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DOYLISM OF THE DAY: “Reputation is a bubble which bursts when a man trys to blow it up for himself.”

by Doyle Brunson |  Published: Aug 03, '09

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I’m getting lots of calls and emails about the Poker Hall of Fame induction in November and my opinion of the candidates. For those of you who don’t know this, this is the first year that the public votes for who they think should be nominated. Then the top 10 players from their vote are sent to the 15 living members of the HOF and to 15 media people. We each have 2 votes so here are my thoughts. Remember, these are my thoughts. If you don’t agree with me, please don’t start a civil war about it.

The criteria for selection is:
(1) Must have played against top competition.
(2) Played for high stakes.
(3) Played consistently well, gaining respect of their peers.
(4) Stood the test of time.
(5) Contