When WSOP went live in Michigan less than two weeks ago, it accompanied its launch by announcing a four-time bracelet winner and WSOP Main Event winner, Joe “The Kid” Cada as its local ambassador.
It was a bit of a surprising move as WSOP usually shies away from using sponsored pros to represent the brand. It did not announce any ambassador when it went live in Pennsylvania last summer, nor does it have anyone to represent its site in either New Jersey or Nevada.
I’m super excited about this role, I’ve always held the WSOP brand in high regard and it’s the most recognizable brand in the industry. But Michigan online poker seems to hold a special place in WSOP’s heart. Indeed, two of its Main Event winners are from Michigan, with Cada winning the Main in 2009 and Ryan Riess four years later in 2013. And Cada was always on WSOP’s horizon.
“With two world champions coming out of this state, Michigan is a special market for the WSOP,” Ty Stewart, SVP of the World Series of Poker at Caesars Entertainment said in a press release.
The Michigan resident rose to fame in 2009 after Cada took down the WSOP Main Event at the age of just 21, becoming the youngest champion ever in the history of WSOP.
Prior to his win, Cada was signed by PokerStars to represent its brand at the Final Table. After his win, he was officially appointed to Team PokerStars and he continued to represent the online poker giant for another five years.
At WSOP MI, he will be seen live streaming cash games, participating in bounty events, and hosting live tournaments around the state.
He will also be playing the prestigious Main Event at the 53rd Annual World Series of Poker this summer where the operator has committed to giving away a $1000 bonus to any Michigan resident who can outlast the former Main Event winner in the $10k buy-in event.
“I don’t know if I’m more excited for the WSOP this summer or WSOP [launching in] Michigan, Cada tweeted ahead of the operator going live in the Great Lakes State.
Soon after his signing, Cada spoke with us and discussed various topics including his role at the company, what is in store for WSOP MI players, what he thinks about his state joining the interstate poker agreement, and more.
WSOP is not known to appoint ambassadors to promote its brand but you have been named local poker ambassador in Michigan. How excited are you about this role?
I’m super excited about this role, I’ve always held the WSOP brand in high regard and it’s the most recognizable brand in the industry.
Per the press release, you will be hosting live streaming sessions at WSOP MI and hosting live tournaments around Michigan. Could you elaborate more on this, please?
I am excited to be able to eventually win bracelets from my own home I’ll be streaming tournaments on WSOP.MI and also cash games. I’ll be streaming 2-4 days a week where I can interact with whoever wants to tune in and learn a thing or two and just interact with other players.
How has the response been to the new site so far?
I think the response has been great, they’re running great promotions and everyone is excited to be able to satellite to WSOP events from their homes. I think, hands down, they have the best software compared to their competitors in the same market.
Are you excited about the prospect of winning a gold bracelet from the comforts of your home?
I think the multi-state agreement makes me more excited than anything. Knowing that [there] is a future for online poker in the states. I am excited to be able to eventually win bracelets from my own home. Ever since I was a kid, I would always [look] forward to the time I’d be able to play the WSOP. I don’t travel to many poker stops, so being able to win a WSOP bracelet from home will be nice.
Could you please tell us what Michigan players can look forward to from WSOP MI in 2022?
Players can look forward to an overall good experience from WSOP. Other competitors seemed more worried about their casino gambling than poker. WSOP only cares about growing its brand and expanding the game of poker.
Michigan has been invited to join the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA). How excited are you about the fact that Michiganders will be able to compete with players from other states such as New Jersey & Nevada?
I think the multi-state agreement makes me more excited than anything. Knowing that [there] is a future for online poker in the states. I think it [is] just another step to slowly make poker federally open to other states eventually. Poker was at its peak when everyone was allowed to play from home and it will be reflected in the WSOP Vegas numbers and poker as a whole.