Chris Moneymaker Begins Tenure As Hollywood Poker Open AmbassadorSeptember 29, 2014 6:38 pm
At the beginning of 2014, the Hollywood Poker Open (HPO) announced that the 2003 WSOP Champion Chris Moneymaker would be serving as the tour’s ambassador during its third season. That season is due to kick-off on November 13th at the Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg, Indiana, and will continue all the way through to June 2015 when the season will conclude at the M Resort Casino & Spa, Las Vegas.
Chris Moneymaker already has some history with the HPO and during Season 2 he captured the $1,800 Hollywood Casino title in St. Louis, after overcoming a field of 67 players on his way to collecting the $36,259 first place prize. Following announcement of his signing as the tour’s ambassador, the 38 year-old pro, commented:
“I had such a blast playing this series. These events draw such an interesting mix of players and the structures allow you to actually play poker. Every event this past season seemed to grow and I thought it was really cool that you started to see some of the same people showing up at different stops.. It was an easy decision when they asked me to come back and represent them for Season 3.”
The Hollywood Poker Open is held in a number of Penn National Gaming owned Hollywood Casinos across the US, and Chris Moneymaker’s affiliation with the group is indicative of a US poker sponsorship industry currently more focused on organizing deals between players and brick-and-mortar casinos. On the other side of the coin, the US industry has seen an increasing number of pros released from their online sponsorship deals post-Black Friday.
Nevada’s Ultimate Poker, for instance, lost half its sponsored pros in April, while in recent weeks PokerStars has failed to renew the contracts of dozens of its pros after their contracts expired. The long list includes such former sponsored pros as the Latin America trio of Humberto Brenes, Jose “Nacho” Barbero and Angel Guillen, Dutch pro Marcel Luske, and Russia’s Alex Kravchenko. This week, 2009 WSOP Champion Joe Cada, 26, also was let go, and commenting later on his twitter account, said:
“If everyone is wondering what happened with Poker Stars and myself it’s pretty simple. I asked for 100 percent rake back, they said no. I asked for zero money. I just wanted the rake back that I used to get.”