LAS VEGAS - August 24, 2005 - Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:HET) said today the World Series of Poker 2005 Tournament of Champions (TOC), a $2 million, free-roll tournament, featuring a select group of poker's biggest names, will be held November 6-8 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
The final nine players from the World Series of Poker's 2005 main event are eligible to join more than 100 top players who qualified for the TOC at five World Series of Poker Circuit events earlier this year. The event will be taped for telecast by ESPN.
Among those eligible to participate in the TOC are top-ranked professional players such as Phil Ivey, Howard Lederer, Antonio Esfandiari, Jennifer Harman, T.J. Cloutier, Chris Ferguson, Robert Williamson, Russ Hamilton, Yosh Nakano, Michael Mizrachi, Tony Le, Eric Cloutier, and Mimi Tran.
Other qualifiers include reigning WSOP Champion Joseph Hachem, who won $7.5 million at this year's main event, and fellow final-table millionaires Steve Dannenman, Derek Barch, Aaron Kanter, Andrew Black, Scott Lazar, Daniel Bergsdorf, Brad Kondracki, and Mike Matusow.
The TOC is a free-roll event - players aren't required to put up any of their own money to enter - that will award $2 million in prize money. First prize will be $1 million, second $325,000, third $250,000, fourth $150,000, fifth $100,000, sixth $75,000, seventh $50,000, and eighth and ninth $25,000.
"This Tournament of Champions is just one way of saying 'thank you' to the skilled and talented players who have helped make the World Series of Poker the richest sporting event on the planet," said Jeffrey Pollack, vice president of sports and entertainment marketing for Harrah's. "We're especially proud to host it at Caesars Palace, the premier luxury brand in the Harrah's portfolio."
Harrah's Entertainment, Inc., is the world's largest provider of branded casino entertainment. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada 67 years ago, Harrah's has grown through development of new properties, expansions and acquisitions. On June 13, 2005, Harrah's Entertainment acquired Caesars Entertainment, Inc., and now owns or manages through various subsidiaries more than 40 casinos in three countries, primarily under the Harrah's, Caesars and Horseshoe brand names. With nearly 4 million square feet of casino space, more than 40,000 hotel rooms and nearly 100,000 employees, the Harrah's portfolio is the most diverse in the gaming industry. Harrah's Entertainment is focused on building loyalty and value with its customers through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership.