WSOP Postponed as Covid-19 Worries Continue

Once the coronavirus became an issue in the United States, we began to see things change. One of the most prominent decisions made that seemed to perk up everyone’s interest in the virus was when the NBA canceled the remainder of their season. It seems from that point on, everything started to go downhill. As poker tournaments around the world were canceled or postponed, players started to speculate about the World Series of Poker. Every May, the WSOP kicks off a two month long series with a ton of live events. As the virus continues to take hold in the US, the organizers of the poker series have now decided to postpone until fall.

New Developments

At the earliest, the WSOP will now take place in the fall months, though when that will actually be is anyone’s guess. The series normally takes place in Las Vegas and with casinos shutdown and no clear sign as to when they will reopen, organizers thought it best to look several months out. The series normally takes place at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino.

Ty Stewart, the WSOP executive director, commented that the WSOP is committed to running the series but need more time to offer the same scale of events and protect guests and staff members. In the meantime, players will find WSOP action online via scheduled events including the WSOP Circuit Super Online Series.

Rumors Spreading

Now that the series has been postponed, the rumor mill is swirling with activity. Some people think the WSOP will go online while others think that the delay is just to modify the schedule and of course wait until casinos are back open.

If the WSOP did decide to go online, they would be limiting their audience. Only a select handful of states offer World Series of Poker gaming legally online. If the WSOP does go online, they would be limiting play to players on an international level and those in these states. Normally, players travel from all over the world to take part in the series, from other countries as well as other states in the US.

If the WSOP is strictly looking at moving dates, will the fall even be an option? Think about previous WSOPs. Tens of thousands of players all packed into one convention space with several players at multiple tables. You have decks and poker chips being touched, which could easily spread the virus if someone onsite is infected.

Many considerations are going to be needed regarding rescheduling the series as well as state and federal guidelines. If the state of Nevada is not up and running or able to handle the large influx of players, will the event still go on? Would the WSOP change dates yet again or perhaps make format changes for a safer environment?

It’s all speculation at this point but what we do know is that the year just keeps getting more odd as everything we are used in life normally taking place is significantly changed due to the virus.

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Jacqueline Packett