The 2016 World Series of Poker is just 12 days away from the start of the Main Event. That means it’s time to begin paying attention to the Player of the Year (POY) standings.
Given his amazing run so far this year, including Sunday’s action, it should come as no surprise that Jason Mericer remains at the top of the leaderboard (1,782.65 points). He cashed in Event #41, the $1,500 Monster Stack No-Limit Hold’em, in 398th place out of 6,927.
He now has eight cashes so far this summer, which is obviously incredible. But what truly makes his summer performance spectacular is the two bracelets and a 2nd place finish within a five-day span earlier this month.
Although it’s going to be tough for anyone to catch up, Mercier doesn’t have the POY locked up just yet. Martin Kozlov, fresh off of his victory in Event #39, the $10,000 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em championship, is a few heaters away from getting back in the race. He currently has 1,252.58 points.
Benny Glaser, a multiple bracelet winner this summer, is 3rd (1,156.57), Michael Semenov sits in 4th (1,125.12), and Ryan Laplante has dropped back to 5th (1,073.13).
The Global Poker Index (GPI) formula is used to calculate Player of the Year points. This is the same formula used to determine the GPI Player of the Year, which is awarded to the poker pro who is the most successful in live tournaments throughout the year.
Only one poker player won a gold bracelet at the Rio on Sunday. That man is Phillip McAllister, a resident of Winchester in the United Kingdom.
He did so in Event #42, the $3,000 Shootout No-Limit Hold’em championship. McAllister isn’t a household name, of course. In fact, he’d only cashed in six previous WSOP events and this is his first bracelet. But he beat out a tough field and will be going back home across the pond with an extra $267,720 spending cash.
Maria Ho, the manager of the Global Poker League’s L.A. Sunset team, made a valiant effort to become the first woman to win a bracelet this summer. But it wasn’t meant to be. Kyle Montgomery, the eventual runner-up, sent her to the exits in 4th place.
Soon after that, McAllister busted Christopher Kruk, setting up a heads-up battle with Montgomery. McAllister held nearly a 2:1 chip advantage and 30 hands later, he was crowned champion. The final hand played out as follows:
McAllister limped on the button with Q♠Q♥, which induced Montgomery to shove all-in for 1,380,000 with 10♦9♣. The soon-to-be champ made an instant call. The board ran out 5♣.3♠2♦J♦K♣. And that was the end of the three-day tournament.
Old school pro T.J. Cloutier is one of the best and most respected poker players of all-time. But at age 76, some might think that the legend’s best performances at the poker table are behind him.
But age isn’t stopping him from contending in Event #41, the $1,500 Monster Stack No-Limit Hold’em. Cloutier finished Day Two on Sunday with 538,000 chips, a well-above average chip stack. He may well show the kids a few card tricks; as we go to press, he’s still in it to win it.
At start of play on Monday, there were still 276 players remaining and two days of play left to go. So he’ll have to grind out many more long hours to win his seventh career bracelet. But as 73-year old Pierre Neuville, a 2015 November Niner, has shown, the old timers can still compete. So there.
The Monster Stack started with 6,927 players and is well into the money. Quite a few big name pros are left in the field, including David Pham, Tuan Le, Andy Bloch, Erik Seidel, Josh Arieh, Leif Force, Chino Rheem, and Cate Hall. And even after losing a pot early on on Monday, the chip leader is still Nabil Mohamed from the United Kingdom. This is the first time he’s cashed in a WSOP event.
This event is already underway today and we will come back with more updates tomorrow.
On Monday, June 27, a winner in Event #43, the $10,000 Stud Hi-Low Split-8 or Better will be crowned. There are 12 players remaining, including chip leader Justin Bonomo, George Danzer, Todd Brunson, Eli Elezra, Randy Ohel, David Benyamine, and David Grey.
Event #46, the $1,500 Bounty No-Limit Hold’em already has cards in the air. At 3 pm PT, Event #47, the $10,000 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball (Limit) will kick off at the Rio in Las Vegas.