Poker Vs. Hearthstone: Pros Face Off In ‘Worlds Collide’ Event Sponsored By Amazon Coins, Poker Central

Written By Joss Wood on May 20, 2016 - Last Updated on January 22, 2018

[toc]The close link between poker and esports is about to be exposed to a wider audience as Amazon Coins and Poker Central broadcast a “Worlds Collide” event on May 24.

The event pits three poker pros against three Hearthstone pros: Team Poker Central vs. Team Amazon Coins.

Team Poker Central

Team Poker Central consists of Doug “WCGRider” Polk, Maria Ho and Scott Ball.

Polk is considered to be one of, if not the, best cash game poker players in the world at the moment. He mainly plays under the screen name “WCGrider“.

The WCG stands for World Cyber Games, becausePolk was an avid eGamer before he got serious about poker.

Ho is one of the world’s top female players, and she is the Team Manager of the Los Angeles Sunset team in the Global Poker League, which is mid-way through its inaugural season.

Her team members include Aaron Paul, the actor who played Jesse Pinkman in the TV series Breaking Bad. Paul was her wild-card pick for the team, and can be seen playing his GPL matches on the Poker Central GPL live stream.

In the lineup for Team Poker Central, Ball is the wild-card. He’s no mean poker player, and in January managed a sixth place finish in the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure event No. 6, a six handed, $600 buy-in event.

But Scott’s day job is being the Community Development and Poker Manager at Twitch. He is deeply embedded in the center of the relationship between poker and esports.

Team Amazon Coins

Hearthstone pros Jason “Amaz” Chan, David “Dog” Caero and Esteban “AKAWonder” Serrano fill out Team Amazon.

The whole event will be commented on by StarCraft player Geoff “INcontrol” Robinson. Geoff is well known to esports fans not just for his playing success, but also because he has become a regular commentator on Dreamhack events broadcast from Sweden, Bucharest and Valencia.

Esports is a natural extension for Poker Central

Poker Central is a 24/7 broadcast channel devoted to all things poker. It launched in October 2015 with a fairly limited set of broadcast options.

Since then it has gradually extended its reach to the point where the 2016 Super High Roller Bowl, created and produced by Poker Central, will air on the CBS Sports Network.

The $15 million prize pool poker event attracts the biggest names in poker, who each put up $300,000 to buy in to the event. CBS will be broadcasting 30 hours of action from the tournament, which takes place at the ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.

The cross-over Worlds Collide event is a natural for Poker Central. Not only are poker pros prominent in the event, but Ho is the host of one of Poker Central’s Twitch streams.

Poker Central managed to get over two million views for its live stream of last year’s Super High Roller Bowl cash game, which ran alongside the main event. The added demographic represented by a Hearthstone audience takes Poker Central into a larger audience than it can get from poker alone.

Amazon Coins are a virtual currency for digital transactions

Amazon Coins are the Amazon version of Bitcoin, the digital crypto-currency which has become popular for use in eGaming.

Unlike Bitcoin, Amazon Coins don’t change in value — 100 coins are worth $1. Coins can be earned via in-app purchases in video games, or can be bought directly from Amazon.

Coins can be used for in-app purchases in many different games, or can be spent in the Amazon app store.

Given the big picture vision that Amazon brings to everything it does, there’s no doubt that CEO Jeff Bezos would love esports to standardize on Amazon Coins. It’s a long-term ambition, but the increasing availability of Amazon Coins shows that progress is being made.

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Joss Wood

Joss Wood holds an English degree from the University of Birmingham and also earned a master’s degree in organizational development from the University of Manchester. Joss has a special focus on the international online gambling market, though he also writes extensively on US regulated markets, sports betting, and esports betting.

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