We continue our countdown of the world’s most prestigious poker tournaments. Today we go all the way from number five down to the number one event on the annual poker calendar.
5. The Five Diamond/LA Poker Classic – It’s tough to split these two WPT events when it comes to which stands tallest. The Five Diamond was the very first WPT event ever held back in 2002 with Gus Hansen prevailing and as it has grown its list of winners has included the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Joe Hachem, Chino Rheem and Antonio Esfandiari. The L.A. Poker Classic is similarly sought after and is responsible for the two biggest prize pools in WPT history outside of the WPT World Championship.
4. EPT Monte Carlo – Much like the WPT World Championship, EPT Monte Carlo serves as the European Poker Tour’s grand final and as such is considered the cream of the crop. The last of the EPT’s 13 annual stops, it also boasts a €25,000 buy-in which makes for small but world class fields. This year’s final table boasted the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Johnny Lodden, Jason Mercier, Grant Levy, Jake Cody and Noah Schwartz.
3. WPT World Championship – The season ending event on the World Poker Tour is also the most popular with a proud history over the last 11 years. Boasting a US$25,000 buy-in, like all big money events its numbers have dropped since “Black Friday” rocked the poker world but at its peak in 2007 it attracted a huge field of 639 with Carlos Mortensen going all the way to win a first prize of almost US$4 million! It has traditionally been held at the Bellagio in Las Vegas but will move to the Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City for the first time in 2014.
2. WSOP $50k Players’ Championship – The US$50,000 entry fee means this event is out of reach for most, but as far as the pros are concerned the Players’ Championship is the truest test of a player’s all-round poker skill. It is a mix of eight different poker formats including Hold’em, Omaha, Lowball, Razz and Stud and invariably attracts the best of the best each year. The trophy is named after the inaugural winner, the legendary Chip Reese, while others to prevail include Freddy Deeb, Scotty Nguyen and Michael Mizrachi (twice).
1. WSOP Main Event – This one is a no-brainer. The world’s most famous poker tournament was first played way back in 1970 and although it has now grown into a series of 62 separate events – all of them offering a coveted WSOP bracelet. But the Main Event remains the one tournament every single poker player the world over dreams of winning. Each year it attracts a field of around 6,500 players with a first prize in excess of US$8 million. And rest assured, if you win this one people will always remember your name!