Huge news! First off, ESPN has got the rights to the World Series of Poker through 2010, but bigger is that they are going to be live broadcasting this year's final table both through a live pay-per-view broadcast and online. The PPV will be $24.95 and according to the press release, "poker enthusiasts will be able to see all the action as it happens with The World Series of Poker Live! from the 2006 Final Table on their TV screens or via live video stream at ESPN.com, starting at 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, Aug. 10, until the champion is crowned...Viewers who want to purchase The World Series of Poker Live!, can order ESPN pay-per-view at http://www.espnpayperview.com, or by contacting their pay-per-view provider."Read on for more highlights & info from ESPN's Press Release:
This year’s winner is expected to claim an estimated $10 million. The pay-per-view special will be offered in addition to ESPN’s regularly televised presentation of the 2006 World Series of Poker including circuit championships, bracelet championships and the entire Main Event on ESPN with content and preview episodes on ESPN360 (broadband) and coverage on ESPN.com.
The 2006 World Series of Poker on ESPN
ESPN will televise the 2006 World Series of Poker presented by Milwaukee’s Best Light starting July 18 at 8 and 9 p.m. ET. This year’s coverage will include 32 one-hour episodes of circuit championships, bracelet events and the popular Main Event. In addition, the network’s coverage will be aired on six continents via ESPN Pac-Rim, ESPN Japan, ESPN Atlantic, ESPN Israel, ESPN Dos and ESPN Latin.
ESPN has televised the World Series of Poker eight times. The network began its poker coverage with the 1993 World Series of Poker. In 2003, the network produced seven one-hour episodes of the Main Event under the ESPN Original Entertainment banner and utilized “hole cam” technology along with cutting-edge graphics, player features and commentators. That year, amateur Chris Moneymaker, an accountant from Tennessee, won the $2.5 million prize and shot to stardom. In 2004, the network expanded its coverage to 22 one-hour episodes. In 2005, 32 one-hour episodes were aired of the 2005 World Series of Poker which set records for the most money at stake for any poker tournament, with more than $103 million in total prize money awarded to contestants. The Main Event alone saw nearly 6,000 players vie for a $53 million prize pool; every player at the Final Table walked away a millionaire, and the ultimate winner - Joseph Hachem - took home a $7.5 million top prize.