This is the second article of a continuous weekly series that gives you a unique opportunity to get a poker strategy question answered by one of your favorite pros. Keep an eye on Poker Central’s Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram page as every Monday we will be posting the pro of the week. Read last week’s edition of this article series featuring Bryn Kenney right here.
None of the pros featured on Poker Central’s “Ask a Pro” need an introduction, but it’s always fun to dive into the numbers and results of the world’s best players. This week we’ve asked Daniel Negreanu to answer some questions from our fans and followers on social media, and let’s just say that there aren’t many more qualified players out there!
Negreanu currently ranks second on poker’s all-time money list with nearly $40 million in career earnings, having lead those rankings for many years before Justin Bonomo overtook him with his recent Big One for One Drop win.
In 2018, Negreanu has $4.5 million in earnings to date, already making this the second best year in terms of money cashed for in his career. At the 2018 Super High Roller Bowl, Negreanu recorded the second biggest score of his career by finishing second to Bonomo for $3,000,000. Relive Daniel Negreanu’s preparation and play during the Super High Roller Bowl in PokerGO’s original series INSIDERS. Now, let’s get to the questions!
Should anyone play as tight as I do?
— Allen Kessler (@AllenKessler) October 9, 2018
Is Tight Right?
Allen Kessler was quick with his question, and due to the nature of his status as one of the tightest players in the world, we passed it on to Daniel.
“First and foremost,” Negreanu said, “You’re going to have to ask yourself an important question. What are your goals? If your goals are to actually win money playing poker, then it will not be possible to play as tight as Allen Kessler. If you’re there to play and complain as long as possible? Then you should probably play even tighter than Allen Kessler.”
Next up is a question from @PotatoSol who wonders what his strategy should be as a mid-to-low stack after the bubble bursts. “Should I be trying to outlast other small stacks to get pay jumps, or should I be going aggressively for the blinds and to double up?”
Negreanu answers, “The pay jumps are so small after the bubble bursts that you shouldn’t overcompensate by worrying about those small increases because tournaments are so top-heavy. You want to finish in the Top 3 and if you’re playing tight to outlast other short stacks, you’ll decrease your chances of hitting a big payday.”
Want to hear Daniel Negreanu talk about one of the biggest hands of his career as a tournament player? Check out Hand Histories on PokerGO in the player below. Find all episodes of Hand Histories right here, exclusively on PokerGO.
Warren Brooks dropped in a tough question that potentially has many answers, as he wondered, “What is one mistake you see most often made by amateur players?”
Negreanu answers, “The one thing I see most often from amateur players is limping in rather than raising and playing too many hands by limping. You’re typically going to want to avoid limping in, especially with weak hands out of position.”
Mike on Twitter is curious about something that affects all of us that play poker. From time to time it’s hard to avoid going on tilt, and he wants to know, “How do you avoid being on tilt when it’s not going your way?”
Negreanu answers, “Avoiding tilt comes with experience. I use a little trick, allowing myself to mentally vent about the situation by thinking something like, ‘This idiot should’ve never played that hand, he’s never going to win the tournament!’ and after that thought passes, I refocus on how I want to experience myself and my focus. So, I allow myself to experience what I went through and then move on from it very quickly.”
Last but not least, David Weyrick jumped on top of Negreanu’s recent study process and asked, “Since you started studying how the young player approach the game, what is the biggest surprises or eye-opener that you’ve incorporated into your game?”
Negreanu answers, “The biggest takeaway is learning to be more balanced with my ranges. In some cases, my betting range and my checking range were too week because I was betting too often with a strong hand, and checking too often when I didn’t. If I checked back, my opponents could bet the turn and river and I didn’t have a good enough range to call with. Now, I check back stronger hands more often and by checking back more, you make both your betting and checking range stronger and that’s what I needed to do. This has helped me a lot in the high rollers that I’ve played.”
Want more Daniel Negreanu talk and play? Catch both nights of “Power Play” week on Poker After Dark on-demand right now on PokerGO.