Daniel Coleman Sparks Criticism After Abrupt WSOP One Drop Exit

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The poker media was left puzzled and dismayed when World Series of Poker One Drop champion Daniel Coleman (pictured) refused to give interviews after winning a massive $15.3 million first-place prize in the million-dollar buy-in tournament.

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Coleman’s solemn lack of celebration and quick exit from the building sparked a heated debate in the poker community as to whether the 23-year-old grinder was doing the game a disservice by choosing not to answer any questions after the victory.

But instead of speaking to ESPN, which had been filming the event for broadcast at a later date, Coleman popped up in a TwoPlusTwo thread to explain the reasoning behind his actions. The post only inflamed opinions about his behavior even further.

“First off, 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,” he said. “It is not a game where the pros are always happy and living a fulfilling life.”

Calling poker a “very dark game,” he reasoned that most recreational players were losing money they couldn’t afford to lose and that advertising gambling on television was playing off “people’s impulses” and “targeting their weaknesses in order for them to make irrational decisions.”

Fellow pros like Schneids quickly responded: “It’s hard for your message to have any level of sincerity when you are well known for trying to tilt your opponents in chat, for trying to slowly goad them into playing you for higher stakes HU, in your cunning sly ways you do.”

He also pointed out that giving an interview didn’t equal promoting the game. “You could’ve done an interview and admitted to being a bit self-loathing because you believe poker has been a net negative for too many lives, even if it has been a tremendous positive in yours,” he added.

Dankhank was extremely critical of Coleman’s seemingly selfish attitude and referred to a previous interview in which the One Drop winner had stated his intention to quit poker in the next few years to pursue other interests. “How nice for him that his financial stability, scorched earth policy toward the game (not just refusing interviews but also trash talking opponents to get more action from them), moral high ground, and recent huge score all line up so perfectly.”

On Twitter, high-stakes pro Kevin BeL0WaB0Ve Saul (pictured) was a bit more succinct in his disagreement with Coleman’s actions. “When he entered the #BigOneForOneDrop, Dan knew what was expected from the winner and also knew he wanted to give poker a big fuck you.”

David “Viffer” Peat was on the 23-year-old’s side, commending the pro on Twitter. “Hats off to Coleman for following his decision. We don’t owe the Rio anything; they are predators taking enough from poker.”

Coleman’s controversial move even brought TwoPlusTwo founder Mason Malmuth into the conversation who applauded the young pro, saying that he should be “commended for giving an honest answer” and calling it “quite refreshing.”

Second place finisher Daniel Negreanu, on the other hand, was more than happy to speak to the media and stuck around for over half-an-hour answering questions. He was quick to congratulate Coleman on the win and back his decision to shy away from the media. “I respect it completely,” he told the Las Vegas media. “To each his own. If it’s not something he wants to do, then I think we should all give him a break.”

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42 COMMENTS

  1. Welp, maybe Dan is a very dark person? I’m reckoning poker is what you make it, and aren’t we responsible for our actions. My guess is Dan is a misguided lib. He has to be with that shit he’s spewing. Hopefully Jaybone wins the main, he ain’t dodging no cameras that’s for sure(plus I got .5% of the bones main).

    • He said his opinion you got to respect that, also his comment about a lot of players being unhappy is sincerely true.

    • Hung out with Dan and his crew a few times in Rio a couple months ago. Even grinded at their pad one tuesday. These guys specialize in a game (high stakes hu hypers) that I have no doubt could make a pessimist out of anyone. They appear to have seen and experienced whatever this game has to offer so his lack of excitement about the whole thing is totally understandable I think. From my experience, they’re all very cool, down to earth, just normal bros really…with somewhat expensive tastes 😉 Some like the limelight, some don’t…

    • Hung out with Dan and his crew a few times in Rio a couple months ago. Even grinded at their pad one tuesday. These guys specialize in a game (high stakes hu hypers) that I have no doubt could make a pessimist out of anyone. They appear to have seen and experienced whatever this game has to offer so his lack of excitement about the whole thing is totally understandable I think. From my experience, they’re all very cool, down to earth, just normal bros really…with somewhat expensive tastes 😉 Some like the limelight, some don’t…

      Agreed, grinding Sng’s(esp. Hyper) and playing tournaments different things.

