Posts Tagged ‘Negreanu’

Daniel Negreanu Has Some Thoughts on WSOP POY Math

 Daniel Negreanu Has Some Thoughts on WSOP POY Math

A week ago, I wrote an article lamenting Chris Ferguson’s presence near the top of the 2017 World Series of Poker Player of the Year leader board. He is down to third from the second spot he was in at the time I wrote it, but he is still dangerously close to the number one spot. In the piece, I mentioned that multitude of cashes, while really nice in and of themselves, are not really all that impressive as far as cashes go and thus “shines a light on what may be a weakness of the scoring system.”

Apparently, great minds think alike, as Poker Hall of Famer and the man in seventh on the WSOP POY list, Daniel Negreanu, is right there with me. But unlike me, “Kid Poker” knows a thing or two about poker, so he actually has some concrete ideas of how to revamp the Player of the Year scoring.

In his blog on Full Contact Poker, Negreanu listed five adjustments he would like to make to the POY system, starting with the number of cashes that should be counted. He finds it lame that players who have the time and money to enter 40, 50, or 60 events have a massive advantage, as if they are decent enough players, they are bound to cash in 20-25 percent of them and even if the cashes are small, they will score enough points to threaten for the POY title.

Instead, Negreanu says, only a player’s best eight cashes should count, which would level the playing field a bit and make deep runs more significant in the scoring.

His second thought is about the scoring itself. Negreanu feels that there is not a wide enough spread in points between the winner of an event and a min-casher. “In a 600 player field, the current system rewarded the winner the equivalent of 4 min cashes,” he wrote. “That’s not a good ratio.”

A better ration is 8-to-1, Negreanu said. Figure out how much of a win should be worth, set the min-cash boundary, then work out the numbers in between. He brainstormed something like 75 percent of first place points for second place, 65 percent for third, 60 percent for forth, and on down the line. Those figures sounded like they were just quick, back of the napkin work, and could certainly be adjusted.

Third, Negreanu thinks that the $ 10,000 championship events should be worth more points than lower buy-in tournaments because the fields are typically tougher.

Fourth, he said that the field size used in POY calculations should be capped at 8,000 so as not to overweight the Colossus, which attracts as many as 20,000 players. Now, based on the calculator on its website, it looks like the WSOP only directly counts the buy-in and prize money won in its scoring, but since field size affects what the prizes are, it is an indirect factor, so something might be able to be done to Negreanu’s liking.

Negreanu’s final suggestion is one which he says will be the most controversial, and that is if someone does not win a bracelet, that person cannot win Player of the Year.

“I don’t think it’s unreasonable to require at least one win to be rewarded POY. In fact I think it adds a cool dynamic to the race,” he wrote. “You may have a points leader at the top without a bracelet who in the homestretch needs that win to win the title. Yes, I’m aware that this would exclude me from contention in the 2017 race, but it isn’t about me, it’s about a system that absolutely guarantees the ultimate winner will be deserving.”

Poker News Daily

2016 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event Day 1: Robin Hegele Picks on Daniel Negreanu to Become Early Chip Leader

 2016 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event Day 1: Robin Hegele Picks on Daniel Negreanu to Become Early Chip Leader

While one World Poker Tour event was wrapping up in the Czech Republic, one of the most popular WPT events of the year was starting at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. The WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event saw 519 entries for Day 1 on Monday with 385 players advancing to Tuesday’s Day 2. Robin Hegele has the unofficial chip lead with 185,000 chips; the official chip counts should be released later this morning.

There is still a long way to go, but if Hegele can keep up the good work, he will be on his way to the best cash of his live tournament career. According to, Hegele has just shy of $ 24,000 in live tournament earnings. His largest cash came just last month in the WPT Caribbean Main Event, where he finished in 36th place for $ 10,000.

