GPL 3 Stars Week 5: Leah, Liv, Igor & the Brazilians Shine Bright

livboeree
Sneaky good at 6-Max.

So far in the first season of the Global Poker League we've seen 69 of 72 players put themselves up for the litmus test of the GPL.

Some - Olivier Busquet, Tom Marchese, Jonathan Little, Randy Lew - we've seen several times now and have proven they'll be rock solid anchors for their teams over the full eight months.

Others - Phil Galfond, Jason Mercier, Davidi KitaiVanessa Selbst, Sam Trickett, Mustapha Kanit, Dzmitry Urbanovich - we've seen just a glimpse of but hint of big potential down the line.

At this stage, though, as we bear down on 33 days of live heads-up matches in Vegas during the WSOP, it's accumulating points to get safely in playoff position that matters most.

No one did it better this week than the reps for the Paris Aviators, London Royals and Sao Paulo Mets.

1. Mike Leah, Paris Aviators

Canadian Mike Leah has been on a tournament tear over the last couple of years racking up career years and big scores live and online.

Mike Leah

WSOP bracelets, WSOPC rings, FTOPS jerseys, WCOOP titles ... doesn't matter the brand or format, Leah has put them all on his CV and proven he's truly in the top tier of poker pros worldwide.

A fourth-round pick of the Paris Aviators in the Global Poker League draft, Leah is showing he's also an MVP-caliber player in the GPL, too.

Leah began the week with an impressive win in the first Eurasia six-max match and deserved a better fate in the second. He then took on red-hot Anatoly Filatov of the Moscow Wolverines heads-up and nearly pulled off the full 3-0 sweep.

All in all he picked up 14 huge points for the Aviators and pushed them ahead of the Wolverines in the Eurasia standings.

His commentary is great, his talent is evident and his Team Manager Fabrice Soulier looks like a genius for sneaking Leah away so late in the draft.

2. Liv Boeree/Igor Kurganov, London Royals

We knew poker's pre-eminent power couple would be important factors in the success of Year 1 of the GPL but they've been even more impressive than expected.

Igor Kurganov
Multi-tasking not a problem.

Boeree has shown she has her SNG ranges dialled and with confident and correct play won two 6-Max matches.

Her 2nd came this week despite having to simultaneously get ready to receive her GPI Player of the Year award in Monaco.

Kurganov stepped in to play heads-up while also playing the 25k High Roller and thoroughly outplayed Bill Perkins to take a key 6 points.

He should have had all 9, but winning matches you're supposed to win is essential to stay ahead of the playoff cutline.

Both are captivating on cam, impossibly talented and easily two of the most important faces of the GPL.

3. Felipe Mojave/Thiago Nishijima, Sao Paulo Mets

Despite having two of the leagues highest-ranked players in Darren Elias and Byron Kaverman, the Sao Paulo Mets got off to a slow start over the first couple of weeks.

FelipeRamos
Felipe knows points.

They've completely reversed those fortunes over the past three weeks, primarily off the play of Felipe Mojave and Thiago Nishijima.

Mojave has clearly mastered the ICM of the GPL 6-Max rounds as he's finished heads-up in all 4 of the matches he's played.

Two more second-place finishes this week gave Sao Paulo another 10 points.

Nishijima won his second consecutive heads-up match, this week outrunning the ultra-talented Tom Marchese of the New York Rounders.

A 16-point week is a difference maker and these two - not even Sao Paulo's top two picks - are putting big points on the board.

Honorable Mentions

Tony Gregg showed why he's known as the End Boss with a dominating performance in the Americas 6-Max; Tyler Kenney was lucky and good to put up another solid 10 points for the Rounders; Kitty Kuo is a delight on stream even if she didn't bring her A-game to her heads-up match; Marc-Andre Ladouceur got no breaks in his appearances but showed he's a top talent along with a top manager; Bill Perkins is overmatched talent-wise but his brand of poker is very watchable, as is his personality; Igor Yaroshevsky put up a quiet 8 points for Moscow - much needed after Filatov couldn't beat Leah; Max Pescatori and Todd Brunson picked up critical points for the Rome Emperors.

Misclicks

The Hong Kong Stars were all deep in tournaments at the EPT Grand Final so had to put up Weiyi Zhang heads-up against Pescatori despite him being chip leader in the 1k. He was obviously distracted and barely managed to pick up 3 points. Bill Perkins showed some flaws in his game that could hurt the Berlin Bears down the line. 

Must-Watch Match of the Week

We could put Olivier Busquet up here every week but this Mike Leah/Anatoly Filatov match was also a fun one. 

