It wasn’t even close. Ali Imsirovic was named the 2021 PokerGO Tour Player of the Year this week, something that looked like an inevitability for months. For his accomplishment, Imsirovic wins $200,000 on behalf of Guaranteed Rate, the PokerGO Tour’s sponsor.
Now, I’m not going to get into how Player of the Year points are calculated, but you can see by the totals that no matter which way you slice it, it was no contest. Imsirovic finished the year with 4,364 points; his closest competitor was Michael Addamo – who kicked serious ass – with 3,083. Imsirovic beat Addamo by over 40%. If you want to forget points because you don’t trust formulas or whatever, then let’s look at PokerGO Tour wins. Imsirovic had 14 this year. The next best was six by Addamo and Sean Perry. Cashes? Imsirovic had 34, Chris Brewer had 27.
Total earnings? Well, ok, Imsirovic was only third there with a measly $6,028,321. Addamo topped that category with $9,418,837 in winnings on the PokerGO Tour, followed by 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event Champ Koray Aldemir with $8,060,465 (it appears that the Main Event was on the Tour, which would explain Aldemir’s massive total).
“It still feels pretty surreal, to be honest,” Imsirovic told PokerGo. “I never thought I would accomplish something of this magnitude in poker. Next, the goal is to just keep trying to get better and solidify and keep proving that I belong here.”
ARIA High Roller events were clearly Imsirovic’s favorite, as 16 of his 2021 PokerGO Tour cashes came in those events. In fact, his first ten cashes where in ARIA High Roller tournaments.
While all of Ali Imsirovic’s cashes were obviously substantial, considering the lowest buy-in was $10,000, none of them were for otherworldly amounts. Of course, most of us would do unspeakable things for a six-figure payday, but in the high roller tournament world, six figures isn’t life changing money. Imsirovic’s largest cash on the PokerGO Tour this year was his final one, when he won $695,355 for winning the $25,500 World Poker Tour Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open High Roller in November.
He also had one cash for nearly $600,000 and another for over $500,000. What a pauper.
Many professional poker players don’t care about the accolades, but not Ali Imsirovic. Speaking about the quest to win the Player of the Tear title, he said, “It was my goal from the start. “I really wanted to win Player of the Year, and I made sure to try and play as many of these as I could and hopefully run as good as I possibly could.”
The PokerGO Tour is on a break for the holidays right now, but the new season begins soon. The first set of tournaments are a series of Venetian High Rollers from January 5 through January 8.