Posts Tagged ‘Kenney’

Can Bryn Kenney Hold onto Player of the Year?

 Can Bryn Kenney Hold onto Player of the Year?

With roughly six weeks to go in the tournament poker season, there is virtually only one question left:  can Bryn Kenney, who has led the various Player of the Year races since the start of the year, hold onto those leads as the year comes to a close?

On the CardPlayer Magazine Player of the Year race Kenney, through the usage of the High Roller tournaments, built up a tremendous lead by the halfway mark of the year. The lead was big enough that Kenney took off the entirety of the World Series of Poker and nobody came close to his point total. Although he was only able to tack on 224 points in the last month through a €25,000 non-bracelet event at the World Series of Poker Europe, Kenney has a dominant lead over the field with his 6708 points.

But is it enough? Last year the man who is currently in second place in the POY standings, Fedor Holz, thought that he had racked up enough points to take the honors. Holz took his foot off the gas and, in the final six weeks of the calendar year, saw David Peters storm past him. Peters used a third-place finish in the last-ever European Poker Tour event, a fifth-place finish in the $ 25,000 WPT Five Diamond High Roller event and won the last $ 25,000 Aria High Roller tournament on December 28 to steal the POY title from Holz.

Now Holz is in that position, at least on the CardPlayer rankings. Holz has earned 5497 points, which included a runner-up finish in the $ 1 Million (HKD) Triton Super High Roller Series for a $ 2,131,740 payday and 800 POY points. With more than 1200 points between him and Kenney (1211, to be exact), it may prove to be too tough a river to cross.

Behind Holz, the players are all jockeying to make their mark on the Top Ten for the 2017 calendar year as going for the top of the heap may be out of the question. Koray Aldemir has been able to move up the ladder into the third-place slot with his 4956 points, but he has more to worry about than trying to catch Holz. Right behind Aldemir is Adrian Mateos, who 4892 points have him right on Aldemir’s heels. Should both men falter, Justin Bonomo is lurking in the fifth-place slot with 4598 points and could pass them both.

The bottom half of the CardPlayer Top Ten has more of the “usual suspects” from the High Roller world. Stephen Chidwick (4522 points), Benjamin Pollak (4460), defending champion David Peters (4422), Steffen Sontheimer (4352) and Jason Koon (4334) are ranked in sixth through tenth places, respectively. All five men routinely can be found in the High Roller events, but it is going to take more than a decent finish in those High Rollers (perhaps a win in another tournament) to mount up enough points to even challenge Holz for second.

Kenney’s in the lead on the Global Poker Index standings, but it is a bit more precarious there. Because the GPI rankings only tabulate the best 13 finishes of a player in a complicated formula, there isn’t much room for Kenney to expand his lead. In Kenney’s case, he currently sits in first place with his 3478.06 points, but he cannot add any more points to his total unless the calculated finish beats his lowest finish of 194.27 points (from his runner-up finish in a 33-player preliminary event during the PokerStars Championships Bahamas). While it is possible that another High Roller finish might do it, it is not going to be for a huge amount of points.

The player chasing Kenney – and the one with the best chance to pass him – is Chidwick. With his 3236.07 points, Chidwick has taken the second slot from Aldemir and has low enough finishes to improve his standing. Chidwick’s 58th place finish in the $ 3000 H.O.R.S.E. event at the WSOP in Las Vegas only got him 111.37 points; another strong finish in a High Roller or even another major tournament could push him past Kenney with ease.

Aldemir is only about 40 points back of Chidwick, but he doesn’t have the room to grow that Chidwick does. With 3197.38 points, Aldemir could work his way up, but the High Roller events he favors have set his bottom level of points quite high. The same could also be said for fourth place Nick Petrangelo (3134.62 points) and fifth place Adrian Mateos (3128.58 points).

