Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada

Mike McDonald

Each week, the Global Poker Index releases a list of the top tournament poker players in the world using a formula that takes into account a player’s results over six half-year periods. For a look at the entire list, visit the official GPI website. Here’s a look at the rankings as of March 9, 2016.

GPI Top 10 Canadians

Canadian RankGlobal Rank PlayerTotal Score
121
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 101
Mike McDonald3,472.96
228
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 102
Jonathan Duhamel3,302.12
330
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 103
Sam Greenwood3,258.22
435
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 104
Mike Leah3,105.55
545
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 105
Ari Engel2,989.31
653
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 106
Daniel Dvoress2,887.59
756
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 107
Sam Chartier2,833.46
885
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 108
Ami Barer2,502.34
986
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 109
Mike Watson2,501.92
1094
Global Poker Index: Mike McDonald Continues to Lead Team Canada 110
Andrew Chen2,459.49

There has been virtually no change in Team Canada this week aside from Ami Barer and Mike Watson switching places. With neither of them booking any results since January, the change is due to the ageing factor of older cashes. As the two box for eighth and ninth place on the roster, the difference between them is negligible at less than half of a point. A well-executed sneeze would earn enough points for one to pull ahead of the other.

Mike McDonald continues to lead and Daniel Negreanu still hovers outside of the top 10 as No. 11. With Negreanu added to the list above, that would encompass all of the Canadian names inside of the global top 100, giving our nation credit for 11 percent of the worlds best tournament players.

GPI Player of the Year

It’s coming soon, we hear — that is, the first list of 2016 indicating where things stand in this year’s Global Poker Index Player of the Year race. Each year, the GPI looks at a player’s best 13 results (in terms of GPI POY points earned) from January 1 to December 31 in order to calculate totals for its POY. Read more here about how the GPI POY is determined.

Meanwhile let’s see how the overall GPI rankings have changed over the last seven days.

GPI 300 Top 10

RankPlayerGPI ScoreChange
1Steve O’Dwyer4,408.92-
2Byron Kaverman4,131.99-
3Bryn Kenney4,064.73+2
4Jason Mercier4,039.56-1
5Nick Petrangelo3,978.59-1
6Dominik Nitsche3,888.09-
7Connor Drinan3,757.80+1
8Anthony Zinno3,746.34-1
9David Peters3,733.56+2
10Stephen Chidwick3,704.94+6

The top of the list remains unchanged this week as Steve O’Dwyer enjoys a ninth-straight week at No. 1 in the overall rankings.

Last week we noted how O’Dwyer had traveled to Tbilisi, Georgia to participate in the World Series of Poker International Circuit festival there. It proved a successful trip for O’Dwyer, as he tweeted yesterday following the conclusion of the series’ final event, a $2,200 High Roller:

steveodwyerdownswing over! I just won the $2k high roller at WSOPC Tbilisi! https://t.co/oBjSqBqceh

O’Dwyer didn’t need that result to maintain his frontrunner status in the rankings during a relatively quiet tournament week. He remains in front of Byron Kaverman, the player he overtook in the rankings to start this year.

Bryn Kenney moves up from No. 5 to No. 3 on the strength of his win in the $25K ARIA High Roller XXVII this past Saturday where he topped a 44-entry field to win $422,400. Kenney’s highest previous GPI ranking has been No. 2 in January 2015. In fact, Kenney has been ranked no lower than No. 12 since late 2014, spending the majority of the last 15 months inside the overall top 10.

There are two newcomers in this week’s top 10. David Peters took fourth in that same ARIA High Roller won by Kenney, helping him go from No. 11 to No. 9 this week. And Stephen Chidwick likewise returns to the list, having moved from No. 16 to No. 10 following a couple of cashes in the World Poker Tour L.A. Classic series, including one in the Main Event where he finished 25th.

The top 10 continues to lack any Canadian players, as it did almost every week last year. Mike McDonald and Jonathan Duhamel are the top contenders for making a charge into this elite list sometime soon.

Welcome to the GPI Top 300

RankPlayerTotal Score
175Joe Serock2,018.64
195Louis Salter1,933.78
204Tyler Reiman1,909.38
227Matt Glantz1,842.48
246Oleksii Khoroshenin1,781.95
250Brett Shaffer1,774.58
260Phil Laak1,764.25
261Christopher DeMaci1,763.82
267Sam Soverel1,752.57
268Bryan Piccioli1,746.40
279Elliot Smith1,715.00
280Vlado Banicevic1,714.84
286Dan Shak1,699.15
287Vasili Firsau1,698.77
297Craig Varnell1,677.44

There was a bit of shuffling down at the other end of the GPI top 300 this week with no less than 15 new names joining the list and Joe Serock the highest-ranked among them. Serock moved all of the way from No. 350 to No. 175 after cashing in that aforementioned WPT L.A. Poker Classic Main Event (finishing 28th), then final-tabling the WPT L.A. Poker Classic High Roller (finishing fourth).

A fifth-place finish in the Macau Poker Cup 24 High Roller event helped Louis Salter make a big move as well, going from No. 315 to No. 195. Salter’s previous career-high ranking has been No. 143, achieved in December 2014. Incidentally, Louis’ brother, Jack Salter, also made that same final table, finishing fourth. Jack first entered the GPI top 300 in late 2013 and has remained on the list ever since, currently sitting at No. 40.

Of all 15 newcomers to the top 300 this week, only two of them are making debuts on the list. Sam Soverel jumped from No. 565 to No. 267 after finishing fourth in the WPT L.A. Poker Classic Main Event, his first time inside the top 300. And Elliot Smith has come close before (getting to No. 304 back in February 2013), but finally broke through after moving up from No. 392 to No. 279 after cashing along with the Salter brothers in that Macau Poker Cup 24 High Roller, finishing 11th.

Biggest Gains

RankPlayerTotal GPI ScoreChange
267Sam Soverel1,752.57+298
175Joe Serock2,018.64+175
204Tyler Reiman1,909.38+170
246Oleksii Khoroshenin1,781.95+157
134Dylan Wilkerson2,198.05+142

Those upward moves by Soverel and Serock were the biggest of the week among players currently in the top 300. A couple of cashes at the Commerce including a ninth-place in the WPT L.A. Poker Classic Main Event helped Tyler Reiman make a big jump as well to go from No. 374 to No. 204.

Biggest Drops

RankPlayerTotal GPI ScoreChange
277Oscar Alache1,719.75-57
182Zohair Karim1,983.84-46
199Andrey Pateychuk1,923.96-45
220Nathan Bjerno1,859.75-42
258Rumen Nanev1,766.11-36

Finally, considering only those players ranked in the top 300, two-time Latin American Poker Tour champion Oscar Alache dropped the furthest this week after slipping from No. 220 to No. 277. Alache — the LAPT Season 8 Player of Year last year — won the second of his titles at LAPT Chile just over one year ago, and thus lost a few points earned from that win thanks to the GPI’s aging factor.

What to Expect Next Week

The WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star in San Jose, California highlights this weeks’ tournament action, with the 2016 Wynn Classic also well underway in Las Vegas. Meanwhile the partypoker WPT Vienna series has already kicked off as well in Austria.

To view both the 2015 Player of the Year and GPI overall rankings in their entirety, visit the official GPI website. While you’re at it, follow the GPI on Twitter and its Facebook page.

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