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Player of the Year Update -- Justin Truesdell Wins

WPT Championship Could Have Big Effect on POY Leaderboard

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The 2012 Card Player Player of the Year race, sponsored by Lock Poker, is about to see some major movement in the coming weeks. The World Poker Tour Championship is currently underway, and the first event of the World Series of Poker is just days away. There was plenty of action going on in the buildup to these huge events, and here are the biggest results from the past week.

WSOP Circuit Harrah’s New Orleans

Justin Truesdell The 2012 World Series of Poker Circuit Harrah’s New Orleans $1,600 no-limit hold’em main event drew the largest turnout in the eight-year history of the New Orleans WSOP Circuit stop, with 694 total entrants and a total prize pool of $1,008,770.

The last man standing was Justin Truesdell, who was awarded the $204,747 first prize, his second WSOP Circuit gold ring and 840 POY points. This was Truesdell’s first POY qualified score of the year, and it moved him into 91st place in the overall standings.

The 30-year-old New Orleans resident has tournament results dating back to 2005, and 82 career cashes, and is a well-respected online MTT player who has cashed for roughly $400,000 under the screen name “truesyalose.” His lifetime tournament cashes now exceed $900,000. Truesdell will be looking to greatly increase this number at the WSOP National Championship in Las Vegas this summer, which he also received entry into as a result of his win in addition to entry into the WSOP main event.

Five Star World Poker Classic

The Bellagio is playing host to two huge events this week, the $25,000 WPT Championship main event and the $100,000 WPT Super High Roller. The main event drew 152 players, and the winner stands to gain $1,171,358 and a sizable 1,008 POY points. As of the beginning of day 5 19 players remain, and there are a number who are still contention in the POY race including current 14th place resident Joe Serock, 22nd place occupant Moon Kim and 44th ranked Steve O’Dwyer. All of these players would move inside the top ten with a win in this event, with Serock able to move into second if he should come out on top.

In the preliminary events at the Five Star World Poker Classic, a number of notable players found success. 2009 Player of the Year Eric Baldwin cashed five times in the prelims, winning two $540 events. Cliff “Johnny Bax” Josephy topped a tough 90-player field in the first $5,180 event of the series, earning $165,240 and 432 POY points. Josephy, who had previously finished 7th in the Borgata Spring Poker Open main event, sits in 129th place in the overall rankings with 747 points.

Here is a look at the top-ten leaderboard in the Player of the Year race:

Rank player POY Points Earnings
1 Oliver Speidel 3,046 $1,767,371
2 John Dibella 2,512 $1,781,418
3 Daniel Kelly 2,378 $720,957
4 Faraz Jaka 2,360 $899,277
5 Jonathan Duhamel 2,290 $1,345,366
6 Dan Smith 2,208 $1,758,285
7 Andrew Chen 2,157 $1,036,843
8 Sean Jazayeri 2,148 $1,373,051
9 Mohsin Charania 2,100 $1,785,780
10 David Sands 2,022 $830,530