Paulius Plausinaitis went into the final table of the 2020 GGPoker World Series of Poker Winter Online Circuit $1,700 Main Event as the chip leader and he finished the day with all the chips. Per the definition of a poker tournament, this means he was the winner (if this is your first time reading about poker, that one’s for you!). For his efforts, Plausinaitis won $1,236,361.
WSOP Circuit events are typically “low” buy-in (I put “low” in quotes because for most people, $1,700 is a ton of money) and have fairly low prize pools as a result. The Winter Online Circuit Main Event was different. Yes, the buy-in was affordable for many tournament players – reflected by 6,395 total entries, of which 974 were re-entries – but the prize pool was a guaranteed $10 million. The impressive number of entries allowed the prize pool to exceed the guarantee, adding up to $10,327,925.
The top 700 finishers cashed for at least $4,107.
Going into heads-up action, Plausinaitis had a 5-to-1 chip lead over a player named “turkey1.” “turkey1” was able to use well-timed double-ups to actually take the improbable lead. Naturally, considering we know who won, Plausinaitis regained control, building up another massive chip stack. On the final hand, “turkey1” moved all-in with Q-9 of hearts and Plausinaitis called him with A-T, also of hearts. The flop produced a 9 to help “turkey1,” but an Ace landed on the turn, giving the hand and the tournament to Paulius Plausinaitis.
Online Circuit Series all over the place
Over in the United States, the 2021 WSOP Online Circuit Series began last week on WSOP.com for players in New Jersey and Nevada. There will be one Circuit festival each month, some sponsored by specific “host” casinos, even though the tournaments are all online. In those Circuit stops, players can buy-in and cash out at the casino if they so chose and receive special discounts if they want to stay at the property’s hotel.
The World Series of Poker may also add a thirteenth Online Circuit stop ““pending launch of the WSOP.com service in a newly regulated market.” This would likely imply that Caesars, the owner of the WSOP, anticipates that WSOP.com will launch in Pennsylvania this year, as it is quite literally the only state of the four that currently have online poker that does not have a site on WSOP.com’s network.
Michigan is also a possibility, but much less likely (unless the WSOP knows something we don’t know), as it is only just about to launch online sports betting. Poker has been legalized, but there is no reason to think that any online poker rooms will be live any time soon, or even possibly this year.
The season concludes with the $250,000 WSOP Online Circuit Championship, an invite-only tourney. Invitees will include anyone who won a ring event this season, the winners of the monthly leaderboards, the winners of the Second Chance Fast Forward Tournaments, and the top 50 points earners on the season.