The third and final Day 1 flight started Monday for the 2013 WSOP Main Event. Day IC has historically been the largest and Monday was no different. Thousands of hopefuls paid $10,000 for a seat and a chance at millions of dollars, among them was one of poker’s brightest stars – Daniel Negreanu.
Negreanu is currently in second place for both the 2013 WSOP Player of the Year and the BLUFF Player of the Year races. Less than a week ago Negreanu came close to winning his sixth bracelet but finished runner-up in the $1,500 2-7 Triple Draw event to Eli Elezra. He has six cashes on the year and is chomping at the bit for final table run in the Main Event.
What follows below is a minute-by-minute account of Negreanu’s Day 1C of the Main Event.
12:02 – Negreanu is at his table and is hyper – he dances in place, chats with the rail and talks to his tablemates. He chose to dress casually with a blue striped shirt, jeans, blue mesh hat and a bright red watch.
12:05 – The WSOP airs a video montage of Chris Moneymaker from 2003. He is at Table 402 in the Amazon Room right on the rail. At the start of play the crowd is three deep.
- Daniel Negreanu
- Peter Debane
- Jess Dioquino
- Todd Rodenborn
- Eric Berger
- Taylor Black
- Jeff Broer
- Jason Bigelow
- John Owen
12:10 – Cards are in the air and Negreanu is the small blind. “Let’s get in first hand,” he says.
“You first,” someone at the table replies.
“It doesn’t work like that in the small blind. You have to go first,” Negreanu answers.
12:15 – Negreanu opens for 250, Rodenborn calls from the small blind and the flop is A 3 9. Rodenborn checks, Negreanu bets 325 and Rodenborn folds. Negreanu flashes the A before he drags the pot.
12:17 – Negreanu opens for 250 and points to a fan on the rail, “He thinks I’m bluffing but that’s why you’re on the rail,” he jokes. Debance, Rodenborn and Black all call and the flop is T 8 6. Each player checks, the turn is J, Black bets 600 and Negreanu folds.
12:27 – Negreanu has been running the table and talking to each player individually. He asks some what they do for a living, some where the from and asks Debane where he got his hoodie from.
Negreanu stands and says quietly, “My work here is done. I’ve got it all figured out.”
12:37 – Plays the beat to Queen’s “We Will Rock You” with his chips in the big blind.
12:41 – “96,075,” Negreanu stands, turns and says. “You know what that is? It’s going to be my stack at the end of the day.”
Then he starts talking about the Rocky franchise, which he famously watches every year before the Main Event. “Rocky I is the best one, right?” a fan from the rail asks.
“No, Rocky III is my favorite and Rocky V is the lamest,” Negreanu answers.
12:42 – Negreanu pops up from his chair and says, “Want to know what’s going to be hard?”
“Getting my chips,” he states confidently.
12:43 – Negreanu stands again, “When amateurs play the Main Event want to know what they shouldn’t do?”
“Chew gum. When I grab my chips and they stop chewing…”
1:08 – Negreanu stands agains to take photos for fans on the rail, all while keeping one eye on the table. A 12 year-old girl is outside the Amazon Room and Negreanu waves to her and signs an autograph for her.
1:12 – Negreanu opens for 250 and Dioquino says, “Man I want to play hand with you.”
“You should,” Negreanu answers. “You can choose to do anything. You choose to be happy, you choose to be miserable. Life is about choices.”
1:15 – Negreanu opens to 250 from middle position and Bigelow calls from the small blind. The flop comes Q 6 3, Bigelow checks and Negreanu bets 325. Bigelow folds and Negreanu asks, “Did you have ace high? Because I do and they’re pretty.” He shows A K and drags the pot.
1:48 – A fan on the rail asks Negreanu if he knows where Matthew Ashton is sitting. Negreanu shook his head and then the fan asks about WSOP Player of the Year. “We’ll get him,” Negreanu says. “If not here then in Europe.”
2:09 – The tournament reaches the first break of the day and Negreanu has 40,450.
2:58 – Negreanu holds a conversation with a woman on the rail and tells her soda is poison. She replies that she masks it with cigarettes and the two come to a $10 prop bet where the woman has to quit smoking and drinking soda by July 9, 2014.
While he’s holding that conversation he opens for 475 and Rodenborn calls. The flop falls Q 9 3, Rodenborn checks and Negreanu bets 625. Rodenborn calls, the turn is 8, Rodenborn checks and Negreanu bets 1,575. Rodenborn check-raises to 4,000, Negreanu calls and the river comes 7. Rodenborn tosses a 5,000 bet and Negreanu wonders aloud, “What do you have….besides me beat?”
Negreanu calls, Rodenborn tables K 5 for a flush, Negreanu says he has a straight and mucks his hand.
3:20 – “Hey Daniel, have you doubled up yet?” a fan shouts from the rail.
“It’s early and not my style,” Negreanu says. “I like to chop away.”
