WSOP Opportunities Await Michigan Online Poker Players

WSOP Opportunities Await Michigan Online Poker Players
By Bill Ordine
Fact Checked by Jim Tomlin

As Michigan sports fans are painfully aware, their beloved Detroit Lions are one of the few NFL teams that has never been to a Super Bowl, let alone won one.

But that’s not to say that nobody wearing a Lions jersey has ever won a world championship.

On the contrary, Ryan Riess – while wearing the No. 81 jersey of former Lions’ wide receiver Calvin Johnson – captured the World Series of Poker Main Event in 2013, winning more than $8.3 million. And that was well before legal, regulated Michigan online gambling sites came into being.

The Michigan State grad was no one-hit wonder. Since his huge score 10 years ago when he was just 23, Riess has gone on to cash in dozens of poker tournaments. And in last year’s WSOP in Las Vegas, he finished third in a mixed-game event for more than $300,000 and second in still another no-limit hold’em tournament for $330,000.

Michigan Online Poker Players Can Join In

Michigan online poker players who want try to emulate Riess, who also occasionally wears MSU green-and-white colors while at the poker table, will have a chance to do that this year. Even if they can’t make it to Las Vegas, they never even have to leave the Wolverine State.

Seven online WSOP tournaments, all offering an online championship bracelet to the winner, will be available to players specifically located in Michigan.

These events will be played this June and July on the WSOP poker platform in that state.

The WSOP recently announced its schedule for 2023. In addition to 95 live events being held at the Horseshoe-Paris casino complex on the Vegas Strip, 34 online-only events are also being offered, including some for Michigan casino app players.

Of that number, 20 are for a mixed pool of players in Nevada and New Jersey, and seven events are open to players located in either Michigan or Pennsylvania, where the WSOP also has internet poker platforms.

When Are Michigan WSOP Events?

The seven events in Michigan are being held on Sundays starting on June 4 and running through July 16. All the events start at 6:30 p.m., ET.

Buy-ins for the Michigan online bracelet events range from $300 to $600, and all the events are re-entry (either 2X or 3X). 

All seven events are a variation of No-limit Hold’em. The seven Michigan events are being run parallel to seven identical events in Pennsylvania on the same dates. Check out top Michigan casino promotions at to maximize your experience.

Along with participating in intra-state online bracelet events, players outside of Nevada can qualify for live WSOP tournaments through satellites where those are available on WSOP poker platforms. 

For players wanting to play in the shared liquidity pool in Nevada-New Jersey, that schedule of 20 online events runs from June 1 to July 16 with a much more varied range of price points from a $400 buy-in all the way up to a $5,300 buy-in.

In the current world of legalized online poker, in addition to individual states legalizing peer-to-peer internet poker, individual states must join a “compact” along with cooperating states to allow for interstate play. As a result, there are technological and legal hurdles to clear before player pools can be shared.

WSOP Main Event Schedule in Las Vegas

The live WSOP is in Las Vegas at the newly renamed Horseshoe (formerly Bally’s Las Vegas) and the Paris, two mid-Strip connecting casinos. The poker festival starts May 30 and continues through July 16. See the 2023 WSOP schedule for details.

The first flight of the $10,000 buy-in Main Event is July 3 with the next three opening flights on the next three days in a row. The Main Event final table is set for July 16-17.

In the impressive array of live bracelet events, several are of the nosebleed variety, including a $250,000 buy-in and a $100,000 buy-in, plus a handful of events with $50,000 and $25,000 buy-ins. In addition, there’s a Ladies championship, a Seniors Championship, a Super Seniors event, and even a tag-team tournament.

And who knows, maybe another Michigan player – perhaps one using a WSOP Michigan deposit bonus – can bring more glory home.



A longtime reporter and editor who began writing on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened, Bill covered the world Series of Poker and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for a decade.

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