Is Allen Kessler going to be the POY on the Heartland Poker Tour?

He didn’t make the final table of the latest Heartland Poker Tour stop at the HPT Club One Casino Main Event, but with a 13th place showing, and yet another cash on the HPT, Allen Kessler is positioning himself for a shot at the HPT Player of the Year award.

Kessler’s 13th place showing is his fourth cash on of Season of the HPT, where he also has a pair of 9th place showings, and 3rd place finish. However, unlike Greg Raymer’s sheer domination of Season 8 (where Fossilman won an astounding four HPT tournaments, piling up 200 POY points with his next closest competitor having a mere 88 POY points) the Season 9 POY trophy is still up for grabs.

Kessler is now basically neck-and-neck with Cruz Baca for the HPT POY lead:

1. Cruz Baca Albuquerque, NM $38,826 96
2. Allen Kessler Las Vegas, NV $39,231 94
3. Mel Wiener Calabasas, CA $186,257 85
4. John Michalak Cleveland, OH $32,088 76
5. Roger Campbell Centralia, IL $143,763 70
6. David Gutfreund Chicago, IL $81,788 69
7. Roger Martin Grand Junction, CO $43,712 68
8. Stan Jablonski Bullhead City, AZ $59,427 63
9. Kris Wagner Albuquerque, NM $24,926 59
10. Craig Casino Winfield, IL $21,549 58


Kessler, known throughout the poker community as “Chainsaw” or the more-fitting moniker of “Complainsaw” is known for his ability to min-cash in tournaments, and his Season 9 HPT successes are the perfect example of this. Despite three final tables and four Top 13 finishes he has only amassed just under $40,000.

Previous HPT POY Winners

Here is a look at the previous winner of the Heartland Poker Tour Player of the Year award:

  • 2012: Greg Raymer
  • 2011: Scott Hastings
  • 2010: Brian Reisner
  • 2009: Jeremy Dresch
  • 2008: Mary Jo Belcore-Zogman
  • 2007: James Mutchler
  • 2006: Joel Casper
  • 2005: Clayton Lilleby

The HPT Club One Casino Main Event Final Table

The final table for the tournament is quite impressive in its own right, with 2007 WSOP Main Event champion Jerry Yang, Poker Hall of Famer Barbara Enright (the only woman to make the final table of the WSOP Main Event), not to mention that four out of the eight final table participants being women.

  1. James Jeff – 1,570,000
  2. Yotam Shmuelov – 1,266,000
  3. Triet Nguyen – 1,252,000
  4. Wendy Friedman – 688,000
  5. Barbara Enright – 673,000
  6. Jerry Yang – 668,000
  7. Mike Ball – 504,000
  8. Lisa Jacobs – 418,000
  9. Mimi Luu – 405,000
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