SHRPO Shocks the Poker World With $11.92 Million Prizepool

When the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open (SHRPO) was first announced with a $10 Million Guaranteed Main Event, the poker world was skeptical there would be 2,000 entries to meet the guarantee.

They were right — there were actually 2,384 entries.

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino shocked the poker world with a new tournament — with no TV coverage and not tied to a major poker tour — that exceeded all expectations. The SHRPO beat the $10 million guarantee by nearly 20%, creating an actual prizepool of $11.92 million.

The final 338 players finished in the money, and the final two will be instant millionaires, earning $1,745,245 for first place and $1,163,500 for second.

In addition to the action on the felt, the Seminole Hard Rock scheduled free VIP entertainment for the players on the first four nights of the tournament.

The tournament attracted a broad mix of poker pros and local dreamers, many of whom entered via $575 satellites for their shot at a piece of the $11.92 million prizepool.

There were also three celebrities in the field — rapper Nelly, actress Shannon Elizabeth, and actor/DJ Danny Masterson. All three survived to Day 2, and Elizabeth and Masterson both finished in the money, with Elizabeth earning $11,635 for 165th place, and Masterson earning $14,544 for 112th.

The final table is scheduled to begin at 12:00 noon on Wednesday, with the final six players guaranteed at least $378,138 and battling for the $1.7 million top prize. And even though this tournament isn’t yet over, there is already talk in the poker world about what the SHRPO will have in store in 2014.