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Isildur1 Dominates Unusual Year in Online Poker in 2015
2015 was a strange year for super high-stakes online poker.
The legendary nosebleed games on Full Tilt were finally shuttered as the site transitions into a poker room for recreational poker players.
It also became much harder to evaluate the biggest winners and losers online as more high-stakes pros decided to opt out of having their results tracked on HighStakesDB.
Alex Kostritsyn, Ben Tollerene and Cort Kibler-Melby are just a few of the high-stakes bosses who have opted out of tracking.
Fortunately we've been independently tracking the biggest games so this year -- for the first-time ever -- we've got some unofficial top 10 lists for you that include some of those under-the-radar players.
In addition, Phil Ivey, one of the all-time most successful online poker pros, had a decidedly down year. There were some success stories, however, and we'll start with the biggest one below.
Top 10 Online Poker Biggest Winners (Tracked) in 2015
Viktor “Isildur1” Blom finally did it. The swingy Swede pulled off a massive year without a tragic downswing.
Regardless Blom still raked in $2.19 million, which made him by far the biggest overall winner according to highstakesDB.
Now that Blom lives in London full time we assume that $2.19 million is tax free, which is a marked difference from his days playing in Sweden.
Blom wasn’t the only player to win big in 2015, though. Ben “Sauce1234” Sulsky won $743k on Full Tilt and $409k on PokerStars for a combined take of well over $1 million.
bbvisbadforme pulled in $965k on Full Tilt. Finnish poker pro Jeans “Jeans89” Kyllonen also won $853k on PokerStars. No word on that trip into space though.
For the first time ever PokerListings also has unofficial top 10 rankings for players that opted out of HighStakesDB tracking.
First here’s a look at the top 10 official biggest winners:
1. Isildur1 (PokerStars) - $3,497,000
2. bbvisbadforme (Full Tilt) - $965,000
3. Jeans89 (PokerStars) - $853,000
4. Sauce1234 (Full Tilt) - $743,000
5. Sauce123 (PokerStars) - $409,000
6. luvtheWNBA (Full Tilt) - $341,519
7. punting-peddler (Full Tilt) - $286,000
8. Cobus83 (PokerStars) - $278,000
9. jama-dharma (PokerStars) - $256,000
10. Empire2000 (PokerStars) - $203,000
Unofficial Top 10 Winners:
1. Alexander Kostritsyn (joiso, PostflopAction) - $2,462,962
2. Viktor Blom (Isildur1) - $2,244,791
3. Ben Tollerene (Ben86, Bttech86) - $1,875,622
4. Alex Luneau (Alexonmoon, BiatchPeople) - $1,261,756
5. Timofey Kuznetsov (Trueteller) - $1,258,762
6. cumicon - $1,180,768
7. Elior Sion (Crazy Elior) - $1,171,237
8. Ben Sulsky (Sauce123, Sauce1234) - $1,164,374
9. WRUUUM - $1,152,049
10. bbvisbadforme - $966,999
Top 10 Online Poker Biggest Losers (Tracked) in 2015
Phil Ivey was the biggest loser in 2015.
It doesn’t sound right, but at least online, Ivey lost far more than anyone else according to all tracked reports.
On PokerStars, where Ivey plays as RaiseOnce, he lost $2.4 million. Over on his Full Tilt account, “Polarizing,” he amassed $1.2m in losses.
Add it all up and it appears Ivey lost $3.6m in 2015. Ivey’s online losses since Black Friday have amounted to a stunning $8.8m.
Don’t feel too bad for Ivey, however, as we would guess he’s made up plenty of that in high-stakes private cash games around the world.
Other than Ivey a number of the biggest losers this year were lesser-known players. Of course Isildur1 lost $1.3m on Full Tilt but he more than made up for that on PokerStars.
Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond, Jaqueline, Sanlker and 8superpoker were also among the top 10 biggest losers.
Here’s a complete look at the top 10 biggest losers:
1. RaiseOnce (PokerStars) +$2,481,000
2. Isildur1 (Full Tilt) +$1,367,000
3. Polarizing (Full Tilt) +$1,250,000
4. Jaqueline (PokerStars) +$1,139,000
5. Sanlker (Full Tilt) +$910,000
6. 8superpoker (PokerStars) +$751,000
7. bodamos (PokerStars) +$626,000
8. candela2005 (PokerStars) +$584,000
9. natalie724 (PokerStars) +$508,000
10. Ilari FIN (PokerStars) +$473,000
Unofficial Top 10 Losers:
1. Phil Ivey (Polarizing, RaiseOnce) -$3,554,314
2. Jean-Robert Bellande (Jaqueline) -$1,129,700
3. AckmaJin -$1,034,396
4. Sanlker -$910,779
5. Cort Kibler-Melby (thecortster) -$838,821
6. megabanny -$831,443
7. 8superpoker -$748,830
8. Chun Lei Zhou (patpatpanda, samrostan) -$715,961
9. Lulius Fleischer (kagome kagome, iHateJuice) -$680,329
10. Phil Galfond (MrSweets28, OMGClayAiken) -$659,776