Daniel Negreanu has emerged triumphant as the winner of PokerGO’s High Stakes Duel 4 after topping Eric Persson and Doug Polk in back-to-back, heads-up matches to win the duel’s $200,000 prize. The specialty event hosted by PokerGo pitted one of the company’s prominent co-owners, Negreanu, against any and all challengers in the made-for-streaming competition.
Maverick Gaming CEO Eric Persson stepped in to be Negreanu’s first challenger, putting up $50,000 to play Negreanu, but he fell to the popular pro. The rules of the duel allowed Persson to re-challenge Negreanu at a higher $100,000 buy-in, and at first Persson planned to make that second challenge, but later backed out. The challenge’s rules allowed any other player to then step in to face Negreanu, and that’s when Polk agreed to take part.
Negreanu and Polk were once bitter foes but have enjoyed a much friendlier relationship of late, though of course that mattered little as the challenge itself played out. Polk moved out to an early lead in the opening levels, but the lead reversed in a big hand where Negreanu flopped the nut flush and Polk unsuccessfully attempted to push Negreanu out of the pot.
The big hand reversed the stacks, and Negreanu padded his advantage from there. The final hand found Polk flopping a straight draw and pushing the betting action on the flop and turn for the rest of his chips, but Negreanu paired a pocket ace on the turn, called Polk’s semi-bluff all-in push, and claimed the win when the river card bricked out.
“The hard thing about playing against Doug is that he isn’t one of those people that are afraid to put you in really tough spot,” Negreanu told PokerGO. “Sometimes you’re going to have to dig deep and make the call with marginal hands like that last hand.”
Negreanu also opted to end the High Stakes Duel 4 challenge after posting the two consecutive wins, as the challenge’s rules allow. “I’m done,” said Negreanu. “I win the belt, right? I don’t want to put the belt on the line. But they can come back and get it in Round 1 if they want it, and I defend it that way.”