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A Look at the Global Poker League's Las Vegas Moneymakers and Sao Paulo Metropolitans


  • Take a closer look at the Global Poker League's Las Vegas Moneymakers and Sao Paulo Metropolitans.

Next up in our short guides to the Global Poker League franchises are the Las Vegas Moneymakers and the Sao Paulo Metropolitans, two teams who are sure to amass large numbers of fans when the GPL officially kicks off.

Las Vegas Moneymakers

A Look at the Global Poker League's Las Vegas Moneymakers and Sao Paulo Metropolitans 101
PlayerHome CountryLive Tournament Earnings
Anthony ZinnoUSA$5,366,980
Jonathan DuhamelCanada$17,592,802
Jake CodyUK$4,132,819
Jonathan LittleUSA$6,257,743
Chris Moneymaker*USA$3,595,975
Scott Ball*USA$38,430

*Denotes wildcard pick.

The Las Vegas Moneymakers have 2003 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Chris Moneymaker pulling the strings and the fun-loving Team PokerStars Pro has a strong roster at his disposal.

Moneymaker's poker story has been told countless times, turning a small satellite win at PokerStars into $2,500,000 by winning the 2003 WSOP Main Event, creating what will always be known as the "Moneymaker Boom."

Moneymaker is perfect for the GPL thanks to being a well-known player, having a great background story, and the fact he just loves playing poker. Let's take a look at his franchise's members.

Anthony Zinno
Anthony Zinno

Anthony Zinno was Moneymaker's first pick and nobody can fault that decision. Zinno has three World Poker Tour titles to his name having won a brace of them in 2015, a WSOP bracelet, and almost $5,400,000 in live tournament winnings. There is no doubting Zinno's ability and it will be interesting for viewers of the GPL broadcasts to see how Zinno approaches the game of poker.

Moneymaker's next pick was former Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel. Like Moneymaker, Duhamel has won the WSOP Main Event, doing so in 2010 when the first-place prize was $8,944,310. Duhamel won two WSOP bracelets in 2015, securing the title in the $111,111 High Roller for One Drop in Las Vegas and taking down the €25,600 8-Max High Roller at the WSOP Europe in Berlin. The Canadian pro has featured in several made-for-TV poker tournaments, so he will be well versed in the strategy needed to succeed in the GPL.

Jake Cody
Jake Cody

Another Team PokerStars Pro made it into the Las Vegas Moneymakers, the United Kingdom's Jake Cody. The popular Brit is one of a handful of poker players to have won live poker's Triple Crown, after winning the 2010 European Poker Tour Deauville Main Event, 2010 WPT London Main Event, and the 2011 WSOP $25,000 No-Limit Hold’em Heads-Up Championship. Cody cut his teeth in the online poker world, so he should be able to adapt well to the faster pace of the GPL events.

The fourth pick for Moneymaker was Jonathan Little. An experienced professional poker player, Little is a great addition to the Las Vegas Moneymakers and another player who is successful online and live, and in both cash games and tournaments. Little is sure to be a go-to player for strategic talks between the franchises members.

Moneymaker chose himself as one of his two wildcards, which comes as no surprise as it seems to be a common theme among the managers. However, his selection of Scott "RumCake" Ball, the Community Development and Poker Manager for Twitch, is a bit more surprising. Ball has been a key figure in introducing poker to the Twitch format and is a self-declared eSports enthusiast. Now he'll have his chance to put his poker knowledge to the test on the big stage.

Sao Paulo Metropolitans

A Look at the Global Poker League's Las Vegas Moneymakers and Sao Paulo Metropolitans 102
PlayerHome CountryLive Tournament Earnings
Darren EliasUSA$3,600,417
Byron KavermanUSA$6,854,598
Thiago NishijimaBrazil$1,804,602
Joao Pires SimaoBrazil$510,022
Felipe Mojave Ramos*Brazil$1,014,295
Joao Neto*Brazil$614,764

*Denotes wildcard pick.

Team PokerStars Pro Andre Akkari's Sao Paulo Metropolitans are another GPL franchise who should have a legion of fans behind them as the Brazilians are passionate about poker and supporting anything their compatriots are competing in.

Akkari is something of a celebrity in his native Brazil and he currently resides in third place on the Brazilian all-time money list. His team selection has raised a few eyebrows in the poker community, so let's have a look who Akkari drafted.

Darren Elias
Darren Elias

Darren Elias was the first addition to Akkari's Metropolitans franchise. Elias has more than $3,600,000 in live tournament winnings and a similar amount from his online exploits, proving he is an exceptional talent. However, Elias is quite reserved at the tables and seems the opposite to the passionate support the franchise is sure to garner.

Byron Kaverman is a similar player, one who has an abundance of talent, but who isn't the most charismatic character while he’s plying his trade. Kaverman also has a reputation for taking an age in making his decisions at the tables, which isn't going to lend itself to the expected GPL format and structure; it will be interesting to see how Kaverman adapts his methodical strategy.

Thiago Nishijima
Thiago Nishijima

The final two draft picks for the Metropolitans were Akkari's fellow Brazilians. Thiago Nishijima is second on the Brazil all-time money list, thanks partly to him winning the $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em event at the 2015 WSOP. Most of Nishijima's live tournament results have come from his play in South America, so unless you follow that part of the world closely, Nishijima could be much of an unknown commodity.

Joao Pires Simao is another relatively unknown commodity, which is dangerous for his opponents as many will not have enjoyed playing against him previously, or at least not enough to have a solid read on him.

The Metropolitans, or Mets as they seem to have been abbreviated to, will not have their manager competing in the various GPL events because Akkari decided to step aside when it came to choosing his wildcard picks. Instead of choosing himself, Akkari selected Felipe Mojave Ramos and Joao "Joao Bauer" Neto.

Ramos is currently ranked eighth in Brazil by the Global Poker Index and recently broke through the $1,000,000 in live tournament winnings barrier after three cashes at EPT Dublin, while Bauer is predominately an online poker player, one with more than $2,300,000 in online winnings but also almost $615,000 in live winnings.

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