The players in the second tier of the Top Ten are probably going to have to be happy with their Top Ten finish. Dan Smith (3057.16 points), Dario Sammartino (3006.34) Stefan Shillhabel (2996.56), Steve O’Dwyer (2930.15) and Dejuante Alexander (2919.11) are the holders of the sixth through tenth slots, respectively. Alexander is notable in the fact he has amassed his point total through events with a buy in of less than $ 4000; most of his competition’s point totals have been built through the smaller fields but bigger buy in ($ 10,000 and up) “High Roller” tournaments.

With only six weeks to go, the players are going to have to do some globe hopping if they are going to get every point available. The World Poker Tour’s Five Diamond World Poker Classic in Las Vegas will have some effect on the standings, as will the PokerStars Championship Prague. A slew of WPT DeepStacks events and other minor events could be critical to those looking to climb into the standings also. It promises to be an interesting six weeks as Bryn Kenney looks to fight off the challenges and hold both Player of the Year awards come December 31.

The post Can Bryn Kenney Hold onto Player of the Year? appeared first on Poker News Daily.

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Bryn Kenney Holds One, Loses Other Top Slot in POY Races

 Bryn Kenney Holds One, Loses Other Top Slot in POY Races

When it comes to the different Player of the Year races in the poker world, the end of the World Series of Poker is usually the time when everything resets. Players that jump out to a huge lead over the first half of the year are normally reeled in as the WSOP schedule closes. In 2017, this has held true – at least partially.

Prior to the start of the WSOP, poker professional Bryn Kenney was atop the CardPlayer Magazine Player of the Year leaderboard. Kenney, however, decided to sit out the entirety of the WSOP roster of tournaments (and other events around Las Vegas), which gave the pack a chance to either close on him or pass him. When it comes to the CardPlayer POY rankings, all it did was allow them to get closer.

Kenney, whose last cash was his victory in Monte Carlo at the PokerStars Championship €100,000 Super High Roller event in April, still has had a year that others would sell their mother for. With four tournament wins, 13 final tables and 17 cashes overall, Kenney has racked up 4162 points to the midpoint of the season. Perhaps more importantly for Kenney, he has earned a stunning $ 5,192,223 in just the first four months (remember, he didn’t play at the WSOP) of the season.

The field isn’t content to sign off the POY award to Kenney, however. Justin Bonomo utilized the High Roller tournaments around Las Vegas – the $ 300,000 Super High Roller Bowl and the ARIA Summer High Roller Series – along with a final table at the WSOP to accrue enough points to slide into the second-place slot on the CardPlayer POY. As the second half of the tournament poker year gets ready to kick into action, Bonomo is within shouting distance of Kenney with his 3841 points.

Another player that is slowing down a bit after a blistering start to the year is Nick Petrangelo. Although he cashed in both the WSOP “One Drop” tournament and the Championship Event, Petrangelo was passed by Bonomo for the second slot on the ladder. Petrangelo, who is also one of the serial High Roller cashers, is sitting at 3639 points, good enough for the third-place spot on the charts.

The man who is poker’s newest World Champion, Scott Blumstein, settles into the fourth-place slot on CardPlayer’s board, but his presence also demonstrates another problem with the CardPlayer rankings that Blumstein has absolutely nothing to do with. Blumstein had four cashes prior to the WSOP, but none of those cashes earned any POY points. The 3300 points that Blumstein has are purely derived from his win in the WSOP Championship Event; in NO RANKING should one tournament alone catapult you into the upper echelons of a yearlong pursuit.

For a guy that says he’s “retired” from poker, Fedor Holz seems to be playing quite a bit of cards. At the end of May, Holz won two ARIA Summer High Roller tournaments (both $ 50K buy ins) that added not only 916 points to his POY total but also added $ 748,200 to his poker bankroll. His overall play in 2017 has Holz currently in fifth place with 3272 points as he looks for the POY award that he barely missed last year.

Rounding out the CardPlayer Top Ten rankings are players such as Koray Aldemir (sixth place, 3262 points), 2016 POY champion David Peters (seventh, 3202), Nadar Kakhmazov (eighth, 3080), Adrian Mateos (ninth, 3076) and Andreas Klatt (tenth, 3068).

While Kenney continues to rule supreme on the CardPlayer rankings, the Global Poker Index tells a different story.

Instead of taking some time off during the WSOP, Dario Sammartino was an active participant in the festivities in Las Vegas. Sammartino cashed eight times during the WSOP and four of those tournaments earned him points in the GPI system (the GPI takes the 13 largest point-scoring tournaments of a player to give the player their total points). Those four adjustments – a lower scoring tournament for a higher one – have pushed Sammartino to the top of the GPI Player of the Year rankings with 2928.47 points.

Petrangelo picked up two better tournament finishes, one at the WSOP in the “One Drop” and the other at the Venetian’s Deepstack Extravaganza in maintaining his second-place spot on the GPI board. In tabulating 2881.97 points, Petrangelo came up just short of passing Sammartino for the top slot on the rankings. Perhaps more importantly, however, Petrangelo has some room to work on improving his point totals by getting better finishes whereas Sammartino is hamstrung.

The third-place slot on the GPI POY race is held by a man who didn’t even appear on the CardPlayer rankings. Since the close of the PokerStars Championship in Monte Carlo, Dan Smith has been on a tear in mostly the High Roller events. Two ARIA High Roller wins and two deep runs in WSOP events (the $ 10,000 Heads Up Event and the $ 25,000 Pot Limit Omaha tournament) have pushed Smith into the POY debate (for the GPI at least) with his 2841.98 points.

Kenney finally appears on the GPI rankings in fourth place. Because he didn’t play during the run of the WSOP, he didn’t have a chance to earn more points, but he’s also facing the difficulty of finding events that will give him more points to replace a lower event. With that said, Kenney’s 2840.97 in points will still improve over the last half of the year.

Aldemir rides high on the GPI rankings (fifth place, 2833.85 points), just not as high as he does on the CardPlayer board. For the remainder of the Top Ten, there are players that were already on the CardPlayer rankings and those that weren’t making the cut. Sergio Aido (sixth place, 2809.01 points), Peters (seventh, 2684.63), Ari Engel (eighth, 2652.8 points), Charlie Carrel (ninth, 2618.77) and Bonomo (tenth, 2616.7) all are part of the GPI POY and well set into their slots.

The halfway mark has passed and it is time to head into the second half of the tournament poker season. The Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open in Hollywood, FL, is going to have a significant impact on the standings as will the restarts of both the PokerStars Championship roster of events and Season XVI of the World Poker Tour. There’s still quite a bit of time for someone to come from the back of the pack to catch these men, but they are the solid contenders for the Player of the Year awards given out in poker.

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PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Wins 100K Euro Super High Roller as Main Event Opens Action

 PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Wins 100K Euro Super High Roller as Main Event Opens Action

Riding the strength of his start of day chip lead, Bryn Kenney continued to be the “Master of the High Rollers” as he captured the 100,000 Euro Super High Roller at the PokerStars Championships Monte Carlo on Saturday. As Kenney added over 1.7 million more Euros to his bankroll for 2017, the 5000 Euro Main Event opened its action.

With nine men in the mix and only eight paying spots, someone was leaving the Super High Roller tournament disappointed. That man would turn out to be Isaac Haxton, who got a bit short and shoved with Big Chick from the small blind. The big blind, David Peters, woke up with pocket Jacks and made the call, looking to eliminate a dangerous player from the event. There was a Queen as the dealer fanned the flop, but there was also a Jack to keep Peters in the lead with a flopped set. After the turn failed to bring anything useful for Haxton, he was out of the tournament in ninth place for the big goose egg (zero Euros).

Everyone left at the table was guaranteed a 237,950 Euro payday and those men set about determining just who would get what piece of it. Viacheslav Buldygin, who came into the final table with the second largest chip stack, went on a rampage at this point in knocking out Sam Greenwood in eighth and Martin Kabrhel in seventh to take the lead from Kenney. Kenney, for his part, had been quiet up to this point, but made himself known in chopping a massive chunk of chips from Buldygin after rivering two pair, Kings up, against Buldygin’s pocket Aces.

