Bryan Pellegrino (PrimordialAA) Sounds Off About the Demise of Lock Poker


With the demise of Lock Poker, stories regarding the operation of the site have begun to leak. First there was former Lock Poker spokesperson Shane Bridges, who warned in February that he believed that the site would never pay out players. Now, Bryan PrimordialAA Pellegrino (pictured) has opened up regarding his time as a sponsored member of the Lock Poker Pro team.

“I get approached by Lock Poker about a pro deal,” Pellegrino continued. “They had actually offered me a deal a few years before this that I had turned down because it seemed kind of sketchy. The owner just hopped on Skype and started talking to me about offshore bank accounts and stuff… I said I wasn’t interested, but… with my options a lot more restricted, I listened to what they had to say.”

After doing some investigation among fellow pros, high-stakes online players, and others regarding Lock Poker, Pellegrino accepted the offer to become a Lock Poker Pro. At the time, the roster of players read like a “Who’s Who” of the world of poker: Chris moorman1Moorman, Annette Annette_15Obrestad, Melanie Callisto 5Weisner, and Michael Mizrachi, just to name a few.

“For the first six months, things go by fine,” Pellegrino reported. Pellegrino then moved his attention to a daily fantasy sports site that he was starting and drifted away from daily play on Lock Poker.

Roughly one year later, Pellegrino looked to get back into the action at Lock Poker and found that the site had many issues. “Lock starts falling to s**t,” Pellegrino wrote in the post. “I’m hearing a ton of complaints from people about cashouts starting to take longer. I talk to [Lock CEO Jennifer Larson] and… get told a bunch of stuff about Cake doing some shady stuff.” After the discussion, Lock Poker moved towards its own poker network and Pellegrino saw how difficult things had become.

The Lock Poker management gathered the sponsored pros and staff in Portugal for a meeting about “big things,” according to Pellegrino. Meeting at a prime hotel, Pellegrino reported that Larson and the senior management “drove around in one or two Rolls Royces” and that there were “30 limos” to transport everyone else. “It was insane and just screamed ‘money,’” Pellegrino observed.

After two days of extravagant but unproductive gatherings, Pellegrino admitted the “big thing” was a reiteration from Larson about problems with payment processors and that things would be fine once new processors were established.

Once again, Pellegrino had done some homework on the issue. He confirmed Lock had purchased a new software program. Pellegrino also disclosed that he learned that Laurent Tapie, the French investor who was unsuccessful in his attempts to buy Full Tilt Pokerfollowing “Black Friday,” had made an offer for Lock and been turned down. Along with being the online poker room that ran satellites for the now seemingly defunct ISPT, Pellegrino thought that things were looking up for the site and decided to stick around a little longer.

“I came back from that trip and told people… I thought they had money and would pay,” Pellegrino continued. “A few months went by with no improvement and, even though I still couldn’t really see how any of those things made sense, it seemed very obvious things weren’t going to get any better. I left quietly… and felt pretty ashamed that I had been so ridiculously wrong.”

Pellegrino stated that during his time as a Lock Poker Pro, he never took money out of the site. “I wasn’t doing it for any monetary gain… I had pledged to give my cashouts to other people who were waiting for money.” Pellegrino concluded his thoughts by saying, “I am incredibly sorry for what happened to everybody. Many of my closest friends and family members were affected by this as well as anybody who saw my name associated with Lock and gave it extra credence of being trustworthy.”

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  1. Wish other former Lock Pro’s would be as candid about their experiences. Especially with those still supporting in threads and on their personal social media Lock Poker after the famed castle trip and the super slow withdrawals.

    Too many of the former site sponsored players want to forget that they were promoting and getting people to sign up to this site and instead of telling their story like Brian did, they are pushing their past actions under the rug. I don’t blame the former site pro’s for the mess at Lock Poker, I blame the management. I do feel generally speaking they were fed a story which they believed or wanted to believe.

    Props to Brian for sharing his experiences, and wish you the best of luck down the road.

    • So people signed on to be Lock sponsored pros without verifying that player funds were protected by being kept separate from operational funds? And did so after the debacle over player funds at Full Tilt?

    • Good for him at least acknowledging he was wrong and apologizing. Many of us will still remember an epic thread on another forum right after the time of the pro retreat in Portugal. Brian was at least courageous enough to show up and talk about Lock, but he came across as irrationally defensive and naive about their insolvency, even after the point where it was clear, even to those of us without special access, that there were dire problems with Lock. I’m not sure if he was just duped by Jennifer Larsen, or deliberately avoided all the public info on Lock or what. He’s not even close to the worst villain in all this, but I don’t think we should totally absolve him of complicity.

    • Yeah, you would think that Risen (Eric Lynch), who was their Tourney Director, and by all accounts an upstanding guy, would come out of the woodwork and say something!

    • So whack that this happens rite after tilt/stars/ub scams. The thought that we cant trust the industry is just sad. No accountability no regulations. So many people effected that are constantly at risk b/c we cant get one universal nation wide law/system in place. Not to mention the millions of players nation wide who don’t have a clue about paying/ filing taxes and earnings b/c of course the whole industry is a grey area smoke and mirrors bull chit scam.

    • He’s getting the Shane treatment now of being a hero for speaking out against them now after being one of the scumbags assuring people everything was okay long after it was clear that it wasn’t. They are both scummy trash and deserve to be held accountable for misleading people for so long