World Series of Poker Paradise Brings Buzz, Huge Prize Pools and Big Stars to the Bahamas

By | December 15, 2023


First WSOP Paradise eclipses $70 million in total prize pool

Main Event Champion to win biggest $5k tournament of 2023

Historic bracelets, strong fields and memorable appearances by poker’s biggest names and sports legends highlight the first winter series for the World Series of Poker (WSOP). Starting on December 3 at Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas, WSOP Paradise hosted some of the biggest poker tournaments of 2023 at various buy-in levels and surpassed its promised $50 million guarantee to achieve a total prize pool of more than $70 million.

“From hall of famers winning bracelets to celebrity sightings and a classic Phil Hellmuth entrance to the Main Event, WSOP Paradise exceeded even our own lofty expectations and became the final highlight of an incredible year,” the Senior Vice-President and Executive Director for the WSOP, Ty Stewart, said. “We thank every player who made the trip to the Bahamas to be part of the action and launch our newest tradition, Winter in Paradise.”

Event #1, Mystery Millions, kicked off the poker in paradise action by breaking the record for the largest poker event ever hosted in the Bahamas and things only heated up from there. The winter series saw exceptional turnouts for its high roller events, with many of the tournaments becoming the strongest of the year at their buy-in level. This included Event #3: GGMillion$ High Roller Championship, which was larger than its $25k counterpart at the WSOP in Las Vegas this summer.

All high-roller event entrants and prize pools can be seen below:

Event #3: GGMillion$ High Roller Championship ($25k buy-in)

  • 533 entrants
  • $13,325,000 prize pool

Event #7: Super High Roller No-Limit Hold’em ($50k buy-in)

  • 137 entrants
  • $6,850,000 prize pool

Event #9: Ultra High Roller No-Limit Hold’em ($100k buy-in)

  • 111 entrants
  • $11,100,000 prize pool

The inaugural WSOP Paradise No-Limit Hold’em World Championship, better known as the ‘Main Event’, has solidified itself as the largest $5k buy-in poker tournament of 2023, with 3,010 entrants battling for the top prize. The first WSOP Paradise Main Event champion will soon take home a $2 million first-place prize in addition to the highly-coveted Main Event bracelet hand-crafted by Jostens from yellow gold, weighing nearly 95 grams and 494 genuine blue topaz round stones.

The full payout breakdown for the WSOP Paradise Main Event Final Table is as follows:

  • 1st: $2,000,000
  • 2nd: $1,200,000
  • 3rd: $900,000
  • 4th: $685,000
  • 5th: $510,000
  • 6th: $400,000
  • 7th: $300,000
  • 8th: $250,000
  • 9th: $200,000

Although this is just the first edition of WSOP Paradise, players and fans at Atlantis witnessed a familiar scene for a WSOP Main Event on December 9 as Phil Hellmuth made his grand entrance into the Atlantis Ballroom dressed as Poseidon, joined by choreographed dancers, mermaids and a marching band. Other highlights from the series action include Hall of Famer Erik Seidel taking home his tenth career WSOP bracelet after winning Event #7: Super High-Roller No-Limit Hold’em and Japan’s Masashi Oya breaking through to claim his first-ever WSOP bracelet to go along with a massive $2.9 million first-place prize in Event #9: Ultra High-Roller No-Limit Hold’em.

Familiar faces from the sports world also attended WSOP Paradise including 2023 Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Tony Parker, two-time WNBA Champion and Las Vegas Aces’ Head Coach Becky Hammon, Manchester City legend Sergio Aguero, FS1’s Nick Wright and more. Parker finished in the money for the first time in a live poker tournament in Event #4: Mini Main Event No-Limit Hold’em and Aguero competed at the feature table for the Main Event with a seat next to Daniel Negreanu.

The excitement surrounding WSOP Paradise builds on a banner year for the WSOP after the series shattered its all-time attendance record for its Main Event in Las Vegas this summer, 17 years after Jamie Gold defeated a crowd of 8,773 entrants in 2006 to take home the prestigious WSOP Main Event bracelet.

Livestreamed coverage for the Main Event continues on GGPoker’s YouTube channel and three post-produced television episodes will air on CBS Sports Network with commentary from legendary poker analysts Lon McEachern and Norman Chad.

Players should follow @WSOP on X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram or check WSOP .com for event news and updates.

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