Bad dream, average reg, or good for poker?
(ISLE OF MAN, 8:00PM LOCAL TIME) Upswing Poker featured pro Doug Polk shook up the entire poker landscape Monday evening when he uploaded his most recent YouTube video announcing a new partnership with the world’s largest poker site, PokerStars.
The agreement, which comes at a time of major flux within the poker industry, could have far-reaching ramifications for poker players around the globe; namely those who make a living playing online poker professionally.
More Rake, Player Entitlement Woes
Two of the most contentious issues facing Amaya’s flagship brand were directly addressed by the three-time WSOP bracelet winner in Monday’s YouTube segment.
In a heartfelt plea to the poker playing community, the 28-year old reigning Top 5 Poker Personality admitted that “everyone has their price” before moving on to the controversial rake increases and customer lambasting that have been at the forefront of PokerStars’ community outreach since the company was purchased by Amaya Group.
“[The increased PokerStars rake] is actually a positive for most people,” explained the heads-up No Limit Hold’em specialist, going so far as to provide a handy spreadsheet diagram to layout how making online poker games more expensive result in an overall benefit to the poker community. “It’s just that a few people lose their jobs.”
PokerStars patrons have been up in arms since the online poker behemoth refused to honor loyalty cashback payments it had marketed to high volume players throughout 2015, but all that is just water under the bridge if you ask the YouTube and Twitch live stream poker tournament record holder.
“I’m starting to think that you guys feel entitled to money that is not rightfully yours,” admonished Doug. “If you deposit onto PokerStars… look, I’m sorry. I hate to break it to you, but is it really your money anymore?”
Team GrindNation Loyalty Put to Test
The decision to #JoinForces with PokerStars has come as a shock to at least one Team GrindNation member. Ranking Empire YouTube video editor Thomas Keeling (aka ‘SrslySirius’) seemed unconvinced just moments following the release of Monday’s video that the new relationship would result in an actual boon for poker.
Nonetheless, Doug and Team Upswing welcome our new extended family members into the fold as we look forward to a new era in online poker shilling.
We’re gonna make you proud, Lee!
David Huber (known as “dhubermex” online) has been involved in the poker industry for more than a decade. He currently assists several poker and gaming entities as a researcher, writer, and consultant. Former Editor-in-Chief & Head Moderator of online tournament rankings site PocketFives (2006-2011).