You do not need a hype machine when the two combatants are doing their own job hyping it up. At this point, I wish we could fast forward to November 1st and watch Daniel Negreanu and Doug Polk finally get their highly-anticipated heads-up grudge match going because it's going to be a doozy, but the latest spat about preflop charts is just a bit silly.
Okay, Polk and Negreanu will two-table $200/$400 NL in two-hour sessions (hopefully every other day) with a goal to reach 25,000 hands, but there's an opt out at the midway point where the loser can either walk away or ask to bump up the stakes.
The next bone of contention would be whether or not players would show hole cards and preflop charts.
Negreanu wanted a more rustic and old-school heads-up battle. I doubt Polk still needs those charts, but maybe he's just sticking to his guns to tilt Negreanu.
"It's not all that complicated for preflop poker, we're not making any decisions before the flop, so essentially we're eliminating the skill of preflop poker and delaying it to the flop," said Negreanu on the DAT Podcast.
At first, the charts were not that big of a deal to Negreanu, but he admitted he did not know enough about those preflop charts. However, his advisors said that he should proceed with caution.
"A week ago you didn't care about using preflop ranges or not, now you are completely up in arms that they are cheating. You are such a little bitch, I cannot wait to clean you out," tweeted Polk.
According to PokerShares, Negreanu is the underdog and +355 on the moneyline (a $100 wager will net you a $355 profit), or approximately 3.5 to 1 odds (aka 7/2 odds). Polk is a -455 favorite, which means you have to lay $455 to win $100.
Hand charts? We don't need no stinkin' hand charts!
In one sense, I get it from Negreanu's perspective. He's the underdog in this battle, so why would Polk need extra assistance against him. Then again, I also get the other side in that it's just standard practice already for many online pros and part of the modern game and that Negreanu can use them too.
There's a $1 million max deposit every 30 days on WSOP.com. So, hopefully they won't need a reload.
Look as someone in the sports world as a sportswriter, there's nothing better than the hype leading up to a fight, whether it's an old boxing match or a current cage fight. Fighters are supposed to talk shit to one another in an attempt to get inside each other's head. So in that sense, is this just pre-fight hype? Or are these two really needling each other in a non-marketing sense? How about both? They understand the hype machine, but they genuinely do not like each other.
In my old neighborhood, if you had a problem with someone, you stepped outside and you whaled on one another for a few minutes until someone got KO'd or until both combatants ran out of breath. At that point, it was over. Dunzo. Fini. Complete. The beef was squashed and everyone moved on with their lives.
But in the modern world, the two cannot truly settle their differences because dueling is outlawed (I think it's still outlawed, even in New Jersey, but you never know with the state of Nevada, they could have a common ground combat clause that allows two individuals to shoot each other to bits so long as they were not withing Las Vegas city limits. Alas, heads-up for rolls it is!