Inaugural MICOOP Main Event to run Sunday, March 7, with $125,000 guaranteed
Online Poker Report

MICOOP Arrives Out Of Season At PokerStars Michigan, Guaranteeing $1 Million Across 60 Events

PokerStars Michigan starts off with a fall series in February

Michigan poker players won’t have to wait long at all for their first major tournament series.

It was only about three weeks ago that PokerStars launched in Michigan. Now, the site is just about to kick off the Michigan Championship of Online Poker (MICOOP), with $1 million in guarantees spread across 60 events.

Want to take part in MICOOP? Sign up for PokerStars Michigan today.

The timing is unusual and will likely be unique to this inaugural edition. In New Jersey, PokerStars’ longest-standing US site, there are two Championship series each year: NJCOOP in the fall, and NJSCOOP in the spring. Its Pennsylvania site has followed suit, and there’s no reason to believe Michigan won’t do likewise once it has settled into regular operations.

MICOOP will run for 17 days, starting this Saturday, February 20, and continuing through March 8. The Main Event takes place on the final Sunday, March 7, and guarantees a $125,000 prize pool on a $300 buy-in. As is customary for PokerStars, it is accompanied by a Mini Main Event, with a $50 buy-in and a $35,000 guarantee.

The promotions surrounding MICOOP are also standard for PokerStars’ US operations. Satellites for the series are running already, starting at $2. There is also a Main Event Depositor Freeroll on March 7, with 35 seats up for grabs. You’ll receive an entry to that if you deposit $30 or more using bonus code MICOOP, any time between now and then.

Finally, there are Second Chance Freerolls running daily throughout the series. You’ll earn an entry to one of these any time you bust out of an event without cashing. Prizes for these consist of tickets to subsequent events so you can try your luck again.

The full series schedule can be found at the bottom of this article.

Why run a fall series in February?

As mentioned, the usual time for a series like MICOOP would be in the fall. Last year, the Pennsylvania series – PACOOP – ran from September 19 through October 5, and NJCOOP followed from October 10-26.

If the goal in Michigan was to match those other states as closely as possible, the obvious choice would have been to start with a Winter Series. PokerStars hosted concurrent versions of this in both NJ and PA this year, from January 21 to 31.

The answer is probably a combination of two factors. Most importantly, the Winter and Summer Series are both small compared to the Championships. Their total guarantees are usually about half as large.

PokerStars may not have wanted to start in Michigan with less than a $1 million series. However, that’s what it guaranteed in Pennsylvania for Winter Series, and if it set that expectation, players may then have been let down if guarantees for the Spring Championship in Michigan didn’t match those in Pennsylvania.

Another factor may have been uncertainty in the timing of the launch. The Michigan Gaming Control Board was at one time aiming to get iGaming off the ground in October or November. Based on that, PokerStars had probably begun internal preparations for MICOOP to run shortly after the other fall Championships. When the launch date got pushed back into January, they may not have wanted to start that work over again, as the Winter and Summer series have a somewhat different structure to them.

A modest schedule as Championships go

Based on state population and site traffic, future series at PokerStars Michigan will probably more closely resemble Pennsylvania than New Jersey. The converse is true for this initial MICOOP, however.

NJCOOP guaranteed the same $1 million, spread over 54 events compared to Michigan’s 60. On the other hand, PACOOP had just 50 events, and $1.5 million guaranteed, for a considerably higher per-event average guarantee than either of the other states. Main Event guarantees are also identical for NJ and MI, at $125,000 apiece, compared to $200,000 in Pennsylvania.

This is despite the fact that PokerStars Michigan currently has the highest traffic of the three. It has at times been filling over 1000 cash game seats, compared to a prime time peak of about 800-900 for Pennsylvania, and only around 300 for New Jersey.

The reason for this is probably a combination of PokerStars’ conservatism and the timing of the series. The company presumably intends to run the Michigan Spring Championship of Online Poker (MISCOOP) in April or May, alongside or just after the Spring Championships for the other states.

Tournament fatigue among players is a real phenomenon. PokerStars may not have felt confident in running two full-sized Championships less than three months apart, particularly in a new state with an unfamiliar player base.

