Daniel - Poker Journal
Harrah's dun' good... real good28 May 2008
Tomorrow at 9:00am the doors open to the public. Today, after doing my radio interview schedule I had a chance to take a look at the Amazon room where the WSOP is held. There is something special about being in that room when it is completely empty- the calm before the storm. I looked around and envisioned the packed house and there was just something special about it.
You all are going to absolutely love all of the hard work they have put into this year's WSOP. It's just incredible, and sometimes I just don't think people realize how big of a task running the WSOP is. I want to share with you some highlights from my snooping:
WSOP Structures- the PAC worked very hard on this year's structures and I give them my seal of approval. The limit events have been sped up a tiny bit early in favor of more play at the later stages.
Buy in Options- whether you are on a big bankroll looking for bigger buy in events, or a low roller looking to grind on the smaller circuit, there are plenty of tournaments to satisfy everyone. New $10,000 buy in championship events could become something really special.
Satellite Room- there is a separate room outside of the Amazon (not in a tent, but in one of the other convention rooms) dedicated to satellites. There is also a dedicated cage for satellite players only inside of that room.
No Tent- there will be no poker played in a tent this year. All tables are indoors.
Aces Club Lounge and Game Room- for $2500 players had the opportunity to receive access to both a lounge as well as a game room equipped with a pool table, golf simulator, etc. so I'm told. I didn't not actually see the game room. Before people scream "More money for Harrah's!" they should understand that the money goes toward charity. In fact, last year's VIP definitely cost Harrah's money. Unfortunately, I think all of the VIP packages have now been sold out.
Sushi and Noodle Bar- you are not going to believe where they put this! Let's just say it's very close to the poker tournament area, is essentially a sit down, first come first serve restaurant that I'm sure is going to be packed.
Food Area-remember the tent? Well, the food area takes over there and is very spacious. Also, it's not a tent. It's a much more stable construction with better circulation.
Registration Room-remember the hectic lines leading into the Amazon room? Well, there is now a completely separate room solely dedicated to tournament registration. Probably the greatest change to the set up for this year's WSOP is the usage of space. Things are well spread out which should help in dealing with congestion issues in years past.
Color Coded Time Clocks-remember last year looking over at a tournament clock and not having a clue what tournament it's for? Well, this year the clocks will be color coded. So if you are in, say, the $1500 NL your clock may be purple, and if you are in the $2500 Omaha 8 it might be blue. Also, there are plasmas everywhere so you should never be in a spot where you can't see one. Lastly, the table breaking order will also be posted on these clocks!
Elevated Media Area- There is an elevated area for bloggers and media to cover the tournament. This is going to help make their job easier as they should be able to survey the whole room from where they are. Plus, while they are working they are out of the way.
Dedicated cashier for live games- There is a section for cash games, and those players will have a dedicated cashier cage just for cash games.
Four High Limit Cash Tables- in the interest of privacy for high limit players, there are four tables set up with borders to it so that people can't look at your cards before you do!
More Food Options in More Spots- I already mentioned the Sushi bar being close by, but there also appear to be more fast food options for those interested. I saw a Pizza Hut stand, a Krispy Creme, and a coffee shop right outside the poker room.
Guys, it's incredible. Seriously incredible. I'm not one to throw around praise when it's unwarranted, but in this case, it's warranted. From what I can tell, all bases appear to be covered. With such a huge task I imagine something may have been left out, but from what I can tell, this year's WSOP is shaping up to be the best WSOP ever. Wait until you see what I'm talking about. If you don't think the place looks great and is a huge improvement over last year, and year's before... I'll give you $1. Oh, and no lying!
Good luck to everyone at this year's WSOP, I can't wait to play!