Now it was Kenney’s turn to pound the opposition and he did just that. Kenney bumped off Steffen Sontheimer in sixth place and shot down Ole Schemion in fifth to extend his lead. After he eliminated Peters from the tournament in fourth place with his Queens standing over Peters’ A-7, he had taken three straight opponents down and held a monstrous lead. Even after Buldygin matched his feat in eliminating three players by taking out Daniel Dvoress, Buldygin still was at a 5-1 chip disadvantage as heads up play began.

The twosome would shuffle some chips back and forth between each other before they paused the action to discuss a deal. The right numbers couldn’t be agreed on by the two gentlemen and, with that, they decided to play on. On the final hand, the aggressive Kenney – he had been punishing his short-stacked tablemates with all-in moves to force them to make decisions for their tournament lives all afternoon – once again moved all in with pocket deuces and, with a suited K-Q, Buldygin made his stand. That stand lasted all of the flop when a deuce landed to give Kenney a set. When the turn blanked, Buldygin was drawing dead and the championship was Kenney’s to celebrate.

1. Bryn Kenney, 1,784,500 Euros
2. Viacheslav Buldygin, 1,290,800
3. Daniel Dvoress, 832,800
4. David Peters, 630,600
5. Ole Schemion, 487,715
6. Steffen Sontheimer, 380,700
7. Martin Kabrhel, 303,350
8. Sam Greenwood, 237,950

The PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo Main Event also saw Day 1A action on Saturday with some of the same players from the Super High Roller jumping over to take part in the action. Ole Schemion used part of the proceeds from the Super High Roller to buy into the Main Event and he did quite well, finishing the day with 144,900 in chips to sit in seventh place. Haxton also made the jump, not finishing quite as well on the day as Schemion but in the game with 65,700 in chips.

The story of the day was Jeffrey Hakim, who seemed to draw the chips in like a vacuum. In a five-way pot, Hakim would flop the ten-high nut straight but have to face down the potential of an opponent catching a bigger straight or a flush with his suited J-9. Once the board came up blanks, Hakim stacked roughly 180K in chips but the best was yet to come. During the last level of the night, Hakim flopped quad fours and found a guppy who wanted to stick around. Hakim would check-raise the flop only to have said guppy four-bet the action, which Hakim was happy to call. On a blank turn, the guppy shoved his stack with a draw and Hakim called to deliver the bad news. The resulting chips pushed Hakim over the 300K mark, the only player to reach that point.

1. Jeffrey Hakim, 305,300
2. Stefan Shillhabel, 203,000
3. Manig Loeser, 195,700
4. Michel Pereira Marques, 168,900
5. Pascal Hartmann, 151,200
6. Igor Yaroshevskyy, 147,500
7. Ole Schemion, 144,900
8. Dmytro Shuvanov, 140,000
9. Bradley Marsh, 130,000
10. Vicente Delgado, 130,000

Although these players will be back on Monday to continue the festivities, a plethora of top pros won’t. Anthony Spinella, Freddy Deeb and Team PokerStars Pros Vanessa Selbst and Jake Cody all found the rail during Saturday’s action. While Day 1B is on Sunday at noon, the tournament is a freezeout and the players cannot rebuy.

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PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Leads Super High Roller, Main Event Begins Saturday

 PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Leads Super High Roller, Main Event Begins Saturday

The sun has set on the beautiful Mediterranean coastline of Monte Carlo for another evening and, with the coming of night, another day is in the books for the PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo. In the 100,000 Euro Super High Roller, Bryn Kenney heads the list of the final nine players while the remainder of those in Monaco for business prepare for the start of the Main Event on Saturday.

With 38 players remaining at the start of the day, four more entries were received to bring the final numbers of the Super High Roller to 61 total entries. The four players – Alexander Uskov, Nick Petrangelo, Leon Tsoukernik and Dietrich Fast – had all busted out previously on Thursday, but they took advantage of the re-entry option to dive back in on Friday (and keep the number of singular entries to 47). Even with another 300K in chips to go to battle with, none of the re-entries from the start of action on Friday would be around by mid-afternoon.

