THE WEEKLY SHUFFLE, 2009-12-06, by OzoneThis week, we've graded the multi-table tournament (MTT) offerings of some popular online poker rooms.
Party Poker has a nice tournament schedule with a wide selection. One downside of their tournaments, or upside depending on how you look at it, is that a lot of their tournaments use a turbo blind structure. Personally, I don't like turbo tournaments as they tend to be even more of a crap-shoot than tournaments already are to begin with. Many of Party Poker's scheduled MTTs have a guaranteed prize pool. This is nice as tournaments will occasionally have a small overlay.
The flagship tournament at Party Poker is the Monthly Million, a $600+$40 buy-in event held on the first Sunday of each month. This is an awesome tournament with a huge prize pool, great structure and weak competition since most of the participants are satellite winners.
Ease of Competition: B
Everest Poker's tournaments have gotten a lot better in the past couple of years, but there's still a lot lacking. There are two issues with Everest's tournaments. First, they're uninteresting. Most of them have a buy-in of $5-$20 and feature little gimmicks (like rebuys, turbo structure, shootout style, etc). Second, their field sizes are usually pretty small. Much of the appeal of MTTs is the big overlay in store for the winner. At Everest, it's hard to find huge prize pools. There is one exception to this, on the first Sunday of every month there is a $336+$24 buy-in $250,000 guaranteed event which is one of the larger tournaments on the internet that day.
Ease of Competition: B
Mansion Poker is on the iPoker Network which is one of the largest online poker networks out there. When it comes to MTTs, large networks are always a huge plus. Once a year, they host the European Championships of Online Poker (ECOOP) which is a hugely popular online tournament series. The championship event for this tournament takes place on the day this article was published on PokerTips. It features a $1,500+$80 buy-in with a guaranteed prize pool of $1.5 million. This is one of the largest annual online tournaments and is a testament to the offerings at Mansion Poker; sites on smaller networks would have no chance of running such a huge event.
One gripe about Mansion's tournaments is that they're often for very small buy-ins ($3-$10). I think a network this large could probably find enough interest in mid- to high-stakes tournaments appearing on the schedule more frequently.
Ease of Competition: A
888 Poker's MTTs are a haven for players with a microscopic bankroll. They regularly run events with a buy-in of $1 or less. Serious players won't find much to their interest at this site except for their $80,000 guaranteed event held every Sunday with a buy-in of $120. There is also a daily $50+$5 event with a guaranteed prize pool of $20,000 that is pretty good. The nice thing about Pacific's tournaments is that their software is fast and structures are pretty good. Value-oriented players would like 888 Poker's MTTs. Most everyone else would probably never think of playing them.
Ease of Competition: B-
bwin's MTTs are pretty good thanks to their network, OnGame, which is one of the larger poker networks. The OnGame network has some of the fastest software which is great for MTT players. This is a good site for small- to mid-stakes grinders since a lot of their events feature a buy-in of $10-$30 with pretty weak competition. Most of their events have a guaranteed prize pool which is also a plus. If you're fortune enough to ever win a huge score on this network, try to use a little more sense than our forum members kid hustlr and brendo who decided to chip dump $160,000 as a means of cashing out.
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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