If you’ve ever played a bit of table poker, you may know Daniel Neilson. He’s an English pro who was undefeated at the European Poker Tour Championship tournament in 2020. The top two finishers in the European Open Final table in 2020 also belong to the same exclusive club.
Daniel Neilson is the captain of his team in the World Series of Poker, the Forex Dream Team. The official WPT Website states that the team works together and shares leadership duties. Other countries have their own superstars, too, like David Hill or Hal Wallis in Australia and Jimmy Chou or Tim Henman in the UK.
Daniel Neilson had his captaincy epiphany while playing at an ATB (alternate checkers) tournament. The current captain of the Florida Hold’em Tournament Team, Neilson was mulling over a question: “What is the difference between a good player and a great player?” The answer was clear: The greatest players are the ones who don’t let anything get them down.
With that, Neilson set out to develop a method that would help players build character. For example, how do you get excited about something when you already have an extensive background knowledge of it? What is the answer to the “why me” question?
Neilson’s philosophy is that everyone has what he calls their “central” character trait. These are skills, traits, and tendencies that can best be described as the “nucleus” of any person.
Neilson’s central character trait, according to him, is that he always wants to win. He will not sit back and let other people decide whether he is a good or a bad player. Instead, he’ll always jump in and take control of the situation whenever he feels it is necessary.
Neilson explains his approach in simple terms. “If I see a good move, I’m going to make it and I’m going to change my strategy if I see a bad one. I’m only going to lose if I allow a bad play to occur.” If you fail to do this, Neilson says, you should just try something else.
To improve your game, Neilson believes that you must evaluate your options at every opportunity. Yes, that’s true. When you make a mistake, always stop and ask yourself if the situation is as good as it looks or if it is as bad as it seems. If it looks good, you’re going to make the right move.
It’s easy to see why Neilson is so popular among many other pros. He doesn’t allow situations to take control of his actions. That means that the poker world is always the one with the advantage.
“I don’t use emotions as part of my decision-making process,” Neilson says. Instead, he counts the odds and looks at the long term results of each move. One of the most important rules of poker is that you always look at the best possible hand if you can.
Daniel Neilson was named the most popular player on the planet by Betfair. Neilson’s personal website is completely devoted to poker. You can read about his most popular and most talked about strategies in his blog.
Neilson’s strategy has won him millions of dollars and honors for his exploits. But what about the rest of us who are willing to play with an edge?