Mike ‘Timex’ McDonald Leading Early POY RacesTuesday, February 25th, 2014 by Ryan
It’s never too early to talk about the popular Player of the Year races in the world of poker, and right now we have one player who is taking the early lead in the races. This place is Mike “Timex” McDonald, and he’s grabbed the lead thanks to some High Roller events and a few international tournaments as well, even though we’ve only played a total of about six weeks of poker to this point.
A few of the tournaments that have rounded up include the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, the Aussie Millions, and a few other events as well. Probably the biggest factor to this point though in deciding who has the lead in the Player of the Year races is the High Roller events that are running. The players who have had some success in the high dollar tournaments of $25,000 are more can probably find themselves sitting somewhere near the top of the rankings at least to this point, even if they haven’t had the hottest runs in the regular tournaments so far. It’s been an interesting year so far to say the least, and it definitely gets you excited for the upcoming events, and the many, many months that we have left on the poker schedule.
As you may know by now, we have three different Player of the Year races that you can keep up with. The first one that we’ll cover is the Bluff Magazine POY race, and McDonald has brought in a total of 640 points to this point thanks to some great finishes. The key to his success so far has been nice runs in the High Roller events. He finished January with an eight place finish at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure High Roller, and then had a second place finish in the Main Event of the same series.
Then after that he went into the Aussie Millions and just went right back to work. At the Aussie Millions $100,000 Challenge he pulled in a second place finish, and then had a third place finish when playing in the LK Boutique Challenge which is a $250,000 event. To sum it all up, through just the first month and a half to almost two months, we’ve seen McDonald bring in more than $4 million in cashes at tournaments. McDonald’s lead isn’t huge though, as the eventual winner of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, Dominik Panka is sitting with 620 points. Those two players are the only ones who really have earned enough points to be considered in the race at this point, as Fabian Quoss, who won the PCA Super High Roller event has 359.10 points. To round out the Top 5 in the Bluff POY race, we have the Aussie Millions champion Ami Barer with 310.10 points, and then Vanessa Selbst with 306 points.
Then we have the CardPlayer Magazine Player of the Year race, and that one has similar names sitting near the top, with a few differences when you look at the list. McDonald is at the top of that list as well, with 3200 points, and Panka is in second with 3000 points. Kanit is in third with 2394, Sorel Mizzi jumps up on this list in fourth place with 2170 points thanks to a second place finish at the Aussie Millions Main Event, and Barer, who beat Mizzi in that event is in fifth with 2100 points. Now for the third Player of the Year race, the Global Poker Index, we’re seeing their rankings coming in, but things in this rating scale are handled differently.
The High Roller tournaments are going to help, but they won’t dominate the Player of the Year races. McDonald is still sitting at the top of that list as well though with 496.14 points, and Panka is in second there also with 397.13 points. The rest of the list features some big names, including Dan Smith with 385.81 points, Selbst with 383.14 points, and Jason Mercier with 343.20 points.
Although these rankings are very telling in relation to the success that we’ve seen so far this year, it definitely does not mean that anyone is a lock, or anything close to that to get the award. Paul Volpe had a great year last year for example, but while he was the early leader on these lists, he didn’t end up on the Top Ten on any list. With a ton of poker coming up over the next few months it’s going to make things even more interesting to watch.