BLUFF POY: Danzer Holds Precarious Lead as 2014 WSOP Nears Finish Line

Mustapha Kanit has pulled within a single point of retaking the 2014 BLUFF POY lead from George Danzer. (Drew Amato photo)

Mustapha Kanit has pulled within a single point of retaking the 2014 BLUFF POY lead from George Danzer. (Drew Amato photo)

The final preliminary events of the 2014 World Series of Poker are underway at the Rio, and as the summer winds quickly towards a close the race to be the BLUFF Player of the Year has never been closer.

Both George Danzer and Mustapha Kanit have continued to put together cash after cash at the WSOP, and both added to their point totals yet again this week. Danzer had one cash, finishing 44th in the $3,000 Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo event, his seventh cash and seventh top 50 finish in seven different variants. That was just enough to hold of Kanit for the time being, but the Italian’s cash in the Monster Stack closed Danzer’s lead to just over one point.

The Monster Stack also helped fuel one of the biggest jumps of the week. Joseph McKeehen is at his highest point of the year in third place, moving up eight spots thanks to a second place finish that earned McKeehen $820,863. He’s followed in fourth by Daniel Colman, who won the second-largest poker tournament payday in history Tuesday night in the $1 million Big One for One Drop. Colman’s one of four players to debut this week, and strangely enough they occupy four consecutive spots in the 2014 BLUFF POY standings.

Brandon Shack-Harris’ WSOP results have single-handily driven him into the top 10, where he debuts in ninth this week. After earning his second runner-up finish in three weeks in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, Shack-Harris has continued to put together big results. He’s since rattled off consecutive cashes in the $3,000 Omaha Hi-Lo event and the $1,500 10 Game Mixed event, and Shack-Harris has also moved himself into the top spot in the WSOP POY race, narrowly edging in front Danzer, a two-time bracelet winner in his own right.

2013 BLUFF POY Daniel Negreanu has suddenly made himself relevant once again after finishing second in the Big One for One Drop. That, coupled with eight other cashes that include a runner-up finish and three other major deep runs, puts Negreanu in 10th place. Simon Deadman cut his path back into the top 20 in a much quieter way by winning the Hollywood Poker Open Championship at the M casino for over $350,000, settling in 11th.

Dan Smith is the lowest debut of the week, in 12th, but he got one of the biggest paydays of all just before the Big One for One Drop. His victory in the $100,000 Bellagio Super High Roller joins Smith’s two WSOP final tables in making for another strong summer.

Everyone else below 14th lost ground this week, with two of them earning enough points to lose less ground than the rest in this very busy week of poker action. Ami Barer cashed twice at the WSOP, going out 57th in the $5,000 No Limit Hold’em and 134th in the $1,500 Mixed Max. Byron Kaverman’s small cash in Event 60, the last $1,500 of the summer, helped keep him in the top 20 for the time being.

The $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha event and the $1,500 10 Game Mixed events could very easily have an impact on next week’s top 20, but with the WSOP Main Event set to begin Saturday afternoon the volume of tournament results will slow down for the time being – until the Main Events of several other series’ and the WPT 500 at Aria crown a few big winners of their own to wrap up the summer.

2014 BLUFF Player of the Year Standings (As of July 4)

  1. George Danzer – 778.85 (-)
  2. Mustapha Kanit – 777.48 (-)
  3. Joseph Mckeehen – 764.72 (+8)
  4. Daniel Colman – 720.70 (NR)
  5. Mike McDonald – 715.08 (-2)
  6. Alex Bilokur – 689.50 (-2)
  7. Dominik Panka – 667.04 (-2)
  8. Keven Stammen – 650.00 (-2)
  9. Brandon Shack-Harris – 647.70 (NR)
  10. Daniel Negreanu – 637.19 (NR)
  11. Simon Deadman – 618.65 (NR)
  12. Dan Smith – 615.75 (NR)
  13. Davidi Kitai – 595.65 (-6)
  14. Vanessa Selbst – 580.60 (-6)
  15. Calvin Anderson – 578.26 (-6)
  16. Ami Barer – 558.88 (-3)
  17. Ole Schemion – 554.74 (-7)
  18. Byron Kaverman – 536.31 (-1)
  19. Jacob Schindler – 534.95 (-7)
  20. Eric Blair – 529.53 (-6)

Dropped from Rankings: Mike Leah (15th), Mukul Pahuja (16th), JC Tan (17th), Joe Kuether (19th), Max Silver (20th)

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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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