LAPT8 Panama: Cultural differences
"Why aren't we the feature table," said Shakeeb Kazemipur, peering over his stack to look up at the stage. "We got Francois, we got this guy, we got that guy."
Kazemipur pointed at other members of his table.
While Kazemipur's table might not have the most Latin appeal, it's easily the loudest. Aside from Kazemipur's loud, intermittent stream of consciousness, Francois Lincourt's deep, baritone voice rattles chip stacks within a two table radius.
Kazemipur was relatively tame the past few days but now that he's with his countryman and other English speakers --as well nearly a million chips-- the floodgates have opened.
Adding to the mix is Jose Obadia, who celebrates loudly and proudly in Spanish with every double up and tries to throw a few jabs back at Kazemipur.
Obadia's most recent double up came against Michael Lech.
After a raise from Lech, Obadia moved all-in and Lech thought for some time before calling.
Lech showed 6♠6♣ but Obadia had K♥K♠. The board ran 8♣5♣8♥A♦8♦ and Obadia jumped and shouted in celebration.
"That's why I hate doubling up against people here," Kazemipur said. "They make you feel like ****."
Yesterday, Kazemipur played with --and doubled up-- Jorge Pereira. Pereira is a Brazilian player well-known on the LAPT for his passionate, vocal and often hilarious celebrations.
A blog favorite is Pereira's rabo de macaco! which roughly translates to: monkey butt.
As tournament director Mike Ward said, passion is inherent in Latin American poker. Any double up requires excessive celebration, a two-outer on the river means a small party with at least a dozen of your closest friends and family.
Players new to the region quickly learn to adapt to the culture.
Team PokerStars Pro Christian De Leon is more than acquainted with poker in Latin America but didn't get to celebrate a double up today.
After a raise to 12,500, De Leon moved all-in for about 110,000. De Leon had A♠K♠ and was called by T♦T♠.
It was a flip for his tournament life but a T♣ in the window quickly deflated the Team Pro. His final board read K♦9♣T♣4♦Q♠ and the final Team Pro in the field was eliminated.
This is De Leon's sixth LAPT cash and he earned $5,860 for finishing 30th.
Players have been falling steadily since while a few players continued to chip up. Kazemipur is still in the lead and is the first player to break the 1 million mark.
Olga Ermolcheva, who's been on the feature table since the start of the day, is now up to 785,000.
For multilingual coverage, check out our Spanish PokerStars Blog and our Brazilian PokerStars Blog. If you're more of a watcher, head over to LAPT Live to check out the live stream. Updates are also available on the LAPT Facebook page.
All photos are snapped by Carlos Monti and all words are clacked by Alexander Villegas.