Two Americans In A Dead Heat For 2018 GPI Player Of The Year Honors

November 26, 2018
Two Americans In A Dead Heat For 2018 GPI Player Of The Year Honors

Heading into what promises to be a December full of high-stakes tournament action, two US poker players find themselves neck-and-neck for the lead in the 2018 Global Poker Index Player of the Year race.

A nominee for the GPI American Poker Awards Breakout Player of the Year in 2017, William Alex Foxen has had an even better 2018. It’s somewhat of a surprise, but he currently sits on top of the standings as a result.

Foxen breaks out again

Foxen has booked a little over $4 million of his $6.2 million in career tournament cashes so far this year.

The Cold Spring Harbor, New York resident still counts the $1,134,202 million he earned finishing runner-up in the World Poker Tour’s Five Diamond World Poker Classic in December 2017 as his career best. However, he has collected two near-million-dollar scores in 2018 and seven more six-figure cashes. That list includes:

  • $963,880 for a win in the Asia Pacific Poker Tour Macau HK$ 400,000 Super High Roller in March
  • $947,916 for a runner-up finish in the £5,000 partypoker MILLIONS Dusk Till Dawn Main Event in October
  • $532,139 for a third-place finish in the PokerStars European Poker Tour Barcelona €50,000 High Roller in August
  • $424,625 for a win in the WPT L.A. Poker Classic $25,000 High Roller in February

Outside of a final table appearance in a $10,000 Super Turbo Bounty event, Foxen didn’t make too much noise at the 2018 World Series of Poker in Las Vegas, Nevada. However, he did manage to win the mid-summer Mid States Poker Tour and Venetian DeepStack $5,000 Championship Event for $239,000 out in Las Vegas.

Poker’s new power couple

All in all, it has been a great year for Foxen and friends. He reportedly started dating Canadian Kristen Bicknell this year and she’s on pace to win her second straight GPI Female Player of the Year award in 2018. Sorry, Mr. and Mrs. Mercier, this is poker’s new power couple.

Foxen will likely be looking to sew up the 2018 Global Poker Index Player of the Year award this December in Las Vegas. The WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic rolls into the vaunted Bellagio on Nov. 29 and includes a $15,000 event, $10,000 Main Event, no less than three $25,000 buy-in tournaments, and one that costs $100,000 to get in.

However, earning the points necessary to lock up the GPI POY title will be no easy feat for Foxen. Particularly because that list of WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic events is exactly the kind of thing that should attract the player right behind him in the standings.

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Justin Bonomo’s 2018 to remember

Justin Bonomo sits less than 100 points behind Foxen on the GPI Player of the Year leaderboard after a 2018 to remember.

Those who doubt this thing will come right down to the wire need to remember that Foxen earned almost twice the difference between the two finishing 82nd in the $5,000 partypoker Caribbean Poker Main Event earlier this month to take the lead.

Of course, if the GPI Player of the Year title were about money rather than points, Bonomo would have it wrapped up already.

His incredible 2018 has included an unprecedented $25,428,933 in cashes, vaulting him up to $43,463,089 lifetime, and the top of poker’s all-time money list.

The only reason he isn’t running away with GPI Player of the Year honors is that so much of his earnings have come in High Roller events. Events with smaller fields and lower than traditional GPI Player of the Year point totals available.

Bonomo’s massive wins have included:

  • $4,823,077 for winning the HK$2 million Super High Roller Bowl China in Macau
  • $5,000,000 for winning the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl in Las Vegas
  • $10,000,000 for winning the $1 million 2018 WSOP The Big One for One Drop in Las Vegas

Down to the Player of the Year wire

The Fairfax, Virginia native calls Las Vegas home now, and will undoubtedly be there next month, setting up a race to the GPI Player of the Year finish line with Foxen that should be worth watching. Mainly because being in Sin City will also give Bonomo the chance to defend his $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl title.

After decimating bankrolls for the past few years running right ahead of the WSOP, organizers have now moved Super High Roller Bowl V to Dec. 17 through 19, 2018.

Aria Resort & Casino and its PokerGO Studio will play host again. The field will be capped at 48 entries yet as well.

The event may not end up being the GPI Player of the Year decider. However, Bonomo did earn over 300 points with his summer-2018 Super High Roller Bowl win. If history can repeat itself, that could be enough to give Bonomo’s Amazing 2018 an honor it probably deserves.

Lead image from WPT/Flickr

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