You may be aware that Nick Petrangelo is currently sitting at the top of the Global Poker Index (GPI) ratings, but do you know why? Or what that means? Until recently the GPI was just an acronym for me.  I knew that whoever was at the top of the ratings was a good player, but good how? Based on what?

The GPI is a poker player rating system which ranks live tournament players based upon how well they cash in certain tournaments across the past three years. Theoretically, every poker tournament open to the public is considered as long as it has at least a $1 buy in and 32 players.  Looking at the fine print, only certain casinos are being tracked.  For example, none of my monies at my local New Hampshire card room are being tracked, as all New Hampshire card rooms are classified as “Charity Poker” and thus excluded from the rankings. GPI has a list of contributing casinos on their site, in case you are interested in determining why you haven’t passed Cate Hall’s 2,225 points to slide into 80th place this week.

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In any case, the GPI takes the number of times that you have moneyed in these tournaments across the last three years and gives you a number of points for each position. From the GPI website “Each player’s individual GPI score is an aggregate of scores in events over the previous 36 month period, measured from the day the GPI is calculated. The score for a given event is derived from a combination of their finishing place percentage, buy-in and aging factor.” The aging factor means that the farther into the past a tournament recedes, the fewer points the player receives. So the most recent cashes are worth the most. The buy in factor is an adjustment for tournament difficulty in which it is assumed that events with higher buy ins are more difficult and thus are awarded more points.

So players receive an event score, and then a composite score is created by adding up each player’s individual scores. Finally, players are ranked based on their composite score, and the players with the best 300 scores are published each week.

So next time you see that Daniel Negreanu has slipped to #460 in the GPI (#18 in Canada, by the way), you’ll know what that means. Kind of.


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