Rafael Nadal and PokerStars ended weeks of rumors and speculation by officially announcing the tennis star’s signing. At just 26 years old, Nadal is already considered the greatest clay court player in history, has won 11 Grand Slam titles, and has captured an Olympic Gold medal (2008). That said, many believe that Nadal is the biggest online poker signing ever.
The Spaniard talked about his deal by saying, “It’s no secret that I love to compete and try my very best in everything, whether that’s tennis, golf or video games.” He went on to say, “When I discovered the game of poker, I chose to join PokerStars because they understand what it takes to be the best and associate themselves with the qualities of champions. I’m very happy to be working with them.”
Now don’t expect Nadal to immediately start grinding away since he’ll be putting most of his focus on tennis this summer – especially with Wimbledon coming up. However, we should gradually see him in online poker games, charity tournaments, and live events over the next several months.
As for his poker skill level, the “King of Clay” is not exactly the king of the felt since PokerStars already has a campaign going where people can visit a special page and offer him tips. This is quite an interesting deal because the person who helps Nadal better his game the most will get an EPT Barcelona package.
Looking at things from a broad perspective, it’s definitely nice to see a celebrity of Nadal’s caliber involved with poker. He’s arguably the most famous person in Spain, and this should go a long way towards boosting online poker popularity throughout their nation. On a side note, Stars figures to benefit quite a bit from this deal as well, which is no doubt why they sought out the tennis star.