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WSOP - World Series of Poker


The first WSOP, World Series of Poker, was held at the casino hotel Binions Horseshoe in Las Vegas back in 1970. Only 7 players took part. The first winner was Johnny Moss, who was awarded the silver cup for his achievements.

As of 1971, all WSOP tournaments have had money prizes for the best placed players. In 1973, a new poker discipline was added to the ”Main Event No Limit Texas Hold’em” tournament , namely Five Card Stud Poker.

Since then, new poker variants have been added, and some removed. There is constant ongoing development of WSOP to try to stay innovative.

WSOP today

The 2006 event saw tournaments include Omaha and razz poker variants. A special tournament for women and another for seniors was also on the bill for this year.

A total of 42 events are planned. Something quite unique and particularly coveted for winners of an event/tournament at WSOP are the highly sought-after gold bracelets, which all tournament winners receive in addition to a pot of money. The gold bracelet for ”Main Event – no limit texas Hold’em” in particular is very sought after. Another reason for the popularity of this event is million dollar prize for the winner.

Famous poker personalities at WSOP

Some of the most famous poker celebrities are known from their achievements at WSOP. Johnny Chan and Doyle Brunson are the 2 poker celebrities to have won the most. Both have won 2 bracelets each. Next is Phil Hellmuth with 9 wins.

The 2005 WSOP saw approx. $53,000,000 in the main pot for the Main Event, with the first prize being $7,500,500, won by Joe Hachem from Australia. (An interesting fact is that this man was allowed to get his winnings paid tax free in Australia. This is because the Australian tax authorities did not think this was his main job, just a hobby! ).

Media interest in WSOP

With the enormous interest in online poker in recent years, WSOP has experienced increased focus from the global media. Media interest brings well-known actors who perform under sponsorship, often from online poker rooms. This trend led to actress Jennifer Tilly winning the women’s WSOP in 2005 at No Limit Texas Hold’em.

Number of participants

The number of participants in the annual WSOP increases year after year. Recent years have in fact seen an almost explosive rise . In the year 2000, 4,780 people signed up to the various WSOP sections. But this number was nothing compared to 2005, when numbers rose to 23,000!!! The main tournament at WSOP is called the Main Event, and this had 839 participants in 2003, a figure which rose to 2576 in 2004, and more than doubled to 5619 in 2005. A limit of 8,000 was set for the Main Event in 2006. TV poker has been a main contributor to the rise in participant numbers. World Poker Tour and other poker programmes result in a steady stream of new players. The competition between online poker sites has also meant that you can qualify and win a seat at WSOP for a relatively low price. This means that normal people, who are not poker sharks or make a living from playing poker have a chance to go to Las Vegas and take part in WSOP.

Prize money

The prizes for WSOP depend on the number of participants. The more poker players there are, the more money in the prize money for the top positions in the various sections. The casino hotel where WSOP is held takes a small rake percentage, but the rest is given as prize money.

World Series of Poker Champions

Below is an updated list of WSOP winners of the Main Event over the years.

  • 1970 - Johnny Moss
  • 1971 - Johnny Moss
  • 1972 - Amarillo Slim Preston
  • 1973 - Puggy Pearson
  • 1974 - Johnny Moss
  • 1975 - Sailor Roberts
  • 1976 - Doyle Brunson
  • 1977 - Doyle Brunson
  • 1978 - Bobby Baldwin
  • 1979 - Hal Fowler
  • 1980 - Stu Ungar
  • 1981 - Stu Ungar
  • 1982 - Jack Straus
  • 1983 - Tom McEvoy
  • 1984 - Jack Keller
  • 1985 - Bill Smith
  • 1986 - Berry Johnston
  • 1987 - Johnny Chan
  • 1988 - Johnny Chan
  • 1989 - Phil Hellmuth Jr.
  • 1990 - Mansour Matloubi
  • 1991 - Brad Daugherty
  • 1992 - Hamid Datsmalchi
  • 1993 - Jim Bechtel
  • 1994 - Russ Hamilton
  • 1995 - Dan Harrington
  • 1996 - Huck Seed
  • 1997 - Stu Ungar
  • 1998 - Scotty Nguyen
  • 1999 - Noel Furlong
  • 2000 - Chris Ferguson
  • 2001 - Carlos Mortensen
  • 2002 - Robert Varkonyi
  • 2003 - Chris Moneymaker
  • 2004 - Greg Raymer
  • 2005 – Joe Hachem
Edited by Henrik Jørgensen

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