The anticipation is over.
The big day is finally here.
The 44th annual World Series of Poker is underway and, for the next seven weeks, we are going to be bringing you poker round the clock. This year is bigger and better than ever. This might seem a little overwhelming, which is why we put together this handy guide of the 33 things you should know about the 44th WSOP:
1. This year's WSOP runs from May 29th thru July 15th. The November Nine will play down to a new World Champion November 4th and 5th.
2. This year features 62 bracelet events, one more than offered last year. The bracelets are once again furnished by Jason of Beverly Hills.
4. This year's set-up at the Rio features 480 poker tables spread across the Amazon, Brasilia, and Pavilion Rooms, which should be more than enough to handle the 75,000 entrants expected to take part in this year's event.
5. Buy-ins for bracelet events this year range from $500 (Casino Employees Event) to $111,111 (One Drop High Roller).
6. The $111,111 is a new price point for WSOP bracelet events. This One Drop High Roller isn't quite as high as last year's million-dollar buy-in, it is the first six-figure buy-in bracelet event in the WSOP's 44-year history.
7. Like the Big One for One Drop, the One Drop High Roller features a charitable component. A total of $107,778 of the buy-in goes to the prize pool, while the remaining $3,333 will go the WSOP's official charity, One Drop.
8. The One Drop High Roller isn't the only charity event on the schedule. This year, everyone has a chance to get in on the philanthropy thanks to the Little One for One Drop. This $1,111 buy-in event is an unlimited re-entry tournament that will run from July 3rd-6th. A total of $111 from each buy-in will go to One Drop.
9. The Little One for One Drop will be one of our largest fields of the summer, but this weekend's Millionaire Maker could be one of the biggest events we've ever put on. The $1,500 buy-in event features two starting flights and a guaranteed first place payday of $1 million. It is a single re-entry event that allows players to buy in once each flight. That tournament runs from June 1st-3rd with Day 1 starting flights at 11am and 5pm on the 1st.
10. These marquee events are just a few of the bracelets up for grabs this summer. You can find live updates powered by PokerNews for all the action of every event in the live updates section of WSOP.com.
11. In addition to live updates from every day of bracelet action, we will also have livestream coverage of nearly all WSOP bracelet events. Host David Tuchman is back in the booth to call the action along with a rotating cast of WSOP characters. The biggest change in the livestreams is that we will be utilizing RFID technology to show viewers players' hole cards on a 30-minute delay.
12. This summer the feature table livestreams will be available in the US on ESPN3 and on WSOP.com in the rest of the world. The go to web address for stream access, wherever you may be, is www.wsop.com/live.
13. We will be offering an enhanced secondary stream this summer that will utilize a multi-camera set-up without commentary to capture more of the action than ever before on the secondary tables.
14. The livestream isn't the only place to watch WSOP action. We will once again be airing Tuesday nights on ESPN. The latest poker season begins on July 23rd with two hours of final table coverage from the WSOP Asia Pacific Main Event, continues the following week with two hours of National Championship coverage, and 13 weeks of Main Event coverage, including the live broadcast of the final table on November 4th and 5th.15. If you want all the up to the minute info about this year's World Series of Poker, be sure to follow us on Twitter @WSOP.
16. If you want great photos, big headlines and a little bit of fun from this year's WSOP, be sure to become a fan of ours on Facebook.
17. The bracelet ceremonies are back once again . Each day in the Brasilia Room, we will honor the latest WSOP gold bracelet winners with a ceremony that coincides with the first break of the day in the noon event. Play will be halted in the Brasilia Room during these ceremonies while the players are honored with the national anthem of their home country.
18. Each bracelet winner will have an impact on this year's WSOP Player of the Year race powered by BLUFF Magazine. The Player of the Year race is more competitive than ever with WSOP APAC and WSOPE also counting towards the points standings. Updated standings in the contest are available on WSOP.com.19. The Player of the Year race has quite a prize up for grabs this year. The winner will receive buy-ins to the 2014 WSOP APAC, WSOP, and WSOP Europe Main Events.
20. The current player to beat in the POY race is Daniel Negreanu, who jumped out to an early lead after winning the APAC Main Event. Should he maintain his advantage through to the end of the year, Negreanu could be the first two-time Player of the Year, having previously earned the honor in 2004.21. The Daily Deepstacks are back in the Pavilion Room this year. The popular series will feature three events a day at 3pm ($235 buy-in), 6pm ($185 buy-in), and 10pm ($135 buy-in).More on the side event action is available on WSOP.com. 22. If the big fields and huge paydays aren't enough draw, here is another reason to play the Daily Deepstacks: BLUFF Magazine will be tracking the Daily Deepstacks results and running a Deepstack Player of the Series contest. The winner will receive a pretty nice prize: a seat in the 2013 WSOP Main Event.23. The Pavilion Room will also play host to the Carnivale of Poker, a 21-event poker series with buy-ins ranging from $365 to $5,000. Events will take place nearly every Monday and Tuesday and will feature a $1,675 buy-in Main Event on Thursday July 11th.24. The Carnivale of Poker will also reward $100,000 in added prize money to the top ten point earners across the series. A breakdown of the Carnivale of Poker points system is available on WSOP.com.25. One of the most talked about events of the Carnivale of Poker series will inevitably be the $5,000 Open Face Chinese tournament on Saturday, July 13th. The unique format is one of the most popular games among pros and will inevitably draw some of the biggest names in the game. More on the OFC event structure is available on WSOP.com.26. There will also be plenty of cash game action in the Green section of the Pavilion Room. In order to keep up with what games are running, be sure to follow @WSOPLiveAction on Twitter.27. Speaking of Twitter, if you have questions about the rules of the game, be sure to give our intrepid WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel a follow @WSOPTD. 28. The WSOP Cage is open 24/7 so you can register for all your bracelet action at whatever time works for you. Be sure to bring an ID and your Total Rewards card as well as your buy-in. The cage accepts cash, live casino chips, money wires (with a waiting period), cashiers checks, and cash advances.29. The satellite action is as good as ever at this year's WSOP with single table satellites running round-the-clock. In addition to single table satellites, the Rio will also run several mega satellites. A complete rundown of the mega satellite offerings is available on WSOP.com.30. If you can't be on hand in Vegas, that doesn't mean you can't have a vested interest in what is going on at the Rio. Be sure to check out the official fantasy game of the WSOP, Fantasy Poker Manager. It isn't too late to head on over to Facebook and draft an all-star line-up.31. You may have heard online poker is coming to Nevada. We don't want to play too coy, but all we'll say is that you probably want to stop in and visit our WSOP.com online poker crew at the Rio. They'll make it worth your while.32. Even if you aren't going to play a bracelet event, visitors are always welcome at the WSOP. We firmly believe poker is a spectator sport and anyone over the age of 21 is welcome to pop in the Amazon Room to scope out the ESPN stage, sweat their favorite pros from the rail, and maybe even get a couple of autographs.33. It has been ten years since amateur Chris Moneymaker won the historic 2003 WSOP Main Event. He isn't the only amateur to capture poker's most coveted title though. In 43 years, 15 up and comers have beaten the pros and made the ultimate poker dream come true. Will this be the year we make it 16? You'll have to follow along and find out.