The Minnesota Poker Hall of Fame committee this week announced its 2017 inductee and welcomed Bryan Mileski of Lakeville, Minn. as its newest member. In 2009, Mileski founded and subsequently grew both the Minnesota State Poker Tour and Minnesota Poker Magazine. Since then, the MSPT has grown into one of the nation’s premiere poker tours.
“I am extremely humbled and honored to be inducted into the Minnesota Poker Hall of Fame,” said Mileski. “Helping to grow poker in Minnesota has been a longtime passion, and I can still recall the early days trying to report tournaments at Canterbury and Running Aces, and put together a magazine without much more than a laptop. Thanks to tremendous support from players and venues, the MSPT has grown into something we can all be proud of.”
In 2011, after eight events in Minnesota, the poker tour crossed the border into Iowa for the first time and subsequently morphed into the Mid-States Poker Tour while keeping the MSPT acronym.
To date, Mileski, who would soon bring on Event Manager Eric Anderson and Media Director Chad Holloway as part of the MSPT family, has hosted 34 major tournaments ($1,100 buy-in) in Minnesota including 13 at Canterbury Park, 11 at Running Aces Harness Park, four at Northern Lights Casino, three at Grand Casino Mille Lacs, and one each at Treasure Island Resort & Casino, Grand Casino Hinckley, and Jackpot Junction.
While Mileski’s induction comes thanks to his contributions to the overall growth of the game, he also plays on occasion. Since 2004, he has amassed $101,629 in live tournament earnings including $13,264 for finishing 40th in the 2012 World Series of Poker Event #59: $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em and earned over $100,000 in tournaments online prior to 2011.
“I’ve always loved poker, I recall my first ever cash came in a $330 Limit hold’em event back in 2004 during the Fall Poker Classic. With the amount of tour travel we do now I haven’t played much the last few years so I definitely miss that, but it’s been worth it. I truly believe some the world’s best players are right here in Minnesota,” Mileski added. “Not only that, the cardrooms here offer some of the best action not only in the Midwest, but in the entire country. You’d be hard pressed to find better limit hold’em games anywhere else. Minnesota is serious about poker, and because of that the poker world takes Minnesota players seriously.”
Mileski joins Tony Hartmann, “Minneapolis” Jim Meehan, Blake Bohn, Mike Schneider and Lyle Berman as members of the Minnesota Poker Hall of Fame.
The Minnesota Poker Hall of Fame is governed by a board consisting of poker industry professionals, poker players, and poker media. It was created in 2013 to recognize Minnesota poker players who have met the following criteria:
* The nominee must have a strong Minnesota connection, either by birth or residence.
* The nominee must have played consistently amongst acknowledged competition.
* The nominee must have withstood the test of time.
* The nominee must have played at a high level, consistently well, gaining the respect of peers.
* Or the nominee must have significantly contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker in Minnesota.