Negreanu-Polk Grudge Match Gets Stopped Over Data Mining Accusations

Last Updated on November 19, 2020 Author:Adrian Sterne

Doug Polk & Daniel NegreanuThe ongoing heads-up grudge match between Daniel Negreanu and Doug Polk has become more intense, after the latter snatched the lead in a session that took place earlier in the week.

Prior to that, Negreanu managed to take down two consecutive online sessions, putting him ahead of his long-time rival. The next match was supposed to take place on Nov 18 but it did not play out as scheduled because of a dispute regarding a potential violation of the game’s agreed-upon rules.

Following Polk’s latest win, a disagreement erupted over the American poker pro’s study techniques which led to a social media debate. It all began when Bill Perkins revealed on Twitter that the match was delayed because Polk thought it was okay to enter hand history into the software manually so he could perform frequency analysis, but Negreanu did not agree.

Doug Polk Poker


The hedge fund manager, who is betting on Negreanu to win the match, thinks Negreanu is at a huge disadvantage as he hasn’t been accustomed to doing such things. Polk countered Perkins and said he was just studying the hand replayer and was manually making notes, studying Negreanu’s play, and did not, in any away, enter hand histories into the software like Perkins claimed.

As it turned out, Negreanu’s main concern was related to “data mining” which is prohibited by Nevada’s gaming regulations, alongside the use of heads-up display (HUD). Polk said he only opened up the client and manually looked up a hand sessions to figure out how many times his opponent folded the button. There was no HUD or hand history used.

Phil Galfond As Arbitrator

Polk also said that he and Negreanu already agreed on the matter, and he just didn’t get it why Perkins was firing off misleading accusations against him. Polk also later revealed that they had a judge to arbitrate on the matter, and the arbitrator turned out to be Phil Galfond.

Perkins later apologized for his mischaracterizations, though it was confirmed by Negreanu that Galfond was indeed called in to decide on the situation. Negreanu then tweeted that the Run It Once founder ruled that Polk’s study methods did not violate the rules. The Canadian poker pro also said that he’s also allowed to do the same thing. Both players are permitted to compile data, but they cannot input hand history into a data base.

The match has since resumed and we will wait for further updates.

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