IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The World Poker Tour® and Bellagio Resort & Casino set another all-time WPT® Main Tour record. The Season XVIII WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic drew 1,035 entries and set a prize pool record for a $10,000 buy-in WPT Main Tour event, with $10,039,500 disbursed among 130 players. First place in this prestigious event receives $1,694,995 at the final table, which will take place on Saturday December 21 at the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas.
The Season XVIII turnout at Bellagio marks the seventh consecutive season of growth for the first-ever event to take place on the World Poker Tour in Season I. The 2019 event also marks a new record for the largest prize pool in 18 seasons of the event.
Among the high-profile players who participated in the event include WPT Raw Deal Host Phil Hellmuth, WPT Commentator Tony Dunst, four-time WPT Champions Club member Darren Elias, defending WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic winner Dylan Linde, and Season III WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic champion Daniel Negreanu.
All final table participants will earn at least $355,125, and the eventual second-place finisher will take home $1,120,040, making it the fourth year in a row in which the top-two finishers receive at least $1,000,000.
The WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic capped off a weekend of high-profile events in Las Vegas, including the 2019 ceremony presenting the WPT Honors, which formally recognized the respective poker careers of bestbet Jacksonville’s Vice President of Poker Operations Deborah Giardina and WPT Executive Tour Director Matt Savage.
“The World Poker Tour’s in-person numbers have exceeded even our own high expectations,” said Adam Pliska, CEO of the World Poker Tour. “This record-breaking event has demonstrated the popularity of poker, the WPT brand, and incredible partnerships like the one with the Bellagio Poker Room, which has lasted for over 18 years.”
“The WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic’s incredible field puts a bow on a strong 2019 for the World Poker Tour and its global casino partners,” added Angelica Hael, VP of Global Tour Management for the World Poker Tour. “The players are demonstrating their continued support of the WPT and its global events, and there is no doubt that Five Diamond will continue to thrive annually at Bellagio.”
“Bellagio is delighted to be the host for another record-breaking WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic,” said Craig Lumpp, Director of Poker Operations at Bellagio. “This event recognizes the best in poker every year, and we look forward to crowning a new champion this week.”
About World Poker Tour
World Poker Tour (WPT) is the premier name in internationally televised gaming and entertainment with brand presence in land-based tournaments, television, online, and mobile. Leading innovation in the sport of poker since 2002, WPT ignited the global poker boom with the creation of a unique television show based on a series of high-stakes poker tournaments. WPT has broadcast globally in more than 150 countries and territories, and is currently producing its 18th season, which airs on FOX Sports Regional Networks in the United States. Season XVIII of WPT is sponsored by ClubWPT.com. ClubWPT.com is a unique online membership site that offers inside access to the WPT, as well as a sweepstakes-based poker club available in 35 states across the United States. WPT also participates in strategic brand license, partnership, and sponsorship opportunities. For more information, go to WPT.com. WPT Enterprises Inc. is a subsidiary of Allied Esports Entertainment, Inc.
About Allied Esports Entertainment
Allied Esports Entertainment (NASDAQ: AESE) is a global esports entertainment venture dedicated to providing transformative live experiences, multiplatform content and interactive services to audiences worldwide through its strategic fusion of two powerful entertainment brands: Allied Esports and the World Poker Tour (WPT). Allied Esports Entertainment was created in August 2019 when Black Ridge Acquisition Corp. completed its business combination with Allied Esports and WPT Enterprises.
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