Many of the biggest poker stars will descend on Aria in Las Vegas Friday evening for the fourth version of the Global Poker Index awards. While many players already know they have won, there are plenty of nominees that will be holding their breath as the names are announced, speeches made, and trophies collected.
PokerGO, the subscription-based poker streaming service, is broadcasting the GPI ceremony for free. The stream starts at 8:30 ET. Hosted by Jeff Platt and Drea Renee, the two will honor Stephen Song, who won his first GPI Player of the Year, which he locked-up by having a red-hot December.
It will also be available on its YouTube channel afterwards.
Song will be joined by Female Player of the Year, Cherish Andrews, who had a break-out year both live and online, where she won her first World Series of Poker bracelet.
They join more than 70 other regional players who were honored for being the best player in their home countries, including Stephen Chidwick for the UK, WSOP Main Event champ Espen Jorstad for Norway, Mike Watson for Canada, and Paul Phua for Malaysia.
But there will be plenty of mystery and drama as nominees in more than two dozen categories wait and see if enough poker players and fans who took part in the voting made them GPI Award winners.
And the nominees are…
The categories of the awards run the gamut from industry leaders to best poker streamers to comeback player of the year. There’s also awards for best tournament series, best final table performance, breakout player, and even Twitter personality and vlogger.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the nominees.
Comeback Player nominees are Alex Keating, Taylor von Kriegenbergh, Daniel Weinman, and none other than Phil Ivey, whose reappearance at tournaments and live-streamed cash games was like watching an old dangerous friend return from a self-imposed exile.
Nominees for Best Performance at a Final Table are Song for winning WPT Prime, Jorstad for his steady and precise way he handed the end of the WSOP Main Event, Dan Cates for going back-to-back in the WSOP Poker Players Championship while dressed in plastic, and Daniel Negreanu for his perforce at the Super High Rollers Bowl VII.
Best Industry Person nominees are Ryan Beauregard, who runs poker operations at the Wynn, Jack Effel, VP of the WSOP, PokerGO’s Mori Eskandani, and Tana Karn, the man behind the RunGood poker series, which was also nominated for Best Mid-Major Series.
Best Tournament Director nominees are Paul Campbell of Aria, Matt Savage, longtime director of the World Poker Tour, Ray Pulford, tournament director at the Wynn, and Toby Stone, PokerStars tournament director.
Best Media Content for a photo honors some of the unsung heroes of the poker industry, the photogs. The nominees are Antonio Abrego, Hayley Hochstetler, Alec Rome, and Spencer Sembrat.
Players Choice for Toughest Opponent nominees are Song, Chidwick, Brian Altman, and two-time GPI Player of the Year Alex Foxen.
And GPI Breakout Player of the Year nominees are Angela Jordison, who came painfully close to winning the Female Player of the Year, Jorstad for obvious reasons, Alejandro “PapoMC” Lococo, the Argentinian rapper and PokerStars ambassador, Punnat Punsri, who exploded on the high-stakes tourney scene in 2022, and Ethan “Rampage” Yau, who was playing the smallest stakes only a few years ago.
Yau is also nominated for the best vlogger. Visit GPI’s page to see all the nominees. And good luck to everyone!