How To Play Like Daniel Negreanu


Ever wondered what goes on in the mind of a professional poker player? In this article, we will share some strategies that Daniel Negreanu uses in his casino games. Additionally, players can learn a ton about Ignition Poker from this link! Continue reading and you may very well be on your way to becoming the next Daniel.

Who is Daniel Negreanu?

For those who are unaware of whom this Daniel is, he is a professional poker player who has successfully clinched six World Series of Poker bracelets as well as two World Poker Tour championship titles. Daniel has always preferred tournament poker over cash games, as he gets to win a trophy and/or big prizes while playing poker in his preferred style. While doing what he likes, Daniel has managed to be one of the biggest winners of the live tournament, with nearly 40 million dollars in prize money.

The diverse stack sizes that are available in a tournament poker game are what makes it different from simple cash games we can find in casinos. When using this to your advantage, it allows for players to determine which strategy will be the best to execute during the tournament. A common mistake that Daniel has witnessed in tournaments would be players blowing off their winnings due to bluffing and trying to win the tournament at the early stages. As such, it is crucial to plan properly on which strategy would work better, as games in online casinos and tournaments have their slight differences.

Other than that, there is also the concept of the Independent Chip Model that professional players use in tournament poker games.

What is Independent Chip Model?

Unlike its name, Independent Chip Model provides users the knowledge of the profitability of a decision rather than the value of the chips. It helps players to find out the difference in the chip’s value as the game progresses. This is an important function as the thought of money start to linger in the minds of the players.

The model is important to the success of players, especially when the long-term goal is for maximum profit. By keeping the model in mind, it helps players to keep their cool in a situation when a huge sum of prize money is being offered on the table. However, if the goal is to win the tournament, then taking the maximum value at any opportunity may be the best yet not the most profitable choice.

How does Daniel Negreanu Win?

Simply by sticking to his nine tournament poker strategy that he has gathered from his experience. After competing in countless tournaments, Daniel has learned and come up with several tips he abides by to keep his winning streaks up.

1. Slow And Steady

In the beginning, it is advisable to play conservatively as it is crucial to surviving through the early stages of the tournament, rather than earning the most chips. Although it is not possible to win the tournament in the initial stage, players are still prone to losing most of their chips. However, when players are matched with opponents that are playing tight, it would be wise to open up the game as a counter to gather more chips under your hands.

2. Look Out For Potential Cards

Many combinations may be best for the early game. Some include connectors with the same suits and pairs, these cards have lesser risk yet have the potential for a big reward. In the late game, off-suit aces may be good for late position shoves with shallow stacks. However, such cards may not be the best for the early game.

3. Patience Is Key

If you notice that you are increasing the size of your blinds aggressively in the initial stage, it is an indication that you are moving too fast. Players have to be on their A-game, especially during turbo tournaments, where your focus should be on the value than survival. Beginners tend to make the mistake of building a large chip stack only to lose it all when trying to clutch the title of the champion. For large-scale events as such, it is important to have patience and discipline. 

4. Keep Your Stack Safe

Upon securing a huge stack, while you are in the middle portion of the game, it is important to protect your stack rather than act as a bully. Upon moving forward towards the bubble stage, this huge stack will be your advantage to apply pressure upon short-stacked players. However, you have to play smart against players who have a similar or bigger stack.

5. Get Through Middle Stages

Many players identify the middle stages as the danger zone. Most players find that they have to adjust their strategy when they have less than 20 big blinds during games in the danger zone. Instead of playing hands that are open for speculation, players should tighten their range towards stronger hands. Such cards will allow players to move out of the danger zone by stealing pots and building back their stacks.

6. Do Not Expect Too Much From Bubble Stage 

Being one of the more exciting portions of the tournament, often times players execute plans and strategies that were never seen before. Most players who are still alive during this period will most like to get a prize. However, players with short stacks will feel the pressure to stay alive longer, thus doing moves that may be unexpected.

7. Know Where You Stand

Knowing your card’s potential is important as it indicates if you are in a good or bad place. Players with short stacks should start to play conservatively to ensure their survival. However, those with big stacks will have the opportunity to leverage their stack and use it against their opponents. However, it is crucial to not get caught up with other big stacks to prevent unexpected outcomes during the tournament.

8. Do Not Make Bad Calls

Although players with short stacks will tend to play conservatively, they will not hesitate to go all-in when they have strong hands. Therefore, players should be aware to not make loose calls.

9. How Tight Is Tight?

For players with a middle stack during the bubble stage, gameplay will most likely be tight. To avoid clashing with bigger stacks, while trying not to lose the chips that are on hand. Further losses incurred will also mean that players will soon have a short stack. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that players do not take it too far with their strategies. Like a tightrope, balance is important for survival.


Although we may not be like Daniel Negreanu overnight just from practicing his style and tips, we are still able to get better at poker itself. Keep these tricks in mind when you play poker, it may very well provide you with an upper hand.

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