2012 WSOP Ones To Watch – British Columbia


Poker on the west coast of British Columbia; it’s already produced some of Canada’s best player and prize-pools, but which BC top guns will be top contenders at the 2012 World Series of Poker?

If we could only pick one player from the region, scratch that, even just one player from all of Canada, hands down Shawn Buchanan is that poker beast…

Buchanan has already kicked off 2012 by winning a PCA $10,000 6-Max event for more than $200,000. Over 2011, Shawn had a total of 9 WSOP in the money finishes; 4 in a single week at the World Series of Poker Europe totaling more than $570,000 in winnings and 5 more cashes over the summer in Vegas worth another $413,000!

Shawn Buchanan at the 2011 WSOP Europe ThumbThis impressive tally includes 4 final table finishes, including two heads-up and heart wrenching finishes to narrowly miss bracelet number 1. At the 2010 World Series of Poker, Buchanan cashed a total of 8 times, including another 2nd place finish. If one were to back track just to 2006, one would find a total of 27 WSOP in the money finishes, in almost every imaginable discipline of the game, accounting for about $2,200,000 of his nearly $4,700,000 in live poker tournament career winnings.

Overdue? We think so, though we love his chances again this year.

Chris “maxxscam” BackChris ”maxxscam” Back has been chasing World Series of Poker bling on a bit smaller of a scale than ”Bucky”, but he’s doing a damn fine job of it. So far Back has cashed 10 times in WSOP-Circuit events over 2012, including making 4 final tables. At the World Series of Poker itself, Chris has 4 career cashes so far, including a very respectable 123rd place finish in the $10,000 No Limit Hold’em Championship Main Event. Here in Canada, Back also has the bragging rights of making at least one final table at the British Columbia Poker Championships for 3 years running, a series considered by many to be made up our toughest fields. His total career winnings of roughly $375,000 put him in the top 100 of the Canadian All Time Money list, proving Chris a better statistical pick than many.

North Vancouver’s Keyvan Payman rings in about the same as Back when it comes to career totals and he’s definitely been around the poker block; Barcelona, Tallin, London and Prague’s cash cages have all ”paid the Payman”. Keyvan only has one WSOP cash on the books, but more than a dozen medium limit cashes on his profile pages could make him a great ”underdog” choice to go all the way in a $1,000-$1,500 event. That and the name just sounds poker lucky…

One for the other wrist?

Zachary Fellows earned his first bracelet back in 2009 after winning a $3000 WSOP H.O.R.S.E. event, a title most players agree comes with a the bit of extra bragging rights of being a ”well rounded and true poker player”. It was also good for more than $311,000; nearly double what he earned for another oh-so-close second place finish in a $1,500 World Series of Poker Limit Hold’em the year before. You find yourself heads-up 2 consecutive years in a row playing for gold, we figure that makes you at least a decent favorite to get there again.


We were lucky enough to interview Daniel Idema after he won his first WSOP bracelet in the $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship, made more impressive by the fact that he was the runner up the year in the same tournament the year before. Idema has cashed a total of 7 times at the WSOP, with 3 of those in the money finishes being at final tables. He also has the distinction of having won the BCPC $2,500 Main Event in Vancouver, considered as difficult a title to take as many smaller bracelet events in Vegas (Negreanu has also won it). His poker resume doesn’t end there either; if you follow the world circuit you’ll see Idema running deep somewhere on any given month. Keep an eye on him this summer too, chances are he’ll be doing something big.


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Jon Harnish
35 year old recreational player, husband and father of three from Calgary, Alberta. Enjoy lower stakes cash games including PLO and limit Omaha 8. Any of the micro-stakes HORSE games will play online MTTS and SNGs. Live, Tournaments and Satellites up to $550. I love the game but am far to social to take it seriously and sometimes give up a little to much information at the table because I enjoy discussing the game, so decided it was safest for my bankroll to take up writing about the game. That way I still get to meet the cool people and opinions on the game, but with a little less risk. Writing wise, currently a regular contributor to Poker Pro Canada, like to write profiles, previews and recaps the most. formally wrote for Canadian Poker Player Canada. My Poker Blogs have been featured on CardPlayer Social and SpadeClub as "Recommended" or in newsletters on several occasions and Pokerweblogs as "Blog of the Month". Past projects included organizing and promoting major events with the Canadian Poker Tour, introducing Big Slick Poker Tour to Southern Alberta and directing events and finals.


  1. Always a favorite. Matt also seems to be enjoying life just as much away from the felt as on it. He’s already done more than many can dream of, don’t think he’ll be as motivated as the guys grinding daily.

    Make sense?

  2. 14th of 3404 for Idema’s 3rd cash. At roughly $46,000 already for 2012 WSOP, all three cashes in top 100 of field.


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