Introducing: Liquid`nanonoko

November 24 2016

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The Hearthstone scene has very close ties to the Poker scene, with many top poker players showing public interest in our little "Wizard Poker" game, the most prominent of these players being Elky and Daniel Negreanu. At the same time, many of our Hearthstone players have competed in high stakes live poker events, thanks to our partnership with Pokerstars. Players like Dog, Sjow, and Savjz traveling to live poker events has given us cute moments like this where the two scenes can truly collide.

Thus, it was no surprise to me when another well-known poker player wanted to give professional Hearthstone an honest shot. When I first heard Randy wanted to be not only a Poker Star, but a Hearthstone star as well, I was cautiously hesitant as you very well might be now. Though poker and Hearthstone require similar skillsets, there was no guarantee that a player with very little to no Hearthstone tournament experience could make it to the big leagues so quickly.

But then I learned more about nanonoko, his fighting game background, and how he came from being an average college student to a top tier poker player with both over $2 million in online earnings and a guiness world record under his belt. This video can tell you more than I ever could about Randy, but my personal takeaway is that he is an intelligent grinder, a characteristic I consider essential to the success of a Hearthstone player.

nanonoko will debut today as a member of Team Liquid at DreamHack: Winter where he'll test his skills in nine grueling Swiss rounds of Hearthstone. As DreamHack is traditionally one of the most stacked tournaments in the scene, nanonoko will have quite the challenge for his first event. Please join us in supporting nanonoko as he begins his journey as a Hearthstone player.

Watch Dreamhack Live
-Kevin "monk" Dong

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"I started playing video games competitively with the fighting game community through “Marvel vs Capcom 2” and transitioned into playing poker full-time. Poker was a natural fit as I had the right mindset to figure out how to beat my opponents and the drive to put in the hard work and dedication necessary to be one of the best. Hearthstone has many similarities to poker in that it’s a turn based card game where you are trying to figure out your opponent’s moves so you can optimize your turn. I think my experience in poker will allow me to learn quickly and fulfill my desire to be one of the best in Hearthstone. As a member of Team PokerStars, I’m honored to be back in the esports competitive scene playing Hearthstone as a part of Team Liquid."

-Randy "nanonoko" Lew


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