Details of the 2020 WSOP have been released and many players are now wondering if the WSOP PA brand will be ready in time and be able to take part in online tournament action. In the past, players in Nevada and New Jersey have taken part and will again. As the online poker environment grows in the US, the WSOP adds more online ring events. Last year, the series added even more online action so players in New Jersey could take part as well as those in Nevada. It seems the option to add Pennsylvania to the mix remains up in the air.
WSOP PA Site
Caesars Entertainment, the owner of the WSOP brand, and Harrah’s Philadelphia have licensing to offer a WSOP branded online poker site in Pennsylvania. However, the site has yet launch and no projected date for services has been provided.
In a recent press release involving the WSOP schedule, both New Jersey and Nevada were mentioned. No information was given on Pennsylvania. We speculate that this is because the site has not launched yet.
In 2019, the online schedule was released in February and a total of nine bracelet events were offered online. This was the highest number of online bracelet events to take place via the WSOP with buy-ins ranging from $400 to $3,200. Last year also marked the first time that payers pools from Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey were combined on WSOP.com.
If the Pennsylvania WSOP site is able to launch in the next few months, it seems reasonable that players in the state would be allowed to take part in the online ring events. However, the state will have to sign on to the interstate compact with Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada to take part.
Maybe a No-Go
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board will have to decide to join the interstate compact in order to be able to offer players access to the online ring events of the series. The Board has shown restraint in the past regarding online gaming in general to ensure that they follow legal requirements on a state and federal level.
Earlier this year, the state was slow to launch online casino gaming due to a new interpretation of the Wire Act by the Department of Justice. Interstate compacting was at risk due to this decision. Due to any potential risk that the Board may feel, the idea to join in on the WSOP player pooling may never come to fruition, at least not at this time.
For now, it is a waiting game. Hopefully, the WSOP site will launch in PA and their players will be in the same grouping as Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey regarding online ring action. If not, at least online gaming is alive and well in the state and players have access to such options for entertainment.