One of the nicest things about high stakes online poker is that it is always being played at its highest level as long as a game is being spread. There is no pre-season or international friendlies, no early season mistakes getting to mid-season form, no bye weeks, no playoffs to see who’ll play the “big game.” Nope, once two players have the bankroll and the cajones to sit down at the high stakes tables and the cards are in the air, the game is on.
Well, this week, the cards were in the air. And the big winners went home fat and happy, the losers went home skinny and morose. Let’s take a look at who finished up this week on top of the charts with our Elite Eight, and who donated more than a family home sized mortgage with our Biggest Losers.
#1 – bbvisbadforme – “bbvisbadforme” may not have been the most active player this week (just 2211 hands over 26 sessions), but he did rack up the biggest win at $177,487. Since a big dip this summer, this grinder has ridden the rollercoaster way up, with this score making up nearly half his total positive earnings ($388,196.)
#2 – Schoitl – Only 8 quick sessions and 930 hands netted Harry “Schoitl” Casagrande from Austria $165,786. While “Schoitl” may mean “idiot” in Austian, it means “winner” in poker-speak this week. Which is good, considering that once Casagrande worked his way out of the high stakes basement playing up to 200/400 PLO this year, his poker yo-yo has swung up and down in multi-100,000 dollar chunks over and over again. Hopefully, he’ll find the stability he’s found in the live world online soon.
#3 – Sanlker – A regular player on the top of the NLHE lists, Sanlker clocked in this week in third for $151,481. Battling the top of the list has been taking its toll on Sanlker this summer, but in the fall, things have taken off in the right direction. This week’s score (over 43 sessions and 5467 hands) nailed up half his run to over a $300,000 lifetime profit.
#4 – punting-peddler – The Macau high stakes draw game specialist is finally putting the breaks on his 2013 freefall with this win. Since we don’t know specifically who “punting-peddler” is, it is impossible to say for certain that he is a net looser, but even though he recovered $150,153 this week, he is still down over $1.25 million lifetime on this account in particular. Even if he ran quite well on sites other than FTP, it might be hard for him to be in the black overall.
#5 – pandorasbux – When he opened his box this week, “pandorasbux” added $135,204 to his bankroll over 13 sessions in 3799 hands. Unfortunately, he’s still almost 1/3 of a million in the red and despite smashing heads with some of poker’s finest, his/her year-to-date earning have fallen to -$312,575, even with this sizeable, six figure, stop-gap win.
#6 – bajskorven – After puttering along at near even for the longest time, this summer saw a couple nosedives that threatened to sap bajskorven’s winning ways. However, winning $117,472 pulled this grinder WAY back into the positive, nearly tripling his former high mark of $30,000 and pushing him to $83,876. And he did it in a simple seven sessions and 558 hands.
#7 – GVZDIKA55 – The Russian mixed-game phenom Vladimir Shchemelev is our first elite eight member to fall below a six figure score this week. In a simple 16 sessions, 2327 hand run, he netted $67,677. A big fall off from #6 this week, but still nothing to sneeze at for the 2010 WSOP surprise POY contender. He’s up over a million lifetime, most of that tracked since late 2011 in online High Stakes Poker.
#8 – ragen70 – One session and 37 hands was all it took to land “ragen70” on the Elite Eight list this week when he took $56,677 in a run in with Isildur1. Ranked as the 20th all time biggest winner lifetime in online High Stakes Poker, I’m sure we’re going to see more of “ragen70” on the Elite Eight list and you can be sure, your old friend Waldo will be looking into his identity.
The Biggest Losers – No Annoying Trainer Needed.
#1 – OMGClayAiken – It is not often you see Phil Galfond headlining the biggest losers in a week, but when your lifetime winnings are well over $8.5 million, you can expect to see some big downswings. However, 15 sessions and 1521 hands netting a $537,860 loss is the kind of downswing that can put even the best on the edge of their seats scratching for a make up win for quite some time.
#2 – FinddaGrind – Even those like Patrik Antonius for example. Antonius took a bit longer to do it with 50 sessions (2636 hands,) but when he dropped $432,120, you can be sure the normally calm-and-collected Finn was sweating his losing week.
#3 – Gus Hansen – rounding out the all-star biggest loser line up is everyone’s favorite crazy Dane, Gus Hansen. Gus has been known for some big losing sessions in his career – some of the biggest actually – but the nearly quarter million ($253,544) downswing in 2889 hands, is a notable one. I guess it is a good thing Gus took that sponsorship with FTP to combat the $875,600 he kicked off to “SallyWoo” in $2k/4k FLO8 on the 13th. But hey…he made MOST of that back vs. Isildur1.
The Swedish Swings Continue
Viktor Bloom has been tearing it up lately, but he’s also been taking it right back in the chops. Let’s walk the week back with him. On the 14th, he both won – and then lost – over a half million dollars. On the 11th, he went up $230k after being down $204k, and then kicked almost $80k of it back to “punting-peddler” to finish off the night. He was up almost $200k again on the 10th to start the week playing FLO8 ($20k from SallyWoo, $173k from Kyle “KPR16” Ray) but then an hour later, he shipped back $200k to Ray in under a half hour. While he gained and lost over and over this week, he did manage to avoid a “full tilt boogie” run that could’ve cost him some of the over $2 million he won over the last couple weeks.
Matt Waldron is an international journalist, writer, home brewer, poker player, and (when he’s not busy with all that) a professional in the product and brand development world. “Waldo” has covered the WPT, WSOP, EPT/NAPT and online poker since 2006 in some form or another and well – he hasn’t gotten tired of it yet.