    • “My guess is Dan is a misguided lib.” I’m not entirely sure what that means.If he doesn’t want to play, he shouldn’t play. I’d respect him more if he announced that he was retiring. But the WSOP is a high-profile event and publicity is what generally comes with the territory. But with him making that much money and only being 23, it’s possible that he doesn’t know what adversity is, which might explain his ungrateful behavior.

    • fK WHEN are people going to understand?First off let me say that I dont know Dan coleman “english player? I will think he needs giving congratulations not snidey idiotic jealous and frenzied remarks about his ways.If the lad dont wanna talk to media and give interviews on poker ,thats entirely up to him , hes done what Sam trickett also done , yet how long has sam been in the game ? I like sam dont get me wrong but these players play the highest stakes and expect like they should win .Sometimes u lose ! Im not knocking anyone here im just saying leave the bloke alone because he won 15 million usd so frigggin what its only money ,and money that he invested to win in the first place , you pay your way and take the chances u got .He must have played really well not to mention know what he was doing half the time ,because the level of playing field was there,. whos gonna mess around in a 1 million tournament?I say leave the bloke alone ,hes Top spot on on regarding the current gambling economy across the globe , hes right about the commercial advertising feeding off peoples spending faculties. sounds like he just knows how it all works .if he dont want publicity like some other well known pros who have no personality or charisma ,why bother. heck these media spotlights put the heckles on the better known players ,some just wanna be left alone , some people look for the limelight . its a freaking calamity , just every one in the world chill the fk out and play good poker .game is only as good as the people your playing with , without the people there is no game!Go good luck and congratulations Dan for winning the One – Drop………..Droppaments /Droppage .

    • and Kevin Saul >>>>> please teach me how you play good poker . Im tires of you always beating me up on 888 lol.good luck man. And Dan , dont listen to anyone ,dont give any money to spongers and dont waste it on hookers or blow.Best thing to do is let me look after all that dollar , fulltilt is ready for me

    • high-stakes pro Kevin BeL0WaB0Ve Saul (pictured) was a bit more succinct in his disagreement with Coleman’s actions. “When he entered the #BigOneForOneDrop, Dan knew what was expected from the winner and also knew he wanted to give poker a big fuck you.”

      Appreciate Saul’s candor but it raises the question of why did Coleman want to give poker a big fuck you? What’s the story behind that?

    • I feel like he has a right to say and believe whatever he wants, as clearly that’s what defines America. As a person who does not make a living from playing poker, I might view this kind of thing as offensive because I would expect that the winner, especially in this event and the main, would state his beliefs so they could be heard by pretty much everyone who cares about or pays attention to this game. IF the goal is to come off to the public as having a sincere concern about the welfare of worse players and people with an addiction, common sense would simply say this would be the highest of platforms I could use to voice my opinion. As a young man, who has clearly benefitted from what he states is a “dark game” I find it a bit hypocritical that he would make such a comment while raking in millions. IF he claims to not owe an explanation, then what’s the point of getting on a forum to state what is your perceived lack of interest to explain yourself when you can continue your reclusiveness and just not say anything.We were all young once! Maybe someday he will look back and regret this decision, not for the benefit of others, but for himself, as a missed opportunity in life! The world will continue, and whether we here from him again or not will remain to be seen. We have all made mistakes, and of coarse will make many more moving forward. I personally feel this was a mistake on his part, but that is simply my opinion, and if I ever saw him I would tell him that, but I would still never hold it against him personally.

