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Texas Poker StoreQueen of Hearts ParisBy: Queen of Hearts Paris

For someone like me, having sat through 40-plus years of NFL drafts anxiously waiting to see who my favorite team (the NY Giants) drafted, it was particularly enjoyable to watch poker enter what many are calling the next new wave of televised poker. (See my last post here.)

Global Poker League AnalystsThe Global Poker League completed their first-ever Draft yesterday, with each of the 12 Team Managers choosing four players (from the pool of 203 draft-eligible players) for their team. No, it didn’t engender quite the same amount of hype as the NFL draft does, but the League did a heck of a good job for its inaugural season. They live streamed on, had four guest analysts (including The Brat Hellmuth and Kid Poker Negreanu) and each team was put “on the clock” just as they are in the NFL (albeit for only three minutes) with lots of speculation and analysis surrounding each manager’s pick. For poker enthusiasts, it was a taste of the excitement and potential of the team competitions to come.

Team Managers chose in the order that had been determined by lottery last week, which meant that the Rome Emperors had the first round draft pick. The team with the 12th pick, the Hong Kong Stars, however, also had the 13th – the second round went in reverse order to try to be as fair as possible to all teams. The team managers will also add two “wildcard” players in the coming week, although in many cases they will count themselves as one of the wildcards.

Max Pescatori, Manager of the Rome Emperors, made Mustafa Kanit the GPL’s first draft pick , which was pretty much of a no-brainer since Kanit is a fellow Italian and ranks among the top 10 on the GPI.

The following are the 12 teams as they are now constituted after the draft:

Global Poker League


Rome Emperors:
Manager Max Pescatori

  • Mustapha Kanit
  • Dario Sammartino
  • Timothy Adams
  • Walter Treccarichi
Montreal Nationals:
Manager Marc-Andre Ladouceur

  • Mike McDonald
  • Martin Jacobson
  • Pascal Lafrancois
  • Xuan Liu
New York Rounders:
Manager Bryn Kenney

  • Jason Mercier
  • Tom Marchese
  • Kevin MacPhee
  • Jason Wheeler
San Francisco Rush:
Manager Faraz Jaka

  • Phil Galfond
  • Anthony Gregg
  • Kitty Kuo
  • Anton Wigg
Las Vegas Moneymakers:
Manager Chris Moneymaker

  • Anthony Zinno
  • Jonathan Duhamel
  • Jake Cody
  • Jonathan Little
Sao Paulo Metropolitans:
Manager Andre Akkari

  • Darren Elias
  • Byron Kaverman
  • Thiago Nishijima
  • Joao Pires Simao
London Royals:
Manager Liv Boeree

  • Igor Kurganov
  • Vanessa Selbst
  • Chris Moorman
  • Justin Bonomo
Moscow Wolverines:
Manager Anatoly Filatov

  • Dzmitry Urbanovich
  • Vladimir Troyanovskiy
  • Andrey Pateychuk
  • Sergey Lebedev
Los Angeles Sunset:
Manager Maria Ho

  • Fedor Holz
  • Olivier Busquet
  • Eugene Katchalov
  • Chance Kornuth
Berlin Bears:
Manager Philipp Gruissem

  • Brian Rast
  • Sorel Mizzi
  • Dominik Nitsche
  • Jeff Gross
Paris Aviators:
Manager Fabrice Soulier

  • Bertrand Grospellier
  • Davidi Kitai
  • George Danzer
  • Mike Leah
Hong Kong Stars:
Manager Celina Lin

  • WeiYi Zhang
  • Raiden Kan
  • Dong Guo
  • Bryan Huang

Handicappers are already looking at the New York Rounders and the London Royals as pulling off the strongest teams. But as we all know, in poker anything can happen, and in team poker who knows? The Texas Poker Store Blog will continue to keep you totally up-to-date about the Global Poker League; in fact, as of now I am considering it my special beat so come back soon!

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