PNW Poker Leaderboard — Christmas 2020

I definitely was not expecting to be posting another update before the end of 2020. There’s no live poker going on in Portland (officially). There are some tournaments going on around the country but they haven’t really ramped up to a fraction of the usual, and the usual between Thanksgiving and Christmas is minimal. But here we are, just a couple weeks on from 10th anniversary post.

2020 In Review

For me, this has been one of those years where I’m just happy I’m employed and not relying on my poker winnings to supplement whatever meagre earnings I had as a security guard or grocery cashier or a freelance multimedia developer. My specialty has been live poker tournaments with fields of 60–150 players, and while I’ve never been hugely profitable, I’ve had some decent years. This has not been one of them.

For one thing, the last live game I played was in early March. I played six events for $10K and $20K guarantees at Final Table, but cashed only one of those and still came out $100 down after taking 13th because of a rebuy. And, of course, I went down to the Chinook Winds PacWest Poker Classic just as the coronavirus was becoming a known thing and didn’t cash there at all (and did a re-entry in the 6-Max, ouch!)

Anyway, most of my poker since lockdown has been on Ignition. Did a brief run on Nitrogen in the spring to support the Portland Meadows series there and had some minor success playing 1¢/2¢ and 2¢/4¢ PLO, with one session even winning 1800bb in less than an hour, but I was chasing the tournament dragon and those 4¢ big blinds get gobbled up pretty fast.

Some ambitious soul put me into some America’s Card Room medium-low PLO tournaments around the same time—my one and only experience with being staked—but I’m afraid this horse was one of those eaten by the dragon. I’ve racked those up as (mostly) losses on my personal database, even though the cost was borne elsewhere. I did manage to claw out a 60th-place finish in an 815-entry $30K guarantee, which got me a profit of less than that of the 2¢/4¢ game on Nitrogen. (I did enjoy getting to play some 7-Card Stud and 7-Card Stud Hi-Lo.)

Big Dog was another of the sites that was pumped locally. I played a few of their Big O tournaments for old-times’ sake, but no good for me.

Most of the year on Ignition has been a downswing for me. Things looked hopeful around the beginning of August, I had a couple satelllite wins and cashes in one of their series (min-cashes). I was runner-up in a $5K guarantee NLHE 6-Max for four figures, then made the final table of a 215-entry PLO8 game, cashed a Thousandaire Maker, then another 6-Max final table. Then it stopped and I was back to playing increasingly-smaller Jackpot Sit-and-Go tournaments and trying to jump-start my bigger tournament wins every few weeks.

Late in November, Portland Meadows paired up with Bomb Pot Poker for another couple online series. I managed to enter a couple of the first series (I’m not saying what I did in them was playing), and I got into three of the Oregon State Championship Series 6-Max games without any results.

So, the year has not helped me recover from the bust of the PacWest series at all. I did manage to contribute to my holiday cheer the other day by late-begging an $11 tournament on Ignition where you start with 50,000 chips and the blinds are 5 minutes long. Got to the final six (from a field of 342) and had AT in the BB, the SB who has twice my stack just limps in and I shove on him with 14bb, he calls with A2 and flops two pair, which was disappointing. Then the next night I won a 65-player PLO8 turbo tournament,

Gonna need a lot more of those in the next week to get the year even, though. Just won a satellite to one of this weekend’s $221K guarantees….

Losing the Spirit

Dan Beecher on the NW Poker Facebook Page posted a letter from Spirit Mountain Casino, announcing the closure of their Poker Room and their plan to disburse their promotional poker jackpot funds of nearly $120,000. Their “known carded Poker players” are eligible to qualify via a promotional kiosk game running 1–15 January 2021, with the drawing for prizes worth $100,000 from the jackpot on 16 January.

I haven’t gotten a letter myself, so I’m not sure that I qualify, but I’m holding out hope. I do have a Coyote Club card in my stack, and while I didn’t play there often (what with bigger-field tournaments kind of being my thing), I did chop the top prize at a Top of the Mountain series event back in 2013, so hopefully I’m still on the rolls!

Never good to see another venue close.

Bimb Pot Poker Oregon State Online Championship

The afore-mentioned Oregon State Championship Series went off for two weeks in December, with 29 events and $40K in guarantees total, including a $220 NLHE Championship, some 6-Max, some NL Omaha, and a bunch of bomb pot and double-board (sometimes both) mixed in.

So much pot splitting you want a computer to do the work.

Hosted online by Bomb Pot Poker, I’ve got no idea what the payouts from any of the events actually were. Most were in the $500 to $1500 guarantee range, with the championship guaranteeing $10K.

One Jungleman took the win of the Championship, with The Ponz making series point leader, cashing in nearly a third of the offered tournaments.

Apparently, gone are the days when someone who doesn’t even make a final table in a series can win a trophy around these parts!

Spirit of Giving

In these hard times, it’s important to remember the people trying to help and Ben May at Final Table had a Thanksgiving give-away I should have caught in the post earlier this month. Final Table gave away $2,000 in gift cards to people in need the day after the memorial tournament for Heath Bloodgood.

Also worth a mention here is Kat Mullins, who has worn a number of poker hats around town over the years as well as posting contact info for racial justice protests here in Portland through the summer and fall, is leaving (or left by now) our burg for San Diego.

Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard

There’s not a huge amount of info to cover since early this month, but it is kind of big information. No new players to report on, but cash game veteran Chris Brewer from Eugene started banging out some tournament cashes in the international leg of the summer’s WSOP on GGPoker, then hit the Wynn High Roller series this month to pick up three cashes in the $10K buyin events. One, we reported on earlier in December, but since then, in two smaller events, he took third (18 entries) and a win (20 entries, beating Alex Foxen and Sam Soverel). These aren’t huge ROI, but the quantities are decent. Those two cashes move him 120 places, up to #156 on the PNW Leaderboard.

Then there’s Max Young, who won the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Main Event, which had 779 entries and a prize pool of $1.2M. Max doesn’t move anywhere from his #5 spot on the Leaderboard, but he’s incredibly close to breaking the $2M mark for live earnings. He broke the $1M mark a little over two years ago, and it’s all a long way from playing at Aces on Powell.

Interviews with Max indicated he might be thinking of moving to Florida, which would take him out of the purview of the Leaderboard, but I’m hoping he makes the $2M mark before that happens!

Ten Years of Mutant Poker

The first post on this blog was December 10, 2010! I’d been playing poker in a home game for a couple of years by then. I’d played a bit online on Cake Poker, PokerStars, and Full Tilt. I’d written a program that evaluated hundreds of thousands of hands to develop starting ranges and incorporated it into an iPhone app that you could use surreptitiously to dial up statistics I’d derived (mostly as an exercise in learning the new field of iOS programming). I’d gotten back in contact with a colleague from back when I was still a bit of a thing in multimedia programming, Tomer Berda, just before he won his WSOP bracelet. I was talking with another long-time friend, Brad Smith (who’s now my boss), about my interest in poker, and he suggested that I should start writing a blog about it. As I was “between employment”, I decided to do it, brushed up on my WordPress skills, did some graphics, and here we are.

The first few months were all about online and my attempts to get to the Irish Open in 2011. Then, of course—as anyone who has been watching the final EPT Retro streams from the 2011 season has been reminded—there was Black Friday and the virtual shutdown of online poker in the US (though there are still some options out there).

Anyway, there’s a lot of stuff in the back catalog if you care to look, not to mention links to the articles I wrote elsewhere.

Good News, Everyone!

Just in case you needed something to cheer your spirits as 2020 drags us toward it’s grisly cave, Limon is back! Banned from Twitter as LimonPoker far too long ago, he’s revived his InfiniteStacks account and is talking about poker (a little) and politics and dissing Bitcoin!

Also hanging with Wayne Chiang on YouTube talking PLO!

PNW Poker Leaderboard, 10 December 2020

Poker is slowly crawling back, and with the imminent beginning of immunizations, maybe there’s hope that things will be back to semi-normal by next summer. If I was the WSOP, though, I’d definitely be looking to delay the starting date from Memorial Day to about where it usually ends around July 4th.

Meanwhile, most of the big action continues to be in Las Vegas, notably The Venetian, where the Venetian/Mid-States Poker Tour DeepStack Extravaganza #29 $200K GTD NLHE did some amazing numbers, putting up a prize pool of over $1 million with 1,123 entries and a first prize larger than the guarantee. Andrew Rogers (Anchorage, AK) placed 8th, and climbs 1140 places to #1700 on the Leaderboard. It more than doubled his Hendon Mob earnings.

Smaller big-buyin events are back, as well. Another Anchoragite, Adam Hendrix entered a 64-player $10K at the Wynn High Roller series and placed 8th. I wouldn’t normally report on a min-cash like this, but there’s not much other news out there. Hendrix maintains his place on the Leaderboard at #31.

Another Wynn High Roller had Eugene, OR’s Christopher Brewer come in 2nd out of 49 entries, in a deal with Martin Zamani—remember that name—for his best-ever cash, doubling his Hendon Mob results and jumping more than 500 spots on the Leaderboard, to #276.

The only new name on the Leaderboard is a doozy. Portland’s own Korey Payne beat 1,238 others to win the Venetian/MSPT #38 $400K GTD NLHE Main Event in mid-November. He jumps right onto the Leaderboard at #170, and it’s literally his first Hendon Mob-recorded cash. He beat out—Martin Zamani, who came in 3rd. #TEAMNOCHOP

The champ had some words to say:

Happy Holidays and (most likely) see you in the New Year!

 

PNW Poker Leaderboard — Thanksgiving 2020

Hey there. Been a while. Miss you guys.

Before anything else, I want to acknowledge the passing of Heath Bloodgood, a vital part of the PNW poker community, and one of the people I most associate with Final Table Poker Club. It’s been a couple of months since Ben May announced his death on the NW Poker Facebook page, and more than a month since his memorial at the club, but if you weren’t able to attend (as I wasn’t), then there’s a great gallery of photos from Angela Strode-Haugen.

The Leaderboard

I still haven’t personally played any poker since March, but there are live venues outside the United State opening up. Some Las Vegas series have restarted—despite high rates of infection in Nevada—and with the move of the WSOP to online this summer on both WSOP.com (in Nevada and New Jersey) and GGPoker (bigger events held outside the US), Hendon Mob has started to roll some online series into their regular statistics.

