Will Hard Work Pay Off in the Super High Roller Bowl for Adams, Davies and Negreanu?
The Super High Roller Bowl kicks off on Sunday, May 27th, as the annual $300,000 buy-in tournament once again brings forward an epic clash of poker’s most exceptional talents and personalities. Three of those players, Daniel Negreanu, Brandon Adams, and Seth Davies, traveled down a unique road to be ready for this event. We caught up with them to talk about the gravity of the moment and whether their extensive preparation will line them up to take home the $5,000,000 and the Championship ring.
"The Most Prestigious Event in the World"
“The World Series of Poker Main Event will get you the most notoriety, but you can’t fluke a win in the Super High Roller Bowl. This is the best of the best playing in the most prestigious event in the world,” Daniel Negreanu said when asked about the fourth edition of this tournament, of which he’s not missed a single one.
Davies: "The excitement for the Super High Roller Bowl is off the charts."
Seth Davies, a first-timer in this event, has never been on a stage this big despite playing in the $100,000 Poker Masters Main Event where he ultimately finished in fourth place. According to Davies, this event is on another level.
“The excitement for the Super High Roller Bowl is off the charts. It’s exciting because I’ve never sat in a seat like this, so we’ll see how my nerves are. It’s easy to say now that it will be fine, but when the lights are on, I’ll hopefully be able to keep it together.”
A veteran of the game with a plethora of appearances on high stakes televised poker cash games, Brandon Adams looks at this event a little differently, “At this point in my life, I've played so much big poker that I really don't get too juiced up. I get fired up for playing, but I don't get stressed. I don't really feel nerves, as a big part of my preparation all along is to wear defeat lightly, and whatever happens, happens.”
As the PokerGO cameras closely followed their preparation for the 2018 Super High Roller Bowl during the taping of INSIDERS, all three reflect on where they stand right now as the tournament is about to get underway.
Brandon Adams started his preparation for this event as soon as he decided to he was going to play early in the year, “I started working and studying with a couple of poker coaches more intensely and a guy who's a specialist in Monker Solver, which is a relatively complex program.
Adams analyzed a variety of specific spots with his coach and memorized particular ranges and spots that might come up.
“It’s not to say that I won't deviate from these ranges when I'm playing based on reads, but it was very important for me in this tournament to have my ranges more carefully defined than usual.”
Adams: "I started working and studying with a couple of poker coaches."
Seth Davies shares Adams’ sentiment, but to him, it’s seemingly much more of a continuation of his usual study process. Davies goes as far as saying that it’s business as usual and that no drastic changes are needed to his game to compete at this level.
“No Limit Hold'em is still No Limit Hold'em, I just continue to try and study the fundamentals and try to be the least exploitable I can be.”
The most significant adjustments for Davies will be playing deep-stacked tournament poker as opposed to the shallower stacks that usually come into play during other high roller events on the poker calendar.
“There are some pretty big changes in deep stack play, and it’s very, very hard, especially when there are more decisions to be made.”
The most experienced player at this level, Daniel Negreanu, emphasizes how long this event has been on his mind after an eye-opening experience during the 2017 Poker Masters. Negreanu thinks he got outplayed by the Germans during the Poker Masters, which turned out to be a huge motivator.
“I was like, ‘You know what, I'm going to start focusing on the Super High Roller Bowl now.’ That was in late September, and I put my plan into place in October and worked really hard specifically towards this event.”
While all three of these top players seem very prepared for this big occasion to start of a summer that’s jam-packed with poker action, they have different views on what it would take for them to look back on this event being a success.
Negreanu: "The game plan is to focus on what the game theory approach of a spot is."
Daniel Negreanu explained that focusing on the journey is more important than the result, sticking to a healthy sleep schedule, making good decisions, and being able to focus for the duration of the event.
“The game plan is to focus on what the game theory approach of a spot is, and then deviate based on player tendencies.”
In closing, debutant Seth Davies shares some of Negreanu’s sentiments, referencing that the possibility of busting on the first hand in a No Limit Hold’em tournament is not out of the question no matter how much you prepare for a big moment like this.
“My No Limit game has come a very long way in the last year I think. I certainly wasn't ready for Super Bowl in 2017. I've just gotten more reps in, to the point where I just have started to understand the sub-games within poker better than I did before, like strategy trends and range on range fundamentals. I want to look back on the way I prepared and know that I was ready.”
The 2018 Super High Roller Bowl is live on PokerGO, along with live reporting provided by PokerNews. Follow the event for four straight days and make sure you don’t miss a moment in what is one of the most prestigious events of the year.
During the lead-up to the 2018 Super High Roller Bowl, to be played at the brand new PokerGO Studio at the ARIA Resort & Casino, Negreanu, Davies, and Adams were followed by the PokerGO cameras to create a new original series titled INSIDERS. Six of the seven parts of this documentary-style series, which can be compared to shows such as Hard Knocks on HBO and Showtime’s All Access, is now available on PokerGO. The first episode is freely available on YouTube and can be viewed below: