It was a David and Goliath story at the conclusion of this year’s $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop event. On one side of the table sat one of the giants of the game, Daniel Negreanu, battling for his third bracelet in two years and seventh overall. Surrounded by a massive rail of poker fans, he was the fan favorite with experience on his side.
On the other side of the table was young online poker pro Daniel Colman, appearing at his first WSOP final table at just 23 years of age. While he is far from a household name, even among more fervent poker fans, he is nonetheless an accomplished player who had the skills to compete with the best.
Dan Colman proved those skills today, putting them to use at a tough final table that concluded with the heads-up battle against Negreanu and with Colman holding up the platinum one of a kind bracelet. Colman earns $15,306,668 for the victory, which rockets him up the all-time money list after starting today with just $159,010 in career WSOP earnings.
The spotlight averse Colman declined to be interviewed following his win, but Negreanu had kind words about the latest bracelet winner.
"What makes him tough is he is very good at playing flops. If you want to be a good poker player, preflop poker is not where it's at. He plays lots of flops, he's very careful. Think boxer-wise. He had his guard up and threw a lot of little jabs, then when someone would open up, he'd throw the knockout punch," Negreanu explained.
While Colman took the title, it is worth noting that Negreanu did beat the youngster from Massachusetts in one category. Thanks to his $8,288,001 runner-up payday, Negreanu is now the all-time money earner in the world of poker with almost $30 million in career tournament winnings.
After an epically long day of action on Day 2, the third and final day of play in this event flew by. There were nine players who returned for the final day, which meant one would go home empty-handed, while the rest would collect $1.3 miilion. After over an hour of nine-handed play on Day 2 without a bustout, it took just one hand to burst the bubble at the final table. A short-stacked Tom Hall got it all-in preflop to Negreanu, failed to win his coinflip, and exited shy of the final table and the money.
From there, it took just two levels to lose four more players. Short stacks Cary Katz and Paul Newey failed to build their stacks, while German Christoph Vogelsang managed to double up twice, including once in a massive pot against start of day chip leader Rick Salomon. After the other German at the table, Tobias Reinkemeier exited in fifth place, Salomon followed in fourth place shortly after that.
While Vogelsang valiantly chipped up and kept three-handed play going for a while, his run would end in third place, setting up a heads-up battle between Negreanu and Colman. All told, the final table action last for 118 hands.
This year’s $1 million Big One for One Drop event drew 42 participants, generating a prize pool of $37,333,338. Additionally, thanks to $111,111 of each buy-in going towards the water equality organization One Drop, the event also raised $4.6 million for charity. The giving for One Drop doesn’t stop there though, as US residents can text ONEDROP to 20222 and pledge $10 to the cause. Over the nearly three years WSOP and One Drop have partenered together, over $11 million has been raised for the charity.
As with the original Big One for One Drop in 2012, there was much speculation about who would play, how many amateurs in relation to pros there would be, and how many people from 2012 would be back in 2014. Here are some key figures:
Here are the final table results from the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop event:
1st: Daniel Colman - $15,306,668
2nd: Daniel Negreanu - $8,288,001
3rd: Christoph Vogelsang - $4,480,000
4th: Rick Salomon - $2,800,000
5th: Tobias Reinkemeier - $2,053,334
6th: Scott Seiver - $1,680,000
7th: Paul Newey - $1,418,667
- 30 professionals and 12 amateur/recreational players
- 24 new players and 18 returning players from 2012
- 15 bracelet winners
- 1 Poker Hall of Famer (Erik Seidel)
- 1 WSOP Main Event Champion (Greg Merson)
- Five of eight final table players from 2012 (Only Phil Hellmuth--5th, Bobby Baldwin – 7th and Richard Yong -8th did not participate)
- Three satellite winners, two from WSOP (Connor Drinan and Erick Lindgren) and one from Bellagio (Bill Klein)
The latest One Drop champ was not available for comment after the event, but we did catch up with the runner-up to talk about his new top spot, the POY race, and what he thought of his opponent: