The just concluded American Poker Awards packed more surprises than anyone imagined.
Several winners were announced to the delight of participants while a few other winners were caught off guard when their names came up for mention. One of these was Las Vegas grinder Andrew Neeme who won two APA awards without being physically present at the event.
Neeme was far away in South Africa but caught everything on live TV. Neeme won the Video Blogger of the Year award and the Peoples’ Choice Award, courtesy of votes from over 10,000 fans.
The Jury, with help from the Nomination Panel, selected Neeme for the Video Blogger award while tens of thousands of fans voted him up to win the Peoples’ Choice Award at the same event.
Another to turnout at the event was Matt Savage, who won the Industry Person of the Year award for the third year straight.
Jacob Zalewski, of One Step Closer Foundation, won the Charity Initiative of the Year award to the delight of thousands of fans. Zalewski, who is a popular figure on the poker circuit, has cerebral palsy but that has not stopped his charity from obtaining over USD $1 million in donations over the years.
Broadcasters Lon McEachern and partner Norman Chad were given the Award for Lifetime Achievement in Poker after nominations from fellow broadcasters Joe Stapleton and David Tuchman.
The American Poker Awards also saw the following winning notable awards at the awards:
- Ari Engel – Pocketfives Legacy Award
- Kristen Bicknell – 2017 GPI Female Player of the Year award
- Bryn Kenney – 2017 GPI American Player of the Year award
- Cary Katz –Poker’s Biggest Influencer
- Jaime Staples – Poker Streamer
- PokerCentral Podcast – Podcast
- Nick Schulman – Broadcaster of the Year award
- Lance Bradley – Journalist of the Year award
- Ema Zajmovic – Moment of the Year award
- Scott Blumstein – Tournament Performance
- Artur Papazyan – Breakout Player
West Hollywood producer Randall Emmett, reality stars Tom Sandoval, Ariana Madix, Amber Nichole Miller and MMA legend Tito Ortiz also took centerstage at the glamorous American Poker Awards event.