BetMGM which is running under the partypoker US Network is hosting a major online series across three markets in the United States. The trio of festivals will take place in August and run across Michigan, New Jersey and Pennsylvania and feature a combined guarantee of $740,000 in prize money.
NJ Online Series
The New Jersey Online Series began on August 8 and will conclude on August 15. The festival features 11 events with total guarantees of $240,500. Entry fees range from $20 to $535.
There are still seven tournaments yet to play out, including the main highlight of the series, a $50K GTD 8-Max NLH tournament, which costs $535 to enter. It takes place on the final day of the festival on August 15.
BetMGM NJ is also hosting an invitational freeroll tournament on August 29, which will give away $50,000 in prizes to the top finishers. Players may qualify by earning 50 iRPs until August 28. The top 10 winners will walk away with a $3,500 ticket.
Also included in the NJ Online Series schedule is a $215 satellite event into the $3,500 buy-in, $1M GTD Borgata Poker Open.
BetMGM’s previous NJ festival back in June was hugely successful, with only one event missing its guarantee. The operator is hoping to replicate that success in the August series.
MI Online Series
The MI Online Series features 11 events, taking place from August 15-22. Players will compete for $330,000 in total guarantees, the highest among BetMGM’s three US markets. Buy-ins for the MI Series range from $20, all the way up to $1,060.
Among the main highlights of the series is the $535 buy-in, $50K GTD opening event. There’s bigger value up for grabs on the final day of the series, with a $1,060 buy-in, $100K GTD 8-Max NLH event.
The August series marks BetMGM’s fourth online series in Michigan so far. The three previous festivals all fell short of hitting their targets and we need to see if the upcoming series will also suffer a similar fate. Nevertheless, BetMGM can take comfort in the fact that its Michigan room has been attracting higher traffic compared to its PA site, which could boost the turnout for its August festival in MI.
PA Online Series
The PA schedule is pretty much the same with its MI counterpart, only that the guarantees are much lower.
BetMGM PA’s online series will run from August 15-22, offering $220,000 in total guarantees. This is lower than the $270,000 guarantee posted by the operator in its debut series in the state back in June which suffered overlays.
The PA series consists of 10 events, kicking off with a $35K GTD 8-Max NLH on August 15. The festival will culminate in a $535 buy-in 8-Max NLH tournament, which comes with a $50K guarantee.
Like the NJ and MI Series, the PA festival is mostly made up of NLH tournaments, with a PLO and PKO event also included.
Online Poker Competition Heats Up
The race for online poker dominance has become more intense in the US as more states decide to legalize online gaming. Pennsylvania and Michigan are the latest to launch a regulated online poker market and operators are ramping up their efforts to boost their market share in both states. PokerStars has been the leading player in PA and MI since it went live there, but the arrival of WSOP.com could change that.
Meanwhile, BetMGM, which is also present in both the Keystone and Wolverine states, is trailing far behind its competitor. The operator launched in MI and PA in March and April respectively, but traffic levels have been quite low for both sites so far, compared to rival operator PokerStars. This is in contrast to BetMGM’s NJ room which houses a stable number of players.
BetMGM isn’t giving up on the race, and while its previous series in MI and PA ended in overlays, it’s hoping that its August festivals will have better results.