While we’ve seen plenty of rappers, rock stars and Hollywood A-listers in past WSOP’s, we haven’t seen a whole lot of NBA stars enter the world’s biggest poker event. However, all of this changed in the 2011 WSOP since two stars in Paul Pierce and Shawn Marion both played in tournaments this year.
Pierce is the big headliner here because he registered in the 2011 WSOP Main Event, and actually managed to survive the first day. The Boston Celtics forward played in Day 1c, which included over 2,100 players, and he was one of the lucky 800 players to move on. In addition to playing some good poker, Pierce also managed to maintain a relaxed attitude at the table. He casually talked to people on the rail, while also keeping a solid focus on the poker action.
During a break from the action, Pierce told reporters, “Solid day. I’ve gotta pick it up if I want to compete. It’s a good first day. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Regardless of who I am in the NBA, I’m everybody’s equal at the table. I’m fair game. You’ve got to be able to play.”
Another star who showed up earlier in the 2011 WSOP was Shawn Marion. Fresh off of winning a championship with the Dallas Mavericks in June, Marion jumped in a $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em tournament. He ended up taking 800th out of 3,389 players, and spoke about his finish by saying, “Tournaments are hard to play. I’m a cash game type of guy. You have to be patient, wait for cards and sometimes you wait for so long, you get antsy.”
It’s no surprise that Marion played in a WSOP event since he’s been making some forays into the poker world. The power forward has been spotted hanging out with Maria Ho and Tiffany Michele recently.