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Maybe it’s because the last World Series of Poker just finished up in November, but it seems hard to believe that the 2009 World Series starts Wednesday.  Registration opens up on Tuesday, as well as tournament satellites and of course, plenty of cash game action.

Wednesday’s event is a casino employees only event, so for most people, the events start Thursday with the 40th Annual No-Limit Hold’em Event.  This is a special tournament featuring a $40,000 buy-in.  The only tournament in the Series with a larger buy-in is the prestigious H.O.R.S.E. World Championship, which of course is $50,000 and starts on June 26th.

Another event of interest may be Event #4, which is a $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em Event.  This tournament is expected to attract players by the thousands, as it will feature a low buy-in (relatively) and is only the second no-limit Hold’em tournament of the Series (after the $40k event).  Event coordinators expect that this event will attract players who may not normally be willing to spend much more than $1,000, but would still like to be part of the WSOP.  They also know players who are there to play will be ready to get started, and what better way to get started than with a reasonable buy-in, no-limit tournament.

The first of 11 World Championship tournaments begins on June 1st, with the World Championship Seven Card Stud tournament (Event 6).  All of the World Championship events feature a $10,000 buy-in, with the exception of the H.O.R.S.E. event, which is $50,000.  The other Championship events are the Mixed Event on June 4th, the Omaha, Hi/Lo 8 or Better Split Event on June 7th, the Deuce to Seven Draw Lowball (No-Limit) Event on June 10th, Heads-Up No-Limit Hold’em on June 13th, Limit Hold’em June 15th, the Seven Card Stud Hi-Low Split-8 or Better Event on June 18th, Pot Limit Omaha on June 20th, and Pot Limit Hold’em June 23rd.

The Main Event, the World Championship of No-Limit Texas Hold’em, begins on Friday, July 3rd, and will once again be delayed until November once play gets down to the final table of 9 players.  Last year was the first year with the delay in the schedule and those in charge of the World Series considered it a great success. Thus, they chose to do it again this year.  One of the main reasons for the delay is to allow ESPN, who covers the Main Event, to show the final table with a very small tape delay, instead of the usual months of delay.  It makes for much more exciting television, and ESPN says rating were up last year because of the delay.

If you are not going to make it to Vegas this year, don’t worry.  You will be able to watch much of the action on ESPN360 and Bluff Magazine.  Overall, 24 of the 57 bracelet events will be covered by one of the two online broadcast partners.  If you are going to be there, best of luck and run good!