Poker is a fascinating and sometimes unpredictable game of chance, which has rapidly entered people’s lives and will undoubtedly be here to stay. It’s played in private rooms in casinos worldwide by millions of players, which is a sure testament to the incredible popularity that the game has achieved in time. Also, anyone can easily find a Bitcoin online casino where they could play poker. There are several versions of the game, and the most popular one, hands down, is Texas Hold ‘Em. It is a game in which players compare each other’s cards, and the one with the highest combination of cards among all players wins.
Due to the rapid uptick of the games’ popularity, it is logical that poker tournaments are a significant event worldwide; the greatest players are no doubt willing to participate. All of the tournaments are also known for their large entry fees, sky-high rewards for the top players who succeed in winning the tournament, and as pools for some of the greatest poker talents in the world. These tournaments regularly host all the best players who have ever sat at the poker tables.
And the great thing is that poker tournaments are mostly held openly for poker fans, and they can learn all the details and easily follow what’s going on. However, it can be difficult to participate in one of these tournaments, given the insanely high entry fees. With this in mind, we have compiled a detailed list of the most attended and highest-rated poker tournaments in the world.
WSOP – World Series of Poker
The World Series of Poker is the biggest Texas Hold ‘Em tournament to date. This tournament was originally established in 1970. Since 2004, the WSOP has a sponsorship by Caesars Entertainment. In fact, the WSOP is not just a single tournament but a series of tournaments. The way the WSOP tournament was originally started was when the highly controversial Benny Binion invited the top 7 best poker players in the world to a tournament in Horseshoe Casino. The World Series of Poker tournament is held annually in Las Vegas. Although the tournament was recently held online due to the pandemic hit, it will soon get back in its person-to-person format again.
Since there’s not just one but many WSOP individual tournaments, it means that there are multiple winners at the WSOP. Every winner gets a unique WSOP bracelet that’s associated with a particular monetary prize. The monetary prize’s size depends on the number of entrants in the particular tournament and the tournament’s entry fee. Ever since the WSOP was originally created, it has eventually exploded in popularity, and now there are thousands of players that come and compete annually. Likewise, what this means is that the monetary prizes for playing at the WSOP have risen dramatically.
However, the so-called main event of WSOP is the $10,000 no-limit Texas Hold ‘Em tournament. This tournament has become synonymous with the WSOP over the years, with the best poker professionals in poker history all competing in it. The winner receives a bracelet and a multi-million dollar prize. It’s one of the most coveted prizes in the world of gambling. In addition, the winner of this tournament receives the high title of a world poker champion, which shows that the WSOP is highly respected among poker pros and poker aficionados around the globe.
During the tournament’s history, there have been many highly interesting events regarding the winners. For example, in 2004, Chris Moneymaker eventually won the WSOP, getting a huge prize in cash. What was unique about it was that Chris got an entry into the tournament by playing a satellite tournament on the online poker platform PokerStars. This turned Chris Moneymaker into a star overnight, and the interest in poker suddenly skyrocketed. This is now known as the “Moneymaker effect.”
Jack Straus had another interesting experience in that he thought that he dropped out of the tournament due to having no more chips. However, he managed to find one last $500 chip, which he used to came back then won the entire tournament. Jerry Yang is another interesting name in the WSOP circles due to the fact that he won the biggest WSOP tournament after having played poker for no more than two years. It was an astounding feat that’s not likely to be done again anytime soon.
So, with all of the action and chaos and sound poker game that goes on, it can be said with a firm belief that the World Series of Poker is the major poker event in the entire world to date, continuing to draw the attention of people from all over the world. And it goes without saying that WSOP’s place at the forefront of competitive poker is guaranteed for a long time to come, as there’s no other tournament that has the scope or depth to replace the WSOP as the premier poker tournament in the world. So, if you’re intrigued, then be sure to watch a WSOP event whenever you have the chance to do so.
