Top Stories of 2022, #2: Daniel Negreanu's Rollercoaster Year

With just shy of $50 million in live tournament earnings to his name and several decades of experience under his belt, GGPoker ambassador Daniel Negreanu remains the most recognizable name and face in the poker world. His exploits on the felt keep audiences glued to screens all around the world.

Casting our minds back to last year, Negreanu captured several headlines from the poker media. At the beginning of 2021, he was on the losing side of his high-profile heads-up match against Doug Polk and was also whitewashed 3-0 by Phil Hellmuth on PokerGO’s High Stakes Duel.

Fortunes then began to sway in his direction as he ended his eight-year tournament hoodoo by winning the PokerGO Cup Event #7: $50,000 No-Limit Hold’em and then went on to be crowned the first-ever PokerGO Cup Champion after topping the series’ leaderboard.

Then at the 2021 World Series of Poker, which took place in the Fall, he put in a hallmark showing that included seven top-ten finishes, a third-place finish in the WSOP player of the year race as well as ending the series in the green.

And like 2021, fans of Kid Poker over the last twelve months have continued to be treated as the Canadian poker player has had another wild ride of a year. So, PokerNews, has constructed this ‘Year in Review’ piece to just show all the ups and downs that Negreanu has experienced in 2022.

Stellar Start to 2022

Daniel Negreanu

On the back of ending his tournament winless streak and an impressive 2021 WSOP, there were high expectations of a strong showing in February’s second edition of the PokerGO Cup. Yet, despite “building chip stacks and dominating the early levels,” Negreanu failed to cash in the first five events of the high roller festival and was left feeling done with the whole thing.

After a little pep talk from Jeff Platt, Negreanu hopped back into the saddle and took down Event #6: $25,000 NLH for a $350,000 first-place payout. He then netted himself another $112,000 following a fifth-place finish in the $50K PokerGO Cup finale.

While there was no repeat leaderboard win this time around, Negreanu’s display over the eight-event series placed him seventh in the overall leaderboard, and while he would’ve wanted to top it again, Kid Poker continued to show his name belonged alongside poker’s most elite players.

It’s mightily impressive when you think about it as it could be said for some of Negreanu’s former peers that poker has passed them by. Whereas, he has continually evolved his game to match today’s environment when it comes to No-Limit Texas Hold’em.

Negreanu continued to find success in the early months of the year. At the PGT Aria High Roller Series he cashed in two of the three events that were scheduled and then a few days later notched his second high-roller win of the year at the Wynn Millions festival for $216,000.

The busy start to his year carried on with the U.S. Poker Open (USPO). While Negreanu only cashed in two of the twelve events, he still boosted his winnings by $167,200 after a fourth and third-place finish in USPO Event #1: $10,000 NLH and USPO Event #4: $10,000 Big Bet Mix.

The conclusion of the USPO would be the last time Negreanu tangoed on the tournament felt, with his eyes then set on preparing for the 2022 WSOP.

And with his form from the high roller scene, there were a lot of reasons to be optimistic when looking ahead to the biggest poker series of the year. His Q1 results had added $928,450 to his live tournament earnings as well as notching a couple of victories under his belt, which is no easy feat when looking at the players he was up against.

Daniel Negreanu Shares His Top 6 Favorite Las Vegas Poker Rooms

Bracelet Drought Continues for “KidPoker”

Daniel Negreanu

“I was left with a feeling of hopelessness…For about two years I’ve developed PTSD over being all in”

Before the WSOP got underway, the wider community backed Negreanu to have an above-par summer, being the highest bid in his $25,000 WSOP Fantasy Draft. Many thought that perennial WSOP POY contender would end his nine-year bracelet drought

In spite of that, Negreanu went on to have his worst WSOP in recent memory, ending the series down around $1.1 million.

“It was pretty demoralizing and I was left with a feeling of hopelessness,” Negreanu told PokerNews regarding his 2022 WSOP. “I was really feeling like, I can’t win if I always lose when I go all in. For about two years I’ve developed PTSD over being all in because I’ve had the worst run in that regard in my 30 years playing,” he added.

One incident over the summer where Negreanu’s distress was on show was in the biggest buy-in event of the WSOP. In the $250,000 Super High Roller, Negreanu was already on his second bullet, meaning he had invested $500,000 invested in the tournament.

On Day 2, Negreanu was on the end of another beat where he had originally got his chips in as the favorite. His eliminator, David Peters, made a backdoor flush to crack his pocket tens which resulted in the tilt-induced blow-up as seen above.

The Poker Hall of Famer took some flack from some members of the poker community after his selfie-stick scrimmage. Justin Bonomo was one of the more vocal critics surrounding the topic which prompted Negreanu to call the all-time money list leader “indoctrinated and brainwashed beyond repair.”

Around a week and a half later, Negreanu hopped into Day 1C of the 2022 WSOP Main Event, but failed to bag after being felted following the dinner break. However, there was one good moment for Kid Poker during the day, as one of his railbirds repaid him a debt he owed from four years prior.

