Popular online streamers Jeff Gross and Jaime Staples are no longer sponsored players by PokerStars. Both pros announced their departures via their channels on YouTube. Staples ended his four-year run with Stars, while Gross spent nearly two years with them. Both pros will continue to stream on their personal channels, while looking forward to new opportunities.
Two popular Twitch streamers will no longer be pitching PokerStars. Jaime Staples and Jeff Gross posted departure videos on their YouTube stations. It seems like it's another amiable breakup between well-known pros and the ominous red spade. Stars usually operates on year-to-year contracts. With contracts up, we can only speculate that the money was not up to snuff this year to keep either pro around.
At the end of 2017, both Jason Mercier and Vanessa Selbst stepped away from PokerStars after carrying Team Pro duties for many years. This year, it's a pair of streaming pros that peaced out.
Jamie Staples from Alberta, Canada is probably most known these days as the dude with the brother who does those crazy weight bets. Yes, the Staples brothers were involved in multiple pro bets to lose/gain weight. Staples slimmed down over 100 pounds to win $150,000 in cash from Bill Perkins. Perkins, who is notorious for inciting outrageous prop bets, wagered that the brothers could not be the same weight inside of a year. Perkins gave them 50-1 odds on only $3,000. Jamie dropped approximately 115 pounds and his brother added 55 to hit 188 each.
Prior to the prop bet, Staples had become a popular streamer on Twitch. He said he began streaming in his mom's basement and PokerStars took a chance on him. Staples was in the right place and at the right time, doing something he loved. And PokerStars paid him for his passion, which is cool if you were in his situation. Getting swept up into the poker world can legit change people's lives in a whirlwind manner, especially if you have to hit the road a pitch the gospel of PokerStars to players in the both the real world, virtual world, social media, and streaming world. Shoot... Jamie shoulda got four contracts for his work!
"I've always been happy there," said Staples. "This was my dream getting into poker. Being sponsored by PokerStars is the pinnacle of my poker dream."
But Staples was not walking away completely. He's going to stream (and presumably more).
"This is still an opportunity for me to do something different."
Perhaps he can get picked up by a rival, like partypoker. Or maybe he goes more the esports route? Who knows? For now, Staples is a free agent.
Meanwhile, Jeff Gross ended his two-year stint with Stars.
"That's going to be a wrap on PokerStars in terms of representing the company and as an ambassador."
He wanted to let his followers know that this change was not a complete shutdown.
"This is just the beginning, this is not the end," Gross assured his loyal followers and friends. "We are just getting locked in. It's seriously about to turn up."
Jeff is most known as the former roommate of Michael Phelps. He's the guy who helped Phelps out. He's also won $3 million in live tournaments. He locked up six figures in cashes for the last decade. He crushed 2013 with $866K in scores. He's had at least $206K in cashes per year since then.