Most of the eyes in the Monte Carlo Casino’s poker room were glued to actor/comedian Kevin Hart at the start of action. Hart, who participated in the first-ever PokerStars Championship offering in the Bahamas and made Day Two of the Super High Roller, was in much better shape as he started the Monte Carlo Day Two. Alas, Hart was unable to make his 396,000 do any work for him as he demonstrated a bit of amateur play on the hand that broke him.

After limping into the pot, Hart saw Byron Kaverman move all in and called off the remainder of his stack. Hart was in the lead with his pocket sevens over Kaverman’s A-4, but “conventional play” would have dictated that Hart would have pushed with his middle pair rather than call off his chips. Regardless, Hart was all in and at risk as Kaverman was rewarded with two Aces on the flop to take the lead. Hart struck back, however, when a seven came on the turn to magically thrust him back in front with a boat. Just as quickly, a four came on the river to give Kaverman the most unlikely of full houses, Aces over fours, to top Hart’s turned full house and send the star of Central Intelligence back to the set with no payday.

Although tournament officials would have liked to have seen the money bubble pop (eight players taking home some cash), they would have to settle for coming up just short. Nine players will come back on Saturday to first determine who will get paid (it isn’t looking good for David Peters, on the short stack with 800K in chips) and then who will walk off with the top prize of 1,784,500 Euros. As it looks right now, Kenney is in the catbird’s seat for that potential payoff.

1. Bryn Kenney, 3.37 million
2. Viacheslav Buldygin, 2.975 million
3. Steffen Sontheimer, 1.91 million
4. Martin Kabrhel, 1.63 million
5. Isaac Haxton, 1.26 million
6. Ole Schemion, 1.25 million
7. Sam Greenwood, 1.15 million
8. Daniel Dvoress, 950,000
9. David Peters, 800,000

To say that Kenney has made a living off High Roller tournaments might be the understatement of 2017 (and we’re not even halfway through the year). Of his 16 cashes in tournament poker this year, 12 of them have come in tournaments with a buy-in higher than $ 25,000 and six have been in the Aria High Roller series. Eight of those cashes have been for six figures, with the highest being Kenney’s win at the PSC Bahamas $ 50,000 High Roller (just under a million at $ 969,075).

When the tournament restarts on Saturday, one man is going to be pissed because he will receive nothing for three days of work. The remainder of the final table will receive six-figure paydays and the champion walks off with 1.7 million-plus Euros, not a bad way to start the Monte Carlo leg of the PokerStars Championships.

While these nine men do their work tomorrow, the first day of the Main Event will open for action. The 5000-Euro tournament, when it was under the auspices of the European Poker Tour, marked the end of the European tournament season and awarded the Grand Final trophy to its victor. Now, the Monte Carlo stop is simply another leg in a tournament poker season, so expecting it to bring in the 1098 entries that came out for the 2016 version might be asking too much.

PokerStars officials are expecting better attendance than the last two PSC events in Panama (366 entries) and Macau (536), but it will push the envelope to reach the 738 entries of the PSC Bahamas. At noon local time (6AM East Coast), we’ll get our first indications of just how big the PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo might be.

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Bryn Kenney Rockets to POY Leads, Demonstrates Problems With Systems

 Bryn Kenney Rockets to POY Leads, Demonstrates Problems With Systems

We’ve blown by the quarter pole in the various races for poker’s Player of the Year, but both of the major standings are in agreement. As players prepare for the 2017 World Series of Poker (only about six weeks away, everyone!), Bryn Kenney has been able to pull out to the lead in the various POY races. Kenney’s lead also demonstrates that there are some problems with both the POY systems and their methods of awarding points.

On the CardPlayer leaderboard, Kenney has 3106 points, as astronomical amount for this point in the year (also astronomical? The $ 2.9 million plus he’s already put in the bank for 2017). In looking at Kenney’s performance, however, he has garnered the majority of his points through the “High Roller” tournaments that are being held, especially at Aria in Las Vegas. Kenney got off to a nice start, cashing six times at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas (including winning the $ 50,000 Super High Roller, the $ 25,000 High Roller and finishing seventh in a $ 100,000 Super High Roller that wasn’t originally part of the schedule) to rack up 1266 points. Of his other seven point-earning tournaments (that have earned Kenney 1840 points), five of them have been at the Aria High Roller series and the other two were both tournaments with a buy in over $ 25K.

