WCOOP profile: IneedMassari's life changing moment
Not to stereotype, but Brazilians are generally happy, friendly people. I'm sure that's not fair to some ugly-faced guy in Sao Paulo who woke up in a bad mood, but I'm prepared to say that nearly--if not all--of the Brazilians I've met have been smiling, enjoyable folk.
João Paulo Simão, if you couldn't tell by the spelling of the name, is one of those smiling Brazilians. Like the familiar Andre Akkari, Alex Gomes, and Gualter Salles, it's hard to find the man known as IneedMassari without a song in his heart.
"I like these players because they are not only a good players,they are good people and do a lot for the poker in my country," he said.
But, it takes more than just having a smile and a few chips to be a respected poker player in Brazil. Moreover, it takes more than all of that to convince one's loved ones that you've got game.
It takes something like a WCOOP win.
WCOOP Event #12 ($215 Heads-Up NLHE) went to IneedMassari for nearly $80,000, a sum that will go a long way toward proving to the folks at home that the 21-year-old civil engineering student has some game.
"(It)shows my friends and family that I'm not crazy and that poker is not a luck game," he said. "This WCOOP was important--not for the money--but to show that poker is a sport that you really have to study and do your best. It was good to show to my family that I'm not losing my time just to play a luck game."
IneedMassari was not without success before WCOOP. When the Latin American Poker Tour stopped in Florianopolis, Brail, IneedMassari won the PLO event and took second in a turbo NLHE against Team PokerStars Pro Andre Akkari.
The WCOOP victory, however, is still the biggest.
"It was better than in my dreams," IneedMassari said. "Now the people believe in me. Now they can only say congratulations. This WCOOP changed my life."