Dan Colman: Poker is a “Distraction,” We Should Stop “Idolizing” Players

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On Tuesday night, the world watched as Dan Colman (pictured) won the World Series of Poker’s Big One for One Drop on ESPN. Colman was largely stoic after the final cards were dealt and for the most part looked stunned. He quickly declined interviews and exited the Rio while second place finisher Daniel Negreanu cordially stuck around, spoke to the press, and took pictures.

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On TwoPlusTwo after the fact, Colman called poker a “very dark game” and added, “I don’t owe poker a single thing. I’ve been fortunate enough to benefit financially from this game, but I have played it long enough to see the ugly side of this world. It is not a game where the pros are always happy and living a fulfilling life.”

On Tuesday, Colman spoke up again, this time on Twitter, saying, “While I appreciate @lonmceachern’s and @RealKidPoker’s attempts to hypothesize at me being a 24-year-old who doesn’t know who he is yet, I am actually 100% certain who I am.”

Colman then spouted off, “I find it to be a much greater accomplishment (and necessary) if thru solidarity, we can get everyone at the bottom to all move up a couple rungs on the ladder. This can be done once we stop idolizing those who were able to make it to the top.”

The One Drop champ, who added $15 million to his coffers for the win, cleared up earlier comments by saying the following in two successive Tweets:

After calling poker a “distraction,” several people asked a logical follow-up question: “If it’s such a distraction, why do you play then?” Another person commented, “By not speaking, you have made more noise, which was probably the opposite of your goal.” Another person on Twitter gave Colman a straightforward exit plan: “Lost all respect for you man… Give all the money to charity and bounce the F out of poker if you don’t like it.”

Shortly after Colman’s original comments about poker came out in July, Negreanu offered the following words of wisdom to Colman about perhaps pursuing another career choice in a blog on Full Contact Poker: “If you are genuinely having an issue with the morality of playing poker for a living, make a choice. Don’t compromise your own moral code for money. If you truly believe in your heart that what you are doing hurts people, and you don’t want to hurt people, you need to make a choice.”

What do you think? Leave a comment here and let us know.

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34 COMMENTS

    • I will break this down quickly:
      “I am actually 100% certain who I am”.. NO you don’t, no one does at 24. Furthermore, how is it possible you know who you are when you contradicting yourself with each thing that comes out of your mouth?

      For example, “I do not care about poker” , buddy if you don’t care about something why are you putting so much time, effort and money from YOUR LIFE into it? as defined you must be mentally insane aka bipolar and you must be a miserable human being to do something so much you don’t care about doing.

      “stopidolizing those who were able to make it to the top”… WHAT? So you have noidols in your life? Whether it be an athlete, a poker player, a Politian, parents, etc.? If you idolize anyone of them and want to be in some way likethem, guess what moron you are trying to get to their level and that would beon top of wherever you are now or were.
      A Very dark game”…every aspect of life has a dark place. This is not Fantasy Island, it is life and it will never change. There will always be someone ahead of someone else and if you aren’t striving to be there(on top) than you have no respect for yourself and have no goals, aspiration’s or dreams in life.

      I personally would love nothing more than have peace in the world and not see innocent people suffer that is for sure. However, I wouldn’t go as far as to say I don’t want to be the best at what I do. That is basically what you have said.

      You now have $15,000,000let us know what you are doing to help the world please.

    • TBH i think he is pretty spot on. I feel similar to him when he refers to it as a distraction. I generally play when I am bored and have to time to kill. It can be consuming, allowing me to believe I am busy, when really I am doing nothing more than passing time.

    • No shit it’s a distraction but WTf most of life is distractions. He acts like he knows what everyone should focus on, well let us fuckin know what we should be wasting our limited amount of time on this earth doing then. Guy sounds like he’s solved life but then he’s yet playing poker everyday.

    • []You now have $15,000,000let us know what you are doing to help the world please.

      Backed by vulgaris – think it’s more like 50%>

    • still………… enough to stop being such a stinking hypocrite!!! so aggravating – but some (a lot) of people are very ignorant at that age but think they are very philosophical with IT all figured out.

      He’ll probably look back on this whole comments fiasco with great embarrassment when he’s older

    • He is probably bitter that he sold most of his action in what would otherwise have been a life changing score.

    • He is probably bitter that he sold most of his action in what would otherwise have been a life changing score.

      lol this is funny, yeah people might not see the real reason hes sad, ‘oh fuck i shouldnt have sold 90 perc of my action

    • He’s entitled to his own opinion whether you disagree with him or not.

