Team PokerStars has steadily been making changes to its team since April, but this month mission makeover at Team PokerStars picked up some speed. Back in February, 2004 WSOP Main Event Champion Greg Raymer left PokerStars when they tried to give him a paycut. The latest players to also leave the team include Tom McEvoy, Bill Chen and 2008 Main Event final tabler Dennis Phillips. American PokerStars pros who are unwilling to move abroad to continue to play online poker from overseas are falling by the wayside.
The trend at PokerStars seems to be putting together a younger batch of sponsored pros to capture the younger fan base, as well as international players, representing territories where online poker still reigns free, and where the game is growing. In PokerStars latest signing, they’ve snapped up Mickey “Mement Mori” Petersen from Denmark, one of the highest earning MTT players in the world today. Petersen cashed 16 times during the 2011 Spring Championship of Online Poker.
It will be interesting to see who is next to join or leave PokerStars in this time of change. Various PokerStars pros have recently been making the move out of the country to maintain their sponsorship and stay in action at PokerStars.com. bitcoin blackjack Just this week, internet phenom Randy “Nanonoko” Lew resurfaced in Canada. He has been furiously back on the grind that we’re so accustomed to see from Mr. Lew. Nanonoko has been spotted 24 tabling 5/10 and higher.
Nanonoko’s new city of residence, Vancouver, Canada, is one of the more popular destinations for American grinders moving abroad. Other well known poker players who’ve made the move to Vancouver include: Phil Galfond, Daniel Cates, and Canadian Daniel Negreanu. Other pros making the move to Canada as of late include Rich “Nutsinho” Lyndaker, Cole “CTS” South, and Ben “Sauce123″ Sulsky. The move overseas to continue playing has been nice for some pros, such as Steve “Gboro780″ Gross, who won a $300 WCOOP Horse Event to start his stay overseas in Canada.
For PokerStars, a younger breed of hip international online grinders seems to play a big part in their marketing strategy. Players such as Vanessa Selbst and Jason Mercier have proved themselves invaluable, for their ability to travel overseas on the tournament circuit, connect with a younger generation of poker player, and amass a large twitter following. Other players with family obligations, such as former PokerStars pro Dusty “Leatherass” Schmidt, had to rescind his sponsorship deal with PokerStars due to an inability to transplant abroad.
Credit is due for PokerStars for their savvy in establishing a strong international presence. By offering a fully international team with players from all over the globe, regional tournaments, and local events, PokerStars has made a strong statement as one of the top international poker sites in the world.