Jeff Platt Announces Winner in WPT Championship Giveaway

4 min read

Late last week, we told you that PokerGO commentator and part-time poker pro Jeff Platt was giving away a free seat to the $15 million guaranteed WPT World Championship in December. Platt has now announced the winner of his contest, army veteran Tom Elder, who spent 12 years in the military, including four deployments overseas.

The WPT Championship will be at the Wynn next month, and Jeff Platt gave a free seat to veteran Tom Elder. (Image: ClubWPT)

Platt said that when he was offered the chance by WPT and WPT Global to give away a seat that he immediately thought of veterans and military members, something that he’s passionate about.

“So many of our military members fly under the radar and this is a great chance for me to throw some spotlight on them and maybe give someone a chance to make some life-changing money so it was an easy decision for me which direction to go.”

Why Elder stood out

While Platt said it was difficult to choose between so many deserving players, there were a few things that stood out about Elder’s submission.

“Tom sent me a 5-minute video just describing his background in the military, and some of his assignments, and he also added his passion for the WPT and how he’d always been a big fan of Mike Sexton.”

Platt continued on that note, saying that Elder told him about a poker dream that he can no longer accomplish after Mike Sexton’s unfortunate passing two years ago.

“We all think of dreaming about our big poker winning moment, a WSOP bracelet or WPT title, and having a winner’s interview with Mike Sexton, which he said he always wanted. To give him a chance to add his name to the Mike Sexton Champion’s Cup really meant something to me.”

Several players in the poker community vouched for Elder after it was revealed that he threw his hat into the ring.

For his part, Elder expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to join the field of this historic WPT event in Las Vegas.


Platt planning to play as well

Doing this giveaway has already got Platt thinking about future giveaways. He told us that he was originally inspired by poker pro Ray Henson, who put a former veteran into the Salute to Warriors event at the WSOP this past summer.

“I’m going to try to win one more seat and maybe give it to the runner-up, as it were. I have already committed a seat to next year’s Salute to Warriors Event,” said Platt. “And I’ll probably do a few more small ones, the $777 event, ones like that. It’s a great way to give back a bit and have someone to root for in those events.”

In addition to putting Elder into the WPT Championship, Platt said he plans to play in the event himself.

Platt’s been on a heater on the felt recently, winning a MSPT main event at the Venetian for $100K and his first WSOP Circuit ring in an online event. That ring arrived earlier this week, and Platt documented it below.

While he’s been enjoying his recent success on the felt, Platt says he’s not taking it for granted, and isn’t ready to give up his day job just yet.

“I’m fortunate enough to say that the only thing I like as much as playing poker is broadcasting it, so I won’t be leaving anytime soon. Of course, I’ve run well in tournaments and been on the right side of variance, but I do also think hard work pays off,” said Platt.

He continued, “This last year specifically, I’ve put a ton of time into my game, studying a bunch and building good habits. I try not to be results-oriented, but I also think those results can show some sort of validation for the work I put in. It’s certainly been fun!”

Elder, too, has been putting in his time at the table, and is seeing the results of his efforts pay off. Though he’s only been playing live tournaments for two years, he already has $177K in live earnings, including a win for $101,865 in Florida, beating a tough final table that included Nicholas Palma and Maurice Hawkins.

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