WSOP Main Event tops 10,000 entries to set all-time mark

2023 WSOP Main Event bracelet
Haley Hintze Author Photo
Haley Hintze
Posted on: July 08, 2023 14:10 PDT

The 2023 World Series of Poker Main Event set a new high-water mark for participation on Saturday as late registration came to a close hours into Saturday's Day 2B play. By the time all registrants had been verified,10,043 players had entered the Main since Monday's action began.

The new mark obliterated the 2006 record of 8,773 players and was due to the WSOP creating extra satellite channels worldwide after falling just short of the record last year.

The WSOP confirmed the new mark early in the evening roughly three hours after late registration had closed, while also posting the prize pool and payout schedule:

The announced prize pool of $93,399,900 and the first-place payout of $12.1 million are also all-time Main Event records, with the $12.1 winner's payday having been boosted by several hundred thousand dollars to perhaps artificially create the new mark, which will wipe Jamie Gold's $12 million in payday from the top spot in WSOP Main Event.

To boost the top spot to $12.1 million required shifting money from spots down the order, making the Main Event's payouts top-heavy compared to all other bracelet events. That did not sit well with numerous prominent pros who commented publicly once the payout schedule was posted. Among the payouts' quirks is that ninth place at the final table receives less than a million dollars, after years of the WSOP guaranteeing that everyone who made the final nine departed as a millionaire.

Comments such as these were typical:

As noted here at PokerOrg in our updates about the pending record attendance, there was a strong chance that the Main Event could set the new attendance mark while having Gold's winner's payday of $12 million still stand as the record in that category. The core reason was the WSOP's move in 2015 to pay out 15% of finishers instead of the earlier 10%, which came along with a plan to make sure that the top 1,000 finishers in that year's Main Event made the money.

Had the 2023 Main Event beaten the old 2006 attendance mark by a lesser amount, there was a larger chance that the old Gold mark would have been allowed to stand. Instead, with the possibility that they'd then have to explain why the old first-place payout mark wasn't also broken when the attendance mark fell, the WSOP opted to artificially break the mark while also incurring some players' ire.