WCOOP – World Championship of Online Poker
If the World Series of Poker is the greatest land-based poker tournament, the WCOOP is its online counterpart. The World Championship of Online Poker is, as the title suggests, the online version of the largest poker event of all time. Chances are that you’ve already seen some info about other major poker tournaments. Besides, the WCOOP prize pools surpass almost any major poker tournament held around the world. The 2020 rendition of WCOOP, as hosted by the well-beloved organization PokerStars, had guaranteed prize money (GTD) to the tune of $10 million. That’s ten million dollars. And that’s not to mention the minor events of the tournament. The complete GTD sum for the entire WCOOP tournament is around $80 million. This is a huge sum of money, no matter what angle you look at it from. This includes $1.5 million in sweepstakes tournament awards.
The original WCOOP event was established back in 2002. Its creators set out to create the online equivalent of the world-famous WSOP poker. And they did manage to do this as, even in the first few years of the tournament, there were several million dollars in prize money. It grew to be one of the largest tournaments, not just in online poker but in poker in general. As is the case with the WSOP, there are multiple variants of poker being played, including Seven Card Stud, Limit, No-Limit, and Pot-Limit Hold ‘Em, Razz, H.O.R.S.E., and others. The main event of WCOOP is, of course, No-Limit Hold ‘Em.
Up until 2014, the host of the WCOOP series of tournaments, PokerStars, showed its incredible generosity by giving the winner of the tournament a 14-karat gold bracelet, besides the cash prize. However, after 2014, this practice was discontinued so that PokerStars saves up on unnecessary costs. The winners of the WCOOP tournaments are better known by their online names. Among the top players who have participated in this tournament are AlexKP, CrabMaki, joao bauer, and others. Cumulatively, these players have won millions of dollars in WCOOP prizes.
And now we have a tournament played with some of the highest stakes that you can find in mainstream poker tournaments. The entry fee for Triton poker events is enough alone to make your head spin. Players cannot pay less than $200,000 for entry on Triton. As such, it’s one of the most difficult poker tournaments to get into and potentially one of the most lucrative.
So, only the poker elite can be found at the Triton tables around the world. The most popular locations where this tournament is usually held are Macau and Jeju, at the Landing Casino. That being said, the fact the entry fee is high has its own perks. The poker players that enter this tournament are known to have their every need catered to. The atmosphere is top-notch, and you won’t get anything like it anywhere else, especially in poker tournaments. That being said, even though Jeju and Macau are the most frequently used locations for this tournament, Triton is known to have been held all over the world, including Russia, Montenegro, South Korea, the Philippines, and more.
As mentioned before, only top-class poker professionals can be seen sitting on the tables of Triton events. Legends like Phil Ivey and Tom Durrrr Dwan, two players with exceptional skill levels in poker, are known to play these tournaments. And some of the winners of Triton are Mikita Badziakouski, Fedor Holz, Jason Koon, John Juanda, and others. The most frequently played poker variant on Triton tournaments and events is short-deck Hold ‘Em. This version has gotten extremely popular as of late. Lastly, given the incredibly big entry fee requirements for playing in the Triton tournaments, you may very well be shocked at the size of the biggest tournament prizes, which can rise up to several million dollars for the top-performing players of Triton.
Triton, as one of the biggest poker series of tournaments in the world, was founded only recently, back in 2015. It was founded by a Malaysian businessman known as Richard Young, who’s also a skilled poker player and an avid fan of poker. The first Triton tournament was held in Paranaque City in Manila, in the Philippines, in the Solaire Resort and Casino. The winner of the very first Triton tournament was Fedor Holz.
Big One for One Drop
If you thought that the $200,000 buy-in for the Triton poker tournament was big, then wait until you see the buy-in for the Big one for One Drop tournament. The tournament features an incredible $1,000,000 entry fee, which means that only a very small part of the poker-playing population can ever allow themselves to enter and play this tournament.
