Second half of Polk Negreanu grudge match underway; Polk breaks $1 million lead in latest session

Having reached the halfway mark of 12,500 hands to end the year, underdog Daniel Negreanu greeted 2021 with the decision to move forward and continue the second half of the popular match. The six-time bracelet winner had a standing deficit of over $770k after 22 sessions yet he remains determined to finish the whole 25,000 agreed number of hands in a mission to overcome his heads up pro opponent, Doug Polk. While Negreanu had a strong start for the year having bagged five consecutive winning sessions, the last couple of matches have been brutal for the iconic Poker Hall of Famer.

To date, the duo has battled for a total of 30 sessions to complete 17,878 hands. With an action-packed session yesterday, Polk successfully broke the $1 million mark having won almost $300k across 770 hands. The latest session is currently Polk’s fourth winning session in a row, putting Negreanu in a massive downswing. Having added over $518k to his lead this past week, Negreanu is in definite need of some advantage for the remaining crucial 7,000 hands.

Huge win for Polk this week


While Polk has been steadily dominating the exciting grudge match, the 32-year old semi-retired pro has finally smashed the seven-figure mark for the first time. The latest session holds the record for his second most profitable session, adding $298,984.93 to his already 17 buy-in lead.

Clairvoyance as it may seem, Polk shared a bout of enthusiasm for the day’s session prior to the game saying, “Looking forward to today’s session. Something tells me it’s going to be a very lucky one.” True enough, his wave of run good continued on with a series of tweets consisting of interesting hands posted on his social media page for poker fans to see.

An unfortunate turnout to start the day, opponent Negreanu rivered his two outer for a boat costing Polk a $55k pot. About a dozen more amusing tweets can be seen on the younger pro’s page keeping viewers more engaged in the thrilling match.

While Polk encountered a share of bad turn and river cards, his overall aggression in the end paid off for a big score. Winning big flips and cooler pots also however, did help Polk recover from his $300k downswing earlier this month.

Enthusiastically, Polk ended the day with confidence ready to fight through the remaining sessions saying, “Finally broke a million. Had so many big hands today… nice to get a big win after so many difficult sessions. Went on a 500k downer but recovered and am ready to finish this thing out.”

Downhill for Negreanu

While Negreanu has positively decided to push through with the second half of the match, it seems that the long-time pro will need more than luck on his side for the upcoming sessions. Down for more than a million dollars, the next few games will be crucial for the GGPoker ambassador. His strong start for the year of five consecutive wins totalling to over $300k has since been recovered by Polk, putting an even bigger dent on the icon’s bankroll.

With the streams equally as entertaining as the figures’ post game interviews, fellow pros such as Patrick Leonard shared their amusement on social media with the duo drawing flak on each other. In the video where underdog Negreanu can be seen ranting about his unfortunate run throughout the match, Polk was quick to defend himself with his massive lead further solidifying his edge on the heads up field. Delighting everyone with humor, Polk can be seen mocking his opponent’s complaints in a playful yet funny manner.

As the match draws closer to its end with over 70% concluded, it is definitely possible to see an extended number of hands given the reactions of the two pros. Negreanu previously noted his willingness to even play up to 100,000 hands as to which Polk was quick to accept. However, with a standing seven-figure loss, things might ultimately change with Negreanu accepting a heavy defeat instead.

Latest tally

After 30 sessions of back and forth swings, Polk continues to hold a strong lead of $1,002,595.59 across 17,878 hands. The match is expected to conclude after the completion of the agreed total of 25,000 hands. Judging from the volume of hands per session, the overall winner will likely be known in more or less ten more games.

Viewers and poker fans can continue to tune in to the live stream of the exciting match on GGPoker TV and Polk’s official Youtube channel. Play will resume on Monday, Wednesday and Friday next week at 2:30pm.


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)
8 457 $24,256.82 ($24,256.82)
9 377 ($205,521.74) $205,521.74
10 852 ($117,624.38) $117,624.38
11 416 ($120,023.59) $120,023.59
12 684 ($332,178.14) $332,178.14
13 476 $17,780.32 ($17,780.32)
14 788 $13,015.31 ($13,015.31)
15 452 $46,581.88 ($46,581.88)
16 824 ($160,348.99) $160,348.99
17 662 ($101,713.33) $101,713.33
18 980 ($173,362.61) $173,362.61
19 834 $143,642.37 ($143,642.37)
20 534 $117,962.28 ($117,962.28)
21 904 ($114,140.26) $114,140.26
22 279 $40,214.10 ($40,214.10)
23 500 $27,005.80 ($27,005.80)
24 750 $98,579.92 ($98,579.92)
25 750 $27,945.80 ($27,945.80)
26 750 $132,648.63 ($132,648.63)
27 600 ($119,609.84) $119,609.84
28 650 ($26,198.60) $26,198.60
29 608 ($73,728.29) $73,728.29
30 770 ($298,984.93) $298,984.93


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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.

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