The WSOP is underway, and with it two separate WSOP Player of the Year races. Paul Volpe and Elio Fox lead the pack in both, but just which one is out front depends on who you ask. For overall Player of the Year, there’s more agreement: Both GPI and Card Player have Justin Bonomo as the favorite as we approach the year’s halfway mark.
Despite all the action happening in Las Vegas, not much has changed in the Global Poker Index rankings. The top five players are still the same as they were last month. Sam Greenwood has entered the top 10 for the first time, having previously come close in late 2016.
Some new names are also making an appearance online, as Canada’s Matt Stone and Brazil’s Pedro Padhila both enter the PocketFives top ten for the first time. Meanwhile, the perennial king of those rankings Simon Mattsson has been displaced by fellow Swede Niklas Astedt, who achieved a remarkable feat during SCOOP in May.
Just what did Astedt do to usurp Mattsson’s throne? For this and other details, read on: Here is your June Poker Rankings Update.
Global Poker Index
About the rankings: The GPI World Poker Rankings rates the top players in the world according to a system which awards points for tournament cashes based on buy-in, field size and finish position. Tournaments over the past three years are considered, but the weight accorded to older results diminishes with time.
Current Top 10
#1 Stephen Chidwick – 3,741.92 pts. (#1 last month)
#2 Adrian Mateos – 3,651.01 pts. (#2 last month)
#3 David Peters – 3,554.09 pts. (#3 last month)
#4 Justin Bonomo – 3,513.07 pts. (#4 last month)
#5 Alex Foxen – 3,437.57 pts. (#5 last month)
#6 Joe McKeehen – 3,415.06 pts. (#7 last month)
#7 Sam Greenwood – 3,351.13 pts. (NEW)
#8 Rainer Kempe – 3,347.42 pts. (#6 last month)
#9 Jason Koon – 3,306.72 pts. (NEW)
#10 Bryn Kenney – 3,261.19 pts. (#8 last month)
Jan Scwippert (#9 -> #12)
Koray Aldemir (#10 -> #14)
So far, the WSOP has done very little to change the GPI Top 10. Stephen Chidwick, Adrian Mateos, David Peters, Justin Bonomo and Alex Foxen form the top five, with their order unchanged since last month and not even any significant differences in the spacing between them.
2015 WSOP Main Event Champion Joe McKeehen managed a third place finish in Event #3 – $3,000 No-Limit Hold’em Shootout, which was enough to bump him up one spot to sixth. Sam Greenwood hasn’t even shown up at the WSOP yet, but pushed his way to a personal best seventh place by winning the €100,000 EPT Super High Roller in Monte Carlo. That happened back in late April, so the reason he didn’t make the top ten in May has to do with the way the GPI lumps results into six-month blocks and only counts the best scores; he had a number of significant results back in October and November last year, so the Monte Carlo win didn’t count until enough time elapsed for those to drop into the next lower block.
Jason Koon also made it back into the top ten this month with a third-place finish in the Super High Roller Bowl. He also cashed the WSOP High Roller (Event #5). Displaced by these advancing players were Rainer Kempe, Bryn Kenney, Jan Scwippert and Koray Aldemir.
Player of the Year
#1 Justin Bonomo – 3,536.43 pts. (#3 last month)
#2 Stephen Chidwick – 3,415.46 pts. (#1 last month)
#3 Rainer Kempe – 2,923.53 pts. (#2 last month)
#4 Jake Schindler – 2,783.66 pts. (NEW)
#5 Adrian Mateos – 2,696.48 pts. (#6 last month)
#6 Bryn Kenney – 2,631.34 pts. (NEW)
#7 Joe McKeehen – 2,616.55 pts. (NEW)
#8 Joseph Cheong – 2,595.92 pts. (#5 last month)
#9 Sam Greenwood – 2,472.22 pts. (#4 last month)
#10 Manig Loeser – 2,410.57 pts. (NEW)
Although many of the names are the same, the story is a bit different in the Player of the Year race. Here, every result counts, so a few smaller cashes at the WSOP can make a much bigger difference than they do for the world rankings.
