The Big One for One Drop, the $1m buy-in tournament cooked up by Cirque du Soleil founder and celeb poker player Guy Laliberté, is set to go down July 1 at the Rio in Las Vegas during the 2012 World Series of Poker. The tourney, which will donate 11.1% of each buy-in to Laliberté’s One Drop fresh-water-for-third-world-countries NGO, is shaping up to be the most valuable poker tourney in history. Some 22 players have already committed to plunking down a cool million, but organizers are hoping to round that up to an even 40 by July 1. Even if they top out at 30 entrants, the winner’s take-home pay will easily eclipse the $12m won by Jamie Gold at the 2006 WSOP main event.
For those of you not named C. Montgomery Burns, the WSOP will be holding a $25k buy-in mega-satellite the day before The Big One gets underway. The winner of that mega-satellite will be granted a $1m seat at the richest table in tournament history. In the meantime, step-satellites will be held at casinos across the US and Canada beginning this Thursday at which players can earn entry into the mega-satellite. Play your cards right, and a mere $65 buy-in could have you sitting at the Rio on July 1, playing some of the biggest names in the game for the biggest prize in… Well, you get the idea by now.
The step-satellite schedule looks as follows: The Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles (April 5); Canterbury Park in Minnesota (May 13); Casino du Lac-Leamy in Gatineau, Quebec (May 19); Harrah’s Chester in Philadelphia (May 19); Harrah’s in New Orleans (May 19); Harrah’s in St Louis (May 20); Choctaw Durant in Dallas/Oklahoma (May 20); Caesars Palace in Las Vegas (May 20); Horseshoe Hammond near Chicago (May 26); Horseshoe Southern Indiana (May 27); Council Bluffs in Iowa/Nebraska (May 27); The Lodge Casino in Colorado (June 3); Palm Beach Kennel Club in Florida (June 9); Horseshoe Bossier City in Louisiana (June 10); Horseshoe Tunica in Mississippi (June 10).