In this column, we deliver you the latest and most interesting news and gossip from our favourite poker people.
Lex Veldhuis streams again
On 8th October, after two months of absence poker legend Lex Veldhuis announced his return to the Twitch world with a tweet.
— Lex Veldhuis (@LexVeldhuis) October 8, 2020
“Stream 3.0” means a new studio set-up that he built after moving to his new home with his girlfriend. But moving wasn’t the only reason his stream was quiet for so long. Lex grieved the passing of his father.
On Sunday, 11th October Lex had an emotional return to Twitch, just spending 3 hours chatting with his community and talking about everything that happened and his plans for the future.
He was clearly touched by all the well-wishes and the love he received from his community and we are of course thrilled to have Lex back on Twitch as well.
Polk & Negreanu – the drama continues
Things looked like they were set and ready to go for 1st November. Finally Daniel Negreanu and Doug Polk were to battle out their feud in a Heads-up match, proving once and for all who is the better poker player.
The assumption that the hatchet will be buried afterwards is probably wrong, but at least it’s an attempt to quiet the ongoing arguments between the two. In the meantime it’s gone the opposite way.
Even the arrangement of the duel has been causing drama on all fronts and although a date and most of the match’s details were set, the discussions are not over yet.
The latest argument that ensued between the two is about the use of pre-flop charts. In Polk’s opinion using pre-flop charts is fine and he is not considering this as assistance or even Real-time Assistance (RTA). Daniel has a different view on this.
In Negreanu’s eyes, pre-flop charts are crutches and can be considered RTAs. He makes it clear in a tweet that Polk is the one trying to swing everything to his advantage in this match, pointing out that Polk already is the favourite as playing Heads-up is clearly Polk’s specialty.
1/3 you are a 6-1 favorite in the betting markets yet you feel the need to use a cheat sheet?
I won’t be using a cheat sheet, why should you?
You challenged ME to a match
I agreed to YOUR game, on YOUR approved platform, and YOUR format
— Daniel Negreanu (@RealKidPoker) October 9, 2020
Doug is now offering no chart usage by both players, but he wants that both will show hole cards throughout the match. Daniel now offers showing hole cards for a portion of the transmission only.
There are still two weeks to go until the match starts and Daniel Negreanu is ready to sit down with 25 buy-ins – that’s $1 million – to battle Polk. If Polk will find more ways to prevent this match from happening remains to be seen, as it does not look like the rules are 100% clear just yet.
My heads up match will begin Nov 1st.
Details on how you can watch the match will be available soon. @PokerGO
I have about two weeks left to study, and will do my best to make it a competitive and enjoyable match for the viewers. 1/3
— Daniel Negreanu (@RealKidPoker) October 12, 2020
JRB’s half drama
The high-stakes world keeps delivering us half drama. Now we have Jean-Robert Bellande at the center of one. We do not know the details – hence ‘half drama’ – but JRB took it to Twitter with the following tweet about a text conversation he had with the notorious Dan Bilzarian:
willing to sully reputations after witnessing one 500k pot of 22 vs AQ aipf… (neither of us were in that pot). I once played a pot dbl that side w 35hh aipf. not cool @DanBilzerian and your 40m followers. not cool. pic.twitter.com/y7xCB12o9c
— Jean-Robert Bellande (@BrokeLivingJRB) October 5, 2020
What we understand is that JRB invited Bilzerian to a private game where the latter thinks there had been cheating going on. JRB himself lost $400k in the game and is trying to convince Dan Bilzerian that nothing was out of order. Bilzerian insults Bellande greatly in the messages, calling him “a cheat” and a “fat idiot”.
It’s probably better that it is half and not full drama, as all these negative public conversations about cheats in poker will not help the game we love and its acceptance into more mainstream platforms and getting more new players to participate.
Gus Hansen domesticated?
And while parts of the high stakes world keep bashing their heads in, there is one legend of the game that is walking more quietly nowadays.
Danish high stakes pro and playboy Gus Hansen seems to have settled down. In a single Instagram video in August from a DIY store he informed us that he had bought a house and that he had a pregnant girlfriend.
In addition to that a very recent Instagram photo shows him pushing a stroller with his new-born baby along a quiet street in Copenhagen.
Looks like a great summer (and autumn) for him!
Kevin Martin & JNandez join GGSquad
GGPoker has signed a few more players to their team of sponsored pros, more specifically to the GGSquad, a group of streamers and content creators.
GGPoker has announced the GGSquad in a tweet, but we are still waiting for more details on this.
In an interview with Pokernews, former PokerStars and partypoker ambassador Kevin Martin announces his own addition to the group and tells Sarah Herring a few more details on the new teams that GGPoker is putting together, which is not just the GGSquad, but also the GGHeroes and the GGCrew.
Adding Swiss poker pro Fernando ‘JNandez’ Habegger to a content creator team also does make a ton of sense. The PLO guru has been putting out training material around his favourite game for many years and he is a highly respected coach in the field.
Today I'm happy to announce that I'm officially a sponsored player for @GGPokerOfficial
— JNandez (@JNandezPoker) October 11, 2020
These are interesting developments out of the GGPoker universe and it’s going to be interesting to hear more about the different groups of ambassadors and the efforts they will be involved in to support the game of poker.
Vegas vloggers are back
Vegas has not been Vegas this year. As has the world as a whole really…
But at least a bit of normality has come back to Sin City with the most popular poker vloggers getting back to the felt and producing video content about it.
Of course the poker rooms look and feel different and not all is bad as the likes of Andrew Neeme, Johnnie Vibes, Pokerkraut, “The Trooper” or Jaman Burton report. The latter hasn’t actually produced a vlog just yet, but he posted on Instagram that he was on his first visit back in Vegas, so we are hoping for a new video to come out very soon.
If you have missed your vloggers or are interested in following along with their adventures at the poker tables, here are a few of them for you to check out on YouTube.