Last updated: January 2020
The playMGM online poker room in New Jersey will operate through a partnership with gaming software developer GVC Holdings and the MGM owned Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa. Borgata’s own New Jersey online poker site uses the same GVC software, which was originally developed by bwin.party.
The PartyPoker NJ online poker site also employs the same software and the two sites share a player pool. PlayMGM is joining that network for online poker.
Since Borgata, PartyPoker and playMGM share the same software platform, their grades will be the same in most areas identically on many points. Read our full review of PartyPoker NJ here.
The MGM owned Borgata runs the premier live poker room on the East Coast. In addition to a lively cash game scene the property runs some of the most popular stops on the World Poker Tour and its own Borgata Open seasonal poker tournament series that draw among the biggest fields in the United States.
The Borgata’s proprietary poker tournament series continue to draw online players as well, with a robust satellite series accompanying every event. There’s every reason to think a playMGM online poker site will try to tap into this market as well, offering online satellites into live events on site at Borgata.
PlayMGM will use the same GVC software platform employed by the Borgata and PartyPoker NJ online poker sites. Players can access the playMGM online poker room in the following ways:
The Borgata online poker site shares its player pool with PartyPoker NJ, meaning players on either site are facing off against one another as well. The only difference is branding, promotions and a handful of exclusive tournaments. But, of course, the site will enjoy its own branding and promotions as well.
Like most other online poker sites on the New Jersey market, playMGM will offer cash games, sit & go’s and multi-table tournament play. PlayMGM offers no-limit hold’em, limit hold’em, 7-card stud, pot-limit Omaha, and Omaha hi-lo.
Play at BorgataPoker.com.
When you sign up with the bonus code PLAYNJFREE, you’re eligible for two great offers:
With a maximum bonus of $2,000, the playMGM opening bonus is very good for NJ online casinos. However, with just seven days to clear it, some players will have a hard time realizing the full bonus.
The bonus is clearly meant more for the casino side of things than online poker. While the bonus is attractive, even playMGM warns players about the short window to clear it.
The incremental release of playMGM’s bonus is another favorable aspect.
Borgata’s online poker site offers players $25 free, just to sign up.
A $25 sign up bonus, with $10 cash, is among the better no-deposit bonuses in the New Jersey online poker market.
One can expect the playMGM online poker site to include a number of regular promotions right from launch. These could possibly include rake back or cash back rewards, tournament leaderboards, and sit & go leaderboards.
No matter what form they take, playMGM is likely to rewards volume players who stay active on the site.
The Borgata online poker site runs a VIP scheme is worth anywhere from 1% to 15% cashback. Players can also convert the points they earn into bonuses, comp points at the Borgata, merchandise or tournament tickets. There’s little reason to think playMGM will not follow a similar player loyalty program model.
Borgata’s iRewards tiered VIP scheme rewards volume. The more you play, the higher your rank, the better the rewards. The playMGM system is bound to be similar. At Borgata players earn about two points for every $1 paid in rake or tournament fees. Higher ranks are relatively attainable and redemption options are aplenty.
PlayMGM may even go beyond New Jersey and offer players the chance to convert points for stays at MGM Resorts properties across the United States as a part of the M life Rewards program.
Depositing options on the playMGM online poker site are expected to include most major credit cards and payment processors, making getting money on the site as easy as can be.
Most of these methods are instant and carry little or no fees:
As with most online poker sites, withdrawal methods will change based on which deposit method is used. Of course, playMGM online poker players will be expected to verify their identity before taking any money off the site:
PokerStars has emerged as the market share leader in New Jersey online poker after launching in 2016.
A partial merger of the WSOP and 888 NJ online poker sites had seen that network move to the top prior to PokerStars’ entry. This left the Borgata / PartyPoker NJ network third in terms of revenue and traffic.
However, the addition of the playMGM brand to the New Jersey online poker market could be a boost to the fledgling network. In fact, the hope is playMGM will at least help Borgata compete with the WSOP and 888 brands for second place, if not take on PokerStars directly.
The online casino business is huge compared to online poker, so it won’t be a big surprise to see playMGM offer a lot more to casino players in terms of bonuses and promotions. In fact, anything more than the online poker industry standards should be considered a win for players.
Until compacts are signed with other states or the New Jersey online poker market grows exponentially, it will always be an afterthought, generating less than 10 percent of the $20 million a month in gross revenue for the state online gambling industry.
The GVC Holdings software employed by Borgata, PartyPoker NJ and playMGM gets regular updates. However, this software has been plagued by MFC errors. The problems have persisted and appear to come up more frequently during high traffic periods. None of these issues bode well for the playMGM online poker launch.
In fact, the software includes several bugs and really lacks of features that have become standard for online poker platforms around the world.
The Borgata platform recently added tournament support to the mobile client, and playMGM should launch with that feature.
The PartyPoker NJ and Borgata online poker sites have been plagued by customer service issues that include:
There is hope the playMGM online poker site can launch having learned from its partners mistakes.
Grade: D+ (D-)
The launch of a playMGM branded online poker sites sounds exciting on the surface. However, the fact it will be trotting out the same glitchy and flawed software employed by already sagging online poker operators in the New Jersey market takes the air out.
Should the software problems be a thing of the past, promotions improved to draw in new players and everything comes across shiny and new right from the launch, we will stand corrected.
However, it’s much more likely playMGM will be focusing on the far more lucrative online casino market from launch, and this poker site is an afterthought aimed at maintaining the status quo.
Grade: C- (C)