CanadaPoker.com has compiled a list of top 10 poker tournaments or tournament series of 2012. The lists have been ranked based on our own research and the feedback that we have obtained by members of the Canadian poker community.
In order to evaluate the top 10 Live Poker Tournaments enjoyed by Canadians, we have examined and ranked the tournaments using a number of factors as the tournaments would appeal to Canadian poker players: overall tournament popularity, prize pool amounts, actual prize pool vs. estimated prize pool, tournament quality and structures, tournament participation, tournament prestige, tournament recurrence, venue, tournament size and event turnout, overall player response.
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The 2012 Atlantic Canada Poker Championships is an annual tournament that takes place in October at the Red Shores Racetrack and Casino in Charlottetown, PEI and the most important tournament in Canada’s Atlantic Provinces.
The ACPC is a $500 buy-in tournament that gets sold out fast with 320 participants. The prize pool consistently hits $160,000 with the winner Greg Walsh taking $40,000 this year. Although it may be smaller than some of the other events, pound for pound, the ACPC consistently hits the mark. It is highly popular and structured nicely.
A recently opened club adding new flavor to the thriving Montreal poker scene, the Stardust Poker Mansion ran their inaugural Stardust Canadian Poker Classic during labour day weekend. The tournament was a $1,100 buy-in with a $300,000 guaranteed prize pool. With 337 entrants, the guarantee was surpassed with the prize pool sitting at $327,860 with $85,000 for the winner Justin Ouimette. The tournament was sponsored by PokerStars who sent roughly 140 players mainly via satellites.
The tournament featured some local celebrities and the prize pool was chunky enough to grab the attention of pros from across Canada who made their way to Montreal to play. The tournament structure was spot on.
The Grand Loto-Québec Poker Tournament was organized to award an entry into the single largest buy-in tournament ever organized, The BIG ONE for ONE DROP, $1 million buy-in tournament which took place in Las Vegas this summer and sanctioned as a bracelet event by the WSOP.
Each entry into The Grand Tournament was valued at $25,000 and most of the seats were won through satellites at Quebec casinos, online, and through scratch ticket sales, making the event somewhat exclusive except to players with deep enough pockets and the only real high roller event in Canadian history. The event which took place on May 19 and 20 at the Casino du Lac-Leamy, saw Ottawa’s Carlos Nahas, who was playing for Keith Hamilton beat a small field of 57 players to win a seat to The BIG ONE for ONE DROP to benefit the ONE DROP charity established by Guy Laliberté, founder of Cirque du Soleil.
The overall prize pool value was about $1,311,689 of which the $1 million seat entry went to the winner, in addition to awarding the top 15 finalists a trip to Las Vegas valued at $5,000.
Although it has been confirmed that The BIG ONE for ONE DROP will be making a reappearance in Las Vegas, Loto-Québec have not announced a repeat of The Grand Tournament.
The 2012 Canadian Open Poker Championships (COPC) featured 10 tournaments with total prize pools shy of $500k that took place at the Deerfoot Casino in Calgary. The COPC is popular tournament series organized by the Canadian Poker Tour with a variety of tournaments to suit any poker player and includes the signature Heads Up Championship, one of the few times you will see a $5,000 Heads Up tournament in Canada which sets it apart from other tournament series. This year’s HU was won by Terrence Chan who earned $32,000 for his win. There were a total of 700 entrants throughout the ten events at the 2012 COPC.
The 2012 Manitoba Poker Open took place at McPhillips Station Casino in April and consisted of three tournaments: a $300 NLH bounty, $600 NLH and the main event being an $1,100 buy-in attracting 170 players for a $170,000 prize pool with the winner of 2012 Kyle Doberstein receiving $45,620.
It is Manitoba’s largest tournament series and had a prize pool just short of $400K with 698 entrants.
The Casino Regina Station Poker Classic and Harvest Poker Classic are two extremely popular tournaments representing the mid-West. They manage to attract players primarily from Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta, Ontario and being three hours from the border, some U.S. players also make the drive up.
The Station Poker Classic runs in March and is made up of four tournaments NLH Freeze-Out with $600, $700, 800 and $1,100 buy-ins. All four tournaments combined managed to generate $471 thousand in prize pools at the 2012 Station Poker Classic with a total of 674 entrants.
The Harvest Poker Classic runs in November and comprise of four NLH Freeze-Out tournaments with $300, $700, $800 and $1,100 buy-ins. The 2012 Harvest Poker Classic achieved a prize pool of almost $486 thousand with 693 entrants.
The tournaments are very popular year after year with very good player attendance.