Continued Worries Over COVID Will Likely Restrain Numbers This Year

Published on April 3rd, 2021 3:04 pm EST

The big tournament in Vegas is a global event.The 2019 World Series of Poker main event ended up with a total of 8,569 entrants, narrowly missing out on beating the record owned by the 2006 World Series of Poker (8,773 entrants).

Most people assumed that the 2020 WSOP main event would set the record, given the growing number of US states offering legal online poker.

COVID-19 came around, of course, and changed all of that.


Earlier this week, the World Series of Poker announced plans for a full WSOP 2021 series, to be hosted this fall in Las Vegas.

There has been a great deal of optimism after the announcement of the event, as some believe that the main event could set the attendance record this year.

This optimism seems misplaced for this year, though the 2022 World Series of Poker main event, in our opinion, will easily break the entrant record.


The 2021 World Series of Poker is set to start in less than six months, as it is set to officially get underway in late September.

While countries like the United States are doing well in terms of vaccinating their citizens, other countries (like Canada) are lagging far behind. This will have an impact on attendance numbers this year.

In addition, I would expect that many people will elect not to travel this year, even if they have been vaccinated. If you are a poker player in Europe, you are likely not going to be looking to travel to Las Vegas this year.

The World Series of Poker draws heavily from all corners of the globe, and the reluctance to travel in 2021 will hurt their numbers.


2022, however, will likely be a much different story, assuming that everything goes well on the vaccination front.

To start, many people will be eager to travel again, and going to Las Vegas will be a tantalizing option for poker players. Many people have been building their savings through the pandemic, as they have been unable to spend their money on anything other than food and shelter.

Legal online poker will be more widespread in the United States by that time, and I expect that the online poker sites operating in these states will be heavily promoting WSOP prize packages.

On top of that, GGPoker and the World Series of Poker will likely team up again in 2022, and I would expect that hundreds, if not thousands, of WSOP prize packages will be won on the site that year.


While we don't expect any records to be set in 2021, 2022 will be an entirely different story. Not only do we expect the record to be broken in 2022, but we also think that there will end up being more than 10,000 WSOP main event entrants that year.


Filed Under: The World Series of Poker

Related Articles