      He prays on the people whom he says it causes problems for. Dude is a hypocritical douche

    • Honestly not sure if it’s arrogance or confidence he claims he has it all figured out. Honestly though he’s in the spotlight for not wanting to be in the spotlight & deterring away from this holier than thou image people in the spotlight receive & he’s being given a holier than thou image because he’s shying away from it. In society you can never win. In poker you try to deter yourself away from bad spots. Maybe he just doesn’t want to get involved, but also feels the need to defend his morals & overall justification for what he does. He makes money at poker, why stop? You can see the bad in it but if it’s good it’s good & you probably won’t be going elsewhere when money is coming in. This life is about hacks to a lot of people & poker is colmans hack for poker, but he knows a lot of others can’t hack it & he feels portrayal of a beautiful millionaire life as a poker player is not accurate & should not be broadcasted. I get the thought. No one can fully comment on everything because they are not him. Sounds like people always need someone to crack down on as a bad guy. Stop being so results oriented & give him what he wants if he wants it…which is nothing.

    • cool story bro.. we heard you the first time.. now quit whoring yourself to the same media attention you claim to be above

    • I will break this down quickly:
      “I am actually 100% certain who I am”.. NO you don’t, no one does at 24. Furthermore, how is it possible you know who you are when you contradicting yourself with each thing that comes out of your mouth?

      For example, “I do not care about poker” , buddy if you don’t care about something why are you putting so much time, effort and money from YOUR LIFE into it? as defined you must be mentally insane aka bipolar and you must be a miserable human being to do something so much you don’t care about doing.

      “stopidolizing those who were able to make it to the top”… WHAT? So you have noidols in your life? Whether it be an athlete, a poker player, a Politian, parents, etc.? If you idolize anyone of them and want to be in some way likethem, guess what moron you are trying to get to their level and that would beon top of wherever you are now or were.
      A Very dark game”…every aspect of life has a dark place. This is not Fantasy Island, it is life and it will never change. There will always be someone ahead of someone else and if you aren’t striving to be there(on top) than you have no respect for yourself and have no goals, aspiration’s or dreams in life.

      I personally would love nothing more than have peace in the world and not see innocent people suffer that is for sure. However, I wouldn’t go as far as to say I don’t want to be the best at what I do. That is basically what you have said.

      You now have $15,000,000let us know what you are doing to help the world please.

      He has found a relatively easy way to make a lot of money, given his skillset. This way of making money happens to indirectly hurt a lot of people. He accepts that and chooses to continue to play (probably because its easier, more convenient, and more lucrative than other jobs). His belief that top-tier poker players should not be idolized the way other successful people are is not entirely unfounded, having seen what the swings do to people first-hand. Some people like to play for fun and get wrapped up in the whole “poker community” bs and watch poker shows and all that while others prefer to just show up and play, then gtfo and go do something real or constructive.

      Dude is not crazy. Dude is not bipolar. This is just a very smart kid using poker as a tool to increase his bank account.

    • Memo to Dan: When you stop playing poker, donate all your winnings to charity and devote your time to finding a cure for cancer, get back to me.

    • He has found a relatively easy way to make a lot of money, given his skillset. This way of making money happens to indirectly hurt a lot of people. He accepts that and chooses to continue to play (probably because its easier, more convenient, and more lucrative than other jobs). His belief that top-tier poker players should not be idolized the way other successful people are is not entirely unfounded, having seen what the swings do to people first-hand. Some people like to play for fun and get wrapped up in the whole “poker community” bs and watch poker shows and all that while others prefer to just show up and play, then gtfo and go do something real or constructive.

      Dude is not crazy. Dude is not bipolar. This is just a very smart kid using poker as a tool to increase his bank account.

      Your opinion is in the minority for multiple reasons.

      Go and speak to dan about how to react when u win that amount of money, you will go along way in life

    • Colman then spouted off, “I find it to be a much greater accomplishment (and necessary) if thru solidarity, we can get everyone at the bottom to all move up a couple rungs on the ladder. This can be done once we stop idolizing those who were able to make it to the top.” (not sure who described it as “spouted off” but that was their opinion)

      Colman is making a political statement and when you consider the top 10% control 86 % of the worlds wealth then you know why we have such a corrupt society. Thought the kid was spot on.

      Didn’t see the post game interviews but if they described him as someone who didn’t know who he was because he didn’t stick around for an interview then that’s them being arrogant.

