The countdown to the year’s biggest event has begun and over the next 25 days, Poker Central will introduce the entire 2017 Super High Roller Bowl field. From the world’s best high-stakes players, to online crushers and successful businessmen, poker’s most exclusive event has it all. Follow Poker Central’s “25 Days of SHRBowl” to know who will be competing when cards get in the air on May 28th.
Time flies when you are having fun and after featuring three players that are impossible to separate, we move past the mid-way point of “25 Days of SHRBowl” with two players that are inseparable. Jason Koon and Ben Tollerene are good friends that are returning to the Super High Roller Bowl this summer, where they will each look to build off huge High Roller victories through the first half of 2017.
Koon opened the year, literally, with a career-best score at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas series. The West Virginia native navigated a stacked field of Super High Roller Bowl participants, including Daniel Colman, Byron Kaverman, Connor Drinan and Bryn Kenney, to win the $100,000 Super High Roller. Koon’s $1,650,000 result pushed his career earnings over $8 million and the win came just a few months after his first seven-figure result.
Even though that $1,000,000 score didn’t come in a High Roller event, instead in the $5,000 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Championship, it certainly has given Koon confidence and momentum over the last year and a half. Since that SHRPO victory, PokerStars Championship Bahamas win included, Koon has recorded eight podium finishes in $25,000 to $100,000 buy-in events.
Most of those medal-winning finishes have come in ARIA High Roller events, along with a $25,000 High Roller win in December’s WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic at Bellagio for $412,000. Even when Koon isn’t finishing on the podium, he is still always churning out six-figure results, with over a dozen such results since the start of 2015.
Koon may be known throughout the world as a High Roller extraordinaire but he doesn’t just do damage on the live tournament circuit. Online, Koon is also one of the world’s best, amassing over $3.5 million in online cashes along with some of the online poker world’s most illustrious titles, including SCOOP and FTOPS wins and a Poker Stars Sunday Million victory. Simply put, Koon is one of the rare hybrids that have immense success no matter what the poker medium.
While Koon opened the year with a victory, Ben Tollerene, pictured above, kept the PokerStars Championship High Roller run going at the next series stop in Panama. Tollerene won the $50,000 Super High Roller for a nearly career-best $538,000 result and while he has yet to record a live tournament cash since, Tollerene has a resume full of quality results.
His best live score and first major tournament victory came, just like Koon, in Florida. Tollerene won the $50,000 Rock N Roll Poker Open High Roller for $459,000 in November of last year. Between those two $50,000 buy-in wins, Tollerene has multiple $25,000 High Roller cashes and has pushed his career earnings over the $2.5 million mark.
Tollerene is another one of those rare hybrids. He is one of the most respected online players in the world and a regular in the virtual felt’s highest cash games. Along with millions of dollars of online cash winnings, Tollerene also has over $2 million in online tournament earnings, including a $851,000 score from a victory in the 2015 World Championship of Online Poker $50,000 High Roller.
With similar backgrounds and similar recent successes, Jason Koon and Ben Tollerene will both return for their second appearance looking to secure their first Super High Roller Bowl cash. Koon played in 2015, when the buy-in was $500,000 but missed the 2016 version of the event, while Tollerene made his debut in last year’s $300,000 buy-in event.