Exclusive: Negreanu on Berkey beef – “We both did a good job of peak arrogance and condescension”

Adam Hampton
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Posted on: February 7, 2024 12:57 pm EST

Daniel Negreanu has opened up to PokerOrg regarding his recent online feud with Matt Berkey.

In an exclusive video interview with poker content creator Kiero – watch the whole thing below – Negreanu sums up the spat so far. He also responds to calls from the community for this beef to be settled the old-fashioned way: with a heads-up match.

And there’s more than playground drama: Negreanu also gives his opinions on how he believes GTO thinking should be used, and reveals how his peers who release training videos are giving him an edge against them.

You can check out Negreanu’s summary of the Berkey situation below, but we’d definitely recommend watching the whole 19-minute interview.

If you’re looking for a primer on what exactly happened, and how it escalated so quickly, here’s Daniel’s take on how things developed.

“When I do it, nobody likes it, and I don’t like when he does it either” – Daniel Negreanu

Jonathan Little posts something, some generic advice Berkey took issue with, and instead of saying, ‘hey, I disagree with you because of this’, he said something to the effect of, ‘anyone who thinks this has a seat in my game and I’ll give them 3% back’… the reason you would offer this is because you think the person’s a bad poker player, they’re stupid, you’re mocking, you’re degrading them.

“I stuck up for Jonathan Little. Then Berkey’s arrogance and condescension came out, which triggered mine. That’s my go-to as well, to be arrogant and condescending. And then it became a back-and-forth about the nitty-gritty of the hand, like, who can be more arrogant and more condescending in a short period of time. I feel like we both did a good job of peak arrogance and condescension.

“I know that’s one of my traits, a character flaw: when people come at me, I usually come back with some arrogance… I’ve never heard [Berkey] acknowledge that the biggest part of the reason why he’s at the forefront of every beef isn’t because of what he’s trying to accomplish, it’s the way in which he chooses to. And it comes from arrogance, being condescending, speaking down to people as though you’re the authority on all things.

Nobody likes that. When I do it nobody likes it, and I don’t like when he does it either.”

Heads-up for rollz?

As is often the case when two poker titans clash, fans are wondering if this beef will be settled with a heads-up battle on the felt. Or, if you ask some, in the ring…

If it did come to a throwdown (with cards, that is, not fists), Negreanu certainly isn’t lacking confidence when it comes to his opponent.

“Berkey’s been Berkey for a long time, I get along fine with him, I always did…I don’t have any personal goals, down the road, to stand up to this guy. Listen, they built an entire game around people who have beefs with him. This is sort of his thing now.

“If I had to play him, I’ll play him, whatever. It’s not like I’d be all that concerned. I’m playing Berkey, right? I had to play Doug Polk – that is a challenge where I knew I’d be a significant underdog, but we’re not talking about Doug Polk, we’re talking about Berkey. Berkey! So, what am I worried about?

“Actually, there’s more to lose in that one, right? Because if you lose to Doug Polk, it’s like, okay, well, you were supposed to lose. But then there’s more pressure because if you lose to Berkey, bro? Sheeeeit…

Anyone else hearing the sound of shots fired?

Check out the full video above, and sling us your details in the banner below to sign up for TheOrg – our free weekly email with all the news, views (and, yep, sometimes gossip) from the poker world. We have a feeling we may not have seen the last of this one…

Images courtesy of PokerGO / WPT