2017 Global Poker Index Player Of The Year Race Coming Down To The Wire

Martin Derbyshire December 4, 2017 302 Reads
GPI POY

It is an extremely tight race at the top of the 2017 Global Poker Index Player Of The Year rankings headed into the final few weeks of the year.

Long Island, New York‘s Bryn Kenney sits atop the standings. This, thanks to another high roller cash at the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic in Las Vegas, Nevada this weekend.

Kenney is having his best year in a decade as a professional poker player, having earned more than $8.4 million so far. He earned $234,000 and 168.77 GPI POY points finishing sixth in the $100,000 WPT Five Diamond Super High Roller to close out November. It was a month in which he also booked cashes in three high roller events at the 2017 World Series of Poker Europe.

Big year, big scores

Earlier this year Kenney also booked the biggest tournament score of his career winning the €100,000 PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo Super High Roller for approximately $1,946,911.

Capturing POY honors from poker’s most definitive ranking system would certainly be a feather in his cap. However, locking up the title will be no easy task with Spaniard Adrian Mateos closely in tow.

Mateos’ $250,000 and 402.69 point win in the $5,000 partypoker Caribbean Poker Party event in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic Nov. 22 actually pushed him into the momentary points lead. He currently sits with 3,376.74 points. But, Kenney’s score at the Bellagio this weekend has him at 3,478.06 points now.

Mateos, whose career highlights include winning the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event and 2015 European Poker Tour Grand Final, is also enjoying his best year as a pro, having cashed for $4,988,681 in tournaments so far.

Global Poker Index Player of the Year up for grabs

One more final table appearance from either of these two to close out the year could decide the whole thing. Plus, the rest of the current top ten could conceivably catch Kenny and Mateos. That list includes:

  • Stephen Chidwick (3,280.21)
  • Koray Aldemir (3,197.38)
  • Nick Petrangelo (3,134.62)
  • Dan Smith (3,057.16)
  • Stefan Schillhabel (3,009.63)
  • Dario Sammartino (3,006.34)
  • Darren Elias (2,942.14)
  • Steffen Sontheimer (2,941.11)

Major tournaments still to come before the end of the year include the $10,000 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event beginning Dec. 5 and two more $25,000 high rollers at Bellagio Dec. 8 and 9. Plus, PokerStars Championship Prague is scheduled for Dec. 7 to 18 in the Czech Republic with a €10,300 Single Re-Entry event, the €50,000 Pokerstars Championship Super High Roller, the €5,300 Pokerstars Championship Main Event, two more €25,500 Single Re-Entry events and a final €10,300 Pokerstars Championship High Roller freezout.

The GPI POY is awarded annually to the player deemed to have had the strongest performance in live tournaments over the course of a calendar year. GPI’s own proprietary formula is used to determine the rankings.

2016 GPI POY David Peters

In 2016, US poker player David Peters captured the honors. It was a year in which the Toledo, Ohio native won $7,564,647 in live tournaments and tallied 3,666.31 GPI POY Points. Mateos finished fifth in 2016 while Kenney managed to finish 12th.

Peters beat Germany’s Fedor Holz by less than 22 points to capture the title. He wrapped up the title making third in the EPT Prague Main Event in December.

Holz made it close making fourth in a $100,000 ARIA High Roller to close out October. However, he blanked November and December allowing Peters to hold on to win.

Holz had an outstanding 2016, booking a massive $16,484,154 in tournament earnings throughout. However, several of his big scores came from high roller tournaments with field sizes too small to qualify for any significant GPI POY points, or in some cases, any points at all.