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Mizrachi Is Card Player's 2006 Player of the Year

He Led the Race Nearly From Start to Finish to Collect the Honors

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Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi is Card Player Magazine's 2006 Player of the Year.

Mizrachi officially became the Player of the Year at around 1 p.m. today after John Huang was eliminated from the $15,000 Doyle Brunson North American Poker Classic in 32nd place. Huang was the last person still alive in the last major tournament of the year who had a chance to overtake Mizrachi's lead, but only with a victory. Mizrachi himself was still alive in the contest, but he was eventually eliminated from the DBNAPC soon after Huang, in 29th place.

Since the very beginning of February, no other poker player ever stood in front of Mizrachi on the Player of the Year leader board, thanks to a three-week winter span. His run started after a second-place finish at the Gold Strike World Poker Open. He then won the Borgata Winter Poker Open a week-and-a-half later, and then a week after that he took second at the $2,500 buy-in no-limit event at the L.A. Poker Classic.

But that was just a start to a year that would prove to be stellar. In 2006, he made 10 final tables, won seven tournaments, and cashed 31 times for $2,356,970 in tournaments.

Out of all the players who sat in the top 10 at the end of January, when Mizrachi made his push to the top, only Nam Le and David Daneshgar stayed there. In fact, those two, as well as J.C. Tran, Shannon Shorr, and Huang, wouldn't let Mizrachi take his Player of the Year award to 2007 without a fight. They all had success at various Five-Diamond Poker Classic tourneys, but couldn't earn enough points to grind down Mizrachi's lead.

The top 10 player list of 2006 is as follows:

  • Michael Mizrachi
  • Nam Le
  • J.C. Tran
  • Shannon Shorr
  • Jeff Madsen
  • David Daneshgar
  • John Hoang
  • Roland De Wolfe
  • Gioi Luong
  • Phil Hellmuth Jr.

Please click here to visit CardPlayer.com's pages dedicated to the Player of the Year competition, including how the players earn points, as well as the entire leader board.