    • why is everyone so pissed off lol

      its not like if he did an interview we were gonna have another “moneymaker effect” anyways.

      he played, he won , didn’t do any interviews , so what… move on

      its not like his decision to not promote poker is gonna hurt us playing anyways

    • life of grinder can be tough…. thats what he mean when he dont owe anything to poker… cose he ripped his a.s.s off in order to achive what he wanted …

    • He has found a relatively easy way to make a lot of money, given his skillset. This way of making money happens to indirectly hurt a lot of people. He accepts that and chooses to continue to play (probably because its easier, more convenient, and more lucrative than other jobs). His belief that top-tier poker players should not be idolized the way other successful people are is not entirely unfounded, having seen what the swings do to people first-hand. Some people like to play for fun and get wrapped up in the whole “poker community” bs and watch poker shows and all that while others prefer to just show up and play, then gtfo and go do something real or constructive.

      Dude is not crazy. Dude is not bipolar. This is just a very smart kid using poker as a tool to increase his bank account.

      +1

    • The guy ships $15m and i want to feel happy for him but the way he talks about the game made me feel sad. We all play poker for different reasons. We still have great ambassadors for the game such as Daniel Negreanu.

    • Funny, when youre 21 you think you know everything…get to 30 and youre like damn i was so fn dumb back then, i assume once you get to 40 the same applies to when you were 30.This dudes confused

    • I have not read everything he said and Im not going to analyze deeply every sentence he is telling, but heres my opinion from what Ive heard. I kind want to support some of his acts or sayings – to start, the lack of giving an interview. I dont think poker players need to do that blindly. And I find that there was an overreaction about it. Poker is very benefical for very few players and bad, to very bad, to a huge amount of people. But its never bad to those who control it and win always. Casinos, sites, media, some sponsorded players, payment processors, governaments. These guys have a much bigger commitment with all this, after all the game played in real life only considers money profiting, not people’s conditions or the earth’s health, so theyre very much into this game. If u doubt so, look at all fights happening between governaments, site and casinos, with plenty of countries trying to make laws to also profit from this. Now poker stars has been sold to a huge group that probably absorbs every bussiness it sees potencial to earn huge money. Do u think this money in hands of these type of people or group will do any benefit to our society? I know PS is a great company but It has limits to what good it can do back to us, as a tradicional enterprise, even more now that the original owners are gone.

      An interview or not wont make no difference. Negreanu has to that, for obv reasons. But we dont get help from no1. No1 pays our expenses for travelling, for health insurance, for extremely expensive prices in regarding live poker expenses, for abusive taxing from goverments, for the months or years that we dont make money, etc. And its not an exact science, not a solved one, what works today is not going to work in one year and if some1 is on the top consistently, like this guy, hes gotta deserve all of that, including the option to give interview or not, because afterall any1 can play and succeed (theoricaly). But for those who are in command of everything, the money will keep coming, after all its a fanstastic game, catchy game and its beeing inteligently exploited.

      I agree also that poker is not benefical for society. Nowadays I see it as just another tool that already rich people and/or enterprises/govs found to bite(in terms of $) lots of people, selling the idea that its a skill game(it is of course) and that anyone could start playing and get to the top. Its just like real life, theres this common ideia and sense that any1 can escalate the ladder of capitalism – the biggest game of all games – but its not true. You cant. Its a dream sold wrongly. 99% of new guys wont succeed, probably more still, more close 100%. In both games it happens. A poor one is almost 100% certain to stay poor in his life.

      I think Daniel is still trying to elaborate a message in his mind and I think theres a chance it could a good one. But it seems he hasnt figured out exactly what to tell people. If he wants to get into this type of fight against huge businesses, governaments, big people, media, he needs it to be more clear and he needs more arguments for what he is trying to tell. Hes gotta be scientific, like he is in his game. How the hell can he say he dont care about poker? How much does this guy have now in $? What type of life style is he getting from it? He also is not working, hes playing to live, at hrs he wants. So he is getting a lot from it. He cares. But I agree that there things that must be clarified to the eyes of people regarding the poker system and also of course the socioeconomical system imposed to our lives, so they can make a choice in what to believe.

      lastly, in the case of a very succesful poker player, u probably made a lot of money at young age and if u can also be good at managing it you are freerolling life for a long time. It generates young people with lots of money with lots of FREE time with a very sharp analytical mind. Who else have it at this age? Look aroune, NO ONE has that nowadays, people are beeing consumed by its way of life. This mix is wonderful for the player but I think its also a burden for this person. U could do things that help society after all. And society and earth desperately need that. Daniel says poker dont help society, but he could do it some other way. Hes got all that and also hes got some impulses to break with the normal ways. So its up to him.