That is how Portland’s Sam Cosby moved from #320 to #250 on the Leaderboard, with a 6th-place finish in September’s WSOP.com Global Casino Championship. Sam won enough points playing in live WSOPC events last season before the shutdown (including his second Ring in February) to be freerolled into the $10K buy-in event (130 entries). He finished three places ahead of Daniel Negreanu. The cash is larger than his largest live cashes.

Ilya Sofinskiy of Hillsboro got 2nd in a nearly even chop in October’s 200-entry Venetian DeepStack Showdown #6 $20K GTD NLHE MonsterStack. It’s his biggest-ever cash and he climbs 1400 places on the Leaderboard, to #1859.

Vencouver, Washington’s Mihai Turenschi won a September event at the Showdown, Event #1 $10K GTD NLHE SuperStack. The field had 268 entries; it’s Mihai’s largest cash and he moves up 2000 places to #2467.

The last item I have is Karim Chatur of Calgary, winner of the Cash Casino Calgary Wild West Shootout Main Event (late October) over 80 other entries. Chatur is already high up on the list but he still moves 2 spots up to #55.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 21 March 2020: Change at the Top!

Wow. I’m writing this a day or so after the near-total shutdown of the live poker economy. The big poker rooms in LA, major poker rooms in Vegas, associated hotels, cancellation of series around the world (with some moving online, including the World Series of Poker Circuit).

The WSOP itself hasn’t been cancelled—I just got notification that my application for media credentials for this year was approved yesterday and according to an interview with WSOP Director Gregory Chochon covered by PokerNews—but with potential weeks of quarantine and social distancing ahead during this period when players are usually working hard to build their bankrolls up before the summer, you’ve also got to feel for the folks who made a little bank this past month and are going to be stuck with no chance to get to the next stage.

My own stab at the summer roll is going to be a bit stunted. I played three tournaments this month so far and that’s likely to be the last live games I get in for a while. I dropped in to the opening night of Portland Meadows at their new location (they’re closed now, it’s been a tough re-opening).

Played the Final Table First Friday $20K GTD and busted well before the money after watching pocket queens (including my own) get sucked out on three times in the early levels. Then, the next Monday, I got together with my original home game players at Daryl’s house (yes, two people with names that sound the same at the same table can be confusing). Chopped that heads up for the second time in a row.

In addition to the players, there are going to be a lot of employees and dealers hurting for money in the quarantine weeks. Eugene’s Full House Poker has put together a fund to keep people afloat (not an endorsement, just information).

There’s also a Portland-oriented fund organized by Bella Tomaltsky.

So with most live poker on hiatus for an indefinite period, let’s look at what might be some of the last tournament cashes for a while.

In lighter news, there’s a great interview with Grant Denison and Jonathan Levy done by one of my favorite broadcast teams at The Chip Race.

There hasn’t been a change at the top of the Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard since I started it almost two years ago. Until now. Oregon’s Seth Davies was in a close 2nd behind Washington’s Scott Clements, but a trip to partypoker MILLIONS Sochi netted him two cashes to pull him ahead. First off was a 7th-place finish in the Super High Roller NLHE Short Deck (50 entries), which was followed up a couple days later with 4th in another (55-entry) Super High Roller NLHE Short Deck (won by Phil Ivey). Davies is ahead of Clements by only $13K, about 0.15% of their lifetime earnings.

This is where I’d congratulate Kevin Buck—whose Twitter handle is a literal Oregon reference—for his win at the Wynn Spring Classic $1M GTD NLHE, but his Hendon Mob profile lists him as a Las Vegas resident. James Pennella of Kirkland finished 9th in the field of 687, moving him from #288 to #262.

Mercer Island’s Calvin Lee was runner-up at the Wynn Spring Classic $100K GTD NLHE, climbing nine spots to #161, while Dien Le (Bellevue) took 4th, moving him right behind Lee, at #162.

Tyler Patterson moves up two places to #16 with his part of a 10-way ICM deal in the Bay 101 Shooting Star NLHE, which had 290 entries (he presumably got to keep his Shooting Star bounty). That came just a few days after his 10th-place finish in the 250-entry WPT Rolling Thunder NLHE Main Event.

A number of the newly-included Canadian contingent found some money at WPT Fallsview, on the north side of Niagra Falls, where there were 594 entries in the C$5K Main Event, for a prize pool just over US$2M. Coming in 21st—and moving up the Leaderboard four places to #119—was Umang Dattani of Calgary (finishing just ahead of Vanessa Selbst). Maple, BC’s Arash Tafakori came in 11th, winning his biggest score (of three) and leaping 4,500 places on the Leaderboard to #1629. The top PNW finisher in the tournament was Jaspal Brar of Edmonton in 7th. He climbs 10 places to #67 (and went on to cash in the WPT LAPC Main Event a week later).

In the WPT Fallsview C$2,500 NLHE side event, Ron Lauzon of Edmonton picked up his largest-ever cash in a long string (72) of cashes for 13th (moving 20 places to #252). 6th place went to Richmond, BC’s Stephen Wong, now #1003 from #4212.

