As we unwrap the presents under the tree this Christmas morning, most of us will be thankful for what we received. But some of us will immediately begin dreaming of what we did not get (like my son who was hoping to get a Lego Dimensions set when we don’t even have a video game console with which it can be used). Perhaps we can put that check grandma sent us to good use. Or, perhaps, we can take that check and gamble it up so that we can buy ourselves an even bigger present.
But where should we test our luck? How about the 2016 World Series of Poker? The WSOP has released the dates and some scattered details about next year’s poker festival so that we can all begin planning our Las Vegas trips right now. The 2016 WSOP will run Tuesday, May 31st through Monday, July 18th, with the first actual event, the Casino Employees Event, starting Wednesday, June 1st.
The most insight WSOP has given the public so far as to the schedule (which will be released in full in January or February) is about the Colossus II, the ambitious follow-up to 2015’s inaugural Colossus tournament. This year’s Colossus cost just $565, the lowest price ever for an open WSOP event. As such, it set a WSOP record with 22,374 entrants, generated a top prize of $638,880. The tournament was a re-entry event, allowing players who were eliminated in a starting flight to pay another buy-in for another try in any subsequent flight.
Colossus II is expected to be even bigger than the original Colossus. Instead of four starting flights, there will be six split up over three days: Thursday, June 2, Friday, June 3 and Saturday, June 4. Assuming the setup is the same as in 2015, there will likely be one flight beginning each morning and another in the evening. The guaranteed prize pool has been increased from $5 million to $7 million and both because players complained about the relatively small first prize this year (in relation to the number of entrants) and to try to attract an even larger field, there will now be $1 million guaranteed for first place.
One major change to the Colossus II is that it will now follow the structure of the 2015 WSOP Europe Oktoberfest event and see each starting flight make its way down to the money. This was primarily done in order to shorten the payout lines, since the players who bust out barely in the money will now be split across six flights, rather than all at once. This also means that it is possible for someone to cash more than once. A player could make the money in one starting flight, be eliminated before the end of the night, and then re-enter and repeat in a different flight.
The 2016 WSOP Main Event will run July 9th through July 18th with three starting flights. As usual, the tournament will be paused after July 18th and will resume in November (or October because of the 2016 presidential election) with the November Nine.
The WSOP has not revealed if the Big One for One Drop will be held this year. It has been held every other year in even number years, but it sounds like organizers are still trying to figure out if there is enough player interest for the $1 million buy-in tournament and whether or not everyone’s schedule will work out.
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