PokerStars SCOOP 2021 Set for April with $100M GTD

Twice each year, PokerStars hosts online tournament series in the COOP family – the original World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) in or around September, and the offspring Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP) in the spring. They led the way in the creation of pivotal online poker tournament series, especially SCOOP with its three-tiered events for players of various bankrolls.

That brings us to SCOOP 2021. It will offer hundreds of tournaments and $100M in prize pool guarantees. It kicks off on Sunday, 4 April, and it will run through the month of April.

SCOOP 2021 Basics

PokerStars has set SCOOP 2021 to be the largest in its now-13-year history. There will be 102 official events, and with each one offering a low, medium, and high buy-in, that makes the schedule full with 306 actual tournaments.

A tally of the guarantees over the course of the series shows that SCOOP 2021 will award at least $100M in prize money. And during this year’s series, SCOOP will hit the $1B mark for prize money awarded in more than a decade of Spring COOP action.

SCOOP offers a range of poker variations, though Hold’em is the dominant one with 225 tournaments. Even in that group, though, there will be differing formats (PKO, short-handed, turbo). There will also be 45 Omaha tournaments, six 8-Game and Stud tournaments, as well as 5-Card Draw, Hold’em/Omaha mixes, Razz, Single Draw, Triple Draw, and Badugi.

Buy-ins start as low as $2.20 and top out at $25K.

There will also be SCOOP leaderboards. As players earn points through SCOOP play and finishes, they will qualify for pieces of the $100K in cash prizes in this competition.

  • SCOOP Low Leaderboard: $5K + trophy for 1st, top 20 paid
  • SCOOP Medium Leaderboard: $10K + trophy for 1st, top 10 paid
  • SCOOP High Leaderboard: $15K + trophy for 1st, top 3 paid
  • SCOOP Overall Leaderboard: $25K + trophy for 1st

Main Events and Highlights

Remember when a tournament series offered a single Main Event? PokerStars was the first to offer a low, medium, and high-buy-in version of one Main Event. It has since expanded over time to offer three versions of the Hold’em Main Event and three for Omaha.

They offer the highest guarantees of the series with $15.35M in those six tournaments alone. They will all happen on Sunday, 25 April.

  • Event 92-L: $109 buy-in NLHE 8-Max Main Event ($3M GTD)
  • Event 92-M: $1,050 buy-in NLHE 8-Max Main Event ($5M GTD)
  • Event 92-H: $10,300 buy-in NLHE 8-Max Main Event ($5M GTD)
  • Event 93-L: $109 buy-in PLO 6-Max Main Event ($350K GTD)
  • Event 93-M: $1,050 buy-in PLO 6-Max Main Event ($750K GTD)
  • Event 93-H: $10,300 buy-in PLO 6-Max Main Event ($1.25M GTD)

There are some other massive guarantees throughout the series, including all of these that exceed $100K per guarantee:

  • Event 2-M: $55 NLHE PKO SCOOP Kickoff ($300K GTD)
  • Event 2-H: $530 NLHE PKO SCOOP Kickoff ($400K GTD)
  • Event 3-L: $11 NLHE 8-Max ($100K GTD)
  • Event 3-M: $109 NLHE 8-Max Sunday Warm-Up ($350K GTD)
  • Event 3-H: $1,050 NLHE 8-Max Sunday Warm-Up ($500K GTD)
  • Event 4-L: $22 NLHE PKO Mini Sunday Million ($275K GTD)
  • Event 4-M: $215 NLHE PKO Sunday Million ($1.25M)
  • Event 4-H: $2,100 NLHE PKO Sunday High Roller ($800K GTD)
  • Event 5-M: $215 PLO 6-Max ($200K GTD)
  • Event 5-H: $2,100 PLO 6-Max ($500K GTD)
  • Event 6-L: $109 NLHE 8-Max ($350K GTD)
  • Event 6-M: $1,050 NLHE 8-Max ($600K GTD)
  • Event 6-H: $10,300 NLHE 8-Max High Roller ($1M GTD)
  • Event 7-L: $22 NLHE PKO Turbo 7-Max Mini Sunday Cooldown ($100K GTD)
  • Event 7-M: $215 NLHE PKO Turbo 7-Max Sunday Cooldown ($250K GTD)
  • Event 7-H: $2,100 NLHE PKO Turbo 7-Max Sunday Cooldown ($350K GTD)

PokerStars published the full schedule, compete with a searchable function.

Giveaways and Satellites

Players of any bankroll can play their way into any of the tournaments listed above…or any on the entirety of the schedule. There are regular satellites running around the clock for SCOOP events now through the end of the series.

And PokerStars is putting up $1.6M in giveaways and unique avenues of qualification for all players.

SCOOP Ticket Machine:  This will be the most lucrative promotion of SCOOP, with PokerStars awarding $1.5M in series tickets. Players who enter any SCOOP event will find their names in daily draws for free SCOOP tickets. The key is to opt-in via the “Challenges” window.

Each player can win one entry into a drawing at each stake level each day throughout the series. The three tiers of drawings will be

  • Low drawing: $2.20 – $22 buy-ins
  • Medium drawing: $22.01 – $215 buy-ins
  • High drawing: $215.01 buy-ins and higher

SCOOP Spin & Gos:  The fast-play sit-n-go tournaments play three-handed and award random prize pools. From now until the end of SCOOP, players can participate buy in to $4 or $22 Spin & Gos for chances to win SCOOP tickets and cash. Tickets in the prize pools range from $11 to $10,300, which can then be used for SCOOP tournament entries or satellites.

SCOOP Fast Track:  This promotion is already running and is a chance for players to step up from very small buy-ins to larger SCOOP entries. This is a way to qualify daily for many tournaments.

For example, players can qualify for the $10,300 buy-in Main Event with the $5M guarantee for only $1. They can also buy in at any step.

  • Step 1: $1 SNG of 12 players, winner receives Step 2 ticket
  • Step 2: $11 SNG of 21 players, winner receives Step 3 ticket
  • Step 3: $109 MTT, winner receives Step 4 ticket
  • Step 4: $1,050 MTT, winner receives entry to $10,300 buy-in Main Event

A Part of Online Poker History

Any tournament series of this scope and stature will work its way into poker’s history books. SCOOP is already there, however, as one of the most successful and long-running series in the game.

The first year of SCOOP was 2009, and it has run each year since. The total numbers in those years are a lot to process:

  • Total events: 644
  • Total tournaments: 1,932
  • Total entries: 9,280,540
  • Total countries represented by SCOOP winners: 76
  • Country with most SCOOP titles: UK with 211 (Canada in second with 179)
  • Total winners’ prize money: $151,768,253
  • Total prize pools: $999,353,882
  • Total players with multiple SCOOP titles: 193
  • Player with most SCOOP titles: Calvin “Cal42688” Anderson with 10

It started as a cautious experiment. Would players turn out for a spring edition of the famous WCOOP?

PokerStars hosted its first SCOOP in 2009 with 22 events (66 tournaments) and brought in nearly 200K entries to create prize pools of more than $39.3M. The next year, they increased it to 38 events (114 tournaments) and more than doubled the participate with nearly 462K entries.

By 2019, the series was up to 73 events that garnered more than 1M entries and awarded more than $105M. And in 2020 – the year of the pandemic – SCOOP offered 124 events that added up to 372 tournaments and more than $185M awarded.

This 2021 SCOOP will be special in its own way. Total prize pools sit at $999,353,882 going in to the series, which means the upcoming one will put that total well over the $1B mark. PokerStars anticipates that will happen during opening weekend.


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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