The outlier for this edition is Rogers, AK’s Adam Todd, taking 4th in the RUNGOOD Poker Series Joplin $100K GTD NLHE Main Event (that’s Joplin MO), 383 entries paid $575 and the prize pool was over $180K. It was Todd’s biggest cash, and he climbs almost 1,500 spots on the Leaderboard, to #2242.

Dylan Linde took 14th at the WPT LAPC NLHE Main Event, which drew 490 entries and $4.7M prize pool. He remains #10. Ian Johns finished 3rd of 48 in the $2,140 buy-in WPT LAPC #66 HORSE and holds at #30.

North of the border in Calgary, Donald McCall from Airdrie, AB was the winner (263 entries) of Great Canadian Freeze Out #4 NLHE. It’s his biggest cash and he moves exactly 700 places to #1158. Two Calgary players took 2nd and 3rd in the Great Canadian Freeze Out #10 NLHE Main Event, (C$660 buy-in). Karim Chatur was 3rd and moves up one spot to #57; Tak Chu is the big gainer for the week, moving from #6638 to #2096 for his second-place finish.

In other news out of Calgary, the C$440 buy-in Grey Eagle Winter XScape NLHE Main Event saw local Doug Lee win the field of 251. He remains #23 on the Leaderboard. Matt Kwong (also Calgary) moves up to #571 for second, and the afore-mentioned Donald McCall took third.

The opening event of the PacWest Poker Classic was a $310 entry, $125K GTD NLHE tournament with a four-way deal made. Gavin Smith of Portland took 1st for his biggest-ever cash, and climbs 600+ places to #1286. In 2nd was Bruce Zhen (Salem, also largest cash) rises to #1023. Crescent City, OR resident Gurit Marwah debuts at #2880 on the Leaderboard for 3rd. And Portland’s Baptiste Chavaillaz came in 4th. bumping him 10 places, to #155. The event drew 498 entries.

Nick Getzen (Portland) won the PacWest Poker Classic $100K GTD NLHE 6-Max, for what is surprisingly, his largest tournament cash (though you may have watched him pull down large chunks of cash on PokerTime. Getzen is up almost 1,000 places on the Leaderboard, to #1681.

Finally, there’s the PacWest Poker Classic $225K GTD NLHE Main Event, which ended in a 6-way deal. Lee Ferris (Washougal, WA, #1844 on the Leaderboard) got 6th. Trevor Kahlberg of Bend claimed 5th (now #1696). Sheridan, OR’s Mark Hurst gains 650+ spots to #1126 for 4th and Ridgefield, WA’s Carl Oman makes another hit at Chinook in 3rd, going from #716 to #538. Second place went to Leaderboard newcomer Ty LaCroix (Portland), who debuts at #1852. Finally, Longview’s Tareq Amhaz got 1st, jumping to #803 from #1474. It was the largest cash for all six players.

And that’s probably it for the Leaderboard for the foreseeable future. Without any live games anywhere in the world, I’m not going to have anything to post here and while I got some money onto Ignition since I stared writing this a couple of days ago, my first tournament ended juat as I was making a recovery after losing a big flip when denial of service attacks took the site down, so there’s not even going to be my own online crap to blog about.

Maybe it’s time to turn my attention to marble racing.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 15 February 2020: Stoker Edition

I meant to get this edition of the Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard out yesterday to coincide with Valentine’s Day and the 161st birthday of the State of Oregon—not to mention that I was hoping to be busy playing poker for the next four days at the PacWest Poker Classic—but life had its own little funny plans, so instead of whipping out a post after a couple of drinks with my sweetheart last night, here I am in the Lincoln City Motel 6 after busting Event #1 $100K NLHE (twice) and Event #2 10-Seat NLHE Main Event Satellite (just once) with just a Diet Coke in hand.

So let’s start out with the most important news of the past couple of weeks. Ryan Stoker came in third in the Wynn Signature Series $400K NLHE Main Event. Wynn doesn’t immediately report their results to Hendon Mob, so Ryan’s cash didn’t make it into the last edition. Congrats to him for his second-largest cash; he moves up from #217 to #184. Ryan bested over 500 other players.

The big winner this time in absolute terms is #2 on the list, Seth Davies who was Down Under at the Australian Poker Open #5 A$25K NLHE, which had 47 entries. Davies finished behind Stephen Chidwick and Eric Seidel.

Seth Davies from the Australian Poker Open, via PokerGO

Four years ago, Sam Cosby was abusing junior senior poker reporters at the World Series of Poker. A couple of years ago when I had my best-ever cash here at the PacWest, Sam was hanging around looking a little jealous. Last summer I think he might have figured out that if even I could make a five-figure cash, he ought to be a shoo-in, because since giving up reporting and going on the road as a full-time player, Sam’s been on a tear, garnering his second Circuit Ring in five months at WSOPC Potawatami #9 NLHE, a $1,125 buy-in with 151 entries, and notching his largest cash, and climbing more than 100 spots on the Leaderboard, to #329. The move to Portland did good!

Sam Cosby at WSOPC Potawatami, via WSOP.com

With 231 entries at C$880, the Pure Canadian Poker Championship NLHE Main Event at Casino Yellowhead in Edmonton put a few players into this week’s standings.

The winner was Edmonton’s Malcolm Bolger, who snagged another in an impressive run of five-figure cashes (9 out of 32, mostly in events with $1K or smaller buy-ins). He climbs about 20 spots to #145.

