Top 5 Poker Rivals

Every game or sport has intense rivalries. You’re so bad. You don’t even understand it. I’m so happy to be so bad. And poker is no exception.

You’re the greatest, buddy. Hold on, let me get your signature. It’s when a conflict develops over time, when the competition becomes personal, and when adversaries become fierce foes. Why does she, like, goes after me every time?

I have no idea why. Here are five of the most notorious rivalries. I thought maybe we’d just get a little shippy shippy right at the end.

[BELL RINGING] Number 5 is less mano a mano and more man against machine. That man is an impatient Tony G. I want to call the clock. I want to call the clock.

Come on, on internet, you play, like, in one second. When you come here now, you come to my game, and you’re wasting my time. And the machine is the computer-like brain of internet pro Andrew Robl. Action on Negreanu. Bets $18,500.

Three 10s is a tough bluff to pull off, so Daniel is most likely trying to rep a big Ace or maybe a straight. His bet is designed to bluff Robl off a King maybe. I don’t think Daniel thinks he could get Robl to fold a big Ace though. I was so crushed after that final, I could cry. I’m going to walk out.

If these guys are going to come here, waste my time, I’m going to walk out of the game. It’s a joke. [BLEEP] hell, he’s thinking 20 minutes every [BLEEP] hand he’s playing. [BLEEP] nit. [BLEEP] Here comes floor man Tom Kean. All right, Andrew, we’re going to go through the same thing.

You play online, it’s like quick, two seconds, bang, bang, they’re pressing buttons. They come here, they freeze up. Daniel’s done a good job of making this look like a value bet.

So Andrew has a legit decision to make. He seems to be doing a good job of tuning Tony out. He folds. What? After all that, he finally threw it away.

I mean, I had a six, but– Daniel shows the bluff. You qualified. I was so happy you called the clock, Tony. High-five for the assist there just in case. I don’t think he had anything, and he had to move in himself. While in recent years, Daniel has had a rivalry of his own with Eric Seidel.

Yes, it’s one and two on the all-time money list. They were far from friends, but frequently shared a table in Super High Rollers. And Daniel seemed to always get the better of his rival. Eric and I are very different people. He’s very quiet.

I’m not. There’s not much in terms of camaraderie or words said between us. And let’s not forget this two-outer from the EPT 8 grand final.

Blinds are up to 10,000 and 20,000 with a 3,000 ante. Pocket 10s for Daniel Negreanu. Wow, what’s that, a 4x raise?

More than. 84? Really? Holy misclicks.

The small-baller accidentally decided to play with a bigger ball. Gulp. Eric Seidel, with pocket kings, will three-bet to 210,000. Got to wonder if Daniel might think Eric’s three-betting because Daniel had that little freak-out. I’m all in.

Whoops. Aye-ya. | call. Seidel obviously calls. The misclick got me.

Sick. Sick. That’s kind of sick you misclicked with 10s too. I know, right? Then I had to like– then it forced me to get a little crazier. Yeah, because– Really surprised to see the shove there.

Daniel almost always just calls in spots like that. Yeah, but you’re going to hit a 10. That’d be good. Seidel is the player at risk, but Negreanu is a huge underdog here.

Even bigger dog now. Really bad flop for Daniel. Can’t even hit any running cards to save himself. He’s still got the same two outs he started with, just three less chances to hit one. Now just one chance, just 5%. Sometimes that shove will make Daniel look like a genius.

This time, not so much. Seidel set for the double-up. A 10 on the river!

You were right. Thanks, Tobias. I run good. I got incredible– Gross. All right, good luck, everyone. Eric Seidel sent to the rail in horrific fashion.

I thought you were right too, but then it started to look scary. Daniel busted him in the PCA Super High Roller also– brutal. That was fun.

From understated animosity to a more tumultuous tangling– the skirmish at number 3 occurred at the 2015 PCA when Maurice Hawkins felt slighted by Shyam Srinivasan, and things escalated quickly. Shyam adds $63,000 to his stack and seems happy about it. Antes. Have you ever seen a man get that much value out of second pair with no kicker? Is this where you, like, do a backdoor comment because you want to be the coolest guy at the table? Nah.

You already snicker after every damn hand I play. I don’t say anything, because I would care less, but– Don’t take anything personally. That’s personal, when you win a pot and you say, you ever seen somebody get value out of the second pair and [INAUDIBLE].