The WSOP then went from bad to worse after Negreanu received a graphic injury following the panic that was caused by rumors of an active shooter in Las Vegas.

Even on the virtual felt, similar patterns were emerging for Negreanu. On’s NV/NJ online bracelet events, he recorded two top-200 finishes before putting in a deep run in the NV/NJ WSOP Online $7,777 NLH Lucky 7s High Roller.

Negreanu was down to the final five players before he looked sent in his stack with pocket jacks. Andrew Robl called his shove with ace-eight and Negreanu was immediately behind and found no help after Robl flopped two pair.

Negreanu was awarded $88,081 following his top-five finish, which was also his best score for the entire series, both live and online.

It would also be his penultimate cash of the summer as he rounded out the series with a final score from Event #87: $5,000 NLH, where he finished in 13th place which is fairly poetic considering the lack of luck “DNegs” experienced while at the WSOP.

Overall, Negreanu received a payout slip in 12 events, but most were min-cashes or slightly above. He was unable to reach a final table in a live event for the first time since 2011.

Daniel Negreanu’s 2022 World Series of Poker Cashes

Event #17: $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball 33rd $4,718
Event #19: $25,000 High Roller Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) 16th $57,738
Event #40: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship 12th $20,448
Event #46: $5,000 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em 106th $8,807
Event #52: $2,500 Nine Game Mix 6-Handed 13th $10,367
Event #60: $10,000 Short Deck No-Limit Hold’em 15th $16,449
Online Event #7: $500 No Limit Hold’em Deepstack 176th $1,070
Online Event #8: $7,777 Lucky 7’s NL Hold’em High Roller 5th $88,081
Online Event #9: $1,000 NL Hold’em Online Bracelet Championship 128th $1,727
Event #77: $1,500 Mixed No-Limit Hold’em; Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) 18th $9,844
Online Event #10: $3,200 NL Hold’em High Roller 8-Max 34th $7,659
Event #87: $5,000 8-Handed No-Limit Hold’em 13th $26,728

Persistance Pays Off

Daniel Negreanu

Off the back of the WSOP and just one cash in September’s Poker Masters, Negreanu was at his low point for the year. All of the good work from the beginning of 2022 and preparations for the WSOP had been undone. That was until a single river card changed everything for Negreanu.

On Day 1 of the Super High Roller Bowl VII (SHRB), a $300,000 buy-in tournament filled with the world’s best players, it was Negreanu’s turn to have lady luck shine upon him.

Negreanu went runner-runner to make quad threes to move ahead of the aces full held by accused poker cheater Bryn Kenney. All the chips would pile in on the river for Negreanu while ousting Kenney to take the chip lead in the early levels.

From there on, he was the man to catch but neither of the remaining players managed to as Negreanu went on to win the latest SHRB for $3,312,000, his second biggest career payday.

Regarding his victory, Negreanu commented that “It’s up near the top [winning the SHRB]. I felt so confident going in after working on some exploits and it was the best performance of my career against top-notch competition. I essentially led the tournament from start to finish, going wire to wire, implementing a strategy I thought would be effective against these guys, and it worked flawlessly.”

Prior to his marquee victory and following his poor WSOP, some of Negreanu’s old cohorts commented that he needs to abandon his new play style and revert back to a former version of Kid Poker, a line of thinking that was vehemently rejected by the man himself.

“This is just plain silly. I would crush “Old Negreanu” it would be a massacre. I’m better than I’ve ever been,” he said.

“If you watched the vlogs over the summer, you saw how I was losing, and it wasn’t my decision-making, it was an endless string of bad luck in all-ins, something outside of my control. Today, I combine my 30 years of experience with theoretical knowledge available to all. I am not a “slave to the sim” and will always look for ways to exploit the way humans try to implement GTO concepts.”

THREE Pieces of Beginner Strategy Advice from Poker Superstar Daniel Negreanu

Lady Luck Comes Back to Haunt Negreanu

Daniel Negreanu

Now with a belly full of hope and momentum on his side, next up for Negreanu was the 2022 World Series of Poker Europe. With all eyes set on winning his first bracelet since 2013, which coincidentally was also at the European stop of the WSOP, Negreanu was in a good place to take Rozvadov by storm.

But that’s not exactly how it played out for the face of poker.

He put in a deep run in Event 6: $5,000 PLO, bowing out in 28th place for his first in-the-money finish of the WSOPE.

A few days later, Negreanu made his 20th WSOP final table appearance since winning his last bracelet in the series’ €25K Platinum High Roller.

When four players remained, DNegs held the chip lead but the blinds were at a point where the lead could shift on any given hand. He first lost a preflop all-in with pocket sevens against Shaun Deeb’s ace-rag. Then, he flopped a pair of aces against eventual winner Paul Phua, who turned a set and then was paid off on the river. After the latter hand, the tides had completely shifted away from Negreanu over to the Triton Poker co-founder.

With the blinds at 200,000/400,000 and a 400,000 big blind ante, Negreanu moved all in with pocket fives and was called by Phua, holding pocket fours. Negreanu was in an excellent position to get back to 25 big blinds, but his opponent flopped a set which was enough to prolong Negreanu’s bracelet drought to at least 2023.

