With the 2008 WSOP rounding the corner it is going to be interesting to see this year how many people that win a seat in one of the online poker sites actually play in the World Series of Poker.
Last year, things changed for the online poker rooms who were sending players to the WSOP and this was probably most felt by PokerStars, who has consistently qualified more players to the WSOP than any other online poker room. In 2004 and 2005 and I believe in 2006 the powers that be allowed poker rooms like poker stars to purchase the seats for their qualified players directly.
Today, this has changed.
The online poker rooms can not purchase the main event seat for players and provide them with a ticket. Today, online poker rooms have to provide the player the funds to purchase the seat and rely on the players to make the purchase themselves. And we all know that there is a big difference in getting a 'ticket' to the WSOP than getting the $10 grand in your hand and then turning that over for a seat in the main event...
This year, Poker Stars is sending over 1,000 players to the WSOP and other sites like FullTilt are already qualifying players and have been announcing a 150 seat WSOP main event guarantee, but while they might 'award' this many seats, how many will actually result in players playing in the event?
Last year we saw an overall fall off on the total size of the field due to the fact that so many players qualified online but chose to take the cold hard cash and not try and parlay it into winning the biggest poker tournament in the world.
What would you do? Lets say you win one of the Step Sit-N-Go's at PokerStars with an investment of around $7 or $8 bucks and turn that into a seat worth $10k plus $2k for travel and hotel? Would you take the cash and run, or would you take the shot and play in the biggest poker tournament in the world?
Personally, I might play in some of the smaller events. Maybe take the $$ and play in a few of the $1500-$2000 events but probably not the main event... maybe next year.
Here is the 2008 WSOP Schedule kicking off on May 29th with Live Action and Satellites!
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