Mike Leah 2nd After APAC High Roller Win, Reignites POY Race

Mike Leah's first career WSOP bracelet win pulled him back to within striking distance of Dan Colman and the 2014 BLUFF POY lead.

Mike Leah’s first career WSOP bracelet win pulled him back to within striking distance of Dan Colman and the 2014 BLUFF POY lead.

For the last six weeks, it’s seemed almost a forgone conclusion that Dan Colman would be the 2014 BLUFF Player of the Year. After winning the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Main Event, Colman had a lead of almost 400 points on the rest of the field – but the man he beat heads-up seems to have something to say about Colman coasting into the finish line.

Mike Leah headed down to Melbourne to play events at the World Series of Poker Asia-Pacific, but going into the final event of the series he’d come up empty. Leah finished with a flourish, however, taking down the WSOP APAC High Roller for his first career bracelet, $527,500 and enough POY points to become a serious threat to Colman’s domination of this contest.

The last few events of WSOP APAC and EPT London each bumped up the scores of a few players lower down the top 20 as well. Brandon Shack-Harris fell short of catching George Danzer in the WSOP POY race, but his 17th place finish in the APAC Main Event did move him up two places to 13th in the BLUFF POY standings.

Davidi Kitai tacked on a few more points with a pair of cashes in EPT London, and Simon Deadman rejoined the top 20 with a 16th place finish in the EPT London Main Event – unseating Jason Mercier in the process.

Leah might be looking up at Colman in the Overall POY race – and his win came down in Australia – but he’s still got the edge on Colman in the North American POY standings. Things have remained fairly steady in this race since the SHRPO in late August, but a couple of big WPT events are likely to have an impact on how things finish up – and Leah’s far more likely to play in Montreal than Colman is.

While he might not be leading that race or the BLUFF European POY standings, Colman still finds himself in the top five in both. In the European race, he’s now looking up at his mentor Olivier Busquet, who added yet another EPT win to his resume in London, winning the UKIPT High Roller.

Dean Blatt survived WSOP APAC with his lead in the Australasian POY race intact, but he’ll have a serious sweat as the year winds down with the tiniest of margins over Quan Zhou. There are, however, new leaders in both the South American and African POY races. Mostafa Boukri topped a field of 502 to win the WPT National Marrakech Main Event, earning enough points to pass longtime leader Olivier Paris and take control of that race.

Oscar Alache’s second LAPT victory of the year, in the Grand Final Main Event in Peru, puts him ahead of another longtime frontrunner in Carlos Hey de Lima.

Overall 2014 BLUFF Player of the Year Standings (as of October 22)

  1. Dan Colman – 1,377.70 (-)
  2. Mike Leah – 1,145.04 (+1)
  3. Dan Smith – 949.35 (-1)
  4. Ole Schemion – 816.59 (-)
  5. George Danzer – 797.35 (-)
  6. Jake Schindler – 794.85 (-)
  7. Mustapha Kanit – 790.48 (-)
  8. Joe McKeehen – 768.22 (-)
  9. Ami Barer – 766.34 (-)
  10. Doug Polk – 757.75 (-)
  11. Mike McDonald – 750.78 (-)
  12. Olivier Busquet – 742.52 (-)
  13. Brandon Shack-Harris – 740.55 (+2)
  14. Joe Kuether – 733.91 (-1)
  15. Dominik Panka – 730.59 (-1)
  16. Davidi Kitai – 722.75 (-)
  17. Keven Stammen – 693.55 (-)
  18. Alex Bilokur – 692.00 (-)
  19. Henrik Hecklen – 688.81 (-)
  20. Simon Deadman – 681.00 (NR)

Dropped from Rankings: Jason Mercier (20th)

North American POY

  1. Mike Leah – 900.84
  2. Dan Colman – 876.70
  3. Jake Schindler – 758.95
  4. Joe McKeehen – 744.42
  5. Joe Kuether – 683.51
European POY

  1. Anatoly Filatov – 613.26
  2. Olivier Busquet – 585.50
  3. Oliver Price – 513.87
  4. Dan Colman – 501.00
  5. Andrea Dato – 498.86
Australasian POY

  1. Dean Blatt – 345.25
  2. Quan Zhou – 340.65
  3. Edison Minh Phuc Nguyen – 328.80
  4. Ami Barer – 327.58
  5. Scott Davies – 321.50
South American POY

  1. Oscar Alache – 294.80
  2. Carlos Hey de Lima – 261.04
  3. Victor Sbrissa – 178.80
  4. Mario Lopez – 176.00
  5. Richard Dubini – 172.00
African POY

  1. Moustafa Boukri – 165.00
  2. Olivier Paris – 140.00
  3. Abdessamade El Mzdadi – 128.00
  4. Diogo Miranda – 124.50
  5. Davor Dadic – 120.00
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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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