No Bluff! WSOP.com Finally Announces Date For Pennsylvania Launch

Written By Katie Kohler on July 6, 2021 - Last Updated on July 16, 2021

Save the date. WSOP.com online poker has announced plans to launch in Pennsylvania on July 12.

Harrah’s Casino Philadelphia tweeted the news about WSOP coming soon to Pennsylvania.

“The #1 poker site in the nation will be launching on July 12. Expect the best sign up offer, the largest guarantees, and a new and improved WSOP.com poker client.”

WSOP.com will launch in PA through Harrah’s Philadelphia which is owned by Caesars. Caesars has a partnership with 888 poker which powers poker clients including WSOP New Jersey, WSOP Nevada, and WSOP Delaware.

Pennsylvania online poker players waited a long 17-plus months for more poker options. Now, it appears that more operators are finally making their way to the Keystone State.

 

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WSOP has been hinting at arrival

In a Q1 trading update on April 28, 888 Holdings CEO Itai Pazner said:

“We are excited about the US, where we plan to roll out sports into further states in the next few months, and launch our upgraded poker platform into further states in partnership with Caesars and their leading and hugely popular WSOP brand.”

During their Q1 investor call, Pazner confirmed plans to launch poker in two additional states very soon.

“We’re planning to launch in the first half of this year, which basically means in the next couple of months.”

Some poker players in PA have been anxiously awaiting the WSOP.com arrival and it appears that it is finally coming soon. If you were one of the people who traveled to New Jersey and downloaded WSOP and played there, you will have to create a new account and download the PA WSOP client when it is available.

Will WSOP in PA have shared liquidity?

No. Pennsylvania and Michigan are both ring-fenced states. Neither state has joined any interstate poker compact, like the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA) that exists between NV, NJ, and Delaware. It could change in the near future, but it’s more likely that Michigan will join an interstate poker compact before PA.

Pennsylvania regulators have been cautious when it comes to uncertainty around Wire Act legislation and litigation. However, recent developments including a Jan. 2021 decision in favor of the New Hampshire Lottery give hope of possible resolution.

A PGCB spokesperson told PlayPennsylvania in early May:

“It is still not clear whether the DOJ will pursue an appeal to the Supreme Court of the First Circuit decision regarding interstate gambling. Until there is some finality of the federal decision and whether there will be an appeal of that ruling, that stymies moving forward since a compact would involve a contract with other states and must adhere to federal law, and any agreement like this must be reviewed by other entities in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. So, it is not just a PGCB decision. Also, the poker operators need to agree to the provisions of any agreement.”

The deadline for a DOJ appeal has come and gone, meaning yet another major obstacle removed.

PA finally hoping to get a ring from WSOP.com

A WSOP.com launch will be welcome news for PA poker players, who have sat on the sidelines for months as their neighbors in New Jersey enjoyed exciting WSOP Online Circuit events.

In 2015, WSOP added online bracelet events to the live WSOP schedule, which takes place every summer in Las Vegas. When COVID-19 led to the summer festival’s cancelation, Caesars decided to host a full online bracelet series, and another this summer before the live WSOP series in the fall.

Also in response to virus concerns and live poker challenges, Caesars took its popular WSOP Circuit events fully online. The first WSOP Online Circuit event took place in Sept. 2018. But starting in 2020, monthly online festivals for players in the Nevada and NJ markets replaced live regional series.

The 2021 WSOP Online Circuit includes 12 series, one each month. Eight of the festivals offer 12 ring events while four “Super Circuits” feature an expanded 18 ring events.

Here is the current remaining 2021 WSOP Online Circuit Schedule:

Bally’s Online Circuit

  • Dates: July 16 – 27
  • Rings: 12 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Thursday, July 29

Rio Online Circuit

  • Dates: August 20 – 31
  • Rings: 12 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Thursday, September 2

Caesars Las Vegas Online Circuit

  • Dates: September 15 – 26
  • Rings: 12 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Tuesday, September 28

Fall Online Super Circuit

  • Dates: October 9 – 26
  • Rings: 18 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Thursday, Oct 28

Paris Las Vegas Online Circuit

  • Dates: November 10 – 21
  • Rings: 12 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Tuesday, November 23

Harrah’s Las Vegas Online Circuit

  • Dates: December 8 – 19
  • Rings: 12 rings
  • $25k Freeroll: Tuesday, December 21

$250,000 Year End Championship Event

  • Date: December 28

Harrah’s Casino Philadelphia closed WSOP poker room

The live poker room at Harrah’s Casino Philadelphia closed permanently in August 2020.

PlayPennsylvania exclusively reported in late August 2020 that the World Series of Poker-branded room with 27 tables had shuttered for good.

AP Photo/John Locher

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Katie Kohler

Katie Kohler is a Philadelphia-area based award-winning journalist. She is the Managing Editor at PlayPennsylvania and covers the Pennsylvania gambling industry with an emphasis on sports betting, online casino/poker and the lottery.

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