ESPN announced Tuesday that it will broadcast 16 original hours of the newly-created North American Poker Tour (NAPT) starting in April. The creation of the NAPT was announced in January at the tour's first stop, the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. Two other stops were announced at that time: the Venetian in Las Vegas, Nevada and Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut. The rest of the tour will be released shortly.
"Having the North American Poker Tour on ESPN2 is going to take poker on this continent to a different level," said Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu. "With some of the most important gaming venues in the US on board and the reach of ESPN2, the NAPT is set to bring the excitement of world-class tournament poker to millions who love this game as much as I do."
Each of the NAPT tour stops will offer a $5,000 main event, but at some locations, other tournaments will also be selected for televised coverage. As part of the coverage from the Venetian next week, a $25,000 bounty high-roller shooutout tournament will take center stage. Thirty-six participants will take place in this tournament, with a bounty on each of their heads. The player that knocks out the most opponents will take home a $100,000 bonus, and with a winner-take-all format, it is sure to create some intense action at the final table.
"We're very excited to bring the North American Poker Tour to ESPN," said ESPN's coordinating producer Jamie Horowitz. "Our fans like big names and big stakes -- the NAPT will have both in excess."
Joanna Krupa, who was featured on 'Dancing with the Stars' and the 'PokerStars.net Million Dollar Challenge' will be one of the show's hosts.
Below is the current schedule of the NAPT with more air dates and times to be announced in the coming weeks:
April 19: Venetian $25,000 high-roller bounty shootout (9-11 p.m. ET)
April 26: Venetian $25,000 high-roller bounty shootout (9 p.m. ET)
April 26: Venetian $5,000 main event (10 p.m. ET)
May 3: Mohegan Sun shootout (9-11 p.m. ET)
May 10: Mohegan Sun shootout (9 p.m. ET)
May 10: Mohegan Sun $5,000 main event (10 p.m. ET)
May 17: PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 high-roller (9-11 p.m. ET)