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How Canadian Daniel Negreanu Became One of the Best Poker Players in the World

One of the first poker celebrities often appearing on TV games held during the poker boom of the early 2000s, Daniel Negreanu remains one of the most recognizable poker players in the world. He’s joined by the likes of Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth, and Jason Koon.

Negreanu has earned $46.2 million in live poker events, according to The Hendon Mob database. He’s made substantially more money when you factor in earnings from the best online casino. The 47-year-old Canadian has been gambling, whether it be poker or pool hustling, since he was 16 years old and is one of the hardest players to read.

Early Life

Born to Romanian immigrants in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1974, Negreanu was good with numbers in his youth and parlayed that into a successful poker career. He began playing when he was 16 and actually quit high school a couple credits short to pursue poker full time. He began playing in local gambling halls and at charity events and won consistently.

Because of his success locally, Negreanu looked toward Las Vegas and moved there when he was of legal age (21). Of course, not every success story follows an upward trajectory. Negreanu lost much of his bankroll early on during his time in Vegas and was forced to return home to Toronto.

Undeterred, Negreanu began playing more and studying more. He spent hundreds of hours reading poker strategies and probability. He also continued to build his bankroll back in Toronto before giving Vegas another shot.

Rise to Fame in the Poker World

Negreanu had his big break in 1997, when he was named best all around player at Foxwoods’ World Poker Final. The following year, he became the youngest player ever (23) to win a World Series of Poker bracelet when he won the $2,000 Pot Limit Hold ‘Em Event.

“I was just happy to be in the money, then I was at the final table and I was like, ‘Wow, this is cool,'” Negreanu recalled. “All of a sudden, I found myself heads up in a form called Pot Limit Hold’em, which I never really played before … I won on the very last hand. An absolute what’s called a ‘coin flip’ situation. The odds of me winning the hand right after the flop were around fifty-fifty.”

Although winning that final hand can be attributed to luck, his success since then has come from patience and hard work. Negreanu won his second World Series of Poker bracelet in 2003 and made 11 final tables and won his third bracelet in 2004. He earned more than $4.5 million alone that year and was named the World Series of Poker Player of the Year and Card Player Magazine Player of the Year.

Negreanu joined Team PokerStars in 2007 and essentially became one of the faces of poker: “I’m very excited about joining Team PokerStars. The organisation seems like the perfect fit for me and I’m glad they feel the same way,” he said at the time.

He continued to play well over the years, but had another career year in 2013. He won the 2013 World Series of Poker Player of the Year again as well as top player distinction from several other outlets.

An outspoken player, Negreanu has had issues with several players but is also admired by many players. He’s regularly been named by Bluff as one of the most powerful players in the world of poker.

Negreanu is also an avid golfer and has appeared in films, including X-Men Origins: Wolverine. He’s also a passionate hockey fan.

Net Worth

The two-time World Poker Tour champion and Poker Hall of Fame inductee has won nearly $7 million at the World Poker Tour and more than $18.5 million at the World Series of Poker. He has a net worth of about $60 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

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