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Daniel Negreanu Getting Serious About Online Poker

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It's been fun following Negreanu's microstakes bankroll challenge but he's really stepped it up, playing high limit NLHE on PokerStars.com.

This month, Negreanu's put in over 3,000 hands at $100/$200 NLH 6-max. He started off really strong, KidPoker's first $100/$200 session after his renewed interest in online cash games netted him almost $60k. By his 6th session he was up almost $200k after a huge $100k win (replay session).

After that, he suffered some losses but overall he's still up over $40k at $100/$200 NLH 6-max.

He's also put in some time in $25/$50 heads up and $25/$50 PLO Full Ring.

The chart to the left shows his recent performance on PokerStars.com cash tables. I'll try to keep it updated but I can't claim it's 100% accurate.

Does Daniel Negreanu Multi-Table?

Mostly, no. For someone that's played one table live most of his life, learning to focus on 4 tables online can be a difficult adjustment but he seems to really have been working hard at improving his online game. He's even using Holdem Manager now.

This morning Daniel Negreanu tried multitabling. He played 4 tables of $5/$10 NLH (6-max). After about an hour (369 hands), he was up almost $3k (1.5BB/100). Not bad. As he gets more comfortable online and makes further adjustments to his game I think he'll start multi-tabling more at lower limits.

If you missed the action, you can replay Negreanu's Multi-Tabling Session.

Update: Today 3/29/2010, Negreanu is playing two $100/$200 6-max NLHE tables! These are the new $100/$200 tables with a 100BB min/200BB max buy-in.

Micro Stakes Challenge Not Over

Negreanu has been working on a bankroll challenge, trying to run $10 into $100k. He started at $0.01/$0.02 NLH Full Ring and has worked his way up to $0.25/$0.50 NLH. He managed to get up his challenge bankroll up to $272.18 but he hit a rough spot at $0.25/$0.50 NLH and dropped down to $80.38. He played a couple of more sessions recently and Negreanu's microstakes bankroll challenge is now up to $113.23.

Even though he's been having fun at higher limits, he's stated on a the twoplustwo.com forums that he's still committed to this challenge.
I have been doing the micro limit challenge grind for a while and I still plan on continuing with it, but I'm not really going to learn much playing at those levels and I wanted to expedite the process.
Whether he keeps it up remains to be seen. Now that he's playing higher limits it may be hard to start grinding for pocket change. I know I'd have a hard time doing it. Lucky for me I don't have to roll to play much higher :) If he does I'd be very impressed with his determination.

He's commented on his online cash game play on his latest blog entry. One thing that still leaves me feeling doubtful about his commitment to the micros is this statement.
People always have an opinion, and may believe I'm going about this the wrong way and should instead be multi-tabling the $5-$10 games. While they are entitled to their opinion, I couldn't disagree more. If you can afford to play against the best players on the site, then you can learn the fundamentals from them. I want to play against the best and while there are certainly great lower limit players online, I'm not interested in beating those games. My goal is to compete at the higher levels. I don't think playing smaller would hurt, but I just don't think it's necessary at all since the stakes I'm currently playing at are very comfortable for me.
The only thing that might keep him building his micro stakes bankroll is his commitment to challenge himself. I don't disagree with he's saying at all but it would suck. It's not often people with small bankrolls get to play with such big names. Every once in a while Humberto Brenes jumps into small stakes cash games while he's waiting for the big Sunday tournaments on PokerStars.com to start and attracts a lot of railers.

Negreanu Seeking Advice From Online Regs

KidPoker acknowledges there are leaks in his NLH cash games but he seems to be seeking help to try and plug them.

Based on his forum posts, it looks like he's getting advice from some of his poker buddies that have more experience in online cash games and he's even posting on twoplustwo.com asking for advice on specific hands. You can check them out here and here.

Even the posters that are knocking him are inadvertently helping him by giving him very detailed reasons why he "sucks".

Can Negreanu Become a Top Online Pro?

Lots of forum posters have been criticizing his cash game based on his recent sessions and his performance on televised cash games. They don't have much hope for him improving.

I disagree. Negreanu is one of the top live tournament players who also knows his way around cash games. He's been playing poker for many years and has been very successful. He's even had a chance to play with some of the top cash game players. He obviously understands the game.

More importantly he's acknowledged he needs to improve his cash game skills and now he's working on doing just that. You can't solve a problem without first recognizing there is one, and identifying what the problem is. He's done that and is working on fixing it. Even though people are ragging on him, he's not letting that stop him.

I still have doubts about his micro-stakes bankroll challenge (Analysis of Daniel Negreanu's Bankroll Challenge) but that's mostly due to the bankroll management strategy he's using. I think he'll be a winning player at high stakes online games.

The key differences are he's playing 6-max and he's reloading when he drops below the max buy-in so he's always playing deep stacked. He's even gotten PokerStars to create some deepstack $100/$200 NLHE tables that have a min buy-in of $20,000 and a max buyin of $40,000.

His looser style of play is more suited to 6-Max than Full Ring and his small ball poker strategy does better when deep stacked.

Success is never guaranteed, but he's doing everything right to be successful.

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