    • I’m glad he didn’t voice his opinion to the press. Didn’t sound very positive towards getting OP passed. And it also seems kind of hypocritical to be so against poker yet you’re playing in a million dollar buy in tournament and making your living from poker. And look, there’s a “dark side” to just about everything in life, whether you’re playing poker or running your own business. The bottom line is there’s going to be a few winners and more losers no matter what you’re involved in. About the only freedom we have left is the freedom to make our own decisions so if you don’t like something, try something else. Never give up and keep trying new things to find something you’re good at and makes you somewhat happy.

    • There is a good church in london that does all of that , ohh i forgot its a hackers network where they spy on your players computers with ease !major relative EASE. btw , you could say the same thing about professionalls such as phil helmuthAre they addicted ? yes they are addicted to playing poker 24/7 7 days a week , then when they close the game off its back to free golf and marketing meetings and other business ventures. Not slating helmuth here hes the best poker player I think thats ever been around the game in the past 50 years, he has multiple records ,he owns what is it now 15 bracelets/ hundreds of scores in live mtt tournaments ,the guys a beast on the mtt scene .I actually like him too ,but players like that will never have a problem with someone telling them they have a major gambling or poker addiction , so for these top end players its not a gambling problem?? You can forget about that bs that some of the people throw out there in defence of the crass attitude of the church do-gooders out there and the idiots that want to ban the game , the gambling issues are relative ,yes I agree on some points but the majority of these sites are geared to help alleviate the players concerns by offering services to minimise thier losses by putting in restrictions on bets and deposits etc.In my opinion ,the people who regular think that just because losing players and im one of those players ,who happen to endlessly deposit money onto a site , are deemed to have a gambling problem is preposturous. and ridiculed. people out there are jealous of winners, jealous of players winning , and overall place catogorisation on players who they think classify as problem gamblers. the gaming commisions dont give a rats arse either , if they did they would make sure these sites were not used by moderators to spy on players computers .Thats their excuse , the sites will win in the long term thus keeping all the players on the backburner promoting the next wannabe sports analyst or some one famous ,and when they sponser them and they make a mistake they sack them after 1 month. like suarez on 888 . superb analogy goes with what happened at Manchester united with David moyes and when they sacked him too. The fucking world hasnt got a clue . and yet people get sacked because they didnt win or they make a mistake which was totally irrelavant to actual company they were being tied to.make your own minds up.!

    • westminster great central hall im talking about , someone from there is using spying technology to look at personal computers poker data/Someone there is heaped. i guess whats really going on is u got MI5/government all sorts . who knows what else .I tracked that from my External IP address ,someone was busy let me assure you , and All i wanted was to play online poker in peace.

    • I used to be like that when I was his age. But I grew up and realized that there are a lot of good people out there that you can give some words to. Some kind words. Some words of inspiration or hope. You dont owe no one nothing but you can love yourself and the people in your life. Having children taught me that.

    • The media acting like cry babies because he didn’t want to give an interview was absurd. He won $15 milly, not them, he can do w/e the **** he wants. I have no problem with the lack of an interview and neither should anyone else. I do have a problem with his 2 2 response though. For 1 he is known to be very harsh in the chat box and admittedly tries to get people to play above their head so he can take advantage of them. In his PGC thread on 2 2 he says ” When I get challenged to HU cash in a hyper I wait it out until they finally tilt to play higher stakes than they are used to” Is there anything wrong with that? i don’t think so personally, but don’t try to act like some saint above the “dark side” of poker. Him and his HU SNG wizard friends also actively team up against anyone who tries to play their stakes and take their fish. Yeah, you’re a real classy guy my friend.

    • The guy is clearly a douchebag, and a really immature one at that. Obviously just trying to be “edgy” or whatever. One of the most misguided and hypocritical things I’ve seen in a while.

    • Yes, they guy is a giant douche. Yes, it would’ve been better for poker if Daniel N. won. Yes, he doesn’t owe poker or the media anything.

      However, its pretty funny how the media is so butthurt because he doesn’t want to give any interviews.

    • Yeah the interview thing didn’t bother me at all, he’s free to do whatever he wants and I respect that. His reasons for doing it are what I have a problem with. Oh well though, some people are just shitheads, c’est la vie. No need to give this guy any more attention, I won’t be wasting any energy worrying about it.