Justin Bonomo has bounced into the lead with a win in Event #16, the $10,000 Heads-Up Championship, and a cash in Event #20 – $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em. Former front-runner Stephen Chidwick also has a couple of cashes, but they weren’t enough to keep him in the lead.
There are also several new names on the list. First among these is Jake Schindler, who racked up some big points with a win in a $10,000 event at Aria, followed by a final table in a High Roller there and another in WSOP Event #20. Others now in contention include Bryn Kenney and Joe McKeehen.
WSOP Player of the Year
About the rankings: Last year, WSOP parted ways with the GPI and elected to award Player of the Year honors according to its own system, although it has updated that system for 2018 to put greater emphasis on final table finishes than last year’s. GPI, meanwhile, has elected to continue awarding its own WSOP Player of the Year title, using the same system as for its overall Player of the Year.
WSOP PoY (Official)
#1 Elio Fox – 2,010.14 pts.
#2 Paul Volpe – 1,671.30 pts.
#3 Joe Cada – 1,594.19 pts.
#4 Nick Petrangelo – 1,269.75 pts.
#5 Roberly Felicio – 1,264.46 pts.
#6 Craig Varnell – 1,194.63 pts.
#7 Julien Martini – 1,159.45 pts.
#8 Justin Bonomo – 1,120.30 pts.
#9 Jeremy Wien – 1,116.15 pts.
#10 Ognyan Dimov – 1,106.38 pts.
WSOP PoY (GPI)
#1 Paul Volpe – 1,094.75 pts.
#2 Elio Fox – 955.20 pts.
#3 Justin Young – 753.34 pts.
#4 Shaun Deeb – 715.01 pts.
#5 Joe Cada – 702.86 pts.
#6 Dylan Linde – 630.29 pts.
#7 Bryn Kenney – 614.52 pts.
#8 John Racener – 608.12 pts.
#9 Eric Blair – 586.09 pts.
#10 Mike Wattel – 581.45 pts.
With only 20 events now in the books, it’s somewhat surprising how different the two races look. Only three names appear in the top ten of each, though it’s perhaps a mark in WSOP’s favor that these happen to be its top three.
Elio Fox is leading the race by WSOP’s reckoning. He has just three cashes, one of them insignificant, but the other two are first place in the $10,000 Super Turbo Bounty and second place in the $100,000 High Roller, which makes it hard to contest that he should at minimum be in contention. Trailing him is Paul Volpe, who has four cashes, including a win in the $10,000 Omaha Hi/Lo Championship and third place in the same Super Turbo Bounty won by Fox.
Volpe also cashed the $100,000 High Roller, albeit only in 15th place, and it looks like this event might highlight the difference between the two systems; GPI also has these players as the top two, but with their order reversed. It seems that GPI puts a little more emphasis on field size, while WSOP weights the buy-in a little more strongly.
2009 Main Event winner Joe Cada is the third name in common between the two races. He’s in third according to the official race and in fifth by GPI’s reckoning. He has three cashes, including a win in the $3,000 No-Limit Hold’em Shootout and a final table in the Super Turbo Bounty.
About the rankings: Card Player unfortunately does not have a rolling leaderboard to compete with the GPI’s, but it does provide an alternative Player of the Year leaderboard. This year’s system is different from previous years’, but still differs dramatically from GPI’s in that its honors are largely awarded based on the number of important titles and final tables had by a player, rather than their consistency of cashing in high buy-in events. Comparing the two often provides interesting insight into players’ performance.
