partypoker announces the creation of Team Online with its first member. Kevin Martin is the latest PokerStars casualty. Stephen Chidwick continues his run as the US Poker Open GOAT. Check these stories and more in the Tuesday Hit and Run.

partypoker announces first members of Team Online

partypoker announced on Tuesday the creation of Team Online, a new home for popular online streamers and other content creators. On the same day they announced the creation of Team Online they revealed its first member, Canadian Twitch Streamer Matt Staples, who is one of the most popular poker players on Twitch with more than 52,000 followers. He is also the brother of former PokerStars Team Pro Jaime Staples, who he famously collaborated with on the UltimateSweat weight loss challenge bet.

The news comes less than a week after partypoker partnered with Bill Perkins’ The Thirst Lounge. In statements announcing both partnerships, partypoker teased that additional deals would be revealed over the coming days and weeks.

Speculation has run rampant that partypoker could reach deals with former PokerStars Team Pros that have left the top online poker this month. Jaime Staples and Jeff Gross drew headlines on February 5th when they departed PokerStars on the same day. Now comes news that longtime sponsored pro Kevin Martin would also be leaving. Will these popular Twitch streamers be the next to contribute to partypoker’s new focus on streaming?

Quick hitters

Stephen Chidwick is at the final table of yet another US Poker Open event, as he was one of six players to hold chips at the start of the second day of action in the $25,000 Pot Limit Omaha (Event #6). Joining Chidwick at the final table was Anthony Zinno, Sean Fafeal, Katz, Ben Lamb and Tom Marchese. At the time of this writing, Chidwick continued his lead with 2nd in chips Cary Katz threathening. Sean Rafael and Anthony Zinno have been knocked out at the time of this writing.

Tuesday also saw the start of Event #7, the $25,000 No Limit Hold’em, with 28 players entering at the time of this writing and new registrations trickling in.

Televised coverage of the US Poker Open can be found at PokerGo with a subscription. Alternatively, poker fans can follow the action via live updates through PokerNews.

With Chidwick’s strong performance he is likely to take over Sean Winter’s place in the US Poker Open standings, who has the lead after the first five events:

PlacePoker PlayerPointsPrizes
1stSean Winter440$419,900
2ndStephen Chidwick340$354,950
3rdJordan Cristos240$206,200
4thAli Imsirovic200$442,500
5thCary Katz200$346,200
6thLauren Roberts200$218,400
7thManig Loeser180$146,200
8thDan Shak140$232,100
9thKorey Aldemir140$159,200
10thDavid Peters140$100,800

– The Golden Nugget became the 13th casino to launch an online sportsbook in the state of New Jerse after going live on Tuesday with wagering available through a web browser and on mobile devices. The casino, which has dominated the online casino market in New Jersey, will likely make an immediate impact for online sportsbetting in the state.

– Last week, the New Hampshire Lottery somewhat surprisingly filed a lawsuit against the Department of Justice’s new opinion on the Wire Act. Legal Sports Report’s John Holden cautions against over-optimism from the lawsuit saying that the effort faces an uphill battle.

– From the Fake News bin, PokerStars new rewards program promises efficiency, transfers directly from poker players to shareholders.

– Tuesday’s featured Grinderschool.com poker training video is the 5th episode in CFTheNatural’s “Why I Still Love Micros” series. In this episode, CFTheNatural reviews a variety of hands where an opponent needlessly lost their stack.

Best poker videos from across the internet

Joey Ingram is humored by the influx of 90-second announcement videos on Twitter from members of the poker community.

Jaime Staples congratulations his brother Matt on his new gig with partypoker:

Marle Cordeiro takes a look at highlights from her 2018 breakout blog since launching six months ago:

– With a three-night stay in Commerce Casino during the Los Angelos Poker Classic, Andrew Neeme reviews some notable hands from the stay: