Negreanu Wins the Poker Players Championship

The rains had finally come

Last week, the hilarious Thomas Keeling posted a video to Twitter entitled ‘Requiem For A Vlog’, a parody of the 2000 Darren Aronofsky film ‘Requiem For A Dream’, poking some fun at, among others, Daniel Negreanu who was having a tough World Series off the back of a tough World Series in 2023.

Negreanu’s 11-year bracelet dry spell and 18-year Vegas WSOP bracelet barren period was an outlier and undoubtedly a source of frustration for the man who has fired harder than anyone else.

To Negreanu’s credit, for over a decade he vlogged his WSOP experiences which has meant that we were not just privy to his ups and downs but also the travails of a tournament poker player at sea in a world of variance, intimately captured for posterity.

We saw the deep runs, the near-misses, the mistakes, the bad beats, and sometimes the tantrums as his anger and exasperation boiled over. That cannot have been easy at times during this fruitless period.

the end of the drought in arguably the most prestigious event of the WSOP

A jam-packed rail showed up last night to witness the end of the drought in arguably the most prestigious event of the WSOP. In the final hand against the talented Bryce Yockey, Negreanu had to fade a gutter and flush draw in Pot Limit Omaha but he was more concerned with the kill cards that would deliver the ultimate knockout. The Queen on the turn was one such card and he raised his arms aloft. The rains had finally come.

Day 4

“Don’t ever say Omaha 8 isn’t an action game.” Those were the words uttered by commentator Chris Fitch at the end of a wild last orbit of Day 4 of the 89-runner $50K Poker Players Championship (PPC) which saw the elimination of Jeremy Ausmus in 6th place and some absurdly perfect card-catching from Negreanu, propelling him into second position going into the final day.

The chip leader overnight was the Day 3 front-runner Chris Brewer who was himself the beneficiary of some kind run-outs, in particular a PLO hand versus Johannes Becker in which he flopped top set versus the turned top and third pair (with two massively important nut-blockers) in a spot where the German knew his opponent would often be making a move.

PPC is a marathon, testing all-around poker ability with very deep stacks

Phil Ivey bust in 7th after a rollercoaster day which saw him at the top and bottom of the chip-counts at different points. The PPC is a marathon, testing all-around poker ability with very deep stacks, lending itself to large fluctuations.

At one point, Negreanu was down to just 340,000 in chips, just a couple of big bets but he battled game-fully, nurdling his way out of trouble and then later saving some bets in key spots when he was behind to keep his head above water. It also helped that he caught lightning twice drawing two and making number one twice in triple draw.

Day 5

With the stage set, Negreanu hit the front right out of the gate, picking off a bluff from Brewer in Razz. In the same orbit, the veteran David Benyamine who had clung on and hung on, sprung into action, making his final stand with 9-8-5-3-2 versus the 9-8-4-3-2 of Yockey. Then, in the blink of an eye, four became three as Yockey sent Dylan Smith to the rail, another Razz hand delivering the fatal blow.

huge hand in No-Limit Hold’em which saw all three players go to a ten-high flop

If there was going to be a significant shift in chips, it was likely to come in the big bet games and so it proved as Brewer heroed against Yockey with J-9 in No-Limit 2-7 Single Draw only to get shown an 8-7. Then there was a huge hand in No-Limit Hold’em which saw all three players go to a ten-high flop. Brewer had pocket aces and both of his opponents had a ten. Yockey had a flush draw to go with his top pair and that was plenty to get the money in versus Brewer while Negreanu made a good fold. The flush draw immediately hit, eliminating Brewer in third.

With a 3:2 chip lead, Yockey was in the box seat but 9-game is a war of attrition and so it proved. Pots went back and forth. Negreanu got his nose in front but then a big Stud Hi-Lo hand left him with less than a quarter of the chips in play.

A big Pot Limit Omaha hand almost ended things as both players got it in with good equity on the flop but Negreanu spiked the river to survive. Not long after, Negreanu picked off a Yockey bluff to take a big lead. Yockey would double up once from there was unable to muster a comeback as Negreanu’s three 7s instantly boated up in the final hand.


In previous years, Negreanu had approached the WSOP in a sort of scattergun fashion, sometimes firing bullets indiscriminately in an attempt to spin up stacks. That approach was somewhat justifiable in the context of his Player of the Year chase but it likely reduced his playing edge in soft fields considerably. The volume game was not working for him and this year he wisely took the advice of his wife Amanda to be more selective, to take days off, and to think ‘quality over quantity’.

So, as I watched Negreanu’s victory last night, it got me thinking about a different Aronofsky film. In the movie Pi, the director’s extraordinary debut feature, there goes the following exchange between the protagonist, reclusive obsessive number theorist Maximilian Cohen, and his mathematics mentor Sol Robeson:

Sol: “You remember Archimedes of Syracuse, eh? The king asks Archimedes to determine if a present he’s received is actually solid gold. Unsolved problem at the time. It tortures the great Greek mathematician for weeks, insomnia haunts him and he twists and turns in his bed for nights on end. Finally, his equally exhausted wife – she’s forced to share a bed with this genius- convinces him to take a bath to relax. While he’s entering the tub, Archimedes notices the bathwater rise. Displacement, a way to determine volume, and that’s a way to determine density and weight over volume. And thus, Archimedes solves the problem. He screams “Eureka” and he is so overwhelmed he runs dripping naked through the streets to the king’s palace to report his discovery. Now, what is the moral of the story?”

Max: “That a breakthrough will come.”

Sol: “Wrong! The point of the story is the wife. Listen to your wife.”

The post Negreanu Wins the Poker Players Championship appeared first on Vegas Slots Online News.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.