Hegele reached the top of the chip counts largely in part to his ability to abuse Poker Hall of Famer Daniel Negreanu. During Level 3, Hegele raised pre-flop to 400 (it’s not often we see notable hands with bets that low) and Negreanu re-raised to 2,000. On the flop of K-K-5, Hegele checked, Negreanu bet 2,000, and Hegele called. Hegele checked again with the 2 on the turn and then called a 6,000 chip bet from Negreanu. Both players checked the J on the river. Negreanu had nothing, failing to hit a spade flush, while Hegele had K-Q for trips. That took Hegele’s stack up to 103,000, while Negreanu busted shortly thereafter.

This tournament, though, allows unlimited re-entries through Level 8 and Negreanu had already re-entered four times. He decided to keep trying, so he and Hegele tussled again a bit later. In another key hand, Peter Neff raised to 400, Hegele re-raised to 1,200, and Negreanu four-bet to 5,000. Lily Kiletto then moved all-in for 10,250, forcing a fold from Neff. Hegele then decided to move all-in himself, so Negreanu called off his remaining 33,000 chips.

When the cards were turned over, Hegele had A-K of spades, Negreanu had pocket Jacks, and Kiletto had pocket Tens. Hegele ended up pairing his Ace on the turn to eliminate both opponents and grow his stack to 163,000 chips.

That was not the last time Negreanu would fire another re-entry bullet. He did finally make through to Day 2 with 80,825 chips.

Day 2 begins at noon PT. As mentioned, re-entries are available through Level 8; Day 2 will begin with Level 6. The largest field the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event has ever had is 664 in 2007, so with unlimited re-entries continuing, it looks like there is an excellent chance that record will be broken.

2016 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event – Day 1 Chip Leaders

1.    Robin Hegele – 185,000
2.    Lucas Blanco Oliver – 139,325
3.    Andjelko Andrejevic – 136,400
4.    Jennifer Tilly – 134,225
5.    Chris Wieners – 121,000
6.    David Pham – 120,100
7.    Soren Jensen – 116,975
8.    Lazaro Hernandez – 106,975
9.    Corey Hochman – 106,150
10.    Nicholas Manganaro – 104,350

Poker News Daily

Daniel Negreanu Would Like to Change Poker Hall of Fame Voting Process

 Daniel Negreanu Would Like to Change Poker Hall of Fame Voting Process

Daniel Negreanu has never been one to keep his feelings about poker matters to himself. Now that Todd Brunson and Carlos Mortensen have been elected to the Poker Hall of Fame, he has something to say about the Hall’s election process. To be sure, Negreanu has no problem with the men who were elected – he calls them “both gentlemen friends and tough players.” What Negreanu would like to see changed are some of the eligibility requirements and the method by which the finalists are chosen.

In his blog on Full Contact Poker, Negreanu detailed the adjustments he suggests for the Poker Hall of Fame eligibility criteria. First, let’s review the criteria that are in place right now:

•    A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
•    Played for high stakes
•    Played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers
•    Stood the test of time
•    Or, for non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results.

Covering the last one first, Negreanu said that non-players, or “builders” as they are often called, should be considered separately from players:

I also find it difficult to vote for someone in the builder category when it takes up a spot that a player may have gotten. Since builders represent a small percentage of the nominees, my suggestion to address this is to induct a builder once every 4 years in addition to the two players that go in annually. That way people like Matt Savage, Steve Lipscomb, John Duthie, Bruno Fitoussi and others would compete against each other in this category and not be judged against players. It’s quite difficult to judge apples and oranges, so just the apples against the apples, and the oranges against the oranges.

He also wants to reword the criterion slightly to add more clarity.

Clarity is a common theme amongst Negreanu’s desired changes. When it comes to “top competition,” he wrote, “What defines top competition exactly? When the Hall of Fame was created, this could only happen if a player played the highest stakes cash games against the world’s best players. Since the 70’s poker has changed a great deal. You have online poker skills, tournament players, and a wide range of stakes that could be considered high stakes.”

Negreanu concluded that the “top competition” requirement should just be removed, as it is a given that if someone is good enough to be considered for the Hall of Fame, they will have played against the best players in the world.

