Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Negreanu’s Intentions

Folks have had fun with Daniel Negreanu’s frequent statements of his “intentions,” often delivered via Twitter, whenever he heads into a new day of tournament poker.

A short while before play begins, the newly-inducted Poker Hall of Famer will send his more than 365,000 followers or so a tweet starting “My intention is” with the rest spelling out some specific goal he intends to realize by the end of that day. Usually he lists a specific chip count for which he’s aiming, while sometimes he adds other less tangible intentions, too.

As he has explained in various forums, Negreanu’s motive for stating such intentions has to do with maintaining a positive, optimistic attitude about what he hopes to accomplish, not any particular superstition or other irrational purpose (as far as I’m aware).

About a half-hour ago Negreanu tweeted out his intentions for today, Day 7 of the World Series of Poker Main Event, which he’ll be starting in ninth position out of the final 27, his above-average stack of 8,495,000 representing a little under 71 big blinds when play begins in just a few minutes.

“My intention for day 7 of WSOP main event is to maintain focus and intensity, be compassionate, and reach the final table with 40 million” says Negreanu. That chip goal, if reached, might well put Negreanu in the chip lead as the tourney pauses nearly four months before resuming in November.

Of course, if Negreanu does survive the whittling down from 27 to 9 and make it through today -- no matter how many chips he has -- I think many of us already have an idea what his intentions will be during the long interruption of play. Never one to shy from the limelight, nor one to demonstrate reticence regarding the promotion of poker, I think it’s safe to assume he’ll show us once and for all what good might come from having someone who is already a full-fledged poker “ambassador” slotted into the November Niner role.

Former 2+2 Pokercast co-host Mike Johnson tweeted earlier today a question that suggested a little bit of skepticism about how exactly Negreanu making the November Nine will change the status quo as far as his already considerable influence is concerned.

“WSOP ME - someone needs to explain how Daniel winning helps poker?” asks Johnson. “He’s had a huge stage to promote/be an ambassador for yrs. It would be the same.”

It’s a valid question and point, I think. And it might well be true to say that whether Negreanu realizes his intention to make it the WSOP Main Event final table or not, the difference for the larger poker community -- ultimately -- might in fact be negligible.

But I think most of us are still curious to see what comes next, should that eventuality occur. That’s why my intention is to follow closely what happens.

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Blogger Lorin Yelle said...

I'm not rooting against him (or for him), but assuming I am reading the context right, "compassion" and winning poker can not be used in the same sentence. "Ethical" and "courteous" for sure, but accumulating chips at the expense of others in a zero-sum game is not compatible with the concept of compassion.

Unless, of course, he is going to say "sorry" after winning each pot. As if that ever dulled the pain of losing... :)

7/15/2015 12:44 PM  

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