    • He has found a relatively easy way to make a lot of money, given his skillset. This way of making money happens to indirectly hurt a lot of people. He accepts that and chooses to continue to play (probably because its easier, more convenient, and more lucrative than other jobs). His belief that top-tier poker players should not be idolized the way other successful people are is not entirely unfounded, having seen what the swings do to people first-hand. Some people like to play for fun and get wrapped up in the whole “poker community” bs and watch poker shows and all that while others prefer to just show up and play, then gtfo and go do something real or constructive.

      Dude is not crazy. Dude is not bipolar. This is just a very smart kid using poker as a tool to increase his bank account.

      Wow reread what you wrote. the first 3 sentences are mind boggling. This is like saying I am a boiler room broker, I have a skill set at selling BS to people . I don’t mean to harm people indirectly and I know it’s bad but I continue to do so because I am good at it, and it is lucrative to me and I accept it and will continue to do so….. YOU HAVE ISSUES THAN!

      he also doesn’t say top-tier poker players. He says people on top. he is referring to the world, pay attention.

      the last sentence in your paragraph doesn’t even have anything to do with what has been said.

      yes he is crazy, dude is bipolar.

    • You guys aren’t looking at this situation correctly at all imo, and there’s a ton of projection going on. Understand that this dude has been playing poker since he was a teenager (likely not thinking about his future etc at the time). You understand the analogy of not giving up swimming across a lake once you’re half way there right? The guy probably felt years ago that poker was a terrible path for any upwardly mobile individual, but once you’ve dedicated so much time to being so good you realize you honestly can’t do anything else to provide that lifestyle you are accustomed to. Gets to the point where it doesn’t even make sense to focus on anything else until you’ve made the max value financially. I think it’s totally fine to destroy the game for millions and still feel like you wished you had done something else with your time. It’s cool if you love the game but just bc Dan is a terrible ambassador doesn’t mean the guy is bipolar or wrong…just has seen/experienced more and likely regrets most of the time he puts in the game.

    • Dan Colman: Poker is a “Distraction,” We Should Stop “Idolizing” Players he schould have said stop playin poker you can idolize and not fck up your life right?

    • We are all being very instantaneously judgmental on what he is saying because we are focusing on what he is saying upon face value with what we perceive are the true concepts of poker. Sure he sounds like the biggest hypocritical/contradicting douche who just seems to sounds plain arrogant and obnoxious in what he is saying but we cant ignore the fact that there really is some realism in what he is “trying to say”. I think he is just trying to express his stance against commercialism in today’s society how things are always displayed in the most superficial manner in what we see in the media (which he is kinda right if you really think about it), however him deciding to say this on the biggest platform of poker especially the one drop just seems make him seem confused about his priorities and moral standing. What i am trying to emphasize above all of this is he could have witness time and time again on many occasions the negative affects of what poker brings to people and “recently” had a change of heart. I COMPLETELY agree that the way he is handling himself may not be the best approach as it leave him vulnerable to misinterpretation and confliction – but i don’t fault him for the way he feels, he just has chosen maybe an inappropriate occasion to express himself or better yet doesn’t know how to properly. He could have used his winnings to start an initiative, not just vent the way he did. If he really has a moral issue about it he could have donated a portion of his winnings to charity (like what Greenstein does)….. just a thought!!

    • We are all being very instantaneously judgmental on what he is saying because we are focusing on what he is saying upon face value with what we perceive are the true concepts of poker. Sure he sounds like the biggest hypocritical/contradicting douche who just seems to sounds plain arrogant and obnoxious in what he is saying but we cant ignore the fact that there really is some realism in what he is “trying to say”. I think he is just trying to express his stance against commercialism in today’s society how things are always displayed in the most superficial manner in what we see in the media (which he is kinda right if you really think about it), however him deciding to say this on the biggest platform of poker especially the one drop just seems make him seem confused about his priorities and moral standing. What i am trying to emphasize above all of this is he could have witness time and time again on many occasions the negative affects of what poker brings to people and “recently” had a change of heart. I COMPLETELY agree that the way he is handling himself may not be the best approach as it leave him vulnerable to misinterpretation. – but i don’t fault him for the way he feels, he just has chosen maybe an inappropriate occasion to express himself or better yet doesn’t know how to properly. He could have used his winnings to start an initiative, not just vent the way he did. If he really has a moral issue about it he could have donated a portion of his winnings to charity (like what Greenstein does)….. just a thought!! LOL