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PokerStars Players Championship Makes History as Richest and Biggest-ever $25,000 Poker Tournament

Zoltan Tundik

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Photo source: pokerstarslive.com
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Ground-breaking PokerStars event generates record-breaking $26,455,500 prize pool including lifechanging $5.1 million top prize

PokerStars, the flagship poker brand of The Stars Group, has shattered live poker records as 1,039 players entered to compete in the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship (PSPC), generating the largest-ever prize pool for a $25,000 buy-in poker tournament. The PSPC will award more than $26,455,500 to 181 players, including $5.1 million for the winner, who will be crowned when the tournament concludes later this week. The final table alone will produce a total of six millionaires.

“Passion and interest in poker is alive and well in 2019, and this tournament highlights the global excitement for the game,” said Eric Hollreiser, PokerStars Director of Poker Marketing. “Tens of thousands of players participated in a year of unique promotions leading up to the event and that enthusiasm delivered one of the most exciting events in poker history.”

Players descended upon the Atlantis Resort & Casino on January 6 and 7 and were registering up to the very last minute to participate in the historic event. The massive field is comprised of diverse players from all over the world and a spectrum of experience from some of the game’s best professionals to novices who won entry through one of the dozens of low buy-in and free-to-play competitions and giveaways PokerStars held in 2018. Over the past 13 months, PokerStars awarded 320 Platinum Pass packages, each worth $30,000, covering the player’s buy-in, travel and accommodation.

“This tournament has been in the works for over a year and it’s been super exciting to follow the journey of the many Platinum Pass winners,” said Daniel Negreanu, PokerStars Ambassador. “I had a chance to meet many of them, and their excitement for this event is truly what poker is all about. The turnout was simply unbelievable! Over 1,000 players in a $25k buy-in. PokerStars did a fantastic job making this event happen, and the players themselves had input into everything from the blind structures to the payouts. It’s truly been the No-Limit Holdem Players Championship.”

The tournament broke records without counting the 320 Platinum Pass winners, smashing the previous attendance record for a $25,000 buy-in event, which was 639 entries, and the previous highest prize pool of $15,495,000.

The PSPC has brought together a mix of players who would not normally be found seated alongside each other in an event of this level of buy-in. Highly regarded players from online and live poker communities around the world took their seats alongside some of the finest and most familiar names in the game such as Patrick Antonius, Phil Hellmuthand Erik Seidel, not to mention PokerStars Ambassadors Chris MoneymakerDaniel NegreanuJason SomervilleRandy LewJennifer Shahade and Lex Veldhuis, as well as Twitch streamers, poker vloggers, and an abundance of recreational, and even new, players.

Adding some extra sparkle to the first event of its kind are some faces (and voices) well known outside of the poker tables such as the voice of the UFC Octagon Bruce Buffer, who kicked off the tournament by announcing ‘Shuffle Up and Deal’, former NBA star and ESPN analyst Paul Pierce, pro skateboarder Tony Hawk, and comedian, actor and writer Norm Macdonald. Golf pro Sergio Garcia also joined the event, although was among the casualties in day 1.

Many colourful, and often emotional, stories have arisen along the way, including those of Jacki BurkhartOliver Biles, and Nikhil Segel who all won their ticket to the Bahamas via the Platinum Pass Adventure. Shaun Lennon from Ireland and Dominique Lamy from France were also nominated to represent their country by their fellow countrymen.

Entry to the tournament is now closed. To keep up to date with all live reports from the PSPC visit the PokerStars Blog or watch the live stream daily from 12:30 ET at PokerStars.TV.

For further information, please contact [email protected]

About PokerStars
PokerStars operates the world’s most popular online poker sites, serving the global poker community. Since it launched in 2001, PokerStars has become the first choice of players all over the world, with more daily tournaments than anywhere else and with the best online security. More than 182 billion hands have been dealt on PokerStars, which is more than any other site.