3:28 – Negreanu opens for 475 in middle position and Berger calls. The flop is J 6 5, both players check and the turn is 7. Negreanu check-calls 650 and the river comes A. Negreanu checks a third time, Berger bet 1,600 and Negreanu folded.
3:50 – Six players, including Negreanu on the button, go to a flop of K 4 2 and everyone checks to Negreanu. He bets 1,150, everyone folds except for Owen and the turn comes Q. Both players check and the river comes J, Owen bets 2,500 and Negreanu says, “Hmmm…nope,” and folds.
“I’m pretty sure you had the best hand the whole time,” Negreanu says.
3:56 – Negreanu opens to 475 in middle position, Berger calls from the big blind and the flop comes K J 6. Berger checks, Negreanu bets 600 and Berger calls to see the 6 turn. Both players check to the J river, Berger bets 1,200, Negreanu raises to 3,500 and Berger calls.
Negreanu announces, “You’re going to win sir, good call,” and tables 8 5. Berger tables pocket sevens to take the pot.
3:57 – Negreanu opens to 475 in early position, Broer calls from the big blind and the flop comes K T 9. Both players check and the turn comes 4. Broer bets 1,000 and Negreanu tosses his cards in the muck.
After a little over an hour and 20 minutes into the second level Negreanu’s stack has slipped to 16,600.
4:18 – Negreanu stands and stretches, looks to the rail and says, “Know what I want to do?”
“Win a pot,” Negreanu says.
4:24 – Negreanu opens for 475, takes the blinds and antes and the rail cheers.
4:26 – Negreanu starts a story to no one in particular, “I was at dinner last night and guy came up to my table said ‘Dude, I love all your movies. Rounders was great.’ So this guy obviously thinks I’m Edward Norton so I figure why ruin for it him? I didn’t spoil it, told him thanks and went on with my dinner.”
4:41 – The tournament reaches the second break of the day and Negreanu has 15,425. He rushes out of the Amazon Room for an interview, but not before he stops to take a few more pictures with fans on the rail.
5:01 – Negreanu returns from break and has a flock of fans waiting for autographs and photos. He fulfills all requests with a smile.
5:13 – Negreanu goes to a flop with Rodenborn, Berger and Owen of K 7 6. Action checked to Negreanu in position and bet 1,100. The table folded, Negreanu showed Q J and celebrated “Yeah, I win a pot.”
5:22 – A new woman appeared on the rail and is swooning over being just a few feet away from Negreanu. He notices and asks how she was doing. “Oh my god, my heart is beating so fast,” she says.
Negreanu walks to her and her puts his hand on her chest, in a PG-13 fashion, and he confirms he heart is racing.
5:25 – ESPN’s Andrew Feldman walks over, Negreanu stands up and the two discuss their fantasy poker league. “I’ll never draft Shaun Deeb again,” Negreanu says. “Not even for a dollar. He spent all his time playing Open Face.”
5:29 – Negreanu opens for 650, Rodenborn calls from the small blind and Berger calls from the big blind. The flop comes J 8 4, action checks to Negreanu, he bets 1,100 and they folded. Negreanu is slightly improved his stack and is now at 15,700.
5:36 – Negreanu opens for 675 in middle position and action folds to Broer in the big blind. He calls and the flop comes 8 7 6. Broer checks, Negreanu bets 850 and Broer folds.
“Pick one,” Negreanu says as he pushes his cards to the middle of the table. Rodenborn turns up the 9 and Negreanu says, “Ok, now I’m feeling it.”
6:06 – Berger opens for 600, Negreanu calls from the big blind and the flop comes K 9 6. Both players check the flop, the turn is 3 and Negreanu bets 1,100. Berger calls, the river is 8 and Negreanu bets 2,100. Berger calls, then mucks after Negreanu tables A K.
6:20 – The table brings up the topic of Greg Merson’s recent Twitter rant about private games being held in public casinos. “It doesn’t affect me,” Negreanu says. “But I understand. I would demand to be on the list and if I see someone at the table that was below me on the list I would threaten to call gaming (commission).”
6:43 – Berger opens for 600 in early position, Negreanu calls from the small blind and Debaene raised to 1,400 from the big blind. Both players call and the flop rolls out K J T. Negreanu checks, Debaene bets 2,000, Berger calls and Negreanu folds.
7:02 – Negreanu runs out of the Amazon Room for the 90 minute dinner break. He plans a small snack for dinner and a nap to get him through the rest of the day. He will return with 14,425.
8:31 – Negreanu returns from the break looking rested. He stops for even more photos and autographs before the cards hit the air. The original nine players at the table are still at their seats and at the start of the level a 25 ante kicks in with blinds at 150/300.
Black and Broer have not returned to their seats when Berger opens for 600 on the button. Negreanu calls on the button for a J T 7 flop. Berger checks, Negreanu bets 1,000 and Berger calls for the K turn. Both players check and the A hits the river, Berger bet 2,500, Negreanu raises to 5,100 and Berger fires back with 7,500. Negrean calls, tables Q J and Berger flips over [Qx] T for a chopped pot.
