There is big news from the 888poker ambassador team as long-time poker pro Dominik Nitsche parted ways with the company recently. The operator announced the latest move in a tweet on March 31.
The announcement ends a seven-year partnership between the operator and the founder of DTO Poker that made Nitsche one of the primary faces of the brand. While the tweet was short on details, 888poker wished Nitsche well, ending with “See you at the tables”.
It was not all losses for 888poker, though as the operator also added a new face to its roster — Brazilian player Alexandre “Cavalito” Mantovani joins fellow countryman Vivian Saliba as the newest face on the team.
The 888poker Team is currently in flux, with Nitsche only the latest departure from the roster after 2014 WSOP Main Event champion Martin Jacobson and Sofia Lovgren both left the brand recently. However, in addition to Mantovani, the operator has also recently expanded its Twitch team presence and added US pro Samantha Abernathy last year.
The Current 888poker Team
With the departure of Nitsche, only Saliba and legendary Canadian commentator Kara Scott remain from the old crew. However, they were joined last year by Abernathy as well as by Chris Eubank Jr. in the role of cultural ambassador.
That brings the main team up to four poker members with the new addition of Mantovani, who has more than $5.5 million in online earnings to go with his $361k in live cash. However, it seems likely there may be more announcements in the future as the operator continues to try to fill the holes left in its ambassador team after the recent departures — and pokerfuse predicts there will be at least one more major announcement regarding the team coming soon.
In addition to the new ambassador, 888poker has been beefing up its Twitch presence in recent times. The operator launched its own 888pokerTV Twitch channel last year, with commentary on live and online games from Nick Wealthall and David Tuchman.
To add to the success of its channel, the launch included the creation of the 888poker Twitch StreamTeam and the operator has continued to expand its roster. It recently added Rene “renemastermix” Majed from Germany and Romania’s Andrei “andreicoz” Cosmin to a team that has members from the United Kingdom, and Portugal.
As mentioned above, pokerfuse predicts there will be another major announcement related to the team in the near future. The upcoming announcement should have a direct impact on both the live ambassador and streaming teams.
888poker Ontario is Now Open for Business
Alongside the announcements from the global side of 888poker, the operator has been gearing up for the opening of the new Ontario market in Canada. While Ontarians have traditionally played on the 888poker global client, new regulations are forcing operators to provide an Ontario-only solution.
888poker Ontario was the first out of the gate in the new regulated market with a fully functional Ontario poker room on April 4 when the new regulations came into effect. It is competing against BetMGM Poker while other competitors such as PokerStars, partypoker, and GGPoker that have applied for a license continue to offer the market from offshore.
Currently, 888 Ontario players are enjoying huge value at tournaments as the majority of them are failing to meet their guarantees. The upcoming Sunday schedule could prove to be even more valuable as some $50,000 in guaranteed prize money is spread across eight tournaments and the likelihood of falling short is very high.
With the launch of 888poker Ontario, we expect to see even more great streaming content come out of Canada’s largest province, especially as 888 already has a local on the ground — Ontario-based streamer, Adam “iamEklo”. Tocholke was one of the founding members of the StreamTeam and has already been streaming live from the newly launched 888 Ontario poker room on his Twitch channel Tocholke (which is certainly worth checking out if you want a peek at the sleek new Poker 8-powered platform).
The new Ontario room also opens up some more opportunities for Canadian streaming or ambassador deals for the local market. Perhaps we will see additional Ontarian ambassadors join Tocholke in the coming months to help boost up its local presence and fill some of the remaining gaps in its roster.