With three Season XVIII events now in the books, Donald Maloney (pictured) moves into the lead in the Hublot WPT Player of the Year standings after winning the WPT Borgata Poker Open. He earned 1,200 points after adding his name to the Champions Cup and winning $616,186.
“With a WPT title not only do I feel more accomplished, but it’s literally set in stone that I was a champion at the highest level of poker,” he says. “I’ve definitely had some deep runs these last few years, but I was never a WPT champion. This is feeling really great right now. It hasn’t really set in yet, but I’m super stoked.”
A couple of other players are right on his heels as action heads to the next stop at Live! Casino. Sitting in second is WPT Legends of Poker champion Aaron Van Blarcum with 1,200 points after earning $474,390 for his win at the Bike.
Uke Dauti, another big finisher at the Borgata, moves into third place in the race after finishing runner-up in the BPO. That finish earned him 1,000 points and $410,787. Gardens Poker Festival winner Roger Teska slides to fourth with 1,000 points ($368,475) with Legends runner-up Gueorgui Gantchev just behind him in fifth with 900 points ($306,265).
There’s quite a logjam in the latter half behind those big winners. Rounding out the Top-10 are:
Kevin Albers – sixth place, 900 points (third place, Borgata Poker Open – $303,903)
Jared Greiner – seventh place, 900 points (third place, Legends of Poker – $226,040)
Laszlo Molinar – eighth place, 800 points (second place, Gardens Poker Festival – $235,615)
Dave Farah – ninth place, 800 points (fourth place, Borgata Poker Open – $227,077)
Vahan Sudzhyan – 10th place, 800 points (fourth place, Legends of Poker, $168,630)
No player yet has more than one cash among the top players in the race, but it’s a good bet that should change with stops in Maryland, the UK, and Florida approaching. The next few weeks should be interesting to see how things play out.
What Can You Win in the Hublot WPT Player of the Year Race?
As the official timekeeper and official watch of the World Poker Tour, Hublot is once again the presenting sponsor of the WPT Player of the Year award for Season XVIII. The company will be awarding a custom Hublot timepiece to the winner of the Hublot WPT Player of the Year race. In addition, the Season XVIII winner receives $15,000 in WPT tournament buy-in credits and complimentary accommodations at all WPT Main Tour events in Season XVIII.
Prizes will also be awarded for the second- and third-place finishers in the race. The runner-up will receive $7,500 in WPT tournament buy-in credits and third place will receive $2,500 in buy-in credits. Credits can be used in any global WPT event, including the Main Tour, WPTDeepStacks, WPT500, and WPT Special Events.
Next Stop on WPT Main Tour – WPT Maryland
Players can continue the East Coast swing with a visit to the Maryland Live! Casino for the $3,500 WPT Maryland at Maryland Live! Casino. The property offers a great venue for poker with some excellent dining opportunities. For those who enjoys some excellent seafood and steak, including some famous Maryland crab, this is the stop for you. The event features a $1.5 million prize pool and is scheduled for Sept. 28 – Oct. 2. The property is offering preliminary events of every buy-in level.
Next up after Maryland, the tour crosses the pond for the WPT UK. Players are invited to head to the Dusk Till Dawn Poker and Casino in Nottingham for some great poker action. The $3,300 event features a $1.5 million guarantee and runs September 30 – October 6. Nottingham is just a short trip from London and offers players not just some poker, but a great vacation getaway. The tournament is held in conjunction with partypoker LIVE and offers numerous options to qualify online. The UK stop also features a WPTDeepstacks event beginning on October 4. The preliminary schedule offers plenty of action and it should be quite a poker festival.
After the UK, the WPT rolls into Florida for the WPT bestbet Bounty Scramble in Florida. This popular $5,000 event features a $1 million guarantee as well as several players with $2,500 bounties on their heads. For more information on this event, click here.
Sean Chaffin is a freelance writer in Crandall, Texas, and his work appears in numerous websites and publications. Follow him on Twitter @PokerTraditions.