You’re the greatest, buddy. Hold on, let me get your signature. All right gentlemen, let’s go ahead and play ourselves some poker.

I concur. Yeah, that’s what we need to do. And stop commentating like you– hey, they got a mic back there somewhere. I’ve got one. Give him the mic, Richard.

He can commentate hisself. He’s the greatest. How about you just make your money and keep your mouth shut? Let’s not drag Richard into this.

Get your ego involved. Why don’t you get that? Because you already got a big ego.

This is great. Queen-Jack against King-Jack. Maurice has raised. I hope they’re not done. Ego in poker, he go broke. I can say whatever I want.

Trust me, I play poker every day. Ego in poker, he go broke. There’s a three-bet from Shyam.

And you really don’t need to three-bet a hand that plays this well post-flop. Definitely some chatterbox play at work here. How much more is it? Does it matter? You’re calling.

Let’s find out how much value you’re going to get out of your hand now, buddy. Oh, dear. Smart-ass comment. Check, buddy. Go ahead, manipulate the situation. Top pair for Maurice.

This is just– this is yes. I check. I did the check thing.

Unfortunately for Shyam, a c-bet here is what he’s supposed to do. He does continue for $31,000. All in. Wow. Can I get a count, please?

All in. Ego in poker, he go broke. Actually, not a bad shove. Better learn how to play poker without ego, buddy.

Your ass will go broke eventually. Win, lose, or draw– be a man. Play a man’s game. He doesn’t speak for all of us, ladies. I hope I win. And I promise you, I’m going to be a man.

I won’t say nothing. I’ll just drag the pot like a champ, because I’m a born champ. Shyam folds.

Shyam folds. Ego in poker, he go broke. We get it.

See how much value I got out of 10 high? Well, some players prefer to let their chips do the talking, all their chips. [BELL WRINGING] At number 2, we find Vanessa Selbst and Dan Shak, both renowned for taking unconventional lines, neither averse to taking risks. They can often be found playing big buy-in events, and always seem to butt heads. There’s been a lot of drama. I don’t know, we just have a history of playing really big pots against each other.

A couple of times recently, he’s made some really big shoves. I’m all in. I know that I just had a good hand and called him. Call.

But obviously, it was a cooler situation for her. Is that real? And I feel bad, because you know, I consider her, you know, if not the best in the game, one of the best in the game right now. I hope you get them Thank you, Vanessa. I appreciate it.

He’s had my number in a number of– a couple major final tables. The Super High Roller, back at the PCA, I was second in chips. She was first. I honestly had a bad read, thought I had the best hand. All in.

And Shak shoves! OMG, ICM suicide. The announcers said it was ICM suicide on my part, because it was on the bubble. He’s not representing that many hands. I have a really strong hand.

It just boils down to one of those situations where I’m just going to call every time. I call. Vanessa calls! And Dan Shak is at risk of bubbling the Super High Roller. She made an amazing call. But I knew, in any case, I had a lot of outs.

And you know, I’m not afraid to take a risk. It’s a 10! That was not supposed to happen.

Given how absurd it was given the situation with all those tiny stacks, we shouldn’t have been playing that big a pot at that stage of the tournament. I just lost, like, 2 million chips. I lost 2 million chips. You know, obviously, I won the last two big confrontation hands with her. But over the years, she probably has gotten the best of me way more than I’ve gotten the best of her.

And now Vanessa Selbst can celebrate. Congratulations. These just have been a couple of high profile hands in key situations. [CHEERING] [BELL RINGING] Now, is anyone shocked that Tony G appears twice on this list? You know it.

He’s had his fair share of verbal brawls at the tables– You come to my game, and you’re wasting my time. –none more impassioned than his squabble with a multi-bracelet winning man-child. I love you. You’re the best, Phil. You guys are the best. I’ll have to clean you out every time I play with you.

I love it. Oh, I’m going to butcher you so badly. I hope you’ve got lots of rebuys. You’re the worst player at the table.

You don’t even know it. I love to be the worst player. It’s the rivalry so entertaining, the Big Game built an entire episode around it.

At number 1, Tony G versus Phil Hellmuth Jr. All right, I open for the pot. Pot. And you looked, right?

Well, I think I looked. 66. Allegedly, I looked. Tony. I’m all in. Pot limit, brah.

Without looking? Without looking. Pretty sure he looked. Well, you can’t be all in. 66. Tony reports it with Ace-King.