    • Coleman stated on 2 2 that he didn’t owe an explanation about not speaking to the media – then why offer one up? He also offered to allow “us” to try and change his mind. I don’t want to change his mind – his opinions and reasons are his own. I just question his motive for giving such an infused reason…
      His reasoning seemed to be a bit condescending… The minions that he has taken money off of are all misguided idiots gambling their rent money away.
      I would have had more respect for his decision not to talk to the media if he had not offered an explanation – and I DO respect any ones personal choices – including those who choose to invest their time and money in the game.
      I also reminded myself that he is only 23… (albeit a talented and intelligent 23) if I had to live and die by the things I felt and said at 23…

    • Coleman stated on 2 2 that he didn’t owe an explanation about not speaking to the media – then why offer one up? He also offered to allow “us” to try and change his mind. I don’t want to change his mind – his opinions and reasons are his own. I just question his motive for giving such an infused reason…
      His reasoning seemed to be a bit condescending… The minions that he has taken money off of are all misguided idiots gambling their rent money away.
      I would have had more respect for his decision not to talk to the media if he had not offered an explanation – and I DO respect any ones personal choices – including those who choose to invest their time and money in the game.
      I also reminded myself that he is only 23… (albeit a talented and intelligent 23) if I had to live and die by the things I felt and said at 23…

      saying things like this doesnt help . Its your lame opinion on what is going on in the world . And not all of them are idiots ,you got to be over 18 to be enter casino in the first place maybe over 21 in the states. I guess your thinking its rent money ,I highly doubt this!.problem with people in this world is they havent had a hard job getting their hands dirty in their lives. Too many people think its good living on easy street not having to worry about anything or anyone.

    • AAND THEY CAN FK THAT CHAT BOX AND DO ONE , THESE POKER SITES CAN GET RID OF THE CHAT CONCEPT BECAUSE ITS PARAMOUNT TO DIKHEADS ABUSING IT TIME AND TIME AGAIN.

    • doc31 take a chill/conspiracy theory much?

      clem made money on AP ,as did I but i’m assuming you’re stabbing at the possibility he lost money on there like idid and thats just bullshit

    • Top 3 “Forum Denials”-You can’t folk AK pre-flop-On-line Poker could never be rigged.-Poker players don’t have gambling problems. That is for the sports bettors, slot and table game players.You can debate his character, self-righteousness, and tact, but he’s bringing appropriate attention to an important matter, and if you’re so quick to ostracize him, see the top three forum denials above… maybe you’re in denial… just saying..

    • Dude is entitled to his opinion but he sounds like a big wet blanket and a hypocrite basically. No he doesn’t have to give an interview at all but the media it what makes all the money come into the game and makes this big scores possible. Golfers, Baseball players, etc. they don’t all like giving interviews no way but they know it builds their sport and helps everyone of the pros make a living. So basically he said (with his non-interview then his posting) ok I got mine now so y’all pros go f*k off. I don’t have problem with it really but thats what he said. I like the comment about most jobs having a dark side NO DOUBT oh my god is that ever true. Whats the difference between a poker tournament and a golf tournament anyway? Pay your entry get in there and compete see how you can do. Every competitive endeavor has a trail of broken dreams…take a look at soccer and the nba if you need help…

    • some people like there job some poeple dont, he obviously has seen a the side of people that dont and have to grind MU and lose loads esp in hypers his reasons for not having the interview are for that reason who gives a f@ck what anyone thinks guys said his piece and will continue to wipe his ass with money we will only ever dream of seeing and hes not been in our faces about it, guy stuck to his guns more admirable than being some attention whoring A hole

    • a 23 year old, locked away in a dark room grinding hu hypers for a few years, probably lacks social skills so wouldn’t be much of an interview anyway.

    • a 23 year old, locked away in a dark room grinding hu hypers for a few years, probably lacks social skills so wouldn’t be much of an interview anyway.

