As medium limit poker tournaments series “go dark” over the next few months in Canada, recreational players looking to build a bankroll and pros looking to sustain their own will head to few popular destinations outside the country that offer a ton of action; the Los Angeles Poker Classic is definitely at the top of any tournament grinders list, with 51 events ranging from $65 all the way up to $10,000.
For those that may not have heard about it, or will be returning and are looking to see what’s new, we though we’d do a quick preview of some of the highlights of this years calendar…
Spanning from January 19th to February 29th for 2012, there are many reasons that this particular series is a player favorite; for one, comparably small buy-ins can get you playing for some massive prize-pools, many of which are even guaranteed. A $65 entry can sees you playing in a $100,000 GTD, $340 is good for a variety of tournaments in different poker disciplines boasting guaranteed prize-pools as high as $1,000,000 and $200,000 to first! To put this into perspective, the only times pay-outs have hit those scales here in Canada, the buy-in is $2,500 or higher. There is also a Double-Stack Turbo that is a $400,000 GTD, with $100,000 to first and a buy-in of only $150. Up here, if you want a shot at 100k, it’s going to mean putting up $1100 or more. Of course, this also means the fields you have to fight through at LAPC will be much bigger, though several tournaments allow players to “get back in the fight” with the option to re-enter the event in one of the next Day 1 starting “heats”.
When asked about his goal in designing these events, world renowned tournament director Matt Savage has been quoted as saying; “Players are attracted the huge prize-pools and fields generated by reasonable buy-ins, like online, but they also love the live play experience and atmosphere…I wanted to give them both.”
Game selection is also almost unmatched anywhere outside the LA Poker Classic XX; there is Chinese poker events, medium and high buy-in Heads Up tournaments, 6 Handed, Bounty, Shoot-out, 8-Game, Senior, Limit, Omaha, Stud, 8 or Better, IronMan, DoubleStack, All in or Fold, H.O.R.S.E. and just about any other kind of tournament that a player can dream of on this years LAPC schedule.
A few interesting changes, highlights or additions include that the $5100 Heads Up Championship with a field cap of just 32 players and is now best 2 out of 3 instead of the “A” side, “B” side double elimination of previous years; a good indicator that organizers are “in-tune” with the current poker scene and turn-outs of comparable recent events. A $120 buy-in All-In or Fold gives players only two way to play a hand and should be well received by the action or hyper turbo players who aren’t afraid to gamble or who know and trust their charts. It also appears that the $25,000 Hi-Roller won’t be returning this year, which isn’t going to break many players hearts, though it could have broken the bankrolls of most.
For those that long to sit in a casino and experience 2 Hour long Blind levels, but don’t have the roll for a Las Vegas Main Event, there is a $340 No Limit Hold’em at the signature Commerce Casino series that offers just that. Also, a new “Mix Max” tournament will see players battling it out on 10-8-6-4 and 2 handed tables before determining it’s winner. There are quite simply just too many events to list here that break the traditional “tournament mold”; our players may want to check it out the full 2012 LAPC schedule for themselves.
Lastly, for those that hit the road in search of juicy cash games, or want to be sure there is plenty of opportunity to grind out buy-ins over the series, Savage once again explained; “Players will find many reasons that set the LAPC apart from Las Vegas based series. The cash games are incredible and while players often spread out over the popular casinos up and down the strip, the Commerce has a 160 poker table facility which tends to keep players happily grinding it out at their temporary home away from home. There are games of low to keep the highest of stakes going…the cash just keeps flowing.”