Joey Ingram, Arlie Shaban & Jeremy Hilsercop Ring in New Year with Platinum Passes

Joey Ingram, Arlie Shaban & Jeremy Hilsercop Ring in New Year with Platinum Passes

Joey Ingram

Table Of Contents

  • A Little Background
  • Arlie’s Final Labor & A Dilemma for Joey Ingram
  • A Good-Natured Counter-Offer
  • Last-Minute Bahamas Bookings

It’s always nice to have a heartwarming story develop during the holidays, and this year, the poker world was graced with one of their own. The moving tale was born as two stories came together on Christmas Day.

One was the final challenge that Twitch poker streamer Arlie Shaban was tasked by PokerStars to complete in order to secure his $30,000 Platinum Pass to play in the $25,000 buy-in in The Bahamas — more on that later. The other involved an emotional video of a Tennessee man opening his Christmas gift from his wife, and we’ll start there.

Randi Hilsercop surprised her husband with a trip to the World Series of Poker that he had dreamed of since he was a kid, and needless to say, he was touched.

The video went viral and had poker players calling for more appreciation within the community for those poker trips that players often take for granted. On top of that, members of the poker community chimed in offering to buy pieces of his action, to provide free coaching and the Hilsercops even got a $100 food credit from All-American Dave.

Fast-forward to later in the day, and Jeremy’s Christmas present had blossomed into so much more. This part of the story has to do with the 12 Labors of Arlie, so we’ll fill you in on that first.

A Little Background

Big Brother Canada contestant turned poker streamer and Run It Up ambassador Arlie Shaban accepted the 12 Labors of Arlie challenge from PokerStars back in September and had been on the grind to complete them ever since. Designed in the style of the Greek 12 Labors of Hercules, Shaban didn’t know he would be rewarded with a Platinum Pass for his trials until .

Shaban has undergone poker-related as well as physical trials throughout his labors, calling on many PokerStars representatives including Lex Veldhuis, Randy Lew, Negreanu, Jason Somerville, Jaime Staples, Kevin Martin, Chris Moneymaker, Joe Stapleton and more for help along the way.

For challenges nine and ten, Shaban had to enlist Felix Schneiders to ship him a lightsaber, and call on streamers Fintan Hand and Spraggy to help round up players for a freeroll Twitch home game. In the penultimate challenge, Shaban had to retrieve the golden apple from a virtual poker god by beating him in a hand during a PokerStars VR session. Upon completion, only one challenge stood in Shaban’s way.

Arlie’s Final Labor & A Dilemma for Joey Ingram

Having valiantly and cunningly navigated his way through hoards of undertakings, Shaban’s final labor would prove the most challenging. Hercules’ final challenge was to descend into the underworld and capture Cerberus, the hound of Hades that guarded the gates of hell. For PokerStars, this translated to tasking Shaban with convincing a passionate poker personality who has on many occasions expressed vocal opposition to the online poker giant, to accept a Platinum Pass and come play the PSPC with Shaban.

Wanting the Players Championship to be an inclusive poker event, PokerStars challenged Shaban with recruiting Joey Ingram to play the PSPC, with both of them receiving a Platinum Pass should Ingram accept.

“Gods respect passion,” read the PokerStars challenge presented on their blog. “We recognize he’s motivated by the love of the game (at least the one with four cards) and we appreciate the efforts he makes sharing his opinion and his public platform with the community. Mortals like him deserve to be at the Players Championship.”

An olive branch in the form of a $30,000 Platinum Pass was on the table, and Ingram was put in an interesting spot. He took to Twitter to ask for advice, and naturally, his followers were divided. No snap-call here and Ingram bought some time to think it through.

A Good-Natured Counter-Offer

Despite his misgivings towards PokerStars in the past, Ingram saw an opportunity – or perhaps many, and found a way to accept the offer on terms he could be at peace with. After seeing Jeremy’s aforementioned video, Ingram was moved to help him out in any way he could, and ultimately, Ingram decided to accept the PokerStars offer with one contingency.

PokerStars wasted little time in getting back with an affirmative response, and a Christmas miracle was complete.

Last-Minute Bahamas Bookings

Shock and disbelief accompanied the news as Randi took to Twitter with her initial reaction.

Then they had to get their passports rushed, and Moneymaker volunteered to cover the costs for expediting.

Considering his reaction to the trip to Las Vegas to play in a $500 event at the WSOP, one can only imagine what the opportunity to go to The Bahamas and play in a $25K means to Jeremy, and his wife.

Joining these three men in the last-minute Bahamas trip planning are Kevin Mathers, better known as "KevMath" in the poker world, and "First Lady of Poker" , who were also among the final recipients of a Platinum Pass. A very Merry Christmas it has shaped up to be for many in the poker world, thanks in large part to the gifts imparted by PokerStars, and to the generosity that Jeremy’s story has triggered among the poker community.

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  • The story starts with a gift from wife to husband & a dilemma for Joey Ingram. It ends with three $30K passes.

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