The 2nd edition of Global Poker Awards (GPA) has been made even bigger with the addition of new categories, which means more poker personalities will be honored in the PokerGO Studio at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas on March 6, 2020.
The GPA will bring together some of the world’s best and finest poker players, alongside commentators, industry professionals and media personalities all vying for more than 20 awards. The new categories include the Player’s Choice Award for Best All-Around Poker Player. The 2020 GPA will be streamed live on PokerGo
New awards and experiences are in store for attendees and viewers at home during the 2020 ceremony, as announced by Global Poker Index (GPI) President Eric Danis this week. The GPI is once again teaming up with Poker Central to celebrate the poker community’s “biggest night”, recognizing the best and brightest on and off the felt.
Poker Central president Sampson Simmons said the second edition of the Global Poker Awards builds on the tremendous success of the inaugural ceremony which was held in April 2019 Simmons said they are happy and excited to once again stream the event for fans at home.
The GPA was launched as a merger between major awards programs, the American Poker Awards and the European Poker Awards, both of which had given away more than 200 awards since 2001.
The inaugural ceremony gave away a total of 20 awards. Among the winners were John Cynn (Tournament Performance), Ali Imsirovic (Breakout Player of the Year), Lex Veldhuis (Streamer of the Year), Andrew Neeme (Vlogger of the Year), and The Chip Race Podcast (Podcast of the Year).
Maria Ho and Sarah Herring received the Broadcaster of the Year and Poker Journalist of the Year award respectively, while Lance Bradley won Media Content of the Year.
ARIA Tournament Director Paul Campbell was named as Tournament Director of the Year, RUNGOOD Poker Series won Mid-Major Tour/Circuit of the Year, while Angelica Hael of the World Poker Tour was recognized as Industry Person of the Year.
American poker pro Justin Bonomo won Moment of the Year, Alex Foxen was named the 2018 GPI Poker Player of the Year, while his girlfriend Kristen Bicknell was also named 2018 GPI Female Player of the Year. Poker legend Doyle Brunson was conferred the Award for Lifetime Achievement in Poker.
Other additional awards given away included the Jury Prize which was won by Drew Amato, PocketFives Legacy Award which was received by Chris Moorman, Charitable Initiative award won by Robbie Strazynski, and People’s Choice Award for Poker Personality of the Year which went to Brad Owen.
Updated Voting Process to Avoid Controversies
For 2020, an updated voting process will be put in place, as indicated in a press release from the GPI. There will be a panel of experts assigned for each category, and winners of several other categories will also be determined via fan voting. This is part of the “improvements” promised by organizers as the inaugural event back in April became a bit controversial for its list of nominees.
Some members of the poker community criticized the nomination process as certain personalities who made the shortlist were undeserving, while those who many thought should have been on the list were left out by the GPI. For instance, Doug Polk, who technically took a break from vlogging since the 2017 WSOP, was nominated for Vlogger of the Year.
In a tweet, the former poker pro took a shot at the panel who selected him for the category, saying the awards were a total joke. Brad Owen, who is hugely popular among the streaming community with more than 95,000 YouTube subscribers, did not make the cut. Owen expressed also expressed his upset knowing that some nominees did not even deserve to be on the list. Good thing his friend Andrew Neeme was nominated and eventually won the award.
Jason Somerville was also nominated for Streamer of the Year, when in fact he wasn’t active in the streaming scene in 2018. Some poker fans thought Parker “tonkaaaap” Talbot should have been a more deserving nominee. Many expressed disappointment at the nominating process, saying the panel was only leaning towards popular and accomplished names, while many deserving individuals just went under the radar.
More details and updates on the 2020 Global Poker Awards will be announced soon.