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Player of the Year

by Ryan Lucchesi |  Published: Apr 08, 2009


L.A. Poker Classic, EPT Scandinavian Open Alter POY Leader Board

Cornel CimpanThree new players entered the Card Player 2009 Player of the Year (POY) top 10 after the conclusion of the L.A. Poker Classic and the PokerStars European Poker Tour Scandinavian Open.

The LAPC proved once again that it is a marquee tournament, as the $10,000 championship event attracted 696 players, creating a prize pool of $6,681,600. Cornel Cimpan took home the top prize of $1,686,760 and 2,400 POY points. These points, combined with the 330 that he picked up for finishing fifth in a $1,000 no-limit hold'em event at the LAPC, give Cimpan 2,730 total, which is good for second place on the leader board. LAPC runner-up Binh Nguyen won $935,424 in prize money and 2,000 points to enter a tie for fourth place.

The EPT event in Copenhagen, Denmark, attracted 463 players and paid out $3,832,648. The winner was Jens Kyllonen from Finland, who captured $1,148,117 in prize money and 1,920 points to jump into a three-way tie for sixth place.

L.A. Poker Classic Prelims Help Players Build Their POY Resumes

Jeff MadsenJeff Madsen is no stranger to hot streaks during a tournament series. His breakout year at the World Series of Poker in 2006 saw him rattle off two gold bracelets and four final-table appearances in just 21 days. He went on another impressive run at Commerce Casino during the 2009 LAPC. In less than a week, he made two final tables and won a tournament. His win came first, in the $1,500 no-limit hold'em event, which was good for $107,593 in prize money and 624 points. He followed that up by making the toughest final table of the LAPC in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. event, in which he won $121,323 and 400 POY points for finishing in third place. Only the six players who made the final table of the main event would take home more money than Madsen did from the tournament. These two finishes combined gave Madsen 1,024 points, which puts him in 31st place in the POY race.

Hafiz KhanOther players who used the LAPC preliminary events to build toward 1,000 points were the top finishers in the $5,000 no-limit hold'em tournament that attracted 184 players. Hafiz Khan won it, to take home $285,569 in prize money and 864 points. This gives Khan 939 points on the year (45th place). Mike Leah finished runner-up to Khan, for $152,600 and 720 points, but now tops Khan in the POY standings in a tie for 35th place. Leah has 960 points, thanks to a final-table appearance at the WSOP Circuit stop at Harrah's Tunica, where he finished in sixth place for 240 points.

2009 Card Player Player of the Year

Upcoming POY Events: April - Tour Championship Time

The last half of April will see two of the biggest events of the year take place when the PokerStars European Poker Tour and the World Poker Tour host their championships. The seventh season of the WPT comes to an end with the WPT Championship, which runs April 18-25 at Bellagio in Las Vegas. The EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo will conclude season five of the EPT, April 28-May 3. This period is also a busy stretch for European events. The oldest poker tournament in Europe, the Irish Open, will be held in Dublin, and the annual EPT stop in Italy will take place in San Remo. Irish Open: April 9-13
EPT San Remo: April 18-23
WPT Championship
: April 18-25
WSOP Circuit, Caesars, Las Vegas: April 27-30
EPT Grand Final: April 28-May 3

Look Out: Chris Moore

Chris MooreChris Moore finished in second place in the $10,000 heads-up event at the L.A. Poker Classic recently, but if history is any indication, he should be back next year to take home the top prize in the tournament. Moore made his first big score on the tournament trail when he finished in third place in the 2007 Wynn Classic. He banked $192,060, his first six-figure cash, and the next year, he came back to Wynn Las Vegas and finished the job, winning the 2008 Wynn Classic, $692,286, and his first major-tournament title.

Moore is from Chicago, and his first cash came in 2005 in a preliminary event at the Five-Diamond World Poker Classic in Las Vegas. He has gone on to cash 10 times in the past four years, making five final tables in the process. He finished in fifth place at the WSOP Circuit stop at Caesars Indiana, and made the final 18 in a $1,000 no-limit hold'em rebuy event at the 2008 World Series of Poker.

Moore has begun 2009 on a hot streak, as well. He finished 72nd, in a field of 1,347, at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure for $22,500, his first cash on the European Poker Tour. He followed that up with a runner-up finish in the $10,000 heads-up event at the LAPC for $190,000, which put him over the $1 million mark in career tournament winnings. He took home 550 Player of the Year points for the finish, and could quickly find himself in the thick of the POY hunt if he continues to cash every month, just as he has done to start the year.

Moore now has $1,180,343 in career tournament winnings. He is also a profitable player online. He plays with the screen name "gcnmoo," and can usually be found at the $25-$50 no-limit hold'em cash-game tables. He has proven that he can win in both the online and live arenas in any game type, and is a player to keep an eye on in the future.