PokerStars invited a special celebrity guest to play in the 2017 PokerStars Championship Barcelona €5,300 Main Event earlier this week. That man was 27-year-old Anton Zaslavski, who is better known to the masses as multi-platinum Grammy-award winning DJ Zedd.
Zedd Meet Poker, Poker Meet Zedd
Zedd, who has nearly six million followers on Twitter, grew up in Germany, but now travels the world as one of the most in-demand electro house music artists. He’s also an accomplished producer having worked with the likes of Alessia Cara and Ariana Grande. In 2014, he received the “Best Dance Recording” Grammy for “Clarity,” featuring Foxes.
“It’ll be something new for me to attend a tournament as huge as PokerStars Championship Barcelona,” Zedd said when it was first announced he’d be playing. “I’m looking forward to experiencing the atmosphere and playing against some of the world’s greatest poker players.”
Unfortunately for Zedd and his legion of fans, live updates from his first major poker tournament failed to capture his bustout hand, but they did note he was gone in Level 4(150/300/50). It wasn’t a great performance, but he did outlast Niall Farrell, Jason Wheeler, and chess master Jeff Sarwer.
Zedd found a bit of redemption, however, in Event #25: €2,000 Turbo, where he finished third out of 226 players for €44,000/$51,944.
“I loved it. Had a drink, talked to some people, found out who they are,” Zedd told poker reporter Sarah Herring. “I obviously don’t play poker that much, but the experience I have are fairly quick tournaments, that’s what I always play. Whenever I play at home, it’s usually pretty quick so I’m used to being under pressure. It felt a little easier for me than the long tournaments.”
In addition to poker, Zedd played a 90-minute set during the PSC Barcelona Player Party at Opium Barcelona.
PSC Barcelona Update
Zedd wasn’t the only celebrity in the Barcelona poker house. Football star Gerard Piqué fired two bullets in the €25,500 Single-Day High Roller, which was won by poker pro Stephen Chidwick. Hollywood A-lister Kevin Hart was slated to play but ultimately decided not to drop into Spain so soon after the recent Barcelona terrorist attack.
This year’s PSC Barcelona attracted 1,682 runners, which made it the third-largest ever, dating back to the 2004 EPT Barcelona. However, it was a three-year low after the 2015 and 2016 fields stood at 1,694 and 1,785 players respectively.
Among the pro poker studs in attendance were Viktor “Isildur1” Blom, Daniel Negreanu, and defending champ Sebastian Malec, who last year gave CardsChat an exclusive interview regarding his win.
Unfortunately for Malec, he fell on Day 2 in Level 13 (1,200/2,400/400) when he got his stack all-in preflop with A♠9♠ against the Q♠J♠ of Zinan Xu. Malec, who was sporting the same yellow hoodie he wore on his way to victory in 2016, got it in good, but a jack on the turn ended his hopes of going back to back.
That ensures a new champion will be crowned this weekend and take home a €1,410,000/$1,664,575 first-place prize.