Two weeks into the 2017 World Series of Poker, the Kings Casino Rozvadov Player of the Year chase is a tightly-bunched affair. Big-name professionals dominate the board as of Monday's results, but all those pros are still chasing amateur Thomas Pomponio, the New Jersey butcher who traveled to Las Vegas to play last week's Colossus III event and returned to the East Coast with the event's $1,000,000 first-place prize.
Pomponio, who at last report was weighing a pops return trip to the Rio in July for the Main Event, tops our second weekly update with 347.08 points, all earned for that Colossus III win. That keeps him ahead of Colossus III runner-up Taylor Black, who has since added a second cash in the still-running Millionaire Maker event to post a current total of 329.45.
The only other player to top 300 POY points in the WSOP's early going is India's Aditya Agarwal. Agarwal is off to a great start in this year's WSOP, having already logged six cashes, worth 307.56 points. The highest of Agarwal's six cashes to date is a ninth-place showing in Event #12, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em. This year's revised and proprietary POY formula, it's worth noting, not only rewards outstanding performances in both deep-field and high buy-in events but also rewards excellence in multiple events.
France's Fabrice Soulier, fresh off his second final table of the series in Event #21: $1,500 8-Game Mix 6-Handed, where he finished third, currently holds down fourth place in the POY standings. Soulier sandwiched a smaller cash in a PLO event around his third- and fourth-place efforts. All told, that's 297.32 points, with most of the series still ahead.
Event #4 $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better winner Benjamin Zamani rounds out the current top five with 291.74 points. Since that early win, Zamani has logged cashes in four more events, keeping him high in the current standings.
Not only are the standings (below) extremely tight at this early juncture, they're sure to change soon. Pomponio's near week as the POY leader is likely to end soon, with significant points to be awarded soon as several point-laden events – including the Millionaire Maker – end soon.
The Kings Casino Rozvadov Player of the Year race will offer over $20,000 worth of prizes. The player leading the POY chase after July's WSOP Main Event will receive a free buy-in into the €10,000 Main Event at WSOP Europe, to be held at Kings Casino this fall. The overall 2017 POY winner, not to be determined until WSOP Europe's 11 bracelet events are in the books, then wins a $10,000 seat into the 2018 WSOP Main Event.
All “open” WSOP events are included as part of the POY chase. Not part of the POY battle are this summer's Ladies, Casino Employees, Seniors, Super Seniors and Global Casino Championship events.
All POY point totals remain unofficial and are subject to change. Listed totals may not reflect the entirety of POY points awarded in any ongoing event.
Current POY Top 10
1. Thomas Pomponio 347.08
2. Taylor Black 329.45
3. Aditya Agarwal 307.56
4. Fabrice Soulier 297.32
5. Benjamin Zamani 291.74