Similarly, Negreanu wants to define “high stakes” as tournaments with buy-ins above $ 10,000, Fixed-Limit cash games of $ 400-$ 800 and above, and No-Limit cash games of $ 25-$ 50 and higher.

He aimed for similar clarity for the “played consistently well” and “stood the test of time” criteria, which are obviously quite subjective. In the end, Daniel Negreanu came up with a revised set of requirements for the Poker Hall of Fame:

1. Must Be a minimum of 40 years old at time of nomination
2. Played for High Stakes.
-Tournaments with buy ins over $ 10,000
-Limit Cash games $ 400-$ 800 and above
-No Limit Cash games of $ 25-$ 50 and above
3. Their poker skills are well respected by their peers
4. They were exceptional in at least one of these areas:
-Cash Games
-Online Poker
5. Stood the test of time over a period of 15 years or more

As for the nomination and final voting process, Negreanu isn’t thrilled with the finalists being selected by a public nomination process because a fan vote basically boils down to a “popularity contest.” He would like it tweaked to allow four finalists selected by fans and six selected by the media and Hall of Fame voting panel.

Speaking of which, those 44 living Hall of Famers and media members currently get to submit ten votes split up amongst any finalists they would like. Negreanu feels that this “gives voting blocks far too much power” and would like it changed to allowing voters to select just two finalists, ranking them as a first choice and second choice.

Poker News Daily

Daniel Negreanu Not Pleased With Chris Ferguson’s Presence at WSOP

 Daniel Negreanu Not Pleased With Chris Ferguson’s Presence at WSOP

After Howard Lederer issued an apology for his role in the Full Tilt Poker “Black Friday” scandal last month, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that he would make an appearance at the World Series of Poker. While we would all like to believe that the apology was completely heartfelt (and I’m not saying it wasn’t at least partially genuine), it is likely that Lederer was using it as a way to be able to return to major tournament poker without seeing torches and pitchforks wherever he turned. And sure enough, Lederer played in some events this weekend.

More surprising, as Earl Burton reported, was that Lederer’s fellow Full Tilt founder and board member, Chris Ferguson, also made his return to the WSOP after five years of radio silence following Black Friday. It was almost as if he was trying to piggyback on Lederer’s apology. Ferguson still hasn’t said anything publicly about what happened at Full Tilt and what his role may have been, which makes his appearance at the Rio hard to swallow for most people.

One of those people is Daniel Negreanu, who posted Lederer’s apology statement on his website, Speaking with, Negreanu expressed his outrage at Chris Ferguson’s decision to show up at the World Series of Poker.

“There’s a distinct difference between Howard Lederer and Chris Ferguson showing up at the WSOP,” Negreanu told PokerListings. “Howard has spoken. He spoke to PokerNews for hours. People might not have liked his answers but at least he was speaking and he issued a statement where he finally showed some ownership in terms of his role. He’s come back and I don’t have much of a problem with it. I’ve put that behind me.”

“Chris Ferguson, on the other hand, has hid for five years when they really needed him. They needed him to help get the sale done so players could get paid. Now he kind of weaselly comes back without saying a word and not acknowledging anything, taking zero responsibility, and now he’s taking pictures with people in the hallway.”

Negreanu called it “shameful” that Ferguson hasn’t said anything after five years, that it appears that Ferguson has no remorse about what happened to Full Tilt’s players.

Ferguson has said in court documents that he was unaware of any funny business at Full Tilt when he was there, but Negreanu doesn’t buy it.

“Ferguson saying, ‘I didn’t do anything wrong,’ is bullshit. Who brought Ray Bitar in? Who’s Ray Bitar’s best buddy? You are. You were on the board of directors. You were involved in the company at a very high level. Everyone had responsibility to some degree. Every single person involved. And to shrug it off like you had no involvement after five years, I’m just shocked.”

