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2014 CarbonPoker Card Player Player of the Year Update -- Mustapha Kanit Extends Lead

Davidi Kitai and Doug Polk Also Climb Into Top 20


The World Series of Poker continues to make it’s impact felt on the 2014 Card Player Player of the Year race, sponsored by CarbonPoker, with two players making moves inside the top five this week. Here is a look at the events that most influenced the overall standings over the past seven days:

WSOP Event 11: $1,500 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em

Justin BonomoJust days after finishing runner-up for the third time at the World Series of Poker Justin Bonomo was finally able to win his first WSOP gold bracelet, topping a field of 1,587 in the $1,500 six-max no-limit hold’em event. For the win the 28-year-old American pro earned the bracelet, the $449,980 first-place prize and 1,080 POY points.

This was Bonomo’s third final table of the year, after finishing fourth in the APPT Macau Poker Cup back in January and second in the $10,000 limit 2-7 triple draw lowball championship. As a result he now has 1,774 total POY points, putting him in 24th place in the Card Player Player of the Year race. His year-to-date earnings for 2014 now total $710,306.

Bonomo topped a tough final table en route to the win, outlasting 2011 Online Player of the Year Taylor Paur (6th – $55,703), Daniel Strelitz (3rd – $180,587) and eventual runner-up Mike Sowers (2nd – $278,518).

WSOP Event 15: $3,000 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em

Davidi KitaiThe World Series of Poker $3,000 six-handed no-limit hold’em event needed an extra day to wrap things up, but in the end, Belgium’s Davidi Kitai picked up his third career gold bracelet and became the first non-American player to win a title at this year’s summer series.

Kitai, who is one of only five players in poker history to win the Triple Crown consisting of a WSOP, EPT and WPT title, earned $508,640 for topping a final table that included Tony Ruberto (3rd – $200,476) and Gordon Vayo (2nd – $314,535).

Kitai now has nearly $4.7 million in career tournament earnings. The Belgian pro also picked up 1,368 POY points at his fourth final table of the year.As a result he has increased his total for the year to 2,588 points, which is good enough to move hims into fifth position in the overall standings.

WSOP Event 19: $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em

POY race leader Mustapha KanitTed Gillis found himself seated at his first World Series of Poker final table in the $1,500 no-limit hold’em event, surrounded by notables such as Hiren Patel, Jamie Kaplan, current POY-race leader Mustapha Kanit, Jacobo Fernandez and John Hennigan, but he never showed any sign of nervousness.

Gillis defeated Hennigan heads-up, denying him his third bracelet. For his efforts, he banked $514,027 and a bracelet of his own. The former Marine from Katy, Texas overcame a field of 2,086 players, who created a total prize pool of $2,816,100.

Although he could only muster a fifth-place finish, Kanit did earn 450 POY points, giving him a total of 3,814. The Italian poker pro was already in the lead, thanks to a strong showing earlier this year that included seven final tables and two wins, but he now holds a 499 point lead over current second-ranked player Dominik Panka.

WSOP Event 21: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em

Dominik NitscheLess than a month after winning his second gold bracelet in the 2014 World Series of Poker Circuit National Championship, German poker pro Dominik Nitsche topped a field of 2,043 entrants in event no. 21, a $1,000 no-limit hold’em tournament, winning his third WSOP title and the $335,659 first-place prize.

With this most recent win the 23-year-old became the youngest player in WSOP history to earn three bracelets. Previously this record was held by none other than Phil Ivey, who achieved the feat at the age of 24.

Nitsche topped a stacked final table that included the like of Jeff Gross (6th – $56,549), Thayer Rasmussen (5th – $76,443), Zachary Gruneberg (4th – $104,594) and 2011 November Niner Badih “Bob” Bounahra (3rd – $145,229).

In addition to the bracelet and the prize money Nitsche also earned 1,080 POY points. This was his third final table and second title of the year, and as a result he climbed to 25th place in the overall POY standings.

WSOP Event 23: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em Turbo

Doug PolkDoug Polk has won or lost six-figures at a time in countless high stakes online cash game session, playing deep-stacked and short-handed with best in the world behind the screen name “WGCRider.”

Because of his particular background was a little surprising that he won his first World Series of Poker gold bracelet in the $1,000 no-limit hold’em turbo event, which mostly demanded experience in short-stack shoving and calling due to fast-paced structure.

Polk topped a field of 1,473 players to win the bracelet, the first-place prize of $251,969 and 960 POY points. This was Polk’s fourth final table of 2014, with runner-up and third-place finishes in the monthly $25,000 high roller events at the Bellagio and a fourth-place finish in the Aussie Millions $100,000 super high roller for $770,130. As a result Polk now sits in 17th place in the POY standings, with 2,010 points and year-to-date earnings of $1,252,343.

Here is a look at the current top twenty in the POY standings:

Rank Player POY Points Earnings
1 Mustapha Kanit 3,814 $1,105,914
2 Dominik Panka 3,315 $1,840,936
3 Mike McDonald 3,312 $4,357,089
4 Keven Stammen 3,052 $1,610,129
5 Davidi Kitai 2,588 $1,377,077
6 Dylan Wilkerson 2,520 $934,575
7 Mukul Pahuja 2,514 $1,060,582
8 Eugene Katchalov 2,480 $725,061
9 Ami Barer 2,430 $1,493,335
10 James Carroll 2,372 $1,324,754
11 Vanessa Selbst 2,276 $2,239,368
12 Sorel Mizzi 2,170 $1,045,207
13 Chris Moorman 2,100 $1,015,460
13 Antonio Buonanno 2,100 $1,715,439
15 Jack Salter 2,038 $1,158,521
16 Byron Kaverman 2,025 $1,229,636
17 Doug Polk 2,010 $1,252,343
18 Eric Blair 1,982 $324,303
19 Oleksii Khoroshenin 1,864 $801,740
20 Sotirios Koutoupas 1,848 $866,592