David Peters Uses Late Year Surge to Win 2016 GPI, CardPlayer POY Awards
For much of 2016, it looked like Fedor Holz was an absolute lock to win every Player of Year race. The thing about 2016, though, is that “much of the year” wasn’t “all of the year.” Though Holz was on fire in live poker tournaments, a lull at the end of the year allowed David Peters to make a strong move and capture both the Global Poker Index and CardPlayer Player of the Year awards for 2016.
Global Poker Index
The Global Poker Index uses a bit of a complicated system to calculate tournament scores and the subsequent player rankings, but fortunately it is simplified for the POY rankings compared to the rolling three-year GPI rankings. To qualify as an eligible tournament on the Global Poker Index, a tourney must have a buy-in of least one dollar, be open to the public, and have at least 21 entrants. Scores are then calculated using a buy-in factor and a finishing percentage factor (that is, in what percentile did a player finish, rather than an absolute finishing position). A player’s top thirteen scores are used for their overall GPI POY score.
David Peters finished with 3,666.31 points in the GPI’s 2016 Player of the Year rankings, just 22 points ahead of Fedor Holz, who had 3,644.80 points. Holz was a dominant force on the tournament circuit last year, but the problem he ran into (in terms of the POY – he clearly didn’t have many problems when it came to poker) was that he only had one tournament score added to his POY total after August and none in the final two months of the year. And then, that one he did earn at the end of October only picked him up seven points, as the 180.66 points he earned for a fourth place finish at Aria Super High Roller 12 only knocked an earlier 173.54 point score out of his top thirteen.
Compare that to Peters, whose final three months gave him a net gain of 568.86 points. Starting in October, Peters had four tournament scores that became a part of his 2016 POY total: a fourth place at the Aria High Roller 43 (187.68 points), a win in the 2016 Asia Championship of Poker High Roller (372.66 points), a fifth place finish in the World Poker Tour Five Diamond World Poker Classic $25,000 High Roller (203.68 points), and a third place finish in the European Poker Tour Prague Main Event (482.29 points). Those four tournaments added up to 1,246.31 points, knocking 677.45 points out of his top thirteen. It was just enough to edge past Holz for the Global Poker Index Player of the Year crown.
CardPlayer does things a little bit differently. Again, tournaments must be open to count and then must have a buy-in of at least $400 and at least 50 entrants. Alternatively, tournaments with at least 10 entrants can qualify if the buy-in is at least $25,000. The scoring is different, as well. Tournaments with at least 2,000 entrants award points to the top 27 finishers, regardless of how the money works out. Other tournaments only award POY points to the final table or an even smaller number of finishers.
CardPlayer also does not put a limit on the number of scores that count, so a player could grind tons of live tournaments during the year in an effort to win the POY race.
In the CardPlayer competition, Peters ended up with 8,601 points compared to Holz’s 7,058. Like in the Global Poker Index, Holz’s final POY score came at the end of October, when he got 300 points for that Aria Super High Roller 12 fourth place finish. Peters, on the other hand, had eight CardPlayer scores in November and December. Those eight totaled 3,500 points, more than enough to bring him from behind to a convincing Player of the Year victory.
Peters’ largest CardPlayer POY score was the third place EPT Prague Main Event finish, which garnered him 1,280 points. He received 80 points for the third place finish, a number which was then multiplied by 4 (corresponding to a buy-in between $5,000 and $9,999) and then by 4 again (1,000 to 1,499 entrants). Even without that, had he earned no points at all, Peters still would have won the CardPlayer Player of the Year award by nearly 300 points.