The poker world received some unexpected news last week when Daniel Negreanu announced he’d be repping another poker site. In a video from the Las Vegas Strip posted on Twitter, Kid Poker announced a new sponsorship deal with GGPoker.
Negreanu’s longtime deal as a PokerStars ambassador came to an end in May. He spoke recently with USPoker.com about the new agreement and his role with GGPoker.
How the GGPoker deal come together and what to expect
Certainly having Negreanu in the fold gives some instant recognition for GGPoker. The company has already promoted the new relationship heavily with more to come.
A quick visit to the company’s website reveals plenty of Negreanu branding already. The site has introduced new player bonuses and a $100,000 Daniel Negreanu Challenge tournament.
Negreanu is pleased with the deal, which came about after some recent help in allowing fans to stake him. This is now an extension of that relationship.
“The relationship began when they reached out to let us know they could help us, as a favor, handle my WSOP Europe package offer to fans that wanted a piece of my action,” he told USPoker. “They did such an amazing job with it and so we started talking about more collaboration which led us here.”
I have a BIG announcement to make! Details in the video below: pic.twitter.com/1xDTkglYmD
— Daniel Negreanu (@RealKidPoker) November 20, 2019
Beyond just a financial deal, Negreanu stressed that he appreciates GGPoker’s interest in growing the game.
“They get it,” he says. “They get how important it is to maintain an ecosystem that is sustainable long term. I see them as a company with staying power because they aren’t afraid to do what’s right.”
Negreanu’s role in helping GGPoker grow
In a post-Black Friday world, sponsorship deals are tougher to come by. PokerStars has severed ties with some ambassadors in recent months. An ambassador must add value for sites with more deals now focusing on Twitch streaming, social media followings, and even celebrity player angles.
Obviously Negreanu is a different story. As the face of poker, he brings some added cachet to a poker site and value beyond a mere sponsorship or ambassador deal.
“They already have a strong foothold on high-stakes action, but I hope to help fill out the rest of the player groupings and bring in more unique customers,” he says.
“In a very short time this company has grown to be the No. 3 operator in online poker, and I’m highly motivated to see that trend upward continue, all the way to the top.”
Much of his work will be with the marketing team. He believes the company has a lot to offer players and he hopes to spotlight that.
“They are the top-tier poker network when it comes to software, specifically mobile,” he says. “That is their expertise and they do it better than anyone. I plan to help with the marketing side and promotional work as well as take a look at the offerings in the client.”
Some of his role has also yet to be determined. But he may play some in Asia and other locations as part of the deal to promote the site.
“We are in the early stages of brainstorming a strategy going forward,” he says, “but I imagine it will include some travel to different markets.”
Capping a crazy month for Negreanu
It’s been quite a November for Negreanu. After the WSOPE, it appeared he had wrapped up his goal of becoming the first WSOP Player of the Year multi-time winner.
That changed after a calculation error was discovered and the honor instead went to Australian Robert Campbell. Negreanu was disappointed with the loss but seemed to take it well.
“It’s an unfortunate situation, but mistakes happen and life goes on,” he wrote in his blog at FullContactPoker.com.
“I’m genuinely happy for Robert Campbell because I know how much it meant to him and I also feel he was deserving, having won two bracelets this year. He is also a nice guy which helps.
“When I got the news, I was oddly not phased by it whatsoever. I surprised myself. Not a single negative emotion or feeling of loss.”
Less than two weeks later, Negreanu had moved on and announced the new deal with GGPoker. The poker year is now wrapping up and limited major events remain.
The WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic runs at the Bellagio in December and attracts plenty of big names. Negreanu won the event in 2004 for $1.8 million and third in 2006 for $592,000.
It’s a good bet he’ll be in the field again. If he plays, no doubt Negreanu will be patched up in his first event as a GGPoker ambassador.