The World Series of Poker (WSOP) might already be a distant memory for some, but ESPN is preparing to rerun some of the action across its two main stations.
While the November Nine are busy preparing for their moment in the spotlight, ESPN’s editors are putting the final touches to seven weeks’ worth of poker content.
Set to be broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2, coverage of this year’s WSOP will feature a combination of prerecorded footage and live action from the 2016 Main Event Final table.
Kicking off the series of broadcasts on September 6 will be two episodes of the Global Casino Champions.
Going live at 10pm and 11pm ET, the ESPN2 broadcasts will provide a recap of Said El-Yousfi route to victory and $343,256 in the championship event of the WSOP’s Circuit (WSOPC) season.
After showing the WSOPC finale, ESPN will begin its coverage of the Main Event. The first two episodes will air on ESPN2 on September 11 (8:30pm and 10pm ET) before 12 more episodes alternate between ESPN and ESPN2.
For many, the highlight of the recently released schedule will be live coverage of the Main Event final table.
This year community favorite and one of the original online tournament players, Cliff Josephy (aka JohnnyBax) will be the man to beat when the chips start to fly.
However, with just a 30-minute delay on the action and everyone at the table likely to have a rail full of analysts backing them, Josephy will have to work hard if he’s going to maintain his position and bank the $8 million top prize.
Back in 2015 the viewing figures for the WSOP were strong. According to ESPN, the Main Event final table broadcasts performed above expectations on days one and two (810,000 and 709,000 respectively).
Although day three with slightly below 2014’s total, the 1.147 million viewers was still a lot higher than it was back in 2012 (735,000) when the broadcasts reached an all-time low.
Over the years it’s fair to say that interest in the WSOP on TV has declined. When the November Nine was first introduced back in 2008 the peak viewership for the final table hit 2.364 million.
This year’s figures are unlikely to reach anywhere close to that mark, but if the broadcasts can top 1 million at some point then it’s likely ESPN and the WSOP will consider it another success.
To check out the full ESPN WSOP schedule, click here.