Random Stats

Total number of hands played: 5320
Number of different players so far: 69
Player with most hands: Olivier Busquet (LA Sunset) – 697 (14 matches)
Most points earned: Olivier Busquet (LA Sunset) - 33 (of 51 total for LA)
Top scorer of the week: Mike Leah (Paris Aviators) – 14 points
Longest Heads-Up-Match: Week 1, Daniel Cates vs. Bertrand Grospellier – 96 hands
Longest 6-Max-Match: Week 1, Eurasia Conference – 147 hands

Standings

 

Eurasia Conference
         
Team
Points
6-Max
Heads-Up
Wins
Paris Aviators
65
35
30
13
Moscow Wolverines
64
43
21
10
Hong Kong Stars
51
24
27
10
London Royals
49
28
21
9
Berlin Bears
45
24
21
8
Rome Emperors
41
26
15
5
         
         
         
Americas Conference
         
Team
Points
6-Max
Heads-Up
Wins
New York Rounders
59
35
24
11
Sao Paulo Mets
55
37
18
7
Montreal Nationals
51
24
27
11
LA Sunset
51
24
27
10
Las Vegas Moneymakers
50
29
21
7
San Francisco Rush
49
31
18
9

Player Performance

 

PLAYER
POINTS
GAMES
HANDS
PERFORMANCE INDEX
Olivier Busquet (LA Sunset)
33
14
697
9
Tyler Kenney (New York Rounders)
22
4
420
10
Felipe Mojave (Sao Paulo Mets)
22
4
429
10
Mike Leah (Paris Aviators)
22
7
345
5.5
Anatoly Filatov (Moscow Wolverines)
21
8
328
6
Randy Lew (Hong Kong Stars)
21
12
564
3
Anton Wigg (San Francisco Rush)
19
7
306
2.5
Jeff Gross (Berlin Bears)
17
5
211
6.5
Liv Boeree (London Royals)
17
4
297
5
Jonathan Little (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
16
8
356
1
Pascal Lefrançois (Montreal Nationals)
15
6
239
6
Dominik Nitsche (Berlin Bears)
15
5
331
4.5
Tom Marchese (New York Rounders)
15
11
489
-4.5
Vladimir Troyanovskiy (Moscow Wolverines)
14
5
285
3.5
Alexandre Luneau (Paris Aviators)
14
5
229
3.5
Anthony Zinno (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
13
5
269
2.5
Max Pescatori (Rome Emperors)
13
5
270
2.5
Kitty Kuo (San Francisco Rush)
12
5
305
1.5
Mike McDonald (Montreal Nationals)
12
4
213
0
Thiago Nishijima (Sao Paulo Mets)
12
9
333
-1.5
Igor Kurganov (London Royals)
11
7
233
-1
Jason Wheeler (New York Rounders)
10
2
142
4
Raiden Kan (Hong Kong Stars)
10
2
239
4
Andrey Pateychuk (Moscow Wolverines)
10
2
202
4
Davidi Kitai (Paris Aviators)
10
2
179
4
Weiyi Zhang (Hong Kong Stars)
10
5
211
-0.5
Daniel Cates (Berlin Bears)
10
10
472
-11
Jason Mercier (New York Rounders)
9
3
94
4.5
George Danzer (Paris Aviators)
9
3
57
4.5
Bertrand Grospellier (Paris Aviators)
9
6
376
0
Jason Lavallee (Montreal Nationals)
9
5
279
-1.5
Tony Gregg (San Francisco Rush)
9
4
246
-3
Xuan Liu (Montreal Nationals)
8
2
106
2
Igor Yaroshevsky (Moscow Wolverines)
8
2
155
2
Scott Ball (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
8
4
272
0.5
Darren Elias (Sao Paulo Mets)
8
5
257
-2.5
Chance Kornuth (LA Sunset)
7
3
147
-2
Justin Bonomo (London Royals)
7
5
207
-3.5
Todd Brunson (Rome Emperors)
7
5
213
-3.5
Walter Treccarichi (Rome Emperors)
7
4
259
-5
Faraz Jaka (San Francisco Rush)
6
3
115
1.5
Sam Trickett (London Royals)
6
3
130
1.5
Joao Pires Simao (Sao Paulo Mets)
6
2
152
0
Fedor Holz (LA Sunset)
6
3
160
-3
Sergey Lebedev (Moscow Wolverines)
6
6
266
-3
Timothy Adams (Rome Emperors)
6
6
233
-3
Bill Perkins (Berlin Bears)
6
5
229
-4.5
Jake Cody (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
5
2
135
-1
Dzmitry Urbanovich (Moscow Wolverines)
5
2
158
-1
Mustapha Kanit (Rome Emperors)
5
2
118
-1
Chris Moorman (London Royals)
5
3
203
-4
Jonathan Duhamel (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
4
2
89
-2
Byron Kaverman (Sao Paulo Mets)
4
2
113
-2
Eugene Katchalov (LA Sunset)
4
4
144
-3.5
Chris Moneymaker (Las Vegas Moneymakers)
4
4
197
-3.5
Bryan Huang (Hong Kong Stars)
4
3
152
-5
Marc-Andre Ladouceur (Montreal Nationals)
4
5
219
-6.5
Martin Jacobson (Montreal Nationals)
3
3
39
-1.5
Bryn Kenney (New York Rounders)
3
3
82
-1.5
Jonathan Jaffe (San Francisco Rush)
3
3
86
-1.5
João Bauer (Sao Paulo Mets)
3
3
91
-1.5
Vanessa Selbst (London Royals)
3
3
74
-1.5
Dario Sammartino (Rome Emperors)
3
3
86
-1.5
Celina Lin (Hong Kong Stars)
3
2
107
-3
Maria Ho (LA Sunset)
1
1
36
-2
Fabrice Soulier (Paris Aviators)
1
2
117
-5
Dong Guo (Hong Kong Stars)
0
1
20
-3
Phil Galfond (San Francisco Rush)
0
3
94
-4.5
Kevin MacPhee (New York Rounders)
0
2
13
-6
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