Monday, 30th January 2023 07:13
Home / Poker / Chad McVean will be repping the recs at the PSPC 2023

When Canada’s Chad McVean went on the Poker in the Ears podcast as a Superfan for a second time in December 2021, the self-proclaimed ‘Poker & Podcast Aficionado’ thought he was simply taking on co-host Joe Stapleton in another edition of the ‘Superfan vs Stapes’ quiz.

And he was right. But what he didn’t know was that he was about to take part in a very special version of the contest–one themed around PokerStars history, with a very special prize up for grabs.

You can listen to that episode of Poker in the Ears below (McVean’s section begins at 48:20).

McVean, an accountant from Niagra Falls, Ontario, defeated Stapleton for a second time and won himself a Platinum Pass worth $30K to the PokerStars Players Championship (PSPC) 2023. 

That means he’ll be flying down to the Bahamas in January to battle among the best in the game, representing recreational poker players everywhere. McVean is an enthusiastic member of the Rec.Poker and CardPlayer Lifestyle community, and if he can do as well in the tournament as he does quizzing versus Stapleton, he’s in with a great shot.

‘Accountant beats the pros to win millions’ has a nice ring to it. Where have we heard that before?

Here’s our conversation with McVean as he prepares for his trip and the biggest tournament of his life.

Could McVean have his own Moneymaker moment?


Hey Chad! It’s coming up on a year since you won your Pass on Poker in the Ears. What have you been up to since?

A lot of daydreaming about the upcoming experience. I have made many study plans over the year but I really didn’t do much until August. I have started a Twitter thread to record my goals on poker and physical improvement for some social media accountability.

What was the reaction from the Rec.Poker and CardPlayer Lifestyle crew?

Other than my wife, Robbie was the first person I told. He was very excited and hoped to be there to cover it. At the time the PSPC date and location were still unknown.

The RecPoker guys were excited too! I’m glad to see that recreational players can get such a great opportunity.

Have you been playing much poker in preparation?

I play in a local poker league which is a weekly tournament (roughly 30 players) that I tend to do well in.

Also, I did head out to Vegas for a week during the WSOP where I had a deep run in one of the Daily Deepstacks finishing 17th out of 794. The rest of the week was spent playing and helping run Robbie’s Mixed Game Festival at Resorts World.

McVean with CardPlayer Lifestyle’s Robbie Strazynski

You mentioned you started studying in August. How are you approaching it?

I have quite a number of poker books and training programs that I have purchased or have been given to work on.

Here are the books I’ve read this year:

  • Secrets of Professional Tournament Poker by Jonathan Little
  • The Poker Brain by Matt Matros
  • Play Optimal Poker by Andrew Brokos
  • 100 Biggest Mistakes by Alex Fitzgerald

And the books I’m going to read:

  • Play Optimal Poker 2 by Brokos
  • GTO Poker Gems by SplitSuit
  • Endgame Poker Strategy by Dara O’Kearney and Barry Carter
  • Modern Poker Theory by Michael Acevedo

I’ve also watched a lot of poker content on YouTube.

What was it like knowing you had this incredible experience on the horizon but not knowing when and where it would take place?

I was really excited. My wife was hoping for the Barcelona location, but when it was announced for the Bahamas, we spent a lot of time researching Baha Mar and what to expect there. There are a surprising amount of travel videos on YouTube. Everything looks phenomenal!

My wife is hoping for it to go one of two ways. Either she has a quiet relaxing vacation as I am running deep for a big score, which would then afford us another vacation together. Or, I am out early and we have the week together for a fun vacation. Obviously, I am hoping for the first option.

You’ve got a couple of months left before heading to the Bahamas. How are you going to spend them?

I am going to continue my poker study and see if I can get one or two bigger live tournaments in. There really are no live tournament options near me, so travel would be required. Looking at Turning Stone or the Jack in Cleveland for a weekend trip to play as possibilities.

Best of luck, Chad!

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