PokerStars to Kick Off New Stadium Series This Weekend

With poker players unable to play poker in most live venues in Canada – and definitely unable to travel to Las Vegas to do so – online poker operators are hosting numerous series. Players have many choices in the month of July, with the largest of the tournament series set for PartyPoker, GGPoker, and PokerStars.

WSOP and WPT Online

Players of all bankrolls and interest levels enjoy traveling to Las Vegas each summer for the World Series of Poker. This year, many were heartbroken that the WSOP had to cancel its live series this summer because of the coronavirus pandemic. With no end in sight to the virus prevalence in America, the WSOP did decide to offer 85 tournaments online.

The WSOP 2020 Online is offering 85 gold bracelet events, though 31 of them are available to players only located in the American states of Nevada and New Jersey. Those began on on July 1 and run through July. But on July 19, the international portion of the World Series begins on GGPoker, which is available to Canadians. The 54 bracelet tournaments run through September 6.

The World Poker Tour was in the same boat. It has been cancelling live tournaments since March and is unable to plan its next live events. Therefore, the WPT partnered with PartyPoker to offer tournaments online, which it has been doing for months.

There will be a big summer series, however, as the WPT World Online Championships begin on July 17 and continue through September 8. The massive series will include 12 WPT-branded tournaments, each with three different buy-in levels. Altogether, the series will guarantee $100 million in prize pools.

Enter PokerStars and the Stadium Series

Players now have more choices in July for online tournament poker. PokerStars introduced its Stadium Series, which is set to begin this Sunday, July 5, and run through Sunday, August 2.

There will be 102 tournaments in all…and $50 million in guarantees.

Better yet, PokerStars will award $2 million worth of tickets into Stadium Series tournaments.

The uniqueness of this series is in its progressive nature and appeal to players of so many bankroll levels. The tournaments increase buy-ins and guarantees as they move along the series, and players can participate in daily and weekly heats to get to the Grand Final.

PokerStars is making it into a big production, complete with commentators hosting broadcasts of the action via livestreaming.

How the Stadium Series Will Work

It gets underway this weekend, with Sunday, July 5 offering the very first events at the lowest price of $5.50. This is the schedule with weekly heats leading to Sunday finals and then the Grand Final.

  • July 5-11: $5.50 / $55 / $530 weekly heats
  • July 12: $5.50 / $55 / $530 Sunday finals ($150K / $500K / $1M GTD)
  • July 13-18: $11 / $109 / $1,050 weekly heats
  • July 19: $11 / $109 / $1,050 Sunday finals ($500K / $1.5M / $1.5M GTD)
  • July 20-25: $22 / $215 / $2,100 weekly heats
  • July 26: $22 / $215 / $2,100 Sunday finals ($500K / $1.5M / $1.5M GTD)
  • July 27-August 1: $55 / $530 / $5,200 weekly heats
  • August 2: $55 / $530 / $5,200 Grand Finals ($1M / $2M / $5M GTD)

It should be noted that the weekly heats consist of a variety of poker formats, such as 6-max, 8-max, progressive knockout, and deep stacks. Each one of those heats also offers a prize pool guarantee.

The full list of weekly heats and how to qualify for each one is on the PokerStars website.

Qualifying Opportunities

Players winning weekly heats will receive seats into those corresponding Sunday finals. PokerStars will also add Sunday finals tickets for the top finishers of low and medium buy-ins of the weekly heats. And all players making it to the final table of a weekly final will receive a complimentary ticket to the $5,200 NLHE Grand Final.

PokerStars will also award $500K worth of tickets to weekly heats in the regular daily tournaments that are not a part of the Stadium Series. There will also be approximately $10K worth of tickets awarded during daily Twitch streams on the official PokerStars channel.

Finally, players can participate in daily freerolls throughout July, as PokerStars will be awarding 170 tickets to the Main Event.

There is also a leaderboard challenge dubbed the Stadium Series Trials. Players must opt in to the trials through the Challenges section of their account, and they will then earn one point for every $1 spent on multi-table tournament buy-ins. On August 1, PokerStars will tally the points:

  • Top 25 players = $5,200 Grand Final ticket each
  • Finishers 26th – 125th = $1,050 Fast Track Final ticket each

Final Notes

Each tournament – weekly heats and Sunday finals – is its own entity. Players do not need to play the heats to play the finals. While they do provide ways to move up in stakes, players may also simply jump in at any time and play any Stadium Series event.

Beginning July 13, the PokerStars Twitch channel will launch 23 consecutive days of live coverage featuring James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton, and Sam Grafton.


Jennifer Newell

Jennifer Newell

Jennifer Newell has been writing about poker and gambling since 2004. From her days in the WPT offices to covering summers of WSOP tournament action, she also followed gambling legislation to Washington D.C. and women-only poker to the Bahamas. Meanwhile, she lived in Los Angeles and Las Vegas for many years before moving back to her hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. Now, Jen travels less, writing about poker and online gambling from her home with her two dogs watching her every move. In her spare time, she follows politics, works on her never-finished novels, and learns Italian in the hopes of retiring to Italy someday.

If you want to know more, you can follow Jen on Twitter @WriterJen


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