Deron Noksana (Edmonton) took second placing, moving him from #619 to #492; and Jimmy Lee (also Edmonton) was third. Lee is already #81 on the Leaderboard, and his cash does not movie him up from that position.

Another well-known poker journalist, Adam Lamers (Edmonton) beat out 228 other entries in the Pure Canadian Poker Championship NLHE Triple Stack. Lamers climbs to #829 on the PNW Leaderboard, He’s also breathing down the neck of the top three on the Poker Media Power Rankings, particularly as Sam Cosby’s eligibility is about to expire.

https://twitter.com/adam_lamers12/status/1216792304897286144?s=20

Lamers’s runner-up, Harvey Johnson (just listed as from Alberta), moved onto the Leaderboard with his second recorded cash. He debuts at #3362.

Yon Kim at the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza, via Venetian Poker Room Blog

Bellingham’s Yon Kim enters the Leaderboard with his second cash, a win in the Venetian DSE #3 $25K GTD NLHE Monster Stack. Kim starts at #2830.

The Parx Big Stax XXXII NLHE 300 in Bensalem, Pennsylvania drew 2,257 entries at $340 each, and Seattle’s Pofuk Ying made it to 8th to zoom up 4,300 spots to #1694. Gonna put an asterisk on this one, because all six of Ying’s cashes going back to 2017 are from Parx Big Stax events, which may mean not Seattle after all.

Finally, a 16th-place finish that’s not in the WSOP doesn’t usually make it to the Leaderboard, but Federal Way’s David Froyalde did it at the MSPT/Venetian $1M GTD NLHE. There were nearly 1,100 entries at $1,100. It was Froyalde’s second-largest cash and moves him up to #1063.

Time for some sleep. Then some more poker, hopefully!

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 31 January 2020: Pendleton Edition

The dam broke this week and results from both the Summer and Fall Wildhorse Poker Round Ups have made it to Hendon Mob, where they’ve been absorbed into the state (and now province) leaderboards, and made their way to this, the Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard. On top of that, the holiday lull is over and NW players have fanned out actoss the world to win more money.

Marko Pantelic (photo from wsop.com)

On top of the movers this week is Bellevue’s Marko Pantelic, taking third out of 487 entries in the WSOPC Thunder Valley #12 $500K GTD NLHE Main Event. His fifth recorded cash is his best by far (three of his other cashes were also from Northern California events). marko moves up nearly 2,100 places, to #564.

George Wolff continues to bang away at the high roller circuit, with a 3rd place in the Australian Poker Open #4 $25K PLO. It’s his third cash in Australia since the start of the year, and he moves up another place on the Leaderboard, to #16.

Andrew Brunette from Woodland, WA picked up his first and only (so far) recorded cash by winning the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #12 +$10K NLHE Main Event. There were 434 entries, and Brunette makes it onto the Leaderboard for the first time at #1288. Coming in right behind Brunette was Auburn, WA’s Jeffrey Lindsey, who rose from #3316 ro #1259 with his fifth (and largest) cash. David Templeton from Anchorage took third—far from his first or fifth cash, but still his best. He goes from #395 to #333. Boise’s Gregg Wilkinson was 4th for his biggest cash (jumping 4,010 places to #2303). And Monty Ford of Wellpinit, WA is the last of the players from that event to make this edition of the Leaderboard, with his 5th place finish taking him to #1011.

Boise’s Jessica King took down the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #3 +$5K NLHE, her largest score to date, beating a field of 470 and moving her up nearly 5,000 places to #1642. Gregory Lindberg from Corvallis came in 2nd for his best cash, climbing about a hundred places to #462. Chad Wassmuth from Lewiston moved up two spots to #71 with a 3rd place in this event and a win in Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #1 +$3K NLHE. The runner-up in the latter event was a different Chad from Idaho, Chad Heft (Boise), who picked up his first cash and a position at #3486. back in Event #2, Kennewick, WA’s Jimmy Stringer came in 4th, but he gets an extra boost because he won Wildhorse Summer Poker Round Up #2 +3K NLHE back in August. Stringer is now #794.

Back on the other side of the globe, Portland’s Landen Lucas came in 5th out of 299 in Aussie Millions #19 NLHE, a A$2,500 buy-in. He climbs to #568.

Tzu Huang of Surrey, BC was at the WPT/Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open $2M GTD NLHE Championship and came in 16th out of 843 entries. Huang rises fifty places to #309. Matt Affleck came in 23rd, and remains at #15.

Beaverton’s Binh Nguyen was one of the few players to have any results reported from the lone Summer series event in Pendleton that had been submitted, but he also won the Wildhorse Summer Poker Round Up #4 NLHE and climbs to #128. Justin Monk (Spokane Valley) was his runner-up, and he goes to #186. Ghulam Mirza of Kennewick was third. Coincidentally, Ghulam Mirza Mohammed of Kennewick was 2nd in the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #10 +3K NLHE. Do you think they could be related? The former only has four cashes (#2929) and the latter has five (#2049). Jeff Ball (from Pendleton!) took 4th in Summer Event #4) and is now #1811.

William Smith of Tualatin, OR won Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #11 +$3K NLHE. He bumps up to #797. Boise’s Brent Becker took 2nd (#715) and Jared Dairy of Bend got 3rd (#1829).

