Staples and Martin Complete PartyPoker Team Online
The build-up for PartyPoker’s new Team Online roster of online poker pros started in February and the roster was complete in early May.
The first announcements from PartyPoker regarding the development of an online team to be a forceful presence on Twitch came in February with Matt Staples as its inaugural member. He was followed in line by Hristivoje “ALLinPav” Pavlovic, Travis “dramaticdegen” Darroch, Patrick “IrEgption” Tardif, and Alan “Hotted89” Widmann. The group brought a range of online poker and gaming talents to the new team.
Several other announcements followed. Ryan “RSchoonbaert” Schoonbaert joined, as did Courtney “courtiebee” Gee, Steven “DWstevie” Kok, Monika “HeyMonia” Zukowicz, and Jeff Gross.
As May began, Kevin Martin was announced as a new member. And a few days later, Jaime Staples officially took his place on the team, though he let it be known in early March that he would be joining, most likely when his last sponsorship contract expired.
It seemed somehow fitting that one Staples brother led off the team announcements and the other made it complete, at least for this initial set of team recruits.
The official PartyPoker Twitch channel is now in full force, and the full starting lineup is in place.
Kevin Martin Joins
On May 1, PartyPoker welcomed Kevin Martin to Team Online.
Martin was a poker fan and player for many years, going to professional status in 2014, but he became much more well known after he won a season of Canada’s Big Brother reality television show. He signed a sponsorship deal with PokerStars as a member of its online poker team of players and spent three years streaming his games and traveling to some tournaments donning that red spade logo.
But in February, as players like Jaime Staples and Jeff Gross departed PokerStars, Martin did, too.
After 3 years with @PokerStars my time as an ambassador for them has come to an end.
Really thankful they took a shot on me when I was just getting going with my journey. ? pic.twitter.com/cMtllob1F4
— Kevin Martin (@KevinRobMartin) February 18, 2019
And as Staples and Gross signed on with PartyPoker, Martin remained unaffiliated but did stream his online poker games on the PartyPoker tables. It wasn’t difficult to figure out that he was aiming to be a part of that team.
As of May 1, Martin did join the team playing on Twitch as “KevinMartin”.
Lets go!!! So excited to officially be on team partypoker.
Such an exciting new team! So many good things happening with the everyday poker player being the focus. Cheers everyone! ? https://t.co/SJm0jPUw9l
— Kevin Martin (@KevinRobMartin) May 1, 2019
Jaime Staples Makes It Official
Staples’s official spot on the team came on May 4, just as he said it would months earlier.
His departure from PokerStars, as mentioned, happened at the same time as that of Martin and Gross, but it had also been notable that his brother had never been picked up by PokerStars.
However, the four young male pros did all seem to be on the same page with their goals, all affiliated with Bill Perkins and his Thirst Lounge. And in early February, PartyPoker became the sponsor of the Thirst Lounge. It wasn’t tough to figure out that all four men wanted to be on the same team, and all had worked hard with similar projects, all somehow hinting at something with PartyPoker.
Staples did announce his PartyPoker affiliation in March, but it didn’t become official until early May.
View this post on Instagram
It’s a proud day for me. I never could have expected this turn of events a year ago. But today, I officially join @partypoker Team Online as their newest member. It’s an amazing opportunity for me. Ever since I first met with the team, it was clear they would support us and trust us all the way. Provide us the resources we need to take Twitch and YouTube poker content to the next level. After signing 11 amazing content creators, and entrusting @jeffgrosspoker and I to head up the team, I think we have everything we need to make a big positive influence on not just partypoker but the game as a whole. Check out my colleagues. make sure to follow along on their journeys, and share with us all what you want to see. What is it that drives you to play poker, watch poker, enjoy poker, and aspire to be better at poker. We are all here for you to make this game better. Cc: @jeffgrosspoker , @matthew_stapless , @kevinrobmartin @allinpav @hotted89 @iregption @dwstevie @courtiebee8 @heymonia @rschoonbaert @tdarroch Thanks to everyone that has been with me on my journey. I’m incredibly lucky, grateful, and intend to use this position for the good of the game. I appreciate you all ❤️
It seems that he and Gross will head up and guide the team.
Strategy and Goals
PartyPoker noted that Team Online is a part of a larger company strategy to be rolled out in the coming weeks and months. The focus will be on “streaming quality, engaging content” on its Twitch channel.
Beyond Twitch, however, there will be a new PartyPoker high-stakes cash game to be streamed live online, which will likely include some of its site ambassadors like Fedor Holz.
Speaking of Holz, he will be one of several hosts of Twitch streaming sessions alongside Patrick Leonard and Ludovic Geilich.
Finally, PartyPoker added one caveat at the end of its latest presser about Jamie Staples. “PartyPoker will be unveiling further new additions to Team Online.”