Chris Ferguson is assured to be crowned the 2017 World Series of Poker Player of the Year. The news was received in an announcement by the WSOP via Twitter on Monday, following the elimination of second-in-points John Racener from the final POY-eligible event of the year.
Ferguson went into the WSOPE in October with the advantage in the Player of the Year race after his 17 cashes and two top-four finishes in $10,000 Championship events in the 2017 WSOP in Las Vegas. His summer performance bagged him a €10,350 buy-in to the WSOPE Main Event at King’s Casino in Rozvadov which kicked off with two starting flights over the weekend.
After six WSOPE clashes, including his sixth bracelet win in Event #7: €1,650 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better for €39,289, Ferguson advanced his lead in the POY race as the final qualifying event neared.
Going into the WSOPE Main Event on Saturday, Racener was in the best spot to challenge Ferguson for POY, sitting 136 points behind, while Ryan Hughes had 184 points to make up in third place. When Racener was eliminated on Day 2 Monday, Ferguson had the title locked up.
As a controversial figure in the poker world since his alleged hand in the Full Tilt Poker scandal, Ferguson stayed clear of live poker tournaments after “Black Friday” on April 15, 2011 but made a comeback to the fallen in the 2016 WSOP, prompting outrage from many in the community.
Players’ reactions as recorded by PokerNews’ Julia Lee at WSOPE Rozvadov were mostly positive and congratulatory towards Ferguson with the exception of 888poker Ambassador and online poker pro Parker Talbot aka “Tonkaaaap”, who feels that Ferguson’s winning of the POY title is… let’s just say — not good for poker.