Shoreline, WA’s Cynthia Orr makes her debut on the Leaderboard at #2546 by winning Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #9 +3K NLHE Seniors. Her runner-up was another newcomer, Kennewick’s James Peck, whose first cash puts him at #3440.

Dylan Wilkerson was another PNW player Down Under, getting 3rd in the Aussie Millions #18 PLO8. There were 133 entries, and Wilkerson remains at #14.

Zack Powers of Arlington, WA took 2nd iin the 341-entry Wildhorse Summer Poker Round Up #3 NLHE. He enters at #3089.

Spokane’s Paul Thone (#3792) got his second cash in Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up #5 +$3K O8. That’s the last of the entries for Pendleton; may they never be this late again!

Lastly but not leastly, Seattle’s Dean Bui won a Wynn Signature Series $400 NLHE mid-month to go from #188 too #177, then James Canitz of Eagle River, AK got second in the same event the next day, popping up to #895.

That’s it for the end of the month. I know there are a couple of results that hadn’t posted by the time the charts ran on Wednesday (looking at you Ryan Stoker!) but you’ll just need to wait for the next edition.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 20 January 2020

Well, this decade’s been a bust for me so far. With Portland Meadows closed down until they get their new location (8102 NE Killingsworth) set up, Final Table has been running $20K guarantees every Friday night. The first of those this year (on the regularly-scheduled First Friday) got 190 entries. That had dropped down to 137, but that was still enough for nearly $7K scheduled for the top prize.

I also dropped in to see the new Trio room at 9th & E Burnside (photo at the top from Kat Mullins on the NW Poker Facebook page). They had a couple of Big O tables running the first day and when I sat down, Kerry Moynahan (who was dealing), mentioned that he didn’t usually see me at the shootout tables, as opposed to the multi-table tournaments. Five minutes later, after winning my first hand and then losing my entire buy-in on the second—after flopping a straight and calling off against a better straight on the turn—he knew why.

That’s my 2020 so far…how’s everyone else’s?

If you’re a real stats-watcher, you may notice some variation in this edition of the Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard, because it now includes players from Alaska, Alberta, and British Columbia. It’s a move I’ve been wanting to make for a while but was too lazy to implement until recently. I meant to get it going before the start of the year, but here it is in the second edition!

Why not start with George Wolff, who’s been walloping the high roller scene since last fall’s British Poker Open. He’s cashed in 10 events with buy-ins of $10K or more with nearly $1.9M in earnings, with the latest coming in the Aussie Millions A$25,000 NLHE Challenge, where he made a deal for 2nd place. George moves up a rarified 5 spots on the Leaderboard, from #22 to #17.

James Romero  (photo: Mickey May/partypoker)

James Romero came in 3rd after starting the final day as chip leader at the partypoker MILLIONS UK $5M GTD NLHE Main Event, a $10K buy-in with 530 entries. Romero also rises five spots, to #5 on the Leaderboard, with his largest score since winning the 2016 WPT Five Diamond (which was only his third recorded live cash, if you really want to beat yourself up over your poker career like I do).

John Skrovan (photo: PokerNews/wsop.com)

The first player from Canada to make an appearance on the Leaderboard is John Skrovan of Burnaby, BC, who took 2nd place in the WSOPC Choctaw NLHE Main Event. As usual, the venue drew a large field of 1,065 entries. It’s Skrovan’s largest cash ever (even though he made the final table of a $600 bracelet event with 6,000+ entries at last year’s WSOP), He moves up 400 spots to #211 on the Leaderboard.

Tom Mahon from Dairy, OR got a little of the Lucky Changes Gold Rush #3 NLHE, which brought in 632 entries for a prize pool of $632K. Mahon cashed in 6th place, doubled his lifetime reported earnings, and moves nearly 850 spots on the Leadderboard, to #1115.

Portland’s Ming Zhu was the runner-up at the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganze NYE #36 NLHE MonsterStack, as part of a six-way deal. He’s currently #250.

The lone newcomer to the Leaderboard (breaking the $3K earnings threshold, as opposed to a couple thousand folks added from BC, AB, and AK) is Vancouver (WA)’s Isaiah Avery, whose second recorded cash was 3rd place in the $200 buy-in, 839-entry MOOSE Poker Tournament Series #10 $30K GTD NLHE. It got—and you can do the calculations yourself) more than five times the guarantee. and had an incredible flat payout structure (none of this 9th makes 10% of 1st; it was one-third). The 5-day series at the las Vegas Golden Nugget had 17 events, which must have kept the place pretty jammed. Avery starts at #3518.

The last name on the list this edition is Ronald Anderson from Yakima. He’s #710 after taking 3rd in a three-way deal at the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganze NYE #33 NLHE MonsterStack.

Keep on winning!

Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard Top 20 (01.20.2020)

01 Scott Clements

02 Seth Davies

03 Shawn Buchanan

04 Kevin MacPhee

05 James Romero

06 Brandon Cantu

07 Annie Duke*

08 Lee Watkinson

09 Lee Markholt

10 Dylan Linde

11Ralph “Rep” Porter

12 Amichai Barer

13 Greg Mueller

14Dylan Wilkerson

15Matt Affleck

16 Matthew Jarvis

17 George Wolff

18Tyler Patterson

19Quinn Do

20 Elliot Smith

*seriously, she hasn’t lived here for a long time, but she’s still on the Hendon Mob list for Oregon

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 04 January 2020

The new year starts out a lot like the old year, with a lot of familiar names making a lot of money. Not me, I literally just busted out of my first tournament of the year (Final Table First Friday $20K GTD) just short of the money, after having a decent-sized stack at 4 tables (with 3 tables cashing).

The short stack mentioned above lost a big hand to me when my dominated (but suited) king hit the flush against his ace-king. He was down to a quarter of a big blind but chipped up and was still in when I went from 30bb (about twice the average stack) to zero.

Let’s start off the new year with news of the #2 player on the leaderboard, Seth Davies, who won the WPT Five Diamond NLHE High Roller (53 entries at $25K a pop), then turned right around and cashed in third place in the WPT Five Diamond NLHE Main Event (606 entries, $10.4K buyin). That comes on the heels of his biggest-ever cash last month. Remaining in the #3 spot, Kevin MacPhee took 18th.

George Wolff continues his climb, moving up two spots to #16 with a string of cashes last month. Notable among them was a runner-up finish at EPT Prague #5 PLO High Roller (PRAGUE!), which got a total of 40 entries, which was his largest single payout so far. A week later is a sixth-place in EPT Prague #33 NLHE High Roller (66 entries, $25K entry). A huge amount of money but sort of a smaller multiple cash that wouldn’t normally make the list, except that the next day he takes 9th in the 255-entry EPT Prague #39 NLHE High Roller ($10K buy-in), then hops over to the Bellagio for 3rd place in WPT Five Diamond #27 NLHE High Roller ($25K, 37 entries), and wraps up just before Christmas at the Venetian in the CPPT/DSE NYE #19 NLHE Main Event with 160 entries and a $3.5K buy-in, where he gets third again. A fairly productive three weeks.

Max Young continues to crush what I guess are called the large-field “mid-majors” these days, with 2nd in the Wynn Winter Classic $500K GTD NLHE; more than 1,200 entries doubled the guarantee. Max moves up a spot to #20.

Holding at #8, Dylan Linde came in 7th at the WPT Five Diamond #15 NLHE, a $5.2K buy-in tournament that saw 127 entries. Buy his book!

The only new name on the Leaderboard in this first edition of 2020 is Michael Kiselman of Edmonds. His singular recorded cash is for first place in what looks like a 2-way deal in the Wynn Winter Classic $40K NLHE over 270 other players (the prize pool was nearly $100K). His first spot on the Leaderboard is #1383.

Up the block at Harrah’s, at the WSOPC Las Vegas #11 $500K GTD NLHE Main Event, it was Matt Affleck taking 12th place. He is still #12.

Alex Dickson of Keizer knocked off 3rd at at the WSOPC Las Vegas #3 $100K NLHE, which apparently missed the guarantee with 188 entries at $600 a pop. He’s up nearly 50 places to #351.

I could swae I saw our old friend Wayne Keller at the Portland Meadows Grand Finale the other day, but he was also at the WSOPC Las Vegas #6 NLHE Seniors tournament, where he won a Circuit Ring! Wayne climbs 14 spots to #193.

And that’s a great way to end the first edition of the Leaderboard for the year. I’d have more, but Wildhorse still hasn’t reported results from November’s Round Up to either Hendon Mob or Cardplayer. If you like to keep track of this stuff yourself, harangue your tournament director to send in the results.

Otherwise it’s like you’ve never existed.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 13 December 2019

It’s Friday the 13th and I’m coming off a 2nd-place finish last night in a tournament, so I’m feeling like writing about some poker, even though the little bit I made at the Portland Meadows Grand Finale #10 $2K GTD NLHE Seniors isn’t close to getting me a mention here except for the fact that I write the column.

Let’s get to some real prize-winners!

The new name on the Leaderboard is Scotty McDaniel from Brent(?), OR, whose 4th-ever cash is a 4th-place finish at WSOPC Planet Hollywood #9 $100K GTD NLHE Monster Stack. He debuts on the list at #1755.

Seth Davies makes a big jump to the #2 spot on the leaderboard, edging out Kevin McPhee with 5th place in the PokerMasters #10 NLHE Main Event, a $50K buyin with 34 entries, followed by another 5th in the partypoker MILLIONS World Bahamas NLHE  Super High Roller Bowl. And by “super”, they mean, of course, a $250,000 buyin. 37 entries.

The high roller tournaments continue to be good for George Wolff, as well, with a 2nd-place finish in PokerMasters #8 NLHE ($25K buyin). He moves six spots to #18.

It’s good to be Alex Ding (Dupont, WA) this fall. He won the Muckleshoot Main Event in October for his first recorded tournament cash. In the last installment of the Leaderboard, we reported he was runner-up in the WPT Montreal High Roller (recorded cash #2). And this time he took 2nd in the WPT Five Diamond NLHE 6-Max. He’s #203 on the Leaderboard.

It’s another runner-up for David Oppenheim (Mercer Island) who got his best-ever cash in the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza IV $200K GTD NLHE EpicStack. Oppenheim climbs 144 spots to #323.