Player of the Year
#1 Justin Bonomo – 6,255 pts. (#2 last month)
#2 Stephen Chidwick – 5,766 pts. (#1 last month)
#3 Jake Schindler – 4,294 pts. (NEW)
#4 Rainer Kempe – 4,077 pts. (#5 last month)
#5 Toby Lewis – 3,780 pts. (#3 last month)
#6 Jason Koon – 3,772 pts. (NEW)
#7 Adrian Mateos – 3,659 pts. (#6 last month)
#8 David Peters – 3,208 pts. (#7 last month)
#9 Darryll Fish – 3,168 pts. (#4 last month)
#10 Bryn Kenney – 3,149 pts. (NEW)
This year, Card Player’s system seems to be producing a race very similar to GPI’s. Just as with the GPI race, Justin Bonomo has overtaken Stephen Chidwick. Third and fourth are close between Jake Schindler and Rainer Kempe, although Card Player has their order reversed.
In fifth, Toby Lewis is the first name included by Card Player but not GPI, and he’s on the decline. He was awarded a huge number of points by Card Player for a runner-up finish at the LAPC back in March and not quite so many by GPI, but unless he follows up on that with some more results this summer, the discrepancy will be moot.
Some more familiar names like David Peters and Darryll Fish made the top ten for Card Player but not for GPI, while Sam Greenwood and Joe McKeehen are there for GPI but not Card Player. With players of this caliber, however, one doesn’t expect them to be too far behind the pack in any system, so if they achieve results that put them on top of either race, it will surely put them at least in contention for the other.
About the rankings: Pocket Fives rankings are the equivalent of the GPI for the online poker world. It considers only the past year’s worth of results, with older results decaying in value and only the best 40 results for each player being counted. Needless to say, this system and the fast pace of online play make this leaderboard quite volatile.
The current Top 10
#1 lena900 – 12,679.22 pts. (#5 last month)
#2 C Darwin2 – 11,474.60 pts. (#1 last month)
#3 Romeopro – 10,503.69 pts. (#2 last month)
#4 hellohellohello – 10,363.66 pts. (#4 last month)
#5 probirs – 10,243.82 pts. (#3 last month)
#6 GINS FINEST – 10,193.29 pts. (NEW)
#7 Ramiro – 9,472.69 pts. (#10 last month)
#8 joaosimaobh – 9,256.67 pts. (NEW)
#9 PaDilLhA SP – 9,033.90 pts. (NEW)
#10 Ariados – 9,029.37 pts. (NEW)
#1 C Darwin2 – 11,398.47 pts. (#1 last month)
#2 Romeopro – 10,640.28 pts. (#9 last month)
#3 probirs – 10,304.94 pts. (#2 last month)
#4 hellohellohello – 10,105.47 pts. (#4 last month)
#5 lena900 – 9,836.99 pts. (#3 last month)
#6 girafganger7 – 9,528.18 pts. (NEW)
#7 1_conor_b_1 – 8,982.60 pts. (#8 last month)
#8 lovefee – 8,913.95 pts. (NEW)
#9 SvZff – 8,874.10 pts. (#6 last month)
#10 Ramiro – 8,745.44 pts. (#7 last month)
It’s an upset in Sweden this month as Niklas “lena900” Astedt has claimed the top spot from Simon “C Darwin2” Mattsson, who has, in recent years, held that honor more often than not. Astedt managed this, in part, due to the remarkable feat of having cashed all three tiers of the PokerStars SCOOP Main Event. He managed to finish 311th in the $109 Low tier for a small $500 cash, but came 15th in the $1,050 Mid tier for over $21,000 and final tabled the $10,300 High tier, winding up in seventh for nearly $185,000.
Aside from that, it’s mostly business as usual in the Top 5, but a little further down we have some new players making a name for themselves. Canada’s Matt “GINS FINEST” Stone has recently gone on a heater, with wins in two High-tier SCOOP events ($2,100 NLHE and $1,050 PLO8), plus two Bounty Builders and most recently a PokerStars Sunday High Roller. Those five results on their own amount to over 2,500 points, catapulting him to a personal best sixth place.
Another newcomer is Brazil’s Pedro “PaDiLhA SP” Padhila, sneaking into ninth, which is also a personal best for him. Like Stone, Padhila’s entry to the top ten comes largely by virtue of a pair of SCOOP wins. In his case, these were SCOOP-40-M ($530 High Roller) and SCOOP-56-M ($55 Sunday Kickoff SE).