This disparity displays the problems with both the CardPlayer system and, as we will see momentarily, the Global Poker Index’s tabulations. In his most recent finish at Aria, the $ 25K tournament was a total of 30 people that earned Kenney 350 POY points (CardPlayer); in winning the World Poker Tour Tournament of Champions, Ryan Riess had to go through a field more than ten times that size to earn his 1200 points for his victory (his only point-earning tournament for 2017). The question has to be asked:  should a player, going through a much smaller field with a big buy-in, earn more points (relatively) than a player who goes through a bigger field with a smaller buy-in?

While Kenney has been able to take the lead to this point in the CardPlayer POY, there are a couple of players on his heels. Ben Heath, the runner-up at the Aussie Millions, has had a blistering start to 2017. He won a $ 15K event at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas and picked up some more points at the WPT L. A. Poker Classic and another runner-up finish at $ 1500 Wynn Classic Main Event. All totaled, Heath has accumulated 2976 points to only be 130 points back of Kenney.

Nick Petrangelo is also back in the swing after finishing eighth in the GPI POY in 2016. On the CardPlayer boards Petrangelo, who won the $ 100,000 PokerStars Championship Bahamas event, also earned points during the Aussie Millions and the PokerStars Championship Macau. Once you total up his six points-earning finishes, Petrangelo is in third place on the CardPlayer table, holding 2918 points.

It’s a bit of a jump down to the other seven men who make up the Top Ten on the CardPlayer rankings. Anthony Spinella (2360 points) and Aussie Millions champion Shurane Vijayaram (2280) are in fourth and fifth places, respectively. Dan Colman (2266 points), Simeon Naydenov (2230), Sam Panzica (2174), Daniel Strelitz (2100) and Darryll Fish (2076) round out the remainder of the CardPlayer Top Ten.

On the Global Poker Index Player of the Year ratings, the same man is sitting at the top. Kenney, who has seen a couple of his Aria performances dropped because they haven’t met the requirements of the GPI for inclusion on their rankings, still racks up 2487.7 points and has a pretty decent lead over his closest competitor. Ari Engel has been able to accumulate points across a wide spectrum of tournaments (his most recent point-earning event was winning the Mid-States Poker Tour Milwaukee Main Event championship for a six-figure score) to land in second with 2032.65 points.

Our first deviation in the charts comes with Mustapha Kanit in third place. While he did pick up a sizeable chunk of points in the Bahamas (891-plus points), Kanit also used finishes in the Aussie Millions and the PokerStars Championship arenas Panama and Macau to total 1970.27 points. Keeping the deviation going, Sergio Aido (1933.22 points), Byron Kaverman (1828.69) and Manig Loeser (1752.38) all reflect a deviation from the CardPlayer charts in coming in on the GPI ratings in fourth through sixth, respectively.

Petrangelo, while ranked much higher on the CardPlayer boards, also lands on the GPI countdown in seventh place  with 1642.51 points. Koray Aldemir (1631.78), Dylan Wilkerson (1562.14) and Spinella (1502.72) round out the GPI Top Ten. If you look to break it down, that means that, between the 20 slots available on the CardPlayer and GPI rankings, 17 men can claim to be in the Top Ten in tournament poker at this time.

Needless to say, this is going to be a free-flowing chart. The World Poker Tour’s Season XVI schedule will begin on Friday in Beijing, followed by the WPT Amsterdam beginning May 5. The World Series of Poker Circuit has a couple more events and, by the end of May, the 48th Annual World Series of Poker begins itself in Las Vegas. If the major ranking organizations continue to count the small-field High Roller events, however, Brynn Kenney will be tough to catch as he gets a huge percentage of his points from those events.

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