Doug Polk shared some “sad news” that rocked the poker community (okay, not really). Daniel Negreanu blocked the poker pro turned cryptocurrency champion on Twitter this week, which spurred a sarcastic video retort from Polk — mocking the Hall of Famer and PokerStars ambassador for not engaging with his ongoing gripes about one company’s business decisions.
The feud between the poker greats began over a year ago when Negreanu did what nearly any high-paid employee in any industry would do: defended the company he represents.
When PokerStars eliminated its popular rewards program that benefited the pros such as Polk in favor of a system geared towards attracting casual poker players, Negreanu defended the change, which, as many things do, irritated Polk.
His expression of disdain for poker’s all-time winningest tournament player has continued, and a truce doesn’t appear in sight.
Last year, Negreanu again defended PokerStars when the poker site announced a rake increase.
When Negreanu uttered the phrase “more rake is better,” Polk mocked the claim on his popular YouTube channel. After Daniel then denied saying that, Polk proved him wrong by showing his followers the clip of him making the comment.
Fast forward a year later and Polk has refused to lay off Negreanu and recently referred to him as “an embarrassment to the game of poker.”
Negreanu rarely responds publicly to Polk’s criticisms, but that hasn’t stopped Polk from continually trashing DNegs on Twitter and YouTube. It’s gotten to a point where a large portion of his poker-related social media posts are anti-Negreanu, such as this one from Thursday that mocked Negreanu’s vegan lifestyle:
“My mom, who has worked in the medical field for 30 years, was discussing that hospitals are limiting carb, not meat, intake for cardiac patients to help w/ high cholesterol,” Polk tweeted. “Its disheartening to me top doctors in the world haven’t taken the time to read Negreanus Twitter rants.”
Polk’s obsession with Negreanu has become as regular as Donald Trump’s continued tirades about Hillary Clinton.
Negreanu apparently had enough, and earlier this week @RealKidPoker officially blocked @DougPolkPoker, which prompted this short video response (featuring a cameo appearance by a CardsChat article about the topic of rake):
Got some sad news today guys ? pic.twitter.com/NgvFRcikqI
— Doug Polk (@DougPolkVids) April 4, 2018
While the video is typical of the talented Polk — sarcastic and funny — it’s another example of a feud that has become as petty as Trump’s repeated attacks on a woman who should no longer be relevant to him.
Can’t We All Just Get Along?
Polk may despise PokerStars, a site he once used to build a large bankroll, for turning its back on the pros in favor of the recreational players. But that doesn’t mean he should take out his anger on Negreanu every time he defends the latest Stars Group move.
But it’s also unfair to expect a de-facto company spokesman to publicly trash their employer’s decisions. Would a general manager at Olive Garden take to Twitter to rip the company for increasing the price on its yummy ravioli di portobello? No, because that person would soon be unemployed.
Negreanu has $36 million in lifetime tournament winnings and lord knows how much from cash games. So, he doesn’t rely on his PokerStars income as much as an Olive Garden manager does. But he’s paid handsomely by The Stars Group and it’s unreasonable of Polk to expect him to criticize major decisions the company makes.
Fold your hand, Doug.