September 17, 2013
Pokerati datamine: 722 summer tournaments bring biggish bucks to Vegas
Summer poker tournaments in Las Vegas generate nearly a quarter-billion dollars worth of prize money, Pokerati data crunchers have found. (Thanks Thea in the Philippines!)
It really is about more than just the World Series. Sure the tournament brand proudly owned by Caesars Interactive may have started it all, but now you’ve got Venetian Deep Stacks, the Wynn Classic, Binion’s Classic, Aria Classic, Rio Deep Stacks, Caesars Megastacks, Bellagio Cup … the list goes on … but all are competing for players, and apparently all you need is a casino property and a poker cliche … and maybe 110-degree weather outside, and voila — tournament success awaits!
LOLs notwithstanding, to better understand the impact of live events on the poker economy, and to assess the scope of WSOP and non-WSOP summertime Vegas action, we looked at 13 different series(es?) held at 10 different casino properties from mid-May through mid July … accounting for 722 tournaments total, nearly 230,000 entries (not to be confused with number of players) … making for more than 1,000 tournament days (whoa, that’s a lotta staff somebody’s gotta manage) in just one city.
And upon looking a little deeper (scroll horizontally) we found how:
- Caesars clearly dominates across low, middle, and high stakes tournament levels — with the 312 tournaments they operate accounting for 43 percent of the action we looked at, but 88 percent of the available prize pools
- Bellagio tourneys may be in a different league of high-dollar play, but even with WPT-branded events, total prize pools under MGM Resorts’ umbrella tally a relatively paltry $10 million
- Venetian held 212 tournaments, with some 32,000 entries generating about $14 million in prize money (after raking about 14 percent)
- With an average buy-in of $185, Rio Deepstacks accounted for 70,000 tournament entries, and $12 million in prize money
- The Hollywood Poker Open was notable, but probably also an outlier; still, might this one-off just before the WSOP main event reveal a possible a soft spot in the tournament economy at the $2,500 level in late June?