Antonius overtakes Hansen in winnings, Blom returns

 

Gus Hansen has been the story of the 2011 winners. Through the first half of 2011, when it came to professional players’ earnings, he was the far and away the name on top. Black Friday’s repercussions haven’t helped any of the U.S. based players. Celebrity poker players like Phil ‘OMGClayAiken’ Galfond, Phil Ivey, Tom ‘durrrr’ Dwan, and Daniel ‘jungleman12′ Cates have all disappeared from the nosebleed tables, essentially dismissing them from the current leader boards.

Now, for the first time in 2011, Gus Hansen has fallen from the top spot, dethroned by Patrik Antonius. According to highstakesdb.com, Antonius is the second most profitable online poker player of all time. Climbing up on the earnings chart is no new experience for him. The beginning of 2011 saw him plummet more than $1 million into the red. His re-emergence after such a start is a remarkable turnaround.

Antonius posted a $900k profit this past week, catching Hansen in the middle of a prolonged downswing. Once up $4 million, Hansen has dropped to $2.5 million in winnings. Antonius, thanks to his almost-million-dollar week, is now at $2.8 million in profit for the year.

While Hansen and Antonius jockey for first position, Swedish phenomenon Viktor “Isildur1″ Blom has shown his face for the first time since bandar judi pulsa . Blom played 1,576 hands of heads up PLO to pull in a winning session netting a hefty $183k. Blom is nowhere near posting the kind of year Hansen and Antonius are having so far, but based on his history of wild swings and hot streaks, a comeback on the level of Antonius’s is far from impossible.

It has been said often that luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.  That might be true, but no one was prepared for the Black Friday shutdown of three of online poker’s largest sites, at least in terms of their US player bases.  In effect, the seizure of domain names for Pokerstars, Full Tilt Poker, and Ultimate Bet/Absolute Poker means that at least for the time being, all US players are suspended from playing at those sites.  That means that the games at every level will be less available than they were before, with the nosebleed games likely taking a noticeable downswing as some of the biggest players won’t be able to sit at the table.  It is bad news for US players for sure, but the bad news for US players was of relatively little concern to Gus Hansen, though, as he still managed to log about 5,000 hands AND finish a $700K winner for the weekend.

It is worth noting that in the week ending on April 17th, Hansen is actually a winner to the tune of just under $1.6 million, and even more surprising is that half of that came after the market was closed to US players.  Most of his profits came in 300/600 Pot Limit Omaha, where Patrik Antonius and harington25 contributed the majority of the profits.  The nosebleed games changed dramatically over the weekend, as players like Matt Hawrilenko and Josh Arieh started out strong but then disappeared after Full Tilt suspended play for US players. Even that did not deter Hansen and his seemingly unstoppable heater that has thus far lasted for almost all of 2011.

Online poker as a whole has a rather cloudy and uncertain future, and the future income that might be available to Top non-US pros is largely in question, as well.  But