At #11, Dylan Wilkerson holds steady with his 4th-place finish in WSOPC LA #5 $250K GTD NLHE Monster Stack.There were 815 entries.

Michael Long of Henderson, WA won the 185-entry Wynn Winter Classic $25K NLHE Seniors, his second-best score, popping him up more than 250 places to #545. In the Wynn Winter $250K GTD Classic NLHEGerald Peltolta from Renton came in 5th for his biggest cash. He is now #383. Puyallup’s David Price took 2nd in a 3-way deal at the Wynn Winter Classic $40K GTD NLHE, doubling his lifetime earnings and moving to #1281.

In more senior poker news, Woodland’s Kelly Frisbie  grabbed 3rd in the WPT Five Diamond NLHE Seniors (132 entries, $1,100 buyin). That’s Kelly’s largest cash and enough to move from #822 to #574.

Matthew Simmons from Kirkland (winner of a Planet Holywood GOLIATH Stack event in 2018) came in 3rd of 426 entries in the WSOPC Planet Hollywood $75K GTD NLHE Double Stack. His 2nd-best cash moves him to #237.

Landon Brown from Kent decided to spend some of the winter in Florida winning money at the SHRPO #2 $250K GTD NLHE, where he came in 7th after a smaller cash at the WPT event there a couple weeks earlier. Landon in #336. In one of the more bizarre coincidences I’ve run across doing this, a Landon Moore (Billings?, OR) is reported as taking 2nd place in SHRPO #18 $50K GTD NLHE Deep Stack Black Chip Bounty.That’s good to move from #1861 to #1228.

Finally, congrats to Bryce Cox of Maple Valley, WA, whose biggest-ever cash in WSOPC Planet Hollywood #3 NLHE just missed the usual cutoff for the Leaderboard roundup by $33, but I feel like someone who just won a Circuit Ring ought to get a little bump!

Anyway, tonight is the Bounty tournament at Portland Meadows, then it’s the $80K GTD tomorrow and the final game on Sunday: Big O! See you on the felt!

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 26 November 2019

While we wait for the results of the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up to trickle up to Hendon Mob (cross your fingers, the Summer results still aren’t up there) let’s take a look at what’s been going on for Pacific Northwest poker players the past month.

George Wolff ripped it up at this year’s Poker Masters, giving a little hope to the idea that the purple jacket might be held for two years in a row by a (former) Portland-area player. Wolff took 3rd (out of 34) in Event #7 $25K PLO, then 2nd in the next day’s Event #8 $25K NLHE. He moves up 4 spots on the Leaderboard, to #24.

Another high-ranking player making a move this edition is Max Young, going from #20 to #19 with his 3rd-place finish at WSOPC Durant #11 $1M GTD NLHE Main Event. Durant is one of the larger stops on the World Series Circuit, and there were 983 entries in this Main Event.

Alex Ding, via Playground Poker

Right on the heels of his first Hendon Mob-reported cash (the Muckleshoot Fall Classic Main Event), Alex Ding (Dupont, WA) headed to Montreal for the WPT/partypoker LIVE series, where he got 2nd in the C$5,300 buy-in Event #4 C$500K GTD NLHE High Roller. The WPT’s Tony Dunst came in 3rd, with the winner claiming anonymity. Ding’s second cash bumps him up nearly 1,000 places, to #281 on the Leaderboard.

The WSOPC stop at Lake Tahoe is considerably smaller than Durant, but it stilll got 424 entries. Charles Coultas of Mill Creek, WA took 3rd in Event #10 NLHE Main Event, adding to an already substantial record. He moves from #52 to #46.

Sam Cosby via WSOP.com

Samuel Cosby continues to make the most of his hall pass from the poker reporting life, winning his first ring on Halloween in Event #8 NLHE Monster Stack (appropriately). That’s his 14th recorded cash since the summer began. He jumps 51 places to #217.

Ellensberg, WA’s Jesse Kertland cashed in four out of five successive events at WSOPC Lake Tahoe (I don’t know if he was even in the one he didn’t cash), with three final tables: Event #5 NLHE 6-Max where he took 5th,  4th place in Event #7 NLHE 8-Max, and another 4th in Event #8 NLHE Monster Stack. Not enough to get him the Casino Championship (Steve Foutty had six cashes with two wins), but he does gain more than 20 places on the Leaderboard: #180.

Lee Markholt started this period as #7 and he stays at #7, despite his 8th place finish in the WSOPC Lake Tahoe main Event. Ditto for James Romero, who took 24th in a field of 1,109 at WPT/partypoker Live C$3,300 NLHE Main Event. He stays at #9.

Shadd Baudoin went from Grants Pass to the Venetian Lucky Shot Poker Series $150K TOTAL NLHE (yes, that tournament) which didn’t quite make the guarantee at 645 entries. Shadd picked up 3rd place and climbs from #869 ti #633.

Finally, Matthew Schwangler of Seattle moves almost 500 places to #1095 with a 4th place finish at WPTDeepstacks Thunder Valley #1 $100K GTD NLHE.The tournament got 282 entries and with Schwangler on the final table is another former reporting colleague, Valerie Cross.

I’m now the Ante Up magazine Pacific Northwest Ambassador. The December issue of the magazine is available for free in poker rooms around the country, or online right here.