The Stars Group owns or licenses gaming and related consumer businesses and brands, including PokerStars, PokerStars Casino, BetStars, Full Tilt, Sky Bet, Sky VegasSky Casino, Sky Bingo, Sky Poker and BetEasy as well as live poker tour and event brands, including the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship, European Poker Tour, PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, Latin American Poker Tour, Asia Pacific Poker Tour, PokerStars Festival and PokerStars MEGASTACK. The Stars Group is one of the world’s most licensed online gaming operators with its subsidiaries collectively holding licenses or approvals in 21 jurisdictions throughout the world, including in EuropeAustralia, and the Americas.

Play Responsibly!  For more information on responsible gaming please visit our website at http://www.pokerstars.com/about/responsible-gaming/

Asia

Morgan Stanley Report Says Macau GGR Will Continue to Fall This Year

Niji Narayan

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Morgan Stanley Report Says Macau GGR Will Continue to Fall This Year
Photo Source: worldtravelguide.net
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In a new report, Morgan Stanley has revealed that it expects gaming turnover in Macau will plunge 35% this year, more than double the bank’s previous estimate of a 16% contraction.

Earlier, the government projected a 50% drop in 2020 GGR because of the COVID-19 outbreak. GGR there fell by a record 87.9% in February amid a 15-day government-enforced casino closure. Now, the analysts expect the March number to decline 75% to 80% on a year-over-year basis.

Nearly all of Macau’s roughly 40 casinos are currently operational – a few are being used as quarantine centres for screening and treating coronavirus patients – but the Special Administrative Region (SAR) is still enduring strict restrictions.

Lack of clarity on when Beijing will lift the IVS halt is prompting analysts to speculate that the first nine months of this year will essentially be a wash for Macau concessionaires and that no noticeable uptick in GGR will materialise until the fourth quarter.

“While we expect recovery to be slow, we anticipate VIP to turn around faster and Peninsula to benefit from land-based visitation,” Morgan Stanley said.

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Central Europe

Polish Bookmakers Association Calls for Government Help

Niji Narayan

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Polish Bookmakers Association Calls for Government Help
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The Employers and Employees of the Bookmakers Companies Association in Poland have called for government help to avoid significant job losses as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The association said it has seen the number of bets placed drop by around 60% due to the cancellation of sports across the globe. This decline is particularly after the retail bookmakers in Poland closed from 14 March.

As a result, bookmakers have seen customer spending disappear, meaning they are losing money, with no way to mitigate the shut-down.

The association said this would result in efforts to reduce fixed costs, including mass redundancies, with many operators now facing bankruptcy. The situation could result in most of the 5000 staff employed in betting shops, not to mention head office staff, risk losing their jobs, it warned.

The regulated Polish gambling industry has an annual turnover estimated at PLN7bn, of which at least PLN820m goes to the state through gambling and lottery taxes.

To avoid job losses and protect the state’s tax revenue, the association urged the Polish government to reduce gambling tax rates from 12% to 10% of turnover at least until August this year. The association also asked the government to delay the deadline for paying these taxes to September.

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Gambling in the USA

GAN’s Online Gambling Revenue in Pennsylvania Rises in February 2020

Niji Narayan

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GAN’s Online Gambling Revenue in Pennsylvania Rises in February 2020
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GAN plc has updated the market following the publication of Internet gaming and Internet sports betting financial information for the calendar month of February 2020 in Pennsylvania, by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB).

Internet Gaming Win was $19.5 million in February, reflecting an increase of 39.6% from the prior sequential month. Total Internet Sports Wagering Handle was approximately $294.1 million in February, compared to $308.6 million in January. Internet Sports Wagering Gross Revenues (after payouts) for the month of February were $10.8 million, compared to$26.7 million in January.

Internet Sports Wagering Gross Revenues may vary from month to month due to the payouts for future events occurring months after the original wager was made and unredeemed winning wagers from prior months will become deductible upon redemption in future months.

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