That being said, one of the best and most popular things about the Big One for One Drop is its huge contributions to charity. At least $111,111 of each player’s entry fee is donated to a charitable organization One Drop Foundation. The charitable organization was founded by Guy Laliberté, also known as the founder of Cirque du Soleil.
The way Big One for One Drop was started was as a tournament within the WSOP, back in 2012, as a No-Limit Hold ‘Em event. We’ve said that the entry fee for Big One for One Drop was $1,000,000, but the truth is that there are several entry fees depending on the particular event that the player wishes to enter. For example, the high roller event has an entry fee of $111,111. The Big One retains the $1,000,000 entry fee, as well as the spin-off Monte-Carlo One Drop Extravaganza tournament, which is known to be hosted in Europe.
Antonio Esfandiari was the first player in the history of the first Big One for One Drop. He beat his heads-up opponent Sam Trickett. And so, he eventually won the tournament with the best card combination and taking the grand prize of $18,346,673. One of the most remarkable experiences related to this competition occurred in 2014. The final table was mostly occupied by professional poker players such as Daniel Negreanu, Tobias Reinkemeier, Dan Colman, etc. There were also a handful of recreational, casual players at the final table. In the end, Dan Colman beat Daniel Negreanu at heads-up and won a grand total of $15,306,668.
As such, the Big One for One Drop tournament is still one of the highest-profile names among competitive poker events with world renown. The entry fee for some tournaments is no more or less than $1,000,000, but the Big One for One Drop is the tournament with the highest entry fee in history. And some top poker pros are known to frequent this tournament goes to show that it’s held in incredibly high esteem even amongst the poker elite.
WPT – World Poker Tour
The last entry on our list of the world’s most beloved poker is the World Poker Tour. This world-renowned poker tournament is televised and watched internationally. Again, the WPT consists of a relatively big number of individual events, and the greatest and most prestigious of these are the WPT Main Tour events. If a player wants to enter the WPT Main Tour, then they would need to pay a fee of $3,500 up to $25,000.
All the lucky poker players that have managed to win the WPT Main Tour are invited to the WPT Champions Club. Also, the trophy of the WPT Main Tour has all the names of the winners written on it. The tournament originally started back in 2002, and it was founded by Steven Lipscomb. Fast-forward to 2021, the WPT was acquired by Element Partners purchased for a sum of $105 million, which shows how far the tournament has gone ever since it was created in 2002.
Some of the names of the poker players that managed to win WPT events are Eugene Katchalov, Eric Hershler, Alan Goehring, Nick Schulman, and others. These players alone have managed to earn more than $2,000,000 each as a prize for winning the tournament. Also, it’s noteworthy that WPT has a point-based system that helps determine the WPT Player of the Year. The points are, of course, acquired by virtue of the success rate of the individual players that play in the tournament. Some of the WPT Players of the Year are Erick Lindgren, Howard Lederer, Jonathan Little, Daniel Negreanu, and several others.
As is the case with the other top—tier poker tournaments on our list, the WPT also has a guaranteed place in poker players’ hearts. Over time, the number of players that enter the WPT continues to increase despite the relatively big entry fees, and, consequently, the prizes for winning the tournament have also gone up.
Conclusion – The Immense Popularity of Poker
There are so many high-ranking poker tournaments held worldwide, some of which have entry fees of $1,000,000, which, in turn, is a sure testament to poker’s supreme popularity. If you’re a poker enthusiast, then you owe it to yourself to watch the action that happens at some of these tournaments. Some of the greatest poker players are known to frequent the poker tables in these tournaments, so there’s never a dull moment once the tournament starts.
And if you want to reach the next level, why not get involved in one of these events and see how it all plays out? We are well aware that not many people can make the $1,000,000 buy-in, but there are ways to enter even the biggest tournaments by winning the satellites. If you can enter and participate in one of these tournaments, it will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.