The jigsaw pieces that will form the inaugural Global Poker League are slowly sliding into place after the Las Vegas Moneymakers, New York Rounders and Sao Paulo Metropolitans announce their wildcard picks.
The Global Poker League (GPL) gets serious on April 5 and here are a tranche of related news stories to get you up to speed on.
Only three teams have gaps in their roster after the Las Vegas Moneymakers, New York Rounders, and Sao Paulo Metropolitans announced their wildcard picks over the past few days.
The Las Vegas Moneymakers
The biggest surprise of the GPL Draft Day was when Chris Moneymaker gazumped Montreal Nationals Team Manager Marc-Andre Ladouceur and drafted the former World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event champion, Jonathan Duhamel, into his team.
He is at it again.
It’s not a surprise that Moneymaker has chosen himself to act in the role of Player Manager, but it is a surprise to learn that he has chosen Community Development and Poker manager for Twitch, Scott ‘RumCake’ Ball, as his final wildcard entry.
While the selection may come as a surprise regarding skill on the felt, the choice has gone down well within the poker community.
— Ryan Laplante (@Protentialmn) 1 April 2016
Las Vegas Moneymakers Lineup
1. Chris Moneymaker (Player Manager)
2. Anthony Zinno
3. Jonathan Duhamel
4. Jake Cody
5. Jonathan Little
6. Scott Ball
New York Rounders – It’s a Family Affair
When Bryn Kenney started choosing team members at the GPL Draft, he made it crystal clear that he would be selecting himself to act in the role of Player Manager when the wildcard selections began. The only curiosity was who he would pick to star alongside him?
When you look at the New York Rounders team, there is a family feel to it, and that just intensified with the addition of Tyler Kenney. Bryn has plumped for brotherly love, and the team has a solid feel to it as a result. Tyler has close to a million in live tournament earnings including a third place finish in the Season XIII World Poker Tour (WPT) Legends of Poker Main Event.
New York Rounders Lineup
1. Bryn Kenney (Player Manager)
2. Jason Mercier
3. Tom Marchese
4. Kevin MacPhee
5. Jason Wheeler
6. Tyler Kenney
Sao Paulo Metropolitans – Andre Akkari Stands Aside
The Sao Paulo Metropolitans have also concluded their wildcard picks and Team Manager Andre Akkari becomes only the second Team Manager behind Berlin Bears Philipp Gruissem not to select himself as a wildcard pick. Instead, Akkari has decided to plumb for Felipe Mojave Ramos and Joao Bauer.
Ramos has over a million dollars in live tournament earnings and during his 2015 WSOP Main Event run had none other than Barcelona star Neymar Jr railing him. Bauer has over $600,000 in live tournament earnings. He has a WSOP final table on his resume, a runner-up in a Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) Main Event, and was the winner in last year’s Brazilian Series of Poker (BSOP) Main Event.
Sao Paulo Mets Lineup
1. Darren Elias
2. Byron Kaverman
3. Thiago Nishijima
4. Joao Pires Simao
5. Felipe Mojave Ramos
6. Joao Bauer
PokerStars Join The Broadcast
GPL chief Alexandre Dreyfus also announced that PokerStars.tv would be distributing all GPL broadcasts from next week. The addition of the Red Spade opens up the GPL to the millions of people who tune in for the EPT and PokerStars action.
The First GPL Fight Cards Announced
Although there is nothing shown on the GPL website about the individual nominations for the heads-up matches in Week 1, the GPL Twitter feed has released a couple of early fight cards.
Strangely, the Week 1 game between the Americas Conference sides Montreal Nationals, and San Francisco Rush involves two Swedes. The 2014 WSOP Main Event Champion, Martin Jacobson, will square off against, the former EPT Champion Anton Wigg. In the other Americas, conference match announced, LA Sunset’s Olivier Busquets will compete head-to-head against Sao Paolo’s Darren Elias.
In the Eurasia Conference, the Berlin Bears Daniel ‘Jungleman’ Cates will butt heads with the Frenchman Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier, and two North Americans will battle it out in the other Eurasia Conference match up as Rome Emperors Timothy Adams faces up to the might of London Royals Justin Bonomo.
The action begins on Tuesday 5 April with the Six Max games. The Heads Up battles will play out on Wed 6 April and Thu 7 April.