PokerStars pro and former StarCraft pro gamer Betrand “ElKy” Grospellier has joined the Hearthstone division of Team Liquid, the eSports professional gaming sponsor. This is the first time PokerStars has had one of its Team Pros signed to top gaming sponsorship. Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, who competed in StarCraft: Brood War, StarCraft 2and Warcraft 3 he retired from eSports to play Poker professionally. In 2001, he finished second in the World Cyber Games in 2001 for StarCraft and in the Ongamenet WarCraft Retail League in 2002. A year later, won the Euro Cyber Games.
Elky’s subsequent involvement with poker brought him tangibly more success than pro gaming as the Frenchman is a bearer of the “Triple Crown”, the title given to those who manage to win three major tours in “World Series of Poker”, “World Poker Tour” and the “European Poker Tour”. He has made more than $10 million USD playing Poker and holds the world record for more Single Table Sit & Goes played in an hour.
Grospellier is one of a number of poker stars who have taken up Hearthstone casually or for streaming, including the winningest poker player of all time Daniel Negreanu. “Some poker players at the table were talking about [Hearthstone] and they were talking about the complexity of it and how it’s similar to poker,” Negreanu said. “So I just downloaded it. The first time I downloaded it, I spent the next 11 hours straight playing it.”
ElkY said, “When I discovered poker, I had to make the difficult choice to leave the competitive gaming world to focus my energy fully on poker. Hearthstone is one of the first games that shares the same skills as poker, and I am very excited for what the future holds in my multi-gaming career.”
Elky made his first Hearthstone appearance at Blizzcon this year against poker player Daniel Negreanu. The friendly 3-out-of-5 duel with Daniel Negreanu was part of the festivities during the 2015 Hearthstone World Championship hosted by the popular card game’s license holder, Blizzard Entertainment. Daniel Negreanu (Kid Poker) defeated fellow Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier. The Swedish player “Ostkaka” claimed the 2015 championship along with its $100,000 first place prize.
Elky is playing his first games under the Team Liquid banner at SeatStory Cup IV, but losses to newly crowned world champion Sebastian “Ostkaka” Engwall and controversial Tempo Storm streamer Byron “Reckful” Bernstein saw him fail to advance from the first group stage.