PCA Tournament Series Returns as PokerStars Championship Bahamas

When the popular PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) tournament series returns to Atlantis Resort – on Paradise Island in The Bahamas – on January 6, it will usher in a new era for the worldwide online poker leader.

The 2017 edition will see the PCA brand swapped out for the new PokerStars Championship Bahamas series, but despite adjusting the name, the series’ structure and schedule have been almost entirely preserved.

That means attendees will have 92 individual poker tournaments to choose from between the 6th and 14th of January, ranging from $110 to $100,000 in price point. The majority of tournaments at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas involve the staple game of No Limit Texas Hold’em, but the schedule is littered with alternative variants like Pot Limit Omaha, Seven Card Stud, the Hi/Lo version of both games, and even the five-game mix known as H.O.R.S.E.

As for the name change, the former PCA – which has been held annually since 2004 – was folded into PokerStars’ new Championship tier of live tournaments back in August. The former European Poker Tour (EPT), which was also sponsored by PokerStars, is said to be replaced in spirit by the Championship level series. Additionally, PokerStars also launched a new Festival series to provide smaller regional series internationally.

When the live tournament structure shift was announced, PokerStars’ Director of Live Events Edgar Stuchly issued a statement to explain the new direction:

“The PokerStars Championship and PokerStars Festival events are an enhancement of the existing PokerStars sponsored live tours, helping to take our vision for live poker to a whole new level.”

The action at this year’s inaugural PokerStars Championship Bahamas kicks off in fine style with the $100,000 buy-in Super High Roller event. Long considered one of the “majors” for elite poker pros, the final PCA Super High Roller was won last year by American pro Bryn Kenney, who defeated a field of 44 players (along with 14 reentries) to claim the $1,687,800 top prize.

While the Super High Roller and its five-figure buy-in cousins understandably draw headlines, for most attendees the PokerStars Championship Bahamas schedule is defined by dozens of events that cost between $110 and $330 to enter.

Additionally, the $5,000 Main Event offers the best of both worlds, as recreational players can break off a piece of their bankroll, or use satellite tournaments to win an entry. From there, a field that averages about 1,000 players stands between them and life-changing money. Between 2006 and 2015 the PCA Main Event winner took home more than $1 million, making it one of the more lucrative tournaments outside of the United States.

The PokerStars Championship Bahamas series runs from January 6 to January 14, but the majority of attendees enjoy a few days of rest and relaxation courtesy of Atlantis Resort’s aquatic amenities before beginning their grind.

A guide to important tournaments, including dates and buy-in amounts, can be found by reviewing the table below:

PokerStars Championship Bahamas Mini-Schedule

EVENT – DATES – BUY-IN (USD)
Super High Roller – January 6-8 – $100,000
National Championship – January 7-9 – $2,200
Main Event – January 8-14 – $5,000
High Roller – January 9-10 – $50,000
Pot-Limit Omaha – January 10-11 – $25,750
PokerStars Open – January 10-12 – $220
PokerStars Cup – January 12-14 – $440
High Roller – January 12-14 – $25,750