The world of live tournament poker tournaments never fails to offer excitement. In fact, live tournaments continue to attract players and make headlines in the poker world. They are big platforms where poker players get a chance to win life-changing amounts of money.
It can be concluded that the interest in live poker grew in 2017 and the launch of new tournaments featuring larger prize pools really boosted that growth. Although it is tough to tell how much money has been given away in tournaments over to the past twelve months, we can easily find out who the most profitable players of the year were. Here is a quick look at the top earners in 2017:
Winning over $8.5 million this year, Kenney is ahead of the WSOP Main Event Champion, Scott Blumstein. 2017 was actually Kenney’s most successful year in terms of live tournament earnings.
In January alone, the player managed to make 6 in-the-money finishes from the inaugural edition of the PokerStars Championship Bahamas and added more than $1.5 million. The highlight was the fact that he took down PokerStars Championship Super High Roller. It can be said that high rollers were Kenney’s main focus in 2017. Apart from the above events, the player topped the fields of 3 more such events and cashed in quite a lot more. In April this year, Kenney took down a $25,000 High Roller at Aria Casino in Las Vegas for $300,000 and then he flew to Monte Carlo, where he won €100,000 Super High Roller and that victory gave him his largest live cash of a €1,784,500.
2.Scott Blumstein – $8,174,347
The second biggest live tournament earner was Blumstein who won this year’s WSOP $10,000 Main Event for $8.15 million after defeating a field of 7,221 entries. This was his largest-ever live cash.
The professional poker player from New Jersey cashed in several other big events before but most of his payouts were three- and four-figure ones. His grand victory at the Main Event steered him to the top five of his state’s most profitable players, with Phil Ivey, Dan Smith, Thomas Marchese, and Chris Klodnicki being the only four players to have won more than him in the live poker tournaments.
3.Christoph Vogelsang – $7,665,247
German poker players rocked in 2017, winning a large number of the higher buy-in tournaments and hence it is not a surprise that the top five among 2017’s live tournament earners from Germany.
Christoph Vogelsang was the most profitable German player this year. He became this year’s Aria Super High Roller Bowl winner, claiming a whopping $6 million for beating 55 fellow players. The player made 6th place finish in the WSOP Europe €111,111 High Roller for ONE DROP for €606,694. Another notable score was his victory in a $25,000 High Roller at Aria for which he won $261,376.
4.Steffen Sontheimer – $7,052,322
Sontheimer was yet another German player to make headlines in 2017. He finished 2nd to his fellow countryman Christian Christner in Aria Super High Roller and collected $1,223,264 for his victory.
In July, he won a €25,200 Super High Roller that took place within the Poker EM 2017 festival in Velden, Austria. He collected €430,000 for his win. Later in September, Sontheimer became the star of Aria Casino’s inaugural Poker Masters High Roller Series, cashing in 4 tournaments of the series. He won a $50,000 buy-in and a $100,000 buy-in event, winning $900,000 and $1,512,000. He also performed really well throughout the Poker Masters and secured the purple jacket for him.
5.Fedor Holz – $6,380,187
German star Fedor Holz who leads Germany’s all-time money leaderboard had a good year so far. The player won several high roller tournaments in 2017, including the HK$250,000 No-Limit Hold’em at the Triton Super High Roller Series in Budva, Montenegro for $444,893. He also won two $50,000 Super High Roller events at Aria in May and collected $330,660 for winning the first and $417,600 for shipping the second. Holz may have failed to improve his performance from last year when he earned over $16 million but he still had a good year and managed to win many big money events.