      As much as that would make sense, I can attest to the guy being plenty entertaining and very sociable. Kind of a shame he makes a name for himself in this light really.

    • Imagine Djocovic doing this at Wimbeldon. In fact I don’t think he had a choice, you win you’re doing an interview. This guy is a twerp. /thread

    • Its not the interview decline . Its the over the top bullshit he spewed after saying he didnt owe anything to anyone . making out most of poker is played by degens using rent money . coming from a player who is prepared to sink lower than a snakes balls just to get someone to play higher stakes or not play at his stakes at all . Im guessing this all comes from people calling him mcloven on ETP live stream. /darkside

    • a 23 year old, locked away in a dark room grinding hu hypers for a few years, probably lacks social skills so wouldn’t be much of an interview anyway.

      good point lol probably true

    • Dan C perception of poker is his own,but from a universal perspective(collective consciousness/worldwide view) it seems to be wrong in the sense that everyone playing poker some will win and some will lose be in any form cash/tournament/sng etc…obv winning players will gain personal finance and the losing player indirectly or directly actually helped another human being/beings (similar to charity(voluntarily),but with a lil fun & competition)..When you play the game with the purity,integrity and fun(high vibrations/positive) it was created too and try to stay from the distractions(bs the game was not intended to face evil,fear,greed,all the lower vibrations(negative) which pretty much creates chaos and conflicts in any industry really)…True strength comes from inside , so dont give away your energy to external situations regardless.Playing Poker is really a win win situation for humanity on earth. anything else is just an illusion to distract yall from the simpleness.As i said once on my twitter and i willl say it here again ” ???????$€???? @The_N_JM ? Mar 26I am pretty sure if Jesus played poker he would explain variance like all of us,@davidblaine yer magic has inspired me to be stronger!If jesus were here he might be but most can see him obv he would support growth of poker on earth,each player has to learn to improve how they deal with the situations their are dealth with in the best possible way that serves the highest good of all!! Anyways I may start a blog since i have so many thing to say that have never been said & done before…Peace yall, we are all one conciousness/humanity in the end which is the simple truth and only illusions in the Matrix that creates seperateness !

    • I respect Dan’s decision. He has his reasons why.

      One thing he is right about is their is a dark side to poker no matter what some people might say.
      But their is also a Brightside also. There’s lots of charitable contributions from poker.
      Guess it all depends on ones own perspective on things or how you look at it.

      Good on you Dan on doing what you felt was right for you. My hat off to you.

    • Dan is entitled to his opinion. I just asked myself, how does Dan’s opinion affect me in any way? The answer was clear… none whatsoever. So I really don’t care what he thinks. Poker is not that dark, it’s a fucking game… like Sudoku or Monopoly or whatever to kill time and combat boredom. People of my world don’t really care whether they win or lose money in online poker…we don’t give a shit. In terms of numbers, if a friend of mine has let’s say like 10 million sitting in his bank account from why would he give a crap about the 50k in his online poker account that he is fucking around with?

    • I think winners do owe poker something. When cameras are there and you are a big name player and win the tournament…….you do owe an interview. Cameras are part of the popularity and ultimately part of the attraction to many and undoubtedly part of the reason prize pools can get so high. Why go on the “thread” to comment? If you are “against the game”, keep all your thoughts to yourself and just leave – we won’t miss you – I could have respected his walking out without an interview better had he not gone on the “thread” to give reasoning later. I think it’s a young kid (brilliant poker player) who wants to be cool or dark or mysterious or whatever – just another social misfit trying to be unique in the poker world. Also, from reading some of the other threads – he sounds a bit hypocritical or at least “wishy-washy” on his stance based on when it might or might not serve him personally.

    • what your saying is the sites are promoting active collusion then? It sure feels that way every time I sit down at stars and fulltilt these days. I have won some plo tournaments but I sincerely feel that players are colluding in the tournaments at the worst of times. Even re-registering their freinds to bust certain players out in mtts.