WPT Championship's Ambitious $40 Million Guarantee Falls Short by $2.5 Million
In early September, the WPT shocked all poker fans by announcing a record $40,000,000 guarantee for the WPT World Championship tournament. Even then, many experts had doubts about the possibility of covering such a large sum. And now the doubts were confirmed. There were 3,835 entries into the $10,300 2023 WPT World Championship, meaning the tournament overlay was approximately $2,500,000, or 250 additional entries. But this result does not upset WPT President Adam Pliska:
"Even before the start of the series, we understood all the risks and we were ready for them, because our goal is to develop a franchise that will become popular and remain for years."
As for the reason why it wasn't possible to get enough players, Pliska cited competition from other poker series that took place at the same time as the WPT World Championship (mainly WSOP Paradise in the Bahamas and EPT stage in Prague).
"In fact, our players witnessed a massive event that went very smoothly. I can't deny that it was influenced by other series, but at the same time it did not affect the quality of the tournament that we prepared, and that was our main focus."
Even though the WPT World Championship turnout didn't provide an opportunity to cover the guarantee, Pliska remains optimistic about the future of poker and the growth of the industry. He called this $2.5 million overlay his own investment in the development of poker. He added that there is nothing to be ashamed of, because the investment of 2-3 million dollars in the development of poker is the long term and useful one.