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Catch an Online Championship Series

by Jeff Shulman |  Published: May 26, 2009


Jeff Shulman

If one of your poker goals is to make a huge score at the World Series or on the World Poker Tour, have you ever thought of taking a shot at a big online championship series?

The advent of the large buy-in online tournament series was back in 2002, with the first installment of the PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). Since that time, nearly all of the major online rooms have released their own lineups, and now events such as the Full Tilt Online Poker Series (FTOPS), the UltimateBet Online Championship, the Bodog Poker Open, and other tournaments are must-plays for those seeking value and a chance to make a big score.

These online series will only continue to grow, as evidenced by the recent PokerStars Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP), which ran in early April. It’s clear that more and more players are realizing that huge prize pools once reserved for only top-tier live tournaments can now be battled for at home, without traveling or stepping inside a casino.

For example, the recent SCOOP awarded nearly $1 million to the winner of its championship event. There were 502 players who entered the $5 million-guaranteed, $10,000 buy-in event, with more than $963,000 going to the winner.

What made the SCOOP idea so great was that you didn’t need a huge bankroll to participate. Thanks to a multitiered buy-in event schedule, players at all bankroll levels had a shot at serious money, as each event was offered at three buy-in levels. In total, SCOOP offered 22 different kinds of events over 11 days (66 tournaments in all), with buy-ins that ranged from as little as $5.50 up to $25,500. In total, the series awarded more than $40 million in prize money.

When the WCOOP first ran, it consisted of nine events and paid out $730,000. In 2008, that series, over a span of 33 events, awarded more than $39 million in prize money — the biggest online poker tournament series ever.

As sites add more of these series, they will create more and more opportunities for every player to win life-changing amounts of money.

You can check out the schedules for all of the upcoming online events at Spade Suit

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