As WSOP in Las Vegas nears, stumbles

Kat Martin Author Photo
Kat Martin
Posted on: August 19, 2021 14:38 PDT

With the WSOP in Las Vegas only six weeks away, the brand is approaching the peak of its annual attention and scrutiny. It is therefore unfortunate that the fledgling online wing of WSOP in Pennsylvania has been making headlines for all the wrong reasons.

As first reported by, the recent $3,200 high roller bracelet event hosted by the PA client had a pay-out structure so bizarre it presumably resulted from a coding error.

Hot on the heels of this apparent SNAFU, another high-profile tournament on the Pennsylvania server baffled players and onlookers alike.

From August 17th-29th, the site is running a PKO (progressive knock-out) series that awards a WSOP Championship Belt to the winner of the final event. Event #2 on August 18th is clearly listed on the PA website as a $5k guaranteed PLO PKO tournament.

Players were naturally surprised when this happened:

"Need some more cards pls @WSOPcom" tweeted "spicy" from the virtual felt.

One does not need to be a poker professional to recognize that a PLO tournament played with two hole cards is, in fact, a no-limit hold'em tournament.

The responses to the tweet were predictably scathing, with ACR pro Jon Pardy being particularly succinct. "Can't be real life," he tweeted.

Here at, we are obviously not privy to the details of the PA client back-end. But as in our previous story on the high-roller pay-out debacle, a little common sense suggests the origin of the problem.

In the image posted on Twitter shown above, the header reads: "MTT NLH $25 $5,000 PLO PKO Tournament Series Event #2". It's that "NLH" in the header that is the problem. We strongly suspect "NLH" was entered into a field that tells the software what to deal, whereas "PLO" has been registered in the tournament name and has no effect on the type of tournament actually dealt.

We recognize that the operation in the Keystone State is relatively new, so that teething problems are to be expected. That said, the brand entered the market in NV in 2013. One would hope by now that check-back mechanisms were in place to prevent these kinds of embarrassing failures.

With the possible exception of's direct competitors, nearly all players and industry professionals wish to see both the live and online branches of WSOP to succeed. The credibility of the poker industry as a fair and well-run endeavor, where players can feel confident their funds are safe, is central to industry growth. We therefore implore to get its act together. reached out to via social media inviting them to comment on the recent issues. At the time of publication we had received no response or acknowledgment.

Featured image source: Twitter