LOS ANGELES (AP) - Six players will compete in a winner-take-all
$60 million poker tournament next summer in what's believed to be
the largest single-day payout in the history of sports on
Fox Sports Net and Mansionpoker.net reached agreement on a
three-year deal, with the pots growing to $75 million in 2007 and
$100 million in 2008 for the one-day competitions at the Crown
Casino in Melbourne, Australia.
The first tournament is scheduled July 12 and will last at least
six hours and perhaps up to 10 hours, according to George
Greenberg, the executive vice president of programming and
production for FSN.
"This event will transcend poker in the United States and take
on a global platform,'' Greenberg said Monday. ``It'll be the
largest single payday in the history of sports and will turn the
poker world on its ear."
Phil Ivey, who has a reputation as one of the world's best Texas
Hold 'em players, will be one of the six taking part. Identity of
the others will be announced later, Greenberg said, adding that the
entry fee for each of the six is $10 million.
Poker has grown greatly in popularity since television became
involved in recent years. FSN, ESPN, NBC-TV, the Travel Channel,
GSN and Bravo have all presented TV series.
Perhaps the most popular televised event has been the World
Series of Poker. Joseph Hachem of Australia collected $7.5 million
for winning the main event of the 36th World Series in Las Vegas
last summer. A field of 5,619 entered the $10,000 buy-in Texas Hold
'em tournament. Each of the nine players who reached the final
table won at least $1 million.