At the river Negreanu stands, turns his chair and readies for a massage from a familiar face – Shannon – a massage therapist that regularly works out the kinks for Negreanu.
8:46 – Negreanu has been silent for 15 minutes for the first time all day.
8:48 – Negreanu opens in early position for 675 and Bigelow calls from the big blind. The flop is J 5 5, Bigelow checks, Negreanu bets 850 and Bigelow calls. The turn is 7, Bigelow checks again, Negreanu fires out 2,100 and Bigelow folded after a pause.
Maria Ho’s previous table was broken and she takes a seat at the table next to Negreanu’s. She comes over, gives him a hug and wishes him good luck.
8:50 – Negreanu opens for 675 under the gun and Bigelow calls from the blinds again. The flop is Q 8 7, both players check and the turn comes T. Bigelow bet 1,000 and Negreanu said, “I’m pretty sure you have the best hand now,” with heavy emphasis on the “now” as he folds.
8:52 – Berger opens fro 600, Negreanu calls from the small blind and the flop is Q 9 8. They check to the 3 turn and check again. The river comes K, Negreanu bets 1,250, Berger calls and Negreanu tables K J. Berger turns up [Kx] 8 for a rivered two pair and takes the pot.
9:20 – Someone nearby has a howling werewolf ringtone and it goes off four or five times. Negreanu finally lifts his head confused then goes back to enjoying his massage.
9:29 – He has been getting a massage for an hour and is down to 6,000.
9:36 – Berger opens for 600 and Negreanu shoves from the small blind for 5,500. The two have been sparing all day and Berger folds.
9:54 – Bigelow opens for 700 and Negreanu calls, defending his big blind. The flop is 8 7 4, both players check and the turn is K. Negreanu bets out 1,250, Bigelow folds and Negreanu is up to 7,250.
10:02 – Dioquino is the first player eliminated from the table.
10:10 – Negreanu opens for 675, Debaene raises to 2,220 and Black re-raises to 4,800. “You guys trying to send me home?” Negreanu asks. “I got plenty,” motioning to his chips.
Negreanu holds [Jx] [Jx] up highly off the table, folds and laments, “This is the best hand I’ve had all day.”
The flop falls J 3 3 and Negreanu stands from his chair and does a short lap around some tables. He makes his way over to Maria Ho’s table and tells her he just missed out on tripling up. “That’s what happens when you make good laydowns,” she says.
Negreanu ends the massage after an hour and 40 minutes. He tips Shannon very well.
10:18 – Negreanu opens for 675, Rodenborn calls and Bigelow calls. The flop comes K J T, Bigelow and Negreanu check and Rodenborn bets 1,600. Bigelow folds and Negreanu moves all in for 5,375 more. Rodenborn calls with Q T and Negreanu tables K Q and is ahead in the hand. The board finishes 7 J and Negreanu chips up to 17,200.
10:20 – Dean Baranowski takes the empty seat and the table is back to nine players.
10:30 – The tournament reaches the final break of the evening and Negreanu opens for 675. The table folds and Negreanu tables K K and says it’s the best hand he’s had all day. He goes on break with 15,250.
11:03 – Berger opens for 800 and finds calls from Black, Bigelow and Negreanu. The flop is 5 2 3 and everyone checks. The turn is T and everyone raps the table a second time. The river is 7, Negreanu bets 1,600 and everyone folds.
11:06 – Negreanu and Debaene each commit 1,300 preflop to see a A 7 6. Negreanu check-calls 1,500 and the turn comes 3. The river falls 3, Negreanu bets 3,500, Bebaene folds and Negreanu shows A Q. He has worked his stack back up to 20,000.
11:09 – “Can I get a picture with you?” Negreanu shouts to fans on the rail. After a moment of confusion they nod and Negreanu hops up for another round of pictures.
11:41 – Owen limps from the small blind and Negreanu checks his option in the big blind. The flop comes J 5 3, Owen checks and Negreanu bets 700. Owen folds and Negreanu says, “Thanks man, I finally beat you in a pot.”
11:57 – Negreanu opens for 950 under the gun and Owen call from the small blind. The flop is J T 2, Owen checks and Negreanu bets 1,250. Owen folds and Negreanu says, “I smashed that flop.” He shows A J.
12:00 – Broer opens for 900, Negreanu calls from the small blind and Debaene calls from the big blind. The flop comes A A 9, all players check and the turn is the 2. Negreanu leads for 1,500, both opponents fold. Negreanu flashes the A and is up to 17,000 after the hand.
12:10 – Negreanu’s rail is down to six people.
12:39 – Negreanu opens from under the gun to 950, Black calls and Bigelow calls. The flop comes 8 7 2, all three players check and the turn comes T. Bigelow checks, Negreanu bets 2,500 and both players fold.
12:41 – The tournament clock ticks down to ten minutes remaining and tournament officials announce that there are four more hands left in the evening.
12:48 – The day is done and Negreanu jumps up calling for bags. He finishes the day with 15,600 and will restart on Day 2b at Table 430 in the Purple Section of the Amazon Room at noon.
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