The Game Show Network (GSN) yesterday announced it will be broadcasting the first-ever $1 million Three-Card Poker National Championship Tournament on Friday, April 21, and Friday, April 28, 2006. The inaugural event is being aired in conjunction with tournament producer Shuffle Up Productions, a subsidiary of Shuffle Master Inc., owner of the copyright to the Three-Card Poker game. The Championship was previously scheduled to air on Monday, April 17, and Monday, April 24, 2006.
The two one-hour specials will be hosted by Mark L. Walberg ("Temptation Island" and "Russian Roulette") and Danielle Demski (Miss Arizona 2004 and Miss USA Finalist) at 9 p.m. (EST/PST).
"We are excited about giving away a $1 million to the winner of our first event. Next year we anticipate bigger crowds and more players competing for the finals at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. We expect to conduct 30 to 35 regional events throughout North America in 2006," said Brooke Dunn, Senior Vice President of Shuffle Master, Inc.
Shuffle Master held 20 regional Three-Card Poker tournaments throughout North America, and over 250 people qualified to play in the finals at The Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The special will focus on the 9 finalists as they battle for the $1 million dollar grand prize and a diamond and ruby-encrusted bracelet worth over $30,000.
"GSN is on the forefront of bringing casino games to television in a compelling and entertaining manner," stated the show's Executive Producer, Eric Scots. "Three-Card Poker is a perfect fit for viewers. It is a game based on skill and luck that anyone can play."
In Three-Card Poker, players compete against the dealer. Each competitor is dealt three cards face-down and must make the best poker hand with them. Hand rankings are slightly different from five-card poker: straights beat flushes and the highest ranking hand is a straight flush. Players can make three different bets which pay based on the rank of the hand and ante. The dealer must have queen high or better in order to play.