PokerStars Michigan MICOOP 2021 schedule

In terms of game makeup, Michigan’s schedule is similar to the other states. It consists mostly of 48 No-Limit Hold’em events, mixed in with the following alternatives:

  • Omaha Hi (PL, 5 events)
  • Omaha Hi/Lo (PL)
  • 5-Card Omaha (PL)
  • 5-Card Draw (PL)
  • Hold’em (FL)
  • Stud Hi/Lo (FL)
  • HORSE
  • 8-Game

The schedule includes nine Knockout events, which is similar to PACOOP, but 16 Turbo or Hyper tournaments, which is more like NJCOOP. All three states have an even split between short-handed and full ring tournaments.

DateTime (ET)Buy-InGameFormatGTE
Feb-206 PM$100NLHE-$30k
Feb-207 PM$20NLHERebuy$10k
Feb-208 PM$50NLHE8-Max$20k
Feb-212 PM$100NLHEDeep$25k
Feb-214 PM$50NLHEPKO$10k
Feb-215 PM$200NLHE-$40k
Feb-215:30 PM$25NLHE-$12.5k
Feb-217 PM$100PLO8-Max$10k
Feb-218 PM$75NLHE-$7.5k
Feb-2110 PM$50NLHEHyper$5k
Feb-227 PM$100NLHE4-Max$5k
Feb-228 PM$50NLHE6-Max PKO$15k
Feb-229 PM$50PLO88-Max$20k
Feb-238 PM$200NLHE-$30k
Feb-238:30 PM$30NLHE-$15k
Feb-239 PM$505-Cd. Dr.Turbo$3k
Feb-247:30 PM$100PLO6-Max$7.5k
Feb-248PM$500NLHE6-Max$35k
Feb-248:30 PM$50NLHE6-Max$20k
Feb-258 PM$200NLHEPKO$30k
Feb-258:30 PM$30NLHEPKO$15k
Feb-259 PM$305-Cd. PLO6-Max Turbo$3k
Feb-265 PM$100FLHE6-Max$5k
Feb-268 PM$100NLHEBig Antes$7.5k
Feb-268:30 PM$150NLHE6-Max Turbo$10k
Feb-276 PM$50HORSETurbo$3k
Feb-277 PM$50NLHERebuy$10k
Feb-278 PM$100NLHETurbo$10k
Feb-282 PM$100NLHE8-Max Marathon$25k
Feb-284 PM$50NLHE-$12.5k
Feb-285 PM$250NLHE-$50k
Feb-285:30 PM$30NLHE-$15k
Feb-287 PM$50PLO8-Max Turbo$5k
Feb-288 PM$100NLHE6-Max$10k
Feb-2810 PM$75NLHEHyper$10k
Mar-17 PM$50NLHE4-Max$10k
Mar-18 PM$100NLHE6-Max PKO$25k
Mar-28 PM$250NLHE-$35k
Mar-28:30 PM$50NLHE-$20k
Mar-29 PM$50Stud H/L-$5k
Mar-38 PM$250PLO6-Max$12.5k
Mar-38:30 PM$30PLO6-Max$5k
Mar-39 PM$100NLHE6-Max Turbo$10k
Mar-48 PM$250NLHEPKO$35k
Mar-48:30 PM$50NLHEPKO$20k
Mar-49 PM$20NLHETurbo$15k
Mar-56 PM$10NLHE6-Max Rebuy$10k
Mar-58 PM$75NLHE-$15k
Mar-59:30 PM$20NLHE6-Max Turbo$5k
Mar-66 PM$508-Game-$3k
Mar-67 PM$50NLHE6-Max Turbo Zoom$15k
Mar-68 PM$50NLHETurbo$5k
Mar-72 PM$50NLHE8-Max Marathon$10k
Mar-74 PM$100NLHEPKO$30k
Mar-75 PM$300NLHEMain Event$125k
Mar-76 PM$50NLHEMini ME$35k
Mar-77:30 PM$200NLHE6-Max Turbo$20k
Mar-710 PM$100NLHEHyper$10k
Mar-87 PM$100NLHE-$30k
Mar-89 PM$20NLHEHU Turbo PKO Zoom$10k
Alex Weldon
- Alex is a journalist from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada. Now site runner for OnlinePokerReport, he has been writing about poker and the online gambling industry in various capacities since 2014.
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