Poker Hall Of Fame Nominees

Jul 20, 2017  Ivey and Ulliott become the 53 rd and 54 th individuals to be inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame. They were nominated by the public, vetted by the PHOF Governing Council and voted in by the 27 living Poker Hall of Fame members, and an 18-person Blue Ribbon Media Panel, it was announced today by the Poker Hall of Fame Governing Council. Following a public vote and a vetting process by the WSOP, Chris Ferguson is among the 10 names nominated for this year’s Hall of Fame. 2019 WSOP Hall of Fame Nominees Chris Bjorin.


The Women in Poker Hall of Fame has announced the candidates for the Class of 2018 inductees. Of more than 50 submissions made by the public, the WiPHoF committee has narrowed it down to the following 11 candidates: Hermance Blum, Mandy Glogow, Angelica Hael, Haley Hintze, Maria Ho. Jul 06, 2018  Some finalists should be in the Hall of Fame already. The Poker Hall of Fame is certainly an eclectic mixture. All members have impacted poker in a profound manner. With that said, some of the people on the finalist list stick out as especially deserving.

Home » Poker News » WSOP Announces 10 Hall of Fame Finalists

As the 50th Annual World Series of Poker flew past the halfway mark last week, there was more going on behind the scenes than tabulating prize pools and payouts. It was time to gather the names of all of the poker legends nominated for the Poker Hall of Fame and narrow the list down to the 10 people with the most votes.

On June 23, the list of the 10 finalists was announced.

Most of the nominees will come as no surprise, as they have been nominated at least once in past years. The only new name on the list this year is Antonio Esfandiari.

2019 HOF Finalists

Without further ado, the names of the 10 finalists for induction into the 2019 Poker Hall of Fame, in alphabetical order, are:

Chris Bjorin

David Chiu

Eli Elezra

Antonio Esfandiari

Chris Ferguson


Ted Forrest

Mike Matusow

Chris Moneymaker

David Oppenheim

Huckleberry Seed

As mentioned, Esfandiari is the only new name on the list. Oppenheim made his debut on the list in 2018, and Chiu, Matusow, and Seed have now been on the list for three years running. Bjorin and Moneymaker had been nominated in 2018 and in previous years.

Ten finalists for Poker Hall of Fame Class of 2019 unveiled:
Final voting to be conducted by 30-person HOF panel and 21-person poker industry media panel.
Induction July 15.

— WSOP (@WSOP) June 23, 2019

Many poker fans will remember the 2018 Poker Hall of Fame inductees.

Poker player, producer, and content creator Mori Eskandani was inducted last year, as was poker pro John “Johnny World” Hennigan.

Final Voting Process

From this point, the public voting is over, and the rest is left up to two groups, all members with equal voting rights. One group consists of the 30 living Poker Hall of Fame members, and the other is a 21-person panel of members of the poker media.

Ballots will be sent to all of the 51 voters, and they must return them to the WSOP Governing Council by July 8. That council will tally the votes and determine the inductees for 2019. This could be one, two, or even three people, depending upon the outcome of the voting process.

The names of the final inductee(s) will be announced soon after the July 8 voting deadline, and the awards ceremony will take place alongside the WSOP Main Event final table action on July 15. It will be televised as a part of the ESPN broadcast.

Inductee Qualifications

All of the nominees have already met the basic qualifications, but the criteria for inductees will be more seriously examined during on the final ballots. The qualifications for induction are as follows:

Poker Hall Of Fame Nominees 2019

–Must have played poker against acknowledged top competition

–Must be at least 40 years old at the time of nomination

–Must have played for high stakes

–Must have played consistently well and gained the respect of his or her peers

–Must have stood the test of time

Non-players can be considered if they have contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker with indelible positive and lasting results. In the 2019 list of finalists, this may apply – with other criteria – to Chris Moneymaker, who rarely plays high-stakes poker.

Poll: Should Chris Moneymaker be voted into the Poker Hall of Fame?

