Vegas Reopens to Poker Players and Online Poker Hits New Heights

This weeks big news was the re-opening of Vegas casinos – well, some of them – and how the new poker-rooms have reacted to the regulations imposed by State Governor Steve Sisolak.

By: Andrew Burnett

Back at the poker tables in the USA

Players were certainly champing at the bit to be allowed back into the live arena, waiting lists at almost every cardroom that opened their doors, including the Venetian, Orleans and Golden Nugget.

That was partly due to the maximum number of players being at four for poker tables, the main reason some of the biggest names didn’t open their poker rooms.

The Bellagio was among those who kept their poker tables on ice, though for those who entered it was temperature checks along with other measures to curb transmission of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Within a few days, however, the Nevada Gaming Control Board had relaxed their rules lightly, five now the new magic number of poker players permitted at a table, leading to many other Strip casinos to announce poker was back on the menu.

Masks were optional, however, and many casino-goers in Vegas, including poker players, weren’t wearing them, according to reports.

In Florida, however, there was plexiglass, masks and 6-player tables back in action at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood…

…and it looks likely that most places will be open within the month, after an almost three-month hiatus.

$800million in prize across major online series

In other news, the online game has seen more than $½billion paid out across the biggest cardrooms in the recent glut of big series.

partypoker had their POWERFEST that ran and ran, PokerStars ran an extended SCOOP and the GGPoker WSOP Super Circuit Series made it a huge trio of series. Adding in all the smaller rooms took the figure to almost $800million in prizes awarded, according to PokerIndustryPRO.

The summer schedule looks like adding another massive boost to the online game, with the WSOP taking their annual shindig online to the tune of 85 bracelets – 54 on GGPoker and 31 on WSOP.com.

partypoker and the WPT have also teamed up to announce a $100million GTD series – the World Poker Tour World Online Championships – which will run from July 17th to September 8th.

French iGaming revenues show poker as outstanding performer

Thought the effects of the recent global pandemic may yet prove otherwise, results from the first quarter of 2020 saw a massive uptick in iGaming revenue in France.

A year-on-year increase of almost 22% was recorded – equating to €435million gross revenue – poker accounting for a record-breaking €98miliion, 44.1% up according to igamingbusiness.com.

Player activity, active accounts and cash games were all up markedly, although the biggest year-on-year rise of 55% was in tournament revenue.

That’s the weekly industry update done and dusted for now, but we’ll be back next weekend with another selection of the biggest stories.

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