Sunday Majors Rundown
THE WEEKLY SHUFFLE, 2008-01-27, by OzoneIt is something of a tradition amongst online poker rooms to hold a large, heavily-promoted tournament each Sunday. Nearly every significant poker room follows this practice. These tournaments often have guaranteed prize pools in excess of $100,000. In order to allow small-stakes players a chance at a windfall payday, most sites run satellites to their major Sunday tournament around the clock. This week, we will detail the big Sunday tournament at six different poker rooms. These tournaments are graded based on the size of the tournament, accessibility to satellites, possibility for an overlay, quality of structure, and ease of competition.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $300,000
Start Time: 17:45 GMT
Although they are no longer the largest online poker room, Party Poker still runs a huge Sunday tournament. Lately, the attendance in this $200+$15 tournament has ranged from 1,600-1,800 players. Many of the participants in this tournament qualify through a satellite. There are literally dozens of avenues from which to win a seat. Party Poker aggressively guarantees seats to the $300k in many of their satellites. For example, their daily $11 rebuy satellite has a guaranteed prize pool of 15 seats. Occasionally, these satellites will have an overlay. My only knock on this tournament is the top-heavy payout structure. Recently, the 10th place finisher in a field of 1,735 won $2,950, hardly more than ten buy-ins.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $200,000
Start Time: 19:00 GMT
Titan Poker's major Sunday tournament is good, but loses a few points for two reasons. First of all, their structure leaves a little to be desired. Currently, players receive 2,000 starting chips in this tournament. Increasing the starting chips to 3,000 would be a significant improvement. Secondly, they assign ten players to each table. Nine is more customary for no-limit tournaments.
Those complaints aside, this is a great tournament. Not more than a couple months ago, one could expect this tournament to have a small overlay. However, iPoker, the network which is home to Titan Poker and , has been growing rapidly. This tournament now regularly exceeds its guarantee. Several satellite methods are available, including progression-based sit-'n'-gos that allow players to win a seat for as little as $7.
It should be noted that on Sunday, March 2nd, Titan Poker is holding a $1,500+$80 tournament with a guaranteed prize pool of $2,000,000. Since this is one of the largest online tournaments of 2008, players will receive 5,000 starting chips to accompany 30 minute levels.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $80,000
Start Time: 20:30 GMT
888 Poker is notorious for its ease of competition. Satellites priced as low as $1 funnel a lot of hopeless fish into this tournament each week. The competition is probably the softest of any tournament mentioned in this article. One downside to this tournament, other than that it is somewhat small, is that the entry fee is a little high. This shouldn't come as a surprise. 888 Poker tends to overrake as much as reasonably possible.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $100,000
Start Time: 16:30 GMT
This is a great tournament for players who might regard a $200+$15 buy-in as too expensive. Relative to other $109/$100k tournaments, Everest Poker's has a flatter payout structure. High-stakes players may find this annoying, but it is a benefit to small-timers looking to reduce their variance. Throughout the week, several $3 rebuy and $11 freezeout satellites are held for this tournament. Typically it draws around 950 to 1,050 participants, so it wouldn't be unreasonable to anticipate a small overlay from time to time.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $20,000
Start Time: 20:00 GMT
PKR is a relatively new poker room with videogame-like graphics. On paper, the structure for their tournaments is fine. However, complicated graphics result in a low hands-per-hour rate, which makes their tournament structure seem worse than most other sites. Seats can be won to their $65+$6.50 for as little as $7.10.
On the final Saturday in each month, PKR holds a $100+$9 buy-in tournament with a guaranteed prize pool of $50,000 at 20:30 GMT.
Guaranteed Prize Pool: $150,000
Start Time: 20:00 GMT
RedKings is a member of the OnGame network, which is only slightly smaller than iPoker and Party Poker. Their large player base allows them to hold the largest weekly $100 tournament. With an incredibly soft field and good structure, one would be hard pressed to find more value from a tournament with an equivalent buy-in.
At 17:00 GMT on Sundays, RedKings hosts another $150,000 tournament with a buy-in of $300+$20.
The Weekly Shuffle is our Sunday column with our observations and commentary on the poker world. Have an idea for an article? Leave a suggestion on the feedback page.
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