Borgata Announces First In-Person Poker Tournament Since 2020

Borgata Announces First In-Person Poker Tournament Since 2020
By Lou Monaco
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

Atlantic City has hosted many large poker tournaments over the years, but the biggest one yet is set to take place in January. 
In early November, Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa and BetMGM announced “The Return: A Borgata Championship Event” that will encompass four tournaments within seven days inside Borgata’s Poker Room and Central Conference Center starting Jan. 2, 2023. 
This will be the first in-person poker tournament at Borgata since Jan. 2020 and the upcoming championship event is a genuine one off from the normal schedules that Borgata Championship events normally fall. 
Those are within the Borgata Poker Open series, of which Borgata has hosted five (5) every year leading up to the past COVID-19 closures.  

With a $5,300 buy-in, the championship tournament will begin Jan. 4-5 featuring a guaranteed prize pool of $3 million dollars, with players competing for a guaranteed $1 million first-place prize. 

The final table will be on Sunday, Jan. 8. 

“The return of championship poker to Borgata is a long time coming,” said Vincent Alonge Jr., Borgata’s director of poker operations, in a news release. “Borgata is the premier gaming destination on the East Coast, which includes best-in-class poker tournaments.” 

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Mystery Bounty Also on Jan. 2

On Jan. 2, Borgata will offer its first-ever Mystery Bounty event with $1 million in guaranteed bounties. Mystery Bounty events let players win big by drawing a Mystery Bounty envelope with a top prize of $250K. 

Instead of a normal bounty, players get to draw Mystery Bounties immediately after eliminating another player.  
BetMGM will offer several online qualifiers, with Borgata Poker hosting multiple in-person qualifiers leading up to “The Return,” including a $540+$60 Big Stack No Limit Hold’Em tournament on Tuesday, Jan. 3.  
New Jersey is one of a few states that already has legal NJ real money online casinos. The state is joined by Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Michigan and West Virginia. 

It also means those state can offer online slots, as well as table games such as baccarat and blackjack. 

Those states, plus Nevada, also have online poker.

Two More Poker Events to Start Year

Borgata will also host two additional guaranteed events on Jan. 6-8: a $1K Borgata Bounty Event and a $10K Super Survivor Event. 
“BetMGM recognizes the strong legacy of tournaments at Borgata and is thrilled to collaborate with the team to bring online qualifiers to ‘The Return,’” said Luke Staudenmaier, director of poker, BetMGM. “In the upcoming months, we look forward to offering online poker players various ways to qualify for this momentous event which will kick off 2023 with a bang!” 
Early tournament registration for the both the Championship and Mystery Bounty events will open on Thursday, Dec. 1 through the BetMGM poker app. In-person sign-ups for all events will begin on Jan. 1st inside Borgata’s Poker Room. 
All poker players that wish to enter must have an MGM Rewards account to participate. 

In addition to news about poker and online casinos, is also a great source for news about New Jersey sports betting and revenue reports. 



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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