The World Series of Poker is famous for offering the widest variety of poker variants on the planet. Even so, there are times where some games just don’t work or their popularity wanes to the point they are no longer viable.
Today we take a look back at 7 extinct events from the WSOP’s past. Some are events that are understandably in poker’s past while others are variants that you probably never imagined were offered on poker’s grandest stage.
Five Card Stud
Many poker fans don’t realize that Five Card Stud was ever offered at the World Series of Poker and for good reason. The game was only offered from 1971 through 1975 and each year the event was won by Hall of Famer Bill Boyd.
In 1972, the only event besides the Main Event was a $10k Five Card Stud event that drew just two players. The event was dropped after the 1975 WSOP due to the lack of popularity.
The game is extinct at this point, not even offered in Dealer’s Choice.
Five Card Draw
Five Card Draw, referred to as Draw High in the record books, had a five-year run at the WSOP from 1978 through 1982. Lakewood Louis won the event in 78 and 79 and the legendary David Sklansky was the final champion in 1982.
The game was all but extinct afterwards but online poker helped to revive the variant to the general public. As a result, the WSOP added a NL version of Five-Card Draw to the Dealer’s Choice rotation where it has remained. In the future, we hope to see the event get its own standalone event or become part of a rotation game.
Ace to Five Lowball
Ace-to-Five Draw was first introduced to the World Series of Poker in 1971. Johnny Moss won that event for $10,000. After appearing on the schedule in 1973, it was taken off until 1976.
Afterwards, it remained a staple of the WSOP until 1996 when it was taken off the schedule for three years. It then returned in 2000 and stayed on the schedule through the 2004 WSOP.
Following the 2004 WSOP, A-5 Lowball was removed for the final time and 2-7 became the only standalone lowball format offered. Nowadays, the only tournaments featuring A-5 Lowball are the Dealer’s Choice Event and the new Mixed Triple Draw Lowball tournament added to the 2017 schedule.
Read More: RIP PL Hold’em
When talking about Omaha Poker, most players instantly think PL Omaha or some flavor of Omaha Hi-Lo. For years, there was also a limit version of Omaha High played regularly at the WSOP.
Limit Omaha was added to the WSOP schedule in 1983 and David Sklansky won the first ever $1,000 Limit Omaha bracelet. The event was dropped from the 1984 schedule but returned in 1985 and stayed a part of the series until 2003.
The game was one of the first casualties of the Poker Boom and has never been readded to the schedule in any format to date.
NL A-5 Lowball w Joker
It’s hard to imagine a WSOP with wild cards, but that is exactly what happened in 1986 when the $5,000 NL A-5 Draw with Joker was added to the schedule. The way this version is played is that the Joker becomes the lowest card in your hand. If you hold 3-4-5-6-J, then you have a rough six-low.
The re-buy event was won by Mike Cox who defeated Poker Hall of Famer Jack Keller head-up for the title. Cox was the first and only champion of this event, as it did not return for a second running.
Chinese Poker had a brief history at the World Series of Poker, only offered at the 1995 and 1996 WSOP. One of Steve Zolotow’s two WSOP bracelets came in the $5k Chinese Poker Event in 1995. He defeated Doyle Brunson heads-up for the title.
The two Chinese Poker events in 1995 drew solid numbers but the following year attendance dropped drastically and likely led to the withdrawal of the event from the schedule. With the exception of cash games, Chinese Poker has never returned.
Odds are that unless some version of Open Face Chinese is added, this game will permanently stay off the schedule.
Half Hold’em – Half Stud
While there have been various mixed game variations over the years, one that had a short tenure on the WSOP schedule is Half Hold’em – Half Stud. The open field version of this even was offered only at the 2002 and 2003 WSOP. Dan Heimiller won the 2002 event while Chris “Jesus” Ferguson took down the event in 2003.
The format was first used for a few years as the Ladies Championship prior to making it an open-field event in 2002. However, with the explosion of NL Hold’em thanks to the Boom, events such as this moved aside to make space for NL players.
This mixed game version hasn’t been attempted since, and chances are it will not return. Considering that both variants still have standalone events and are parts of the majority of mixed games on the schedule, there’s no reason for it to return.