Borgata to Host Return of Live Tournament Poker
The pandemic hit some casinos harder than others. The Borgata in Atlantic City was one that suffered greatly from the mandatory shutdowns and subsequent reopening process.
In fact, the Borgata didn’t reopen its poker room until February 2022, nearly two years after the initial lockdowns. And when it did, things didn’t exactly go smoothly. In fact, the celebratory tournament was so chaotic that the Borgata put those events on hold again.
Just this month, the former poker hub in Atlantic City announced its return. The Return, as it’s aptly named, will start on January 2, 2023.
Last Attempt Gone Wrong
At the beginning of 2022, the Borgata decided it was ready to reopen its poker room for live tournaments. It scheduled one big tournament for Presidents’ Day weekend, which was February 20-21. The $400 buy-in tournament offered two starting flights, both on February 20, and they put a $200K guarantee on the prize pool.
Players were so excited to see a big poker tournament back in Atlantic City that they lined up to play. And those lines were a problem, as they snaked around the casino, from one end to the other.
I’m not even there just trying to help.
I guess they are still taking people but this is what I was sent earlier. Just tryna help, BE WARNED pic.twitter.com/gQXY9I7GXJ
— Ryan Depaulo: Degenerate Gambler (@depaulo_ryan) February 20, 2022
Many players spent hours waiting to buy in. The alternate list for the first flight grew until it was simply out of control. And just four hours before the second flight had been scheduled to begin, the Borgata announced on social media that the tournament was “full committed” for both flights. “There are no available spots at this time.”
The tournament ultimately reported 1,164 entries and a prize pool of $395,178, nearly double the guarantee. But the frustrations from players were a problem.
The following month, the Borgata hosted “The Spring Rebound,” a $1K buy-in with a $100K guarantee. That one went more smoothly and built a prize pool of $255,110.
Starting Over Again
This month, the Borgata announced another effort, this one set for January 2023.
“The Return: A Borgata Championship Event” will be a production of the Borgata and BetMGM. There will be four tournaments during the first week of January with a total of more than $4M in guarantees.
Borgata Director of Poker Operations Vincent Alonge Jr called the casino the “premier gaming distination” on the East Coast and the home of “best-in-class poker tournaments.” BetMGM Director of Poker Luke Staudenmaier added that they are thrilled to collaborate with the Borgata. He added that there will be various ways for players to qualify for the tournaments online through the rest of 2022.
The schedule will be:
January 2-3: $2,200 buy-in Mega Stack Mystery Bounty (2 flights) ($1M in GTD bounties)
January 4-8: $5,300 buy-in Borgata Championship (2 flights) ($3M GTD with $1M GTD for winner)
January 6-7: $1,100 buy-in Deepstack Orange Chip Bounty ($150K GTD)
January 7-8: $1,100 buy-in Survivor (top players GTD $10K each)
All events will allow reentries.
In addition, Borgata will livestream the final table of the Championship tournament on Sunday, January 8.
♠️ High-stakes championship poker RETURNS to #BorgataAC this January!
— BorgataPoker (@BorgataPoker) November 1, 2022
To help ease any registration problems, organizers are making online registration open December 1-29 via the BetMGM Poker app, with in-person registration for all events beginning at the Borgata on January 1. They note that seating will be limited. “If the event is old out through online registration, only players reentering or alternate seats will be available in person.”
The Borgata is getting ready with a slightly smaller event but one that is already attracting player attention.
This Friday, players can get in to the $1,500 buy-in Deepstack No Limit Hold’em tournament called the Friday Fifteen for a noon start. Players receive 35K chips to play 40-minute levels, and the first nine levels will offer late entries and reentries. There will be a $250K guarantee for the prize pool.
Day 1 will start at noon on November 18, with Day 2 playing for the win on Saturday, November 19.
🚨 THE FRIDAY FIFTEEN 🚨 – $250,000 Guaranteed! Take a chance and QUALIFY – Three chances Nov 15, 16 and 17!
🔗 Visit https://t.co/lmq7gAO71X for all the details!!
— BorgataPoker (@BorgataPoker) November 15, 2022
After Thanksgiving, the Borgata wants to welcome players to its cash game tables for a special High Hand event worth $50K.
On Friday and Saturday – November 25-26 – players can win $500 every 20 minutes from 11am to 9pm. But from 9pm to midnight, they can win $1K every 20 minutes. In addition, the first person to be dealt a royal flush each day will win $1K.