Biggest Winners in Poker 2017

Every year people are clamouring to see who made the most money in poker. As we move into 2018, let’s see who made what in both online poker and in the live arena.


BERRI SWEET Tops the Online Cash Leaderboard

In the world of high-stakes online cash games, only two players managed to end the year with a seven-figure bottom line. Heads-up PLO crusher BERI SWEET just managed to squeeze out Timofey “Trueteller” Kuznetsov for the top honours after winning $1,769,395 over the year. Trueteller still profited for $1,454,838, which is an incredible result for the young Russian.

BERRI SWEET played 55,120 hands over the calendar year, in 869 different sessions, while Trueteller got in a few more with 59,505 played, but he did it in in only 701 sessions.

BERRI SWEET has been looking for action on the high-stakes tables on Pokerstars since 2012, and is now $2,330,314 in profit. Dani Stern, who announced his retirement from poker in 2017, donated $777,373 of that in a short period of time.

So, who is the mysterious player? Well, the answer is nobody appears to have any idea. Just like when the mercurial Isildur1 appeared a decade ago, everybody is asking around but nobody is telling. All we know right now is that he is Swedish, and $200/$400 appears to be the staple game. In July 2017, during a heads-up match with Isildur1 there were no less than four pots which grew to more than $200,000. One of which broke the $300K barrier.

BERRI SWEET opens to $1,360 with AC As 3s 8c, and Isildur1 3 bets to $4,242 with Ad Ah 6d Ks. With both players holding aces it was always going to end up in the middle somehow, but it took another four raises this time. Both players agree to run it twice.

The first run was 3c 5s 6c 3h Qd giving BERRI SWEET trip threes. The second board came 7c 6h 9s Js Tc for a split with both players playing their pair of pocket aces. This gave BERRI SWEET $343,557 for the biggest pot we’d see online all year.

Another big one was when Isildur1 opens to $1,360 with Jd 8d Qs 7s, and BERRI SWEET repops him to $4,242 with As Ts Qd 6h. Isildur1 isn’t having any of it and comes back over the top again for $12,880, and BERRI SWEET just calls.

The flop comes Ks 8h 6s.

BERRI SWEET checks, and Isildur1 bets $25,917. BERRI SWEET then comes back over the top for $103,668 putting it to Victor Blom for the remainder of his chips, which he duly calls off to make a pot of $213,421.

Again the players agree to run it twice but neither run gives Isildur1 any help as BERRI SWEET hits nut flush and trip sixes.

This was BERRI SWEET’s best year so far, unless he has changed his identity. Will next year be even more of a crushing victory?


Bryn Kenney Wins the Live Tournament Rankings for 2017

American Bryn Kenney, a 31-year-old from Long Beach, New York won more money playing live tournaments than anybody else in the world last year. After cashing 28 times to bring home $8,505,898 Kenney just pipped Scott Blumenstein who scooped $8,150,000 for his WSOP Main Event win alone.

Kenney started the year with a bang after shocking everybody with his six cashes at the PCA in the Bahamas. This included two wins, a seventh, and a ninth in high roller events. All-in-all this netted him around $1.8 million.

After starting the year with $12 million in live winnings, Kenney must have been feeling good about the rest of the calendar after this start.

The rest of the winter and run into spring was kind as well. Trips to the Philippines and Panama around tournaments at the Aria Casino in Las Vegas were all profitable. Then it was off to the Pokerstars Championship Monte Carlo where he took down the $100,000 Super High Roller for almost $2 million. It was an incredible run. And then it all died down for a while. In fact, it would be four months before his next tournament cash at all.

A $10,000 tournament in Hollywood paid out more than $200,000 for second place, and then it was onto Spain for the Pokerstars Championship Barcelona, where he would pocket close to $800,000. The heater was back on.

Next up was the inaugural Poker Masters where Kenney would pick up one victory and a seventh-place cash for more than $1 million, before the trip to Macau for the Asia Championship of Poker. Here another $1 million would be won in the week before travelling to the King’s Casino, Rozvadov, Czech Republic. In that series three cashes in three high roller events would add about another $350,000 to the total.

To end the year was the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic in Las Vegas. Another three cashes for more than $350,000 would secure the lead at the top of the live tournament leaderboard for the rest of the year.


Biggest Online Tournament Winners

Simon ”C. Darwin2” Mattsson, from Sweden, was the top MTT player online for 2017. He has been, according to popular opinion, the biggest crusher in the online tournament scene for the last few years.

As is usual, the Pocketfives rankings are the most useful way to gauge success in this field. Mattsson pipped Dutch grinder Steven "SvZff" van Zadelhoff, who won the WCOOP Main Event in 2017, to the top spot. He also came to note again after winning the title of Swedish Player of the Year. Speaking to the media after accepting his award he said

“It was tough competition and although I personally think that BERRI SWEET was worth the prize, I’m very happy to win it myself. It is a confirmation that you do something right. Thanks to everyone who has voted.”

After winning more than $7.6 million online, as well as WCOOP and SCOOP titles, it’s difficult to see where it can get any better for the young man.