All right. All right. You slowed down.

You slowed down a bit. Are you going to save the rest? Not if he believes you haven’t looked.

Wow, all that talking makes me think he’s strong. I was for sure going to call before that. 15 on top, Tony.

He’s saying he hasn’t looked though. He most certainly looked. Did no one see him? Did you look at your cards at all? I mean, it’s– Look, the people at home know I haven’t looked. Well, if you haven’t looked, I guess I’ll just move in.

All right. Phil ships, and Tony calls. All right, you’re close. You’re up there.

Oh, you lied. Of course I lied. It’s poker, Phil. What do you think this is? Wow.

What do you think, I’m blind? How many times do you want to run it? Well, I asked you if you had looked or not. You want to run it how many times? I’ll let you choose, Tony.

Three times. I mean, I always lose, so– you kind of deserve to lose the first one. I do deserve. I hope you win one. Why would you lie?

I mean, that’s considered totally not– uncool, man. I mean, it’s not right. I feel it’s just a game. That’s etiquette though.

I mean, you never– you don’t say you were blind when you were blind. Phil, what happens on this table in play is just a game. We tell whatever we want.

When do you tell the truth? So all the rules of poker are just thrown out the window for you? Well, call the floorman if you think I– my hand might be dead then. You don’t say you haven’t looked at your cards when you’ve looked at your cards. You don’t do that.

OK, well then I’m wrong. It’s like a rule of poker. It’s like– it’s– Well, why did you call? –horrible etiquette. Because I thought you hadn’t looked at your cards.

Well, I mean, come on, Phil. Well, if you want $25,000 this bad, you can have it. You have to pay attention to the game.

How many times are we dealing? Phil, if you’re a professional player, you would pay attention to me looking at my hand. Karmically, he deserves to lose all three. What a villain. I drink your milkshake. So they’re going to run it three times with the winner of each run taking a third of the pot.

Flop– King, 9, trey. Tony pairs his King, Phil drawing nearly dead. How happy are you now, that it’s not running once? Turn’s a Jack. That’s bad for me. I need that Jack on the next round.

That’s really bad for me. Well, unless you get one now. Yeah, unless I get one now. Which means you won’t get any more, win any more. Terrible card for Phil, one less Jack he can hit on the next run.

Give him the Jack. River– Ace of diamonds. That’s kind of fair. Let’s even out the deck a bit.

You know, Phil, I– like, for me, I just went to undersell my hand. I don’t know if the way– I do it any way I can, because it’s a heads up pot. That’s me. I’m sorry if that’s mean. You just admitted it was bad etiquette.

You want to retract? I’m sorry if I bullied you. I’m sorry. I don’t want to bully you. I’m sorry.

I feel bad. Tony, look, no problem. Nice hand, man.

I mean, you know, you showed your true colors, which is bad for you here. Here comes flop number two. 7, 5, 10– no help to Phil. You really– I don’t think you’re the kind of guy that wants to show your true colors all the time. Well, it’s just your true colors can’t escape you. You are who you are, Phil.

I’m sorry, that’s the way I am. Turn number two– Ace of clubs. Phil’s not even holding a club, so no flush draw can save him. He’s looking for one of the two remaining Jacks.

River– another 5. And Tony G takes the second run. Don’t rush.

Don’t rush. We might keep you in. Flop number three– Queen, Queen King. And Phil picks up some outs. I have a good feeling about this one, but the math is just so strong against. How can I get there?

No, you’ll get there. How can I get there? You will. You will.

It’s just too nasty. Everyone wants you to get there. Turn– 7. No help to Phil. OK, the last 10– three 10s. You can take insurance too.

Yet another needle from Tony. Our final river– Phil’s going to need a 10. It’s a Jack.

Whoa, he got there. That’s not cool. No, he didn’t. No, sorry. I was just joking, Phil.

Did you believe me again? No, I didn’t believe you. Is that bad etiquette too? So Tony, so look, you’re loaning me $50,000, right? Yeah. OK, look, I don’t accept it.

OK, no problem. But good game, man. All right, I’m sorry, Phil, I really am. I’m sorry. I think you should retire.

I think it’s over. I think you’re not there anymore, Phil. And one of those two is now an elected representative of the people. Get the hell out of here. Well, I hope you enjoyed our countdown of ripping rivalries.

Check out our other top 5s at