PokerStars Spreads Holiday Cheer, Gifts $30K Platinum Card to Joe Ingram, Thankful Poker Player

In the spirit of Christmas, PokerStars is making dreams come true. The world’s largest internet poker site shipped $30,000 Platinum Passes into the coming PCA to Joe Ingram, Arlie Shaban, and a guy who had already obtained a poker dream gift from his wife earlier in the day.

Joe Ingram PokerStars PCA

Joe Ingram received a gift-of-a-lifetime for Christmas from PokerStars: a $30,000 Platinum Pass into the 2019 PCA in the Bahamas. (Picture: YouTube)

However, there’s always a Grinch on Poker Twitter looking to turn a positive into a negative. Ingram, who has been critical of the poker website previously, took some heat from a small portion of his fans for accepting the gift. But he is not fazed by those who called him a”sellout.”

PokerStars has given out over 300 free Platinum Passes to lucky winners this year. Joey’s controversial choice helped two others also have a Christmas to remember.

When Your Dream Christmas Gets Even Better

Randi Hilsercop of Tennessee established what turned out to be a viral video of her husband, Jeremy, starting a Christmas present any poker player would love.

I bought my husband a trip to the WSOP in Vegas for Christmas this past year. We have never been able to afford to go til this year. He was very surprised! @WSOP @RealKidPoker @phil_hellmuth @MagicAntonio @PhilLaak @PokerGO #poker #wsop

— Randi Hilsercop (@Randi_heatlifer) December 25, 2018

Jeremy, who works as a General Superintendent at Wood Group in Nashville, was gifted a visit to his first WSOP and will remain at the Rio in Las Vegas this summer. A present like that sure beats the clothing, video games, and toys most folks obtained, at least for a poker player. But that was only the start of what turned out to be quite the merry Christmas.

Ingram made it even better. Arlie Shaban, who had been required to conquer 12″labors” to get a Platinum Pass, needed Joey to take PokerStars’ offer to complete the challenge. The popular poker podcaster decided it was time to move all-in.

I will accept your $30k Platinum Pass provide now on XMAS @PokerStars @PokerStarsLIVE if we could also get Jeremy a Platinum Pass as well. I think him & his wife @Randi_heatlifer could use sunlight. @ArlieShaban wins his Platinum Pass as well. @erichollreiser

— Joey “Clause” Ingram (@Joeingram1) December 25, 2018

PokerStars snap-called that wager, responding with,”let’s make this a Christmas to remember for Jeremy and Arlie.” Ingram, Shaban, and Hilsercop will visit the Bahamas in January with $5,000 in travel money each and $25,000 tickets into the $8 million guaranteed inaugural PokerStars Players Championship at the yearly PCA.

Randi Hilsercop told CardsChat that her husband was playing poker”since he was 12″ but has”never actually had the opportunity to play in any big tournaments or games.”

“He’s managed to play in smaller money games, largely 1/2 and 2/5 making some pretty decent gains but his family always comes first.” she said. “Every time we have some spare time and a teenager, I’ll say’let’s go,’ and we are off to the nearest casino.”

Jeremy, with the Platinum Pass, now has an opportunity to finally play at a high-stakes event. And, who knows, perhaps he’ll win enough to quit his job and support his family through poker.

Moneymaker to the Rescue

Getting to the Bahamas could be a slight issue for the Hilsercop’s. Jeremy doesn’t have a passport but he wants one expedited. The PSPC starts January 6 and it could take over a month for a US citizen to be given a passport. That is the bad news. The fantastic news is Chris Moneymaker is here to save the day.

Bad news for @Randi_heatlifer @jhilsercop who only won a platinum pass from @Joeingram1 they don’t have passports!!!!

Good news if somebody can do the research on if it’s feasibly possible for them to get the passport by Jan 5 I will pay the fees to get done for them. #holidays

— Chris Moneymaker (@CMONEYMAKER) December 25, 2018

Jay Farber, the 2013 WSOP Main Event runner-up, shared some more great news. He advised Moneymaker that a passport can be obtained”overnight” for a nominal fee.

Haters Gonna Hate

Joe Ingram is learning that you just can’t win with everyone, especially not on Twitter. The”great game of pot-limit Omaha” promoter made some of his fans mad by even considering to take a Platinum Pass. That’s because he has been critical of the poker website previously. And those fans view it “selling out.”

“Many of poker’s biggest names are sponsored by some poker website,” he advised CardsChat. “And I don’t ever hear them being called sellouts.”

Ingram has a trusted voice . And he sees this as an opportunity to”establish some type of dialogue with PokerStars.” Instead of continuing to rant on YouTube and social media, he can now state his concerns directly to the poker website. And he also helped Shaban and Hilsercop input the PSPC. Therefore, even the haters must admit he’s doing some good.

“If you feel some type of way about what is going on in the poker world, make your voice known,” he said. Create videos, vlogs, blogs, etc.. Get your voice out there rather than criticizing those who choose to do so.”

Don’t expect Ingram to change his ways. Just because he’s competing in a PokerStars event doesn’t mean he’ll become a shill. He is simply doing what most would do: accepting a free $30,000 gift.

And he just might win a huge amount of money in the process. Well, if he can quickly learn how to crush the game he refers to as”two-card PLO” (no-limit hold’em).

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