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Aaron Johnson wins MSPT Season 9 Player of the Year

10 December 2018

(PRESS RELEASE) -- Aaron Johnson has officially locked up the MSPT Season 9 Player of the Year title.

Few players have had as much success in 2018 as Minnesota’s Aaron Johnson, who has thus far won a career-high $343,587. On Sunday at the MSPT finale at Canterbury Park - Racetrack & Card Casino, Johnson was named the MSPT Season 9 Player of the Year after leading the race for the majority of the year.

“It feels amazing. It’s surreal to have a year like this where you ship two Player of the Years on two different tours,” Johnson said. “Coming into 2018 I wanted to have a good year, but I would never have imagined I’d be in this situation right now. It really feels surreal and I hope it’s not a dream.”

To date, Johnson has $857,187 in lifetime earnings, which puts him 22nd on the state's all-time money list. Two years ago, Johnson notched a career-high score of $96,787 when he finished 72nd out of a field of 6,737 in the 2016 World Series of Poker Main Event.

As far as the MSPT is concerned, Johnson has 27 Main Event and six Regional cashes for $250,981. Six of those cashes were Main Event final table appearances with his best finish to date being both second to Rick Burleson in April’s 2018 MSPT South Dakota State Poker Championship for $39,181, and second to Ryan Skluzak in August’s MSPT Grand Falls for $33,834. He also took fourth place in February’s MSPT Canterbury Park for $34,183.

Not content to stop there, Johnson took down May’s MSPT Grand Falls Regional Event outside Sioux Falls, South Dakota, good for $21,268 before placing 15th in the MSPT FireKeepers for $13,715.

Over the summer, he placed 226th in an MSPT Venetian event for $3,936, and then finished 29th in the 2018 MSPT Iowa State Poker Championship at Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel for $2,375. He also took 32nd in the 2018 MSPT Michigan State Poker Championship for $5,172.

Not only that, Johnson recently won the HPT 2018 POY race. Earlier this year he topped a field of 394 entries to win the HPT Belterra Main Event in southern Indiana for $86,189, and also finish eighth out of 624 entries in the HPT Chicago for $22,377 before finishing sixth in the season-ending championship.

That means Johnson has accomplished the remarkable feat of winning two mid-major tour POY races in the same year.

To top it all off, by winning POY Johnson has also become the third player to win his way into the MSPT Hall of Fame alongside Kou Vang and Rich Alsup. Johnson did so by amassing 25 Main Event cashes with either a Main Event win or POY title.

“I’m very proud of that accomplishment,” Johnson said. “I wanted to get in the Hall of Fame. I had a couple shots this year but I could’ t win a Main Event which would have put me in. So to get it through POY is just awesome. I hope it’s the start of more things to come.”

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