Negreanu vs Polk challenge: Negreanu capturing the lead for over $155k after seven sessions

Widely catching the poker community’s attention is the famous heads up challenge of Doug Polk and Daniel Negreanu, two of the industry’s most popular icons. While the duel is still in its early stages, a publicized dispute circled the social media accounts earlier this week, bringing to light what was seen as a possible violation of the agreed rules. Parameters were set early on which included the match to be played on, following the regulations prohibiting the use of HUDs and softwares intended to analyze hand histories.

Twitter discussions blasted across the platform as Bill Perkins revealed the issue on hand, putting Polk’s review methods in potential violation. In his post, Perkins highlighted Negreanu’s disadvantage in comparison to Polk’s alleged actions. The accused, however, was quick to refute the allegations and explained how he is simply studying the hand replayer while manually taking down notes in an attempt to gain more insight on Negreanu’s strategies.

Polk replied in a series of tweets which can be seen below, clearing the air that he did not violate the rule of no hand histories and no HUDs. He commented that he merely opened up the client and looked how many times Negreanu folded his button.

Polk finished his argument with a few strong words saying, “We also have a judge to arbitrate this thing, and now Perkins is just firing off with SUPER MISLEADING accusations about what has happened in this match. Completely out of line.”

Perkins eventually apologized but the issue remains for discussion, with the three seeking fellow pro Phil Galfond to arbitrate. While their talk with Galfond was left behind the scenes, the duo finally settled with an agreement later on in the day to allow both parties to compile data but prohibit transcribing hand histories into a database.

Polk likewise chimed in tweeting, “Yup we are good to go. Want to thank Phil for spending the time to help us out.”

In a following Twitter thread, rival Negreanu shared with fans how both players have aligned on what’s technically permitted and what is not. With the issue on the rules cleared out, the duo is back on the felt with Negreanu scooping up a huge win in today’s session.

Back in the game: Negreanu takes the lead

polks vs negreanu live

While the challenge took a short break, today’s session puts Negreanu back in the lead for over $155k. Viewed as the underdog, Negreanu is not letting it out easily and has shown himself as a strong contender for the said challenge. Seeing the back and forth tally of wins, poker fans are excitedly tuning in to the latest updates on the neck and neck battle. Below is a short recap of the three recent sessions concluded.

Session 5: 365 hands online on

Claiming the lead, Negreanu booked a huge win in the challenge’s fifth session, securing over $206k in winnings across 365 hands. This puts the Poker Hall of Famer in the lead for $25k overall. Polk commented on his Twitter page how his opponent was making less and less errors in other pots, making the 4-1 favorite joke around about the session’s results and apparently, his biggest loss so far.

Additionally, he followed the tweet saying, “Im not going to spend all day every day studying and then also do vids. I dont give 2 shits about making content when im playing 40k hunl.” With everything going on and the amount of money and reputation at stake, no one can blame the heads up pro for focusing on the roller-coaster of a challenge instead of making media content.

Session 6: 637 hands online on

A longer session than usual, the duo continued to play a total of 637 hands extending the initial 300-hand mark. Through the first three hours, Negreanu was holding a slight lead up until the last half hour where an unfortunate river caused him once again an $80k pot. In a three-bet preflop pot, Negreanu instantly flopped two pair against Polk’s pocket Aces. A continuation bet from Polk on the flop saw Negreanu shoving all-in which undeniably, met a snap-call from Polk. Unfortunately for Negreanu, a King on the river counterfeited his two-pair giving Polk the decent size pot. Polk continued to scoop up a few more pots here and there, ending the session with a profit of over $99k, putting him back in the lead for less than two buy-ins once again.

“We are almost 10% of the way through and its neck and neck. Was a much quieter session than normal today despite being a longer one.”, Polk noted.

Session 7: 591 hands online on

After a short disruption brought by a contention of the rules, today’s session was a swing in Negreanu’s direction, who booked another win of $222k over 591 hands. His biggest win so far, Negreanu revealed in the GGPoker live stream post match interview how he thinks his play is improving after each session. Despite being in the lead, Polk remains a favorite according to live odds from Poker Shares. With over 9,000 hands left to be played out and both players putting in a ton of work, the victory remains uncertain judging from the rate the results have been going in the past sessions.

Negreanu proceeded to share his excitement on social media saying, “Wrote in my journal this morning that I was going to win $218k in today’s session. Ended up winning $222k and am back in the lead in a seesaw battle!”

Polk on the other hand, tweeted “Lowest point in the challenge yet. Luckily only about 4 buyins or so. Looking forward to getting in a lot of volume tomorrow and friday.” after yet again another hefty loss.

Latest tally

With 7 sessions and a total of 2,965 hands completed, Negreanu is in the lead for a recorded profit of $155,206.89, roughly about four buy-ins in the $200/$400 match. Play will continue tomorrow with volume expected to increase next week, according to Polk.

Session Hands Completed Daniel Negreanu Doug Polk
1 200 $116,500 ($116,500)
2 424 ($218,792) $218,792
3 382 ($166,239) $166,239
4 366 $87,166 ($87,166)
5 365 $206,994.59 ($206,994.59)
6 637 ($93,542.68) $93,542.68
7 591 $222,832.70 ($222,832.70)


Avatar photo

Janette Dee

Graduated from De La Salle University, Janette works as a full time teacher in Manila, Philippines. She has long joined the local poker community as a recreational player for the last decade. Having a natural love for the game, she decided to branch out into a different avenue of poker. Currently, Janette works for Somuchpoker as a content writer reporting local and international news for the site.

More Posts - Website