Negreanu then headed back to Las Vegas for the World Poker Tour World Championship, and again was on the wrong side of a brutal bad beat.

The original field of 2,960 had been whittled down to its final 17 players. Negreanu was all in and at risk of elimination with a full house, deuces full of tens, and was up against the pocket kings held by Lucas Foster.

Negreanu needed to just fade four outs to double up to a healthy chip stack but a king would come on the river to improve Foster to a superior full house and end Negreanu’s tournament.

Despite collecting a $176,200 payout, Negreanu’s journey to the WPT WOC wasn’t for a boost to his bankroll but to chase a WPT title and to crack the $50 million lifetime mark in live tournaments.

DNegs’ last event of the year was the winner takes all 2022 PokerGO Tour (PGT) Championship and again he would be the victim of a cold deck. Negreanu, with pocket queens, got into a preflop-raising war against the formidable Sean Winter. Both players committed their stacks, but Negreanu had the worst of it as his opponent held pocket kings. There would be no saving grace on the runout and Negreanu’s year ended without any celebratory fireworks.

Playing poker seems more about legacy rather than chasing big paydays for Negreanu, and although he ended the year with an SHRB winner’s ring, a lackluster summer as well as not topping any of the PokerGO Tour leaderboards would’ve left a sour taste in his mouth.

WSOP Main Event Railbird Pays Back Daniel Negreanu Four-Year “Debt”

Plans for 2023

The Horseshoe
The Horseshoe

Although 2022 contained several heartbreaks for Negreanu, he’s said he’s ready to for another year of live poker.

“For next year, I’ll grind the WSOP as always, start the year off at the PokerGO Cup, and possibly make a trip to at least one Triton stop.”

Without a point to prove to himself after the 2022 WSOP, you can fully expect Negreanu to be turbo-charged in his effort to capture bracelet no. 7 as well as a bunch of other prestigious titles.

Daniel Negreanu with the Perfect Read at a $25,000 High Roller Final Table!

Daniel Negreanu’s 2022 Recorded Live Earnings

Date Event Position Prize
Feb 7 PGT PokerGO Cup Event #6: $25,000 NLH 1st $350,000
Feb 9 PGT PokerGO Cup Event #8: $50,000 NLH 5th $112,000
Feb 25 PGT Aria High Roller Series Event #2: $10,000 NLH 5th $28,800
Feb 26 PGT Aria High Roller Series Event #3: $15,000 NLH 4th $54,450
March 2 PGT Wynn High Rollers Event #2: $15,300 NLH 1st $216,000
March 16 PGT USPO Event #1: $10,000 NLH 4th $93,000
March 19 PGT USPO Event #4: $10,000 Big Bet Mix 3rd $74,200
June 8 WSOP Event #17: $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw 33rd $4,718
June 9 WSOP Event #19: $25,000 PLO High Roller 16th $57,738
June 18 WSOP Event #40: $10,000 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo 12th $20,448
June 21 WSOP Event #46: $5,000 NLH 6-Max 106th $8,807
June 24 WSOP Event #52: $2,500 Nine Game Mix 13th $10,367
June 28 WSOP Event #60: $10,000 Short Deck 15th $16,449
July 11 WSOP Event #77: $1,500 Mixed NLH/PLO 18th $9,844
July 16 WSOP Event #87: $5,000 NLH 13th $26,728
Sept 22 PGT Poker Masters Event #2 $10,000 NLH 9th $22,800
Oct 5 $300,000 SHRB VII 1st $3,312,000
Nov 6 WSOPE Event 6: $5,000 PLO 28th $8,935
Nov 7 WSOPE Event 8: $25,000 NLH Platinum High Roller 4th $146,090
Dec 12 $10,400 WPT World Championship 17th $176,200
Total     $4,749,574

Daniel Negreanu’s 2022 Recorded Online Earnings

Date Event Position Prize
July 3 NV/NJ WSOP Online $500 NLH Deepstack 176th $1,070
July 10 NV/NJ WSOP Online $1,000 NLH Championship 128th $1,727
July 10 NV/NJ WSOP Online $7,777 NLH Lucky 7s High Roller 5th $88,081
July 12 NV/NJ WSOP Online $3,200 NLH High Roller 8-Max 34th $7,659
Sept 10 WSOP Online #1: $400 NLH Kick-Off 15th $2,365
Sept 18 WSOP Online #7: $365 NLH 8th $6,079
Sept 24 WSOP Online #11: $400 PL0 6-Max 11th $1,656
Sept 27 WSOP Online #14: $500 NLH 6-Max 34th $1,489
Oct 16 WSOP Online Event #29: $1,000 NLH Championship 23rd $3,171
Total     $113,287
Name Surname
Calum Grant

Editor & Live Reporter

Calum has been a part of the PokerNews team since September 2021 after working in the UK energy sector. He played his first hand of poker in 2017 and immediately fell in love with the game. Calum’s proudest poker achievement is winning the only tournament he has ever played in Las Vegas, the prestigious $60 Flamingo evening event.

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