Daniel Negreanu Takes Down Two of Three Major POY ChampionshipsMonday, December 23rd, 2013 by Ryan
The talks about the Player of the Year awards have been swirling in the world of poker, but many of the talks have pointed to one of the most popular players in the world in Daniel Negreanu. It’s for good reason as well, since Negreanu has now taken down two of the three major Player of the Year championships, and although he had to avoid comebacks from quite a few players after holding the lead for the beginning of 2013. Things got pretty crazy during December with players trying to make a push at him, but Negreanu was able to hold on and win two of the POY races, but in the third race he was caught by an opponent.
The Bluff Magazine POY award saw Negreanu not add any points from his original 1274.66 over the last two months of the calendar year, and it let the two men behind him have a shot at catching up. The first player was Phillipp Gruissem, who finished second in the World Poker Tour’s Alpha8 championship, and this pushed up in the rankings. He ended up in second place though behind Negreanu by a fair amount, with 1063.65 points. David Peters also made a push for this award, but couldn’t get past Gruissem for second, and he finished in third place with 1052.31 points. The finish up the top five for that award we saw Scott Seiver get fourth place with 878.86 points, and Mike Watson finish in fifth with 861.32 points.
After that though, we saw the next five players in the rankings move around quite a few bit in the final months of the year. After Ryan Reiss won the World Series of Poker $10k Championship Event, he jumped up in the rankings and finished in sixth place. Vanessa Selbst made an impressive run herself, as she finished in seventh place, and was followed up by Martin Finger in eighth, Noah Schwartz in ninth, and Paul Volpe in 10th. Before the World Series of Poker got rolling, Volpe was actually near the top of many of the POY races, and he was able to finish up in the top ten.
For the CardPlayer Magazine Player of the Year race, Negreanu had a massive lead to start the month of November. He pretty much just rode that lead to the finish to grab the award, and his 5140 points held up. He had to watch Volpe and Selbst both make pushes though late in the year, as Volpe ended up in second with 4298 points, and Selbst ended in third at 3921 points. The two players couldn’t pass Negreanu, but they did pass Peters who ended up in fourth place. Steve O’Dwyer finished in fifth place to round out the top five with 3488 points, a few hundred behind the 3802 of Peters.
To finish up the top ten in that race, we saw Blair Hinkle finish sixth, just 40 points behind O’Dwyer. Seventh place went to Justin Bonomo, and he was the only player in the race who actually didn’t win a tournament this year, but took home a nice $1.5 million. Reiss finished up in eighth place, Ole Schemion finished in ninth, and last but not least was Scott Seiver rounding out the top ten in 10th place, making up quite a strong list overall.
Last but definitely not least was the one Player of the Year race where Negreanu was actually caught, and it was the Global Poker Index POY race. Schemion made it to the final table at the European Poker Tour Prague event, and that was enough for him to just barely pass Negreanu in the race. It was an insanely close race, as Negrenau finished up with a total of 1130.87 points, and Schemion was just ahead of him with 1163.14. Volpe made his own push in that race, as he finished in third place with 1042.38 points, and Bryn Kenney finished behind Volpe in fourth with 986.26. Peters was fifth with 983.67 points. To finish out the top ten we saw Watson with 964.80, Gruissem with 962.57, Steven Silverman with 940.41, Jonathan Duhamel with 938.76 points, and Shannon Shorr with 929.10 points.
The tournament poker action starts up again in the New Year on January 5th with the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, and it’ll be the first spot where players can start earning points towards the 2014 Player of the Year races.