[toc]The number of places to play poker in Nevada is perpetually declining. However, the amount of revenue these places generate appears to be holding steady as casinos prepare for the annual boom that comes with the World Series of Poker (WSOP).
The Nevada Gaming Control Board released statistics showing the number of poker rooms across the state dipped from 71 in March 2016 to 66 in March of this year. Plus, the numbers revealed the total number of poker tables operating across Nevada dipped to 596 in March 2017 from 655 in the same month last year.
This represented a seven percent and nine percent decline, respectively.
Nevada poker revenues hold firm
However, the most surprising statistic would have to be the revenue generated by these poker rooms. In March 2016, Nevada’s 71 poker rooms and 655 tables generated $9,678,000 in poker revenues. Meanwhile, in March 2017, the state’s 66 poker rooms and 596 tables generated an almost identical $9,608,000 in poker revenues.
The $70,000 difference represented a decline of less than one percent. This clearly showed people in Nevada are playing about the same amount of poker, even as the number of places to play goes down.
In fact, while the number of tables continued to plummet, the amount of money each table brings in was up considerably. Nevada’s per table average hit $16,120 in March of this year. This is compared to the $14,775 recorded in March 2016.
The Strip leads the poker market
Clark County is clearly the center of Nevada’s poker universe. It is home to 40 of the state’s 66 poker rooms. This includes the famed Las Vegas Strip, which accounts for 20 of the state’s poker rooms and 277 of its tables. The Strip also accounts for 63 percent of the total poker revenue generated in the state.
The Clark County and Las Vegas Strip poker revenue numbers are about to get a huge boost as well. The annual WSOP kicks off at the end of May.
The first bracelet events do not begin until May 31. However, Daily Deepstacks tournaments start at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino May 30.
The 2017 WSOP runs from May 30 to July 17. It will feature a 49-day schedule filled with bracelet events, satellites, cash games, and Daily Deepstacks tournaments. However, the WSOP traditionally does more than just draw thousands of poker players to the Rio over a six week period.
It helps draws these players to poker rooms all over Las Vegas for various other tournament series and cash games. In turn, this bumps Nevada poker revenue numbers significantly during this time period every year.
The WSOP creates an annual revenue boom
In fact, Nevada poker rooms reported over $16.1 million in poker revenue in June 2016. This was the biggest month reported by the state’s poker rooms since June 2009. The top month in Nevada poker history was June 2007. That’s when poker revenues hit $17.66 million.
In 2016, the WSOP broke records, drawing 107,833 total entries. This created prize pools in excess of $221 million. Similar numbers are expected in 2017.
In addition to the annual boom in Nevada poker revenues, online poker revenues are expected to increase substantially this year. This due to the fact WSOP.com is running more bracelet events and online satellites into live WSOP events than ever before.