Some relatively new names have dominated in live poker in 2014, with the WSOP Big One for One Drop having been the main kingmaker.
2014 has seen a tectonic shift in the world of professional poker. While old war horses Daniel Negreanu and Phil Ivey are still going strong, the list of big winners is dominated by young, brash rising stars. Two of the names in the top seven have barely made the transition from online poker to live tournament play. Tune in to see the most successful poker pros of 2014.
#7: DOUG POLK, $3,582,815
The up-and-coming poker star has made a name for himself over the past few years playing at online poker sites in America under the name WCGRider, which has remained his nickname in the live poker circuit.
2014 is the first time he’s devoted his energy primarily to live tournament poker, and he has impressed big time. He has six major tournament wins this year, topping the $100,000 mark five times and breaking one million with a $1.6 million jackpot in a cash game at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. Remember the name Doug Polk.
#6: PHIL IVEY, $3,787,707
The poker room legend is still regarded by many to be the best Texas Hold’Em player in the world, although his 2014 winnings may not show it. The reason is that he plays in far fewer high-profile tournaments these days, opting to spend most of his time playing in private poker games.
Never a big fan of the limelight, Ivey’s big moment in 2014 was taking down Ike Haxton at the $250,000 Challenge in Melbourne and netting a hefty sum of $3,582,753. That put him over $20 million in career live tournament winnings and putting him fourth among active poker pros. Expect to see him at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Asia-Pacific event this upcoming weekend.
#5: SCOTT SEIVER, $4,092,553
The 29-year old pro is one of the younger names on this list. He first rose to prominence with a $5 million pot at the 2008 WSOP. 2014 has also been a huge year for him, topping the million dollar mark twice, including winning $1.6 million at the Big One for One Drop at the WSOP. He boasts career winnings of over $13 million.
#4 MIKE MCDONALD, $4,391,951
The young Canadian took the poker world by storm in 2008 by winning $1,370,161 at the European Poker Tour (EPT) Dortmund at the tender age of 18. Now 25, McDonald made gambling news in 2014 becoming the first player to top the $4 million mark for the year.
He won back-to-back million dollar pots at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure and the Aussie Millions event to start the year and top $10 million in career live tournament winnings. His second-place finish at the Caribbean Adventure meant narrowly missing becoming the first player ever to win two EPT titles, but this brilliant young player will get another chance.
#3: CHRISTOPH VOGELSANG, $4,530,775
The 28-year old German has been around for a while, although many poker fans first noticed him this year when he came in at third place in the Big One for One Drop, which was covered live by ESPN. He followed that up with a 25th place finish at the EPT in Monte Carlo.
Vogelsang’s calm demeanor and aversion to flash are two reasons he hasn’t become a major celebrity, but judging by his poker playing alone, he should be one of the biggest pros in the world.
#2: DANIEL NEGREANU, $10,247,171
Now to get to the true money winners of 2014. The Canadian Negreanu, referred to as “Kid Poker,” may well be the best player in the world these days. His year included big money wins in nine WSOP events, including a runner-up finish at the Big One for One Drop that netted an immense $8.2 million. He also won $1.1 million at the main event in the Aussie Millions tournament.
Next up look for Negreanu at the WSOP Asia-Pacific event, where he’ll look to push his career live tournament winnings past the $30 million mark. He is currently the worldwide winnings leader among all active players.
#1: DANIEL COLMAN, $21,058,153
Colman is the prime example of an online poker player making the leap to live tournament poker and finding fantastic success. The youngest pro on this list, Colman’s biggest moment of 2014 was when he took down Negreanu at the Big One for One Drop to take home $15.3 million.
That sum would have made the year of almost any poker player, but Colman didn’t stop there, winning another $6 million in live tournaments throughout the year, including a second place finish at the Super High Roller EPT event in Barcelona.
Even without having participated in the Big Drop his year would have put him #2 on this list behind Negreanu. Not bad for a 24-year old. Colman is rightfully considered the brightest star in professional poker today, and the most exciting thing is that his career is just getting started.