— Kevin Mathers (@Kevmath) September 14, 2016

It can and should be noted that all of the nominees in 2019 are male, and most are based in the United States with the most notable exception of Chris Bjorin. Elezra, Chiu, and Esfandiari have globally diverse ethnic backgrounds but all claim the US as home.

Can we just all agree to change the official name to ´American Poker Hall of Fame´?

— Milko @ WSOP (@DegenOnTour) June 24, 2019

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Poker Hall Of Fame Nominees

A couple days ago, the list of the 10 final nominees for induction to the Poker Hall of Fame was published. There are four repeat nominees this year (John Juanda, Tom McEvoy, Jennifer Harman, Scotty Nguyen) and six first-time nominees (George Hardie, Brian “Sailor” Roberts, Chris Bjorin, Eric Drache, David Chiu, Thor Hansen). In the past couple of years, we’ve written about the latest inductees, Barry Greenstein and Linda Johnson (2011) and Erik Seidel and Dan Harrington (2010), so if any of the nominees end up getting inducted, we’ll naturally be doing another write-up. News, names, and inductions aside, however, we think that it’s high time for a proper Poker Hall of Fame to be built.

Poker Hall Of Fame Nominees

What Does It Mean to Get Inducted?

Election to the Poker Hall of Fame is considered to be one of the biggest honors in the game. As many of you know, while public nominations are accepted, to be eligible for enshrinement nominees must fulfill a number of strict criteria. Wikipedia has a great page with details about Poker Hall of Fame and its 42 current members. Owned by Caesars Entertainment, all Poker Hall of Fame matters are handled exclusively by the people who run the World Series of Poker.

Currently, the official “home” of the Hall of Fame is at Binion’s in downtown Las Vegas; the original home of the WSOP. There, a dedicated wall displays pictures of all Hall of Famers, dating back to Johnny Moss and the other six initial members who were inducted back in 1979. Ironically, the Poker Hall of Fame at Binion’s was originally conceived not just to honor the achievements of the game’s greatest players and proponents, but also to serve as a tourist attraction. I’ve been to Binion’s and I’ve seen the wall. Buried in the bowels of an aging downtown Las Vegas relic, however, I’ve got to say that as a poker fan I was both very unimpressed and disappointed.

Like Sports and Music or Professional Wrestling?

The head honchos over at the WSOP need to decide what sort of character they want the game’s Hall of Fame to have. Currently, it most resembles WWE’s professional wrestling Hall of Fame, which essentially exists online, “in people’s minds and hearts”, and in yearly induction ceremonies. Perhaps that type of Hall of Fame is apropos for what essentially boils down to lifetime achievement awards for excellent service to a private entertainment company. Real-world achievements in public arenas like sports and music, however, arguably deserve better. When there’s an actual shrine to visit, it elevates those enshrined that much more.

Famous Halls of Fame like in Cooperstown (baseball), Cleveland (rock and roll), Canton (football), and Nashville (country music) get millions upon millions of visitors each year and for good reason. Fans of those enshrined make pilgrimages to these edifices in order to pay tribute to their heroes and the greats of sports and music who have inspired and influenced them.

If You Build It, They Will Come

We call upon the WSOP to build a permanent home for the Poker Hall of Fame in Las Vegas at the Rio. The game of poker has so much to gain from the creation of a bona fide Hall of Fame tourist attraction. Hold the annual ceremonies there and collect memorabilia from current members, who will likely be all too happy to contribute their time and effort. Put up plaques, showcase video footage, mention it during WSOP broadcasts – we’re talking about something very highly marketable here.

Give us tens of millions of poker fans worldwide another reason to want to come to Las Vegas. I dare say go ahead and even charge us $1 admission (payable by poker chip – how’s that for unique and innovative?) to keep the hall open 24/7 (another first) and ensure that it’ll be a moneymaker (“you know who” would be a great front man to promote it…).

2017 Poker Hall Of Fame Nominees

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