Phil Hellmuth, Daniel Negreanu play High Stakes Duel II rematch tonight

Geoff Fisk
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Posted on: May 5, 2021 6:07 pm EDT

Winner take all heads-up match for $200,000 airs on PokerGO

The first High Stakes Duel II match between Phil Hellmuth and Daniel Negreanu garnered major hype, with Hellmuth taking the win in the heads-up challenge.

The rematch between the two poker legends arrives tonight. High Stakes Duel II Round 2 airs on PokerGO at 8 pm ET, with $200,000 on the line in the winner-take-all sit & go.

The first match went the way of Hellmuth, as the “Poker Brat” battled back from the brink of elimination to score an improbable win. That opening-round match played out with $100,000 at stake.

Hellmuth collected the $100k prize, and per the rules of High Stakes Duel, Negreanu had the option of challenging his fellow Poker Hall of Famer to a double-or-nothing rematch. Negreanu invoked the rematch clause, leading to tonight’s event.

The winner from tonight’s High Stakes Duel II takes a $200,000 payday, with each player putting up $100,000.

If Hellmuth wins, Negreanu can challenge one last time. If Negreanu wins, Hellmuth can challenge for another rematch.

In either scenario, Round 3 of the heads-up match would play as a winner-take-all sit & go for $400,000, and each player would put up $200,000. If either player declines to push for a Round 3 after tonight, the Round 2 winner is declared the reigning High Stakes Duel champion.

If that happens, any player can challenge tonight’s winner in a $400,000 match, with the challenger’s seat open for 30 days.

Hellmuth, Negreanu putting on a show for the poker world

Both players in tonight’s match stand as legends in the game. Hellmuth and Negreanu persist as poker icons, and the two pros strike unmistakable personas that transcend multiple eras of the game.

The poker acumen of each could spark debate about which player is better in 2021. Without a doubt, however, both Negreanu and Hellmuth are masters of their cultivated public personas.

The first chapter of the Hellmuth-Negreanu saga ended up as one of the most-anticipated poker matches in recent memory. Both players, along with PokerGO, did a masterful job of building anticipation for Round 1.

At the “apex” of that hype came this exchange from the Round 1 pregame show:

Hellmuth’s coining of “Apex Predator Shit” went down as an instant classic in poker lore. Negreanu and moderator Nick Schulman offered pitch-perfect reactions to Hellmuth’s promotional antics.

Can Round 2 of High Stakes Duel II capture the magic from the previous round? The opening-round match went on for six hours, with Negreanu holding 97,000 chips to Hellmuth’s 3,000 at one point.

Hellmuth began chipping away at the lead, however, eventually taking the advantage and closing out the marathon match with the win. Hellmuth’s comeback win earned the praise of many in the poker community, as the 15-time WSOP bracelet winner continues to find ways to win heads-up matches on the PokerGO stage.

Hellmuth goes into tonight’s challenge on a four-match winning streak on High Stakes Duel. He downed Antonio Esfandiari in three straight matches on the first run of the series, and can continue to build his heads-up legend with another win tonight.

Featured image source: Twitter