And at this point, in Negreanu’s opinion, even though Ferguson should still apologize (whether or not he means it) it is really too late for an apology to have any impact unless it is shockingly genuine.

“…now he kind of has to apologize for coming back and not saying anything because it’s basically a slap in the face. It’s like saying, ‘Hey I robbed all you guys, how you been?’”

Poker News Daily

Daniel Negreanu Documentary “KidPoker” Premieres on Netflix

 Daniel Negreanu Documentary “KidPoker” Premieres on Netflix

A documentary that was a couple of years in the making, detailing the life of poker professional and Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu, is now seeing its premiere over a major streaming service. The documentary KidPoker, produced by PokerStars Original Films, premiered on the streaming service Netflix last week and has already generated some decent buzz in the poker community. It has also done well so far on Netflix, drawing a four out of five-star rating from the streaming service.

The 90-minute documentary details out Negreanu’s life, from his birth in Toronto to immigrant parents from Romania, to his greatest achievements in his poker career, particularly his 2014 induction into the Poker Hall of Fame. The story of the early years of Negreanu’s mother and father is arguably one of the best in the film, with Daniel recounting how they came to Canada with $ 5 to their name and were able to build their family into an upper middle class success story. “My parents – my Mom was always the type to make sure you were fed and my Dad was always the one to make sure your glass was full,” Negreanu remembers about his parents.

Another star of the movie is Daniel’s brother, Mike, who also offers his commentary about growing up Negreanu. He remarks how Daniel, knowing he had an older brother, would “often let his mouth get him into situations” that required his brother’s help to avoid a serious beating. Mike Negreanu also remembers how smart Daniel was, talking about how he always excelled at everything that he did.

Daniel’s life as a pool hustler gets a slight touch, as does his experiences in the poker rooms of Toronto, but a major focus is in how he continually drove himself to be the best poker player possible. Negreanu himself recounts how, on many occasions, he would go to Las Vegas with a meager bankroll (of around $ 3000), only to return to Toronto with nothing in his pockets but lint. Eventually, however, the stays in Las Vegas became longer and longer until, in 2000, Negreanu decided to make the transition to calling Las Vegas home.

For those of you knowledgeable about Negreanu’s career, this was AFTER he had already won a World Series of Poker bracelet AND the U. S. Poker Championship in Atlantic City.

The entirety of the film is interspersed with stories from friends who have been by Negreanu’s side over the 20-plus years he has been in the poker world. Such luminaries as Phil Ivey, European Poker Tour founder John Duthie, James Hartigan, Antonio Esfandiari and fellow Poker Hall of Famers Jennifer Harman and Phil Hellmuth (just to mention a few) open up about Negreanu’s passion for the game, his drive to succeed and, Harman in particular, the difficulties that he faced following the death of his mother in 2009 following several severe strokes.

There are areas that aren’t touched on in depth about Negreanu. His marriage to wife Lori (Weber) ended in 2007 and it isn’t discussed much in the film, but Negreanu has admitted in the past that she helped him become a better man (it is also possible that she is the person that Negreanu speaks of in discussing how the Choice Center helped him in his life). And, although she shows up in photos and videos throughout the documentary, former paramour Evelyn Ng is not mentioned at all.

For those that expected a fluffy piece of confection, KidPoker is exactly that, a “documentary” that speaks glowingly of its subject without uncovering too many thorns. For those in the normal world who have never heard of Daniel Negreanu, they will learn about a man who wants to do more with his life than just be remembered for playing cards for a living. Even for those of us that know Negreanu’s history well, it is a pleasant trip down Memory Lane that was well done overall. There will be those out there, however, that are looking for something to “bring Negreanu down” and those people aren’t going to be very pleased with the movie.

I found myself enjoying KidPoker, even though I knew everything that the documentary touched on in its story. It was more like an extended Pokerology, the poker documentary series on Poker Central, but with a bigger budget that made it well worth checking out. If you find yourself with some time to spare and an itch for a poker-related movie offering, KidPoker might be up your alley.

Poker News Daily

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