Already one of the preeminent poker rooms in Canada, the Playground Poker Club in Montreal added to its prestige today with the addition of their latest member of the Playground Poker Club.
Former Montreal Canadien legend Guy Carbonneau was announced this morning as the latest member to join the Playground Poker Club’s Players’ Club. Carbonneau joins top professional poker players Antonio Esfandiari, Phil Laak, Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi, Greg “FBT” Mueller and Erik Cajelais (among others) as the “faces” of the Playground Poker Club that participate in their charity events. Carbonneau is the first former National Hockey League player to join the Players’ Club and David Montour, the Playground Poker Club’s Chief Operating Officer, couldn’t be happier.
“Guy Carbonneau is the last player to take the Montreal to the Promised Land by captaining them to a Stanley Cup in 1993,” he elatedly said during the announcement of Carbonneau’s joining. “He’s a born leader and a natural choice to be the first former NHL player named to the Playground Players’ Club.”
The Players’ Club is an integral part of the Playground Poker Club operations as they are prominently featured during their charity events. The Playground Poker Club hosted a very popular charity event, the NHL Faceoff, in September, which proved to be a huge success with the players and fans alike. Hockey legends such as Carbonneau, former Canadiens teammate Guy Lafleur and Mike Bossy joined current NHL pros Carey Price and P. K. Subban and poker pros Trishelle Cannatella and Esfandiari to raise $50,000 for the Jodi Taiger Lazarus Fund for Hereditary Breast Cancer Research.
Coming up on December 4, the Playground Poker Club will be holding another charity event. The tournament, dubbed the “Legends Banquet,” will once again have hockey’s elite and poker’s biggest names in town for a charitable cause.
“Montreal is the home of hockey’s greatest ever team and possesses an impressive and fast-growing poker community,” Montour continued during the announcement of Carbonneau’s arrival to the Players’ Club. “The Players’ Club combines those two aspects and does it all for a great cause.”
Carbonneau’s hockey career is replete with his success in the game. After starting his career with the Chicoutimi Sagueneens of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League in 1976, Carbonneau was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in 1980. He would go on to play thirteen seasons with the Habs, leading them to some of their greatest triumphs.
Guy would help the Canadiens to the Stanley Cup championship in 1986 and was named the Captain in 1989. In 1993, Carbonneau would lead the Canadiens to their last NHL championship before being traded to the St. Louis Blues. Although he would win another Cup in 1999 with the Dallas Stars, Guy has always been loved by fans of the Canadiens. While with the Stars, he participated in the final game at the Montreal Forum (taking the opening faceoff in that game) against the Canadiens and fans voted that his number (21) would not be worn that next season.
His coaching career may not have been as successful as his playing career, but it has brought him back to Canada. He was the head coach of the Canadiens for three seasons (2006-2009), finishing with a 124-83-23 record. Guy is now the president of his first club, the Sagueneens.
While it might not be a combination that people would think of – hockey and poker – the Playground Poker Club seems to be pulling it off well, bringing the best from both worlds to its felt for philanthropic causes!