Jason Koon, Connor Drinan Lead 2021 WSOP Player of the Year Race

Brand new GGPoker ambassador Jason Koon is off to a strong start to the 2021 World Series of Poker. If the series ended today, he’d claim both the traditional and Velo No Limits Player of the Year awards.

Unfortunately, for the high-stakes crusher, there’s still more than a month remaining before the WSOP concludes. So, he still has some work to do before he can celebrate, especially with some heavy-hitters right on his heels.

Unpredictable Year

The usual suspects near the top of the POTY leaderboard — Shaun Deeb, Chris Ferguson, Daniel Negreanu — aren’t a factor in the race, yet. Ferguson, the 2017 winner, hasn’t even graced the players inside the Rio with his presence, and it’s unclear if he will before the series concludes November 23.

Negreanu, who hasn’t won a bracelet since 2013, continues to grind a full WSOP schedule. Although he has five cashes thus far, his deepest run has been a 10th-place finish for $46,002 in Event #2: $25,000 H.O.R.S.E.

Deeb’s also been firing away like usual, but the results haven’t been up to his lofty standards. The 2018 WSOP Player of the Year winner has six cashes — two online. But his only five-figure score came in Event #14: Seven Card Stud, a fifth place finish for $18,475.

Connor Drinan, Phil Hellmuth Hanging Tough

Connor Drinan

Koon leads the way in the Player of the Year race thanks to one title (Event #11: $25,000 Heads-Up No-Limit Hold’em Championship), two final table appearances, and a final table bubble (9th place).

Following Wednesday’s action at the Rio, Koon has 1,660.20 points on both the traditional and Velo No Limits Player of the Year leaderboards. That puts him just ahead of Connor Drinan (pictured above) in the traditional POTY race (1,507.51) and Daniel Lazrus in the new POTY leaderboard (1,277.87).

The traditional race calculates points accumulated in every event, whereas the Velo standings only track no-limit hold’em events. That’s why the standings differ. A $15,000 cash prize will be awarded to the winner of each POTY race, with second place taking home $7,000, and $2,500 for third.

Phil Hellmuth has arguably been the top performer through two weeks at the 2021 WSOP. With three final table appearances and an 18th place finish to boot, he’s proving that he still has it at age 57. He’s also showing the poker world he still has trouble controlling his emotions. With that said, the “Poker Brat” has 1,226.35 POTY points, good for sixth place. He doesn’t have a single point in the Velo standings because his four cashes are all in non-NLH events.

Traditional 2021 WSOP Player of the Year Leaderboard

Rank Player Country Points
1 Jason Koon United States 1,660.20
2 Connor Drinan United States 1,507.51
3 Dylan Linde United States 1,477.25
4 Aria Engel United States 1,378.73
5 Daniel Lazrus United States 1,277.87

Velo No Limits Leaderboard

Rank Player Country Points
1 Jason Koon United States 1,660.20
2 Daniel Lazrus United States 1,277.87
3 Tyler Cornell United States 1,197.65
4 Harvey Mathews United States 1,136.33
5 Zhi Wu United States 1,110.25

Check out our 2021 WSOP Hub here!

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