Daniel Negreanu has come out fighting for the second half of his heads-up poker match against Doug Polk.
Negreanu has shaved $286,180.15 off a deficit that stood at $770,254.08 after the first 12,500 hands of their challenge. Despite the recent run, Polk is still up $484,073.93.
Negreanu and Polk are playing heads-up No-limit Hold’em at stakes of $200-$400 (a $40,000 initial buy-in for each session). The match is being played two tables at a time online on WSOP.com after the first 200 hands were played live at the PokerGO studio by the Aria.
Polk praised Negreanu on Twitter after Monday’s session, in which Negreanu won $132,648.63.
“I gotta say (Negreanu) is playing just night and day better than at the start of the challenge,” Polk tweeted. “I still think I have the edge but I wouldn’t be surprised if its pretty low at this point. Gotta give credit where credit is due.”
Negreanu responded: “Thank you sir. It’s been fun.”
I gotta say @RealKidPoker is playing just night and day better than at the start of the challenge. I still think I have the edge but I wouldn't be surprised if its pretty low at this point. Gotta give credit where credit is due.
— Doug "Truck Driver" Polk (@DougPolkVids) January 12, 2021
The cordiality has been in stark contrast to the hostility that led to the match.
Negreanu, a 46-year-old Las Vegas resident, is a six-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner with $42 million in live tournament earnings, according to the Hendon Mob Poker Database.
Polk, a 31-year-old Henderson resident, is a three-time WSOP bracelet winner with more than $9 million in tournament earnings. But he made his name in poker by beating the best players in the world in heads-up No-limit Hold’em online, while Negreanu is known primarily as a live multitable tournament player.
Before the match, Polk was a -556 favorite to win on pokershares.com (Negreanu +410).