As we recently covered, a good poker tournament is hard to find right now. And New England is no exception. The two Massachusetts casinos (Encore Boston Harbor and MGM Springfield) have made clear that they are in no rush to return to tournament poker. The single Rhode Island Casino (Twin River) keeps promising the return of poker, but it has yet to happen. Tournament pickings in New England are slim right now, there is just no way around it.
Fortunately, there are a few tournaments now running in New Hampshire that we love. In fact, we feel quite comfortable saying that these are the three best tournaments in New England at the moment.
Filotimo Casino Monthly $240 Tournament
Filotimo Casino, the beautifully remodeled casino in Manchester, New Hampshire, definitely has the most poker tournament action in the state. This cardroom runs three tournaments a week, on Tuesday and Thursday evening, and Saturday afternoon. Each of these tournaments regularly draws 90 to 120 players from as far away as Connecticut and New York. The Tuesday/Thursday structures are decent and the play is good, although fairly aggressive due to the $50/$50/$50 structures. The majority of players rebuy and/or add on. So while these tournaments read as cheap, most players are firing multiple add-ons.
The tournament that puts Filotimo on the Best Tournament in New England list, however, is their bi-monthly $240 tournament. This tournament plays alternate Saturdays at 12:30pm. The monthly tournament at Filotimo regularly features more than 200 players from all over New England. The structure is strong, with 30-minute levels starting at 100-100 and gradual blind increases.
Players receive 40,000 starting chips with an optional $10 dealer add-on for an additional 10,000 starting chips. Big blind antes kick in at Level 3 (200-400-400). There are no rebuys, no re-entries, and no add-ons. Prize pools are generally large, and first prize can grow to over $10,000. Additionally, Filotimo staff does an excellent job overseeing such a large tournament pool. Dealers are good, floors are attentive, and waitresses circulate frequently.These are the best poker tournaments in New England right now.Click To Tweet
Honorable Mention: Filotimo has upgraded their alternate Saturday tournament structure to rival the best in New England. The 1pm tournament has a $150 buy-in and 30 minute blind levels. The starting stack is 25k with another 10k added for a $10 dealer add-on. While the big blind ante starts in the third level, levels start moving up gradually and only accelerate at around level 9. This tournament has recently been drawing over 100 runners with top payouts nearing $6,000. Note that this tournament is very popular, and we strongly recommend that you buy in well ahead of the tournament start to avoid being placed on the (often long) alternate list.
Lebanon Poker Room Monthly $150 Tournament
The Lebanon Poker Room is a small poker room near the Vermont border. While this is a smaller room, the monthly $150 tournament has an excellent structure and draws players from three states.
Players start with 40,000 chips at 100/200 with 30-minute blinds. The levels are reasonably gradual, and feature only a small blind (rather than big blind) ante. The play is good and the dealers are generally excellent. This tournament is the biggest draw for the Lebanon poker room, and top prizes easily build into a few thousand dollars.
The slow structure of this tournament makes it one of the best tournaments in New England right now.
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Dover Poker Room $90 Sunday Tournament
The Dover Poker Room is a bit of a hike from Boston (although not as far as Lebanon). Dover is found on the eastern edge of New Hampshire, near UNH. Dover features a weekly Sunday tournament which is notable for it’s relatively lengthy 30 minute blinds and decent player pool.
Dover’s $90 Deepstack offers 30,000 chips (with optional $10 dealer add on). Blinds are 30 minutes long, start at 100/100, and feature a big blind ante starting at level 3. This tournament offers one of the best buy-in to structure ratios in New England.
Dover Casino features one of the Best Tournaments in New England due to its low buy-in and playable structure.
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