Does Daniel Negreanu Think Wearing Sunglasses is Cheating?
Recently, Daniel Negreanu has been very vocal on the subject of sunglasses in poker. In talking about his new poker television show (The Big Game) he mentions how the players are not allowed to wear sunglasses on the show. Negreanu then goes on to say that he would like to see sunglasses banned from all televised events pointing out that if everyone wore hoodies and sunglasses then poker would never survive on tv. Basically, Negreanu feels that wearing sunglasses is hurting the advancement or popularity of poker. He does have a point. If High Stakes Poker were eight dudes in hoodies and sunglasses that just sat there not moving (bit of an exaggeration but..) trying not to give off any tells then I don't think many people would watch and poker would suffer for it.
Negreanu doesn't go so far as to say that players who wear sunglasses are cheaters but did say that banning sunglasses would help to protect the integrity of the game against cheating. How? Well, apparently wearing sunglasses makes it easier to see marked cards. There are even certain types of ink (which can be used to mark cards) that can only be seen through special glasses and not by the naked eye. Read up more on card marking here. Apparently, Negreanu is not alone on this as fellow high stakes poker professional Tom "Durrrr" Dwan has commented on an episode of High Stakes Poker that you should be uncomfortable playing against someone wearing sunglasses in a big game.
Another argument Negreanu makes for banning sunglasses is that it takes some skill out of the game as one of the skills of poker is (or should be) the ability to read your opponents. Negreanu is not calling for an all out ban of sunglasses but would like to see a few shows or tournaments here and there that do not permit players to wear sunglasses.
Negreanu has seen some backlash from his take on sunglasses in poker. Poker Pro Roy Winston feels this would be unfair to players that wear prescription sunglasses. Well how about wearing your other pair of glasses that aren't tinted. Or how about getting a new pair that aren't tinted. Or how about not saying anything Roy Winston unless you have something intelligent to say. Just because you make stupid comments doesn't mean people are going to care who you are Roy. Negreanu has made many valid points and yes people do care about that. I say let's get rid of the sunglasses and let the real poker players play poker.