The World Series of Poker hasn’t been quite the same since Doyle Brunson played his last WSOP event in 2018. That’s why the poker world has been thrilled about a recent comment from Brunson himself that he will “play a few select tournaments this year.” The announcement comes on the heels of the revealing of the 2021 WSOP schedule, which will get underway on September 30th.
Brunson’s last WSOP appearance came during the 2018 No Limit 2-7 Lowball tournament, an event in which he finished in 6th place for a prize of $43,963. At the time, he said that it would probably be “the last I’ll ever play,” because of health issues (including melanoma) and so that he could spend more time with his ailing wife, his partner of 58 years.
Prior to playing the 2-7 Lowball event in 2018, Brunson had played in limited events, so the announcement did not come as a surprise. Since then, he has stuck to that declaration by skipping the 2019 WSOP. Of course, last year the 2020 WSOP was held exclusively online.
Since stepping away from the WSOP and live tournaments in general, he has continued to play high-stakes cash games, but has avoided the limelight of high-profile tournaments including the WSOP.
With 88 events announced for the 2021 schedule, Brunson won’t play many of them, but a few is will be a welcome change for Brunson’s many fans.
I'm planning on playing a few select tournaments in the WSOP this year. https://t.co/9um2zalbIR
— Doyle Brunson (@TexDolly) June 15, 2021
What events will Brunson play?
When the 2021 WSOP kicks off on September 30th, it’s unlikely that Brunson will want to play huge multi-day events such as the Main Event. Instead, he will likely focus on events with higher buy-in events with smaller field and non-No Limit Hold’em games.
The most likely candidates for Doyle’s participation include the 2-7 Lowball Championship, which was the game of Brunson’s final WSOP event. He could also play the mixed game such as the $25,000 HORSE or the $10,000 Dealer’s Choice.
Reaction to the WSOP return of Doyle Brunson
Unsurprisingly, Brunson’s announcement was met with widespread praise and excitement for the 10-time WSOP bracelet winner and fan favorite, who will turn 88 years old this August.
Hell yeah Dolly!! The WSOP is always better when you’re a part of it
— brian shively (@mizzoubrian) June 15, 2021
Awesome Doyle 💪🏻💪🏻💪🏻 https://t.co/9gEi2yBijZ
— Max Pescatori 🇮🇹🇺🇸🏴☠️ (@maxpescatori) June 16, 2021
— Robbie Strazynski (@cardplayerlife) June 15, 2021
Let’s play the tag-team event and I’ll wear my cowboy hat 🤠
— Joey Ingram 🇲🇽🇲🇽🇲🇽 (@Joeingram1) June 15, 2021