Poker Central is excited to announce the acquisition of the global television and digital media rights to the World Series of Poker. An agreement has also been reached with ESPN to bring – for the first time – same day live coverage of the World Series of Poker from Day 1 of the Main Event until the winner is crowned.
The winner of the World Series of Poker Main Event will now be known on July 22nd, as this deal marks the end of the ‘November Nine era.’ The biggest tournament in all of poker starts on July 8th with Day 1a and plays down to a winner on three consecutive days starting on July 20th.
Under the new deal, ESPN will telecast an estimated 40 hours of live – on a 30-minute delay – WSOP Main Event coverage each July, on top of 130 hours of originally packaged shows. Any coverage not aired by ESPN will be streamed exclusively through Poker Central’s digital distribution channels.
“ESPN has been our home since 2002, and we’re delighted to extend the relationship into the next decade,” said Ty Stewart, executive director, WSOP. “Having every day live coverage of the WSOP Main Event is truly a huge commitment on behalf of ESPN and Poker Central, and we look forward to delivering to our faithful audience wall-to-wall action from the outset for the very first time.”
“We are thrilled to add the preeminent poker brand, the World Series of Poker, to our growing portfolio of poker-related content,” said JR McCabe, chief digital officer, Poker Central. “We have major plans to reinvent the WSOP offering to greatly expand how, when and where fans of the game of poker can watch and engage with the game.”
“The World Series of Poker has been a longstanding staple of ESPN programming,” said Dan Ochs, director of programming and acquisitions, ESPN. “We are pleased to reach an agreement to continue to carry the sport’s most prominent event and modernize our coverage with the new same day live coverage throughout July each year.”
The planned schedule of WSOP Main Event coverage on ESPN and ESPN2 read as follows:
|Date||Day||Time slot (ET)|
|July 9||1b||2pm – 6pm|
|July 19||Final table preview||10pm-11pm|
|July 20||9 down to 6||9pm-TBD|
|July 21||6 down to 3||9pm-TBD|
|July 22||3 down to 1||9pm-TBD|
Poker Central is planning a comprehensive live streaming schedule for the 2017 World Series of Poker and will announce further details prior to the start of the WSOP in late May. Periods of the WSOP Main Event not broadcast by ESPN will be included in that schedule. Click here for the full release.