The day that Daniel Colman Won $15m and shocked the poker world

Voice and Script by Craig Bradshaw / Video by Bruno Thienard

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It’s July 1st 2014 and a young man stands in front of a mountain of cash in Las Vegas, stony faced. His name is Daniel Colman, and he is coerced into having his picture taken after winning $15.3M. He refuses to smile or hold any of the bricks of cash in front of him. He just won the second edition of the “Big One for one Drop” , the charity tournament organised by Guy La Liberte in favor One Drop Foundation.

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With this success he claimed the second biggest prize in Poker history. To achieve that he defeated field of 42 entries composed of a mix between top players who all paid a $1M Buy in.In the final stage of tournament he took the best on one the greatest poker stars Daniel Nagreanu. Daniel Colman‘s huge win and the subsequent storm that followed have not come from nowhere as he has been playing online poker for around 7 years prior to winning the Big One for One Drop. He claims that the allure of poker was always about strategy and competition in his eyes, and that he only wanted to play against the best, with financial gain being an accidental byproduct. Colman initially made a name for himself under the online pseudonym “mrgr33n13” Where he became one of the most successful heads up sit &go players ever to play online. While he did have a few early live tournaments where his results weren’t spectacular, when he did find good form in the live arena, he did so in exceptional fashion, going on one of the most prolific runs of live success ever seen.

It all started before the One Drop event, when Colman won the EPT Monte Carlo Super High Roller netting over $2.1 million in the process. His eight figure score at the One Drop tournament followed,before an avalanche of six and seven figure scores saw his live career cashes surge to over $26M. The young pro is in many ways, the polar opposite of the man he defeated heads up in the One Drop. Daniel Negreanu has dedicated himself to being an ambassador for poker throughout his career,but Colman‘s views on poker are paradoxically, very negative.He later states that he sees poker as having a net detrimental effect on people’s lives and that the media portrayals of poker success are completely at odds with reality. The views and actions of Daniel Colman in the wake of his victory were certainly controversial. Some viewed him as a hypocrite, and questioned why he would even play poker if he felt that way. While others praised the fact that he expressed his views to the poker world openly and stood by them, despite the storm of criticism which was certain to follow. By his own admission, Colman is conflicted about poker.He was reported as having given no interviews after his One Drop win, but he in fact gave a short interview speaking solely about the charity, requesting that all questions were in relation to that, rather than being about himself. Conflicted or hypocritical, Colman still plays live poker, and still divides opinion two years later..