SCOOP 2015: Mohsin Charania undoing the Monte Carlo mess
The running joke, if you haven't already heard a couple hundred times from EPT Live broadcaster Joe Stapleton, begins like this..."I don't want to say Monaco is expensive but..."
For poker superstar Mohsin Charania, that joke is no joke.
"I just got back from Monte Carlo where I played the €100k, the Main Event, and the High Roller without cashing," he said today.
I don't want to say Monaco is expensive, but that, folks, translates to roughly $150,000 in buy-ins over the course of a little more than a week, and that doesn't count any other events or rebuys he might have made. Upon his departure, Charania made his feelings clear.
Good bye Monaco you were rather expensive— Mohsin Charania (@chicagocards1) May 7, 2015
For a lot of people, that would be enough to encourage a long period of reflection and bankruptcy. Charania, however, can afford it. The 30-year-old one-time Chicagoan (exiled to Toronto after Black Friday) is only six months removed from winning his second WPT title. He has more than $4.5 million in live earnings, a big chunk of which came from his EPT Season 8 Grand Final Main Event win. He's not going broke any time soon.
That isn't to say, however, that the 2015 Monte Carlo experience didn't sting a little bit. Good thing the Spring Championship of Online Poker came around so quickly, then.
See, Charania barely had time to do his laundry before SCOOP started up, and he was among the very first winners. He won $198,000 in the the high buy-in turbo event on Sunday. It was his second SCOOP title.
"A SCOOP title means a lot," he said. "There's only a few events each year, and all the best players in the world are playing them, so it means a lot to win one."
By the time a guy has won millions playing poker, winning a couple hundred grand may not seem like a huge deal. To a degree, that's actually the case.
"Having played so much online poker, this win gets numbed down a little," Charania said. "I don't know the best way to describe it, but when you play poker for a living, you tend to limit your highs and lows or you will never become good at the game. After I won, I fist pumped and yelled, but about 10 seconds later I was back to myself playing the other tournaments I was currently entered in. This was also a turbo. It lasted less than four hours, so it kind of felt like a blur."
No matter how fast it went or how the purse related to his overall earnings, it was a blur that undid a lot of the Monte Carlo mess. Not a lot of the people who went o-fer in Monaco have repaired their bank accounts already.
"This money will go toward replacing the damage that trip did," he said. "It will also go toward playing other SCOOPs. SCOOP is an expensive series, and I was planning on playing almost every high and medium event anyways."
We shouldn't have expected any less from Charania. Like many people, he was a successful pro before Black Friday hit four years ago. If he wanted to keep playing online, his only choice was to leave the USA. For a lot of players, that could've meant the end of a career or the end of their normal life. Charania has proven, whether it's a big bankroll ding in Monaco or becoming a man without a country, he can adapt. Not only has he remained a successful player, he's got a good life, too. He's got a girlfriend, plays sports, and travels as much as he can. Life's not so bad in his adopted home.
"Luckily I have a lot of family here including my grandma," he said. "Toronto is nice and very similar to Chicago in many ways. It has the same weather and feel of a big centralized city."
So, yes, if you're a caring person, you can feel bad for a guy who drops six figures along the Riviera. You should feel bad. That kind of thing sucks. But don't cry for Mohsin Charania. It seems like he has it covered just fine.
Brad Willis is the PokerStars Head of Blogging