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Nov 19, 2014

Rumors of Viktor Blom Unibet Poker Signing

By RTR Dennis

A month ago, popular high stakes pro Viktor 'Isildur1' Blom was dropped by Full Tilt Poker. Many considered this yet another sign that the sponsorship era of online poker is almost dead. However, it's possible that Blom has already landed with Unibet, and we'll discuss the signs of this potential deal below.

Tweets from Blom and Alex Dreyfus

Speculation over a union between Blom and Unibet arose when the Swede recently tweeted the following about his upcoming poker schedule:

"In Macau right now, but planning to play the @unibet cash game before @unibetopen at Aspers in London end of November. Looks fun!"
This is significant because A) Blom isn't very active on Twitter, and B) he doesn't exactly play a lot of live tournaments, with just 10 live cashes since 2010. Global Poker Index founder Alex Dreyfus, who's dialed into the industry, also feels like something could be happening here as he tweeted:

"Is @ViktorBlom (Isildur) sponsored by @Unibet now ? Interesting development."

Unibet announces cash game

While Unibet Poker hasn't officially announced anything regarding a sponsorship deal, they did confirm that Isildur1 will be taking part in their cash game:

"Poker greats @ViktorBlom @CrocMonsieur and @SenseiChanning will play in our golden cash game at @Unibet Open London!"
The Unibet Open London event kicks off on November 27th, so perhaps we'll know more on if Blom is truly sponsored by then.

Does a sponsorship deal make sense?

Given that many sites are moving away from signing pros, it certainly wouldn't be a bad idea for Blom to grab hold of this opportunity. Sure Unibet doesn't have the resources or funds of Full Tilt (Amaya Gaming), but these days, many poker players would jump at guaranteed money from a sponsor.

As for Unibet, having a well-known player like Isildur1 representing them is a great way to appeal to the European market. They've re-branded their poker site and have an obvious focus on drawing recreational players. Sure Blom is far from a recreational player, but the name recognition that he brings would bode well for Unibet and their revamped marketing efforts.