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World Series of Poker Finalizes 2020 Schedule, Players Gamble on the Coronavirus

WSOP Championship Poker Dates 2020

The World Series of Poker has been slowly dripping out the schedule for the 2020 WSOP over the past few months, but now they’ve announced the final schedule three months out. This will be the 50th World Series of Poker and it’s grown from just one event and seven players in 1970 to a poker mecca that attracts hundreds of thousands of players from all across the world every year.

That’s why it’s no surprise that there have been rumblings and worries about COVID-19 – an infectious disease, more commonly known as the coronavirus, that has infected more than 85,000 people across 57 different countries so far – affecting this year’s WSOP. Probably even less surprising is that poker players have taken this chance to gamble on whether the coronavirus will cancel the WSOP.

Laying odds on the Coronavirus

Poker players have been lighting up Twitter with tweets, facts and odds about the coronavirus. Professional poker player Mike McDonald announced he’d take 12:1 odds on the World Series of Poker happening. Dan O’Brien quickly replied and booked $2,000 to McDonald’s $24,000. Other players noted the ambiguity of the wording of the WSOP being “canceled,” so McDonald elaborated on this definition in a series of tweets:

Doug Polk also set a line and was looking for action. Polk set the line a little higher than McDonald, though:

Businessman and poker player BIll Perkins has also been vocal about the coronavirus on Twitter, posting about its effects on the market and even some useful advice from doctors. Perkins feels quite strongly that the odds on the WSOP canceling are different, but he was a bit ambiguous about specifics:

The finalized WSOP schedule and registration improvements

Barring any changes, the World Series of Poker recently announced its finalized schedule as well as changes to registration. “There is no doubt we need to do a better job of getting people in their seats and playing poker faster,” WSOP executive director Ty Stewart said in a media release. “We’ve looked closely at several areas in the off-season and are dedicating new resources – technology, equipment and people – to aid in these efforts in 2020.

“These changes, in conjunction with better informing guests of the required documents needed to register, make us optimistic it can lead to noticeable improvement.”

One of the improvements the WSOP announced is that it was separating in-person registration and payouts. The WSOP claims this will allow them to add more booths and speed up both processes. The WSOP is also encouraging people to open up WSOP tournament accounts so they can register online.

There will also be 20 kiosks where players will be able to print their seat assignments. The WSOP is managing online registrations through Bravo Poker Live and said approximately 20 percent of players registered online in 2018 and they’re hoping to get that number up to 80 percent. “The WSOP Tournament Account is a no-brainer for anyone who plays more than a couple WSOP events annually.”

Daniel Negreanu said about the system: “Literally I went to the registration cage once to set it up, then utilized the self-serve kiosks the rest of the summer to register for any event I wanted to play. I was in and out of the kiosk in less than a minute and on my way to my seat.” The WSOP also announced that they were setting up the Belize Room to exclusively handle registration problems.

If you want to check out the full schedule, the WSOP has it on their website now.