Paul Rodgers, the former U.S. Marine, punched his ticket to the $5,300 Main Event through ClubGG and now joins the thousands of hopefuls aiming to make waves against the pros in the Bahamas. 

Las Vegas, Nevada (November 6, 2023) - The 54th Annual World Series of Poker was one for the ages, with multiple record-breaking fields highlighted by the $10,000 Main Event World Championship. 10,043 players came to Las Vegas and took a shot at the most prestigious title in poker, generating a total prize pool of $93,399,900 to break the long-standing record from 2006.

Daniel Weinman etched himself into the history books by becoming the 2023 World Champion, and just before he claimed his historic $12.1 million win, the World Series of Poker announced their brand-new tournament series – WSOP Paradise.

Made possible through a partnership with GGPoker, WSOP Paradise is set to take place from December 3-14, 2023, at Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas. The highly anticipated series will feature 15 bracelet events, headlined by a total of $50 million in guaranteed prize money, including a $5,300 Main Event with a $15 million guarantee.

Players from the top echelon of the poker community have already announced their commitment to the series. They will be joined by star athletes, celebrities, and recreational players taking their shot at the higher stakes.

One of them is Paul Rodgers, a former United States Marine who typically takes to the felt at local casinos in his home state of California. Rodgers is one of more than 1,000 players attending WSOP Paradise after qualifying through GGPoker’s free-to-play poker app, ClubGG.

“There was a little over 2,200 players in the satellite, and it was a one-seat winter-take-all. This one was interesting because I was actually doing a lot of work around the house that day, and I was just playing on my phone,” Rodgers said after punching his $5,300 Main Event ticket. “I was just playing my good hands and paid attention when I had to, but for the rest of the 7 hours, I didn’t really pay attention. I just ran decent, and when it got down to the final 3 tables, I sat down and actually started playing, and luckily I was able to go all the way.”

The $5,300 Main Event at the WSOP Paradise is boosted with a $15 Million guarantee, and a win would mean life-changing money for most people – Rodgers included.

“This will be my second biggest tournament I’ve played. I won a seat to the $10,000 Main Event in Vegas last year, which was my biggest. It’s obviously not in my bankroll to go play a $10K out of pocket – I mainly play the $600 to $1,100 on the WSOP Circuit when they come here locally.”

The WSOP Circuit is a popular series for mid-stakes players who love the game and play recreationally away from their 9-5 jobs. The Morgan Hill, Calif., native is no exception. When traveling to the Bahamas, he expects to face tougher opponents than he’s generally used to – a challenge he embraces.

“It’s always fun to play with the pros. I got to play with Chance Kornuth during the Main Event, and I played with Mike [Nguyen] at the Venetian in a $400 buy-in, which was fun,” said Rodgers. “I’ve seen Daniel [Negreanu] around the Series, but I haven’t talked or played with him. It’s always cool to sit there and see the guys that you’ve seen play on TV for a long time,” said Rogers about the opportunity to test his skills against the pros.

Rodgers is no novice to the game and boasts a resume highlighted by more than $60,000 in live poker earnings. Just like a lot of other poker fanatics, he’s often making the trip to Las Vegas in the summers to compete in the WSOP.

“The experience of playing in the WSOP in Vegas is always so great. Just the vibe in the room, walking into the ballroom and seeing all the tables and players. Everybody has that dream of bringing home that first place and getting that bracelet. It’s my dream as well.”

The dream of capturing the most coveted prize in the sport, the WSOP bracelet, can come to fruition in December, as 15 bracelets will be awarded at Atlantis Paradise Island between December 3-14. The traveling poker pros, star athletes, and hundreds of GGQualifiers are all hoping they will be the ones to become part of history at the first WSOP Paradise.

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WSOP Paradise is set to take place from December 3-14, 2023, at Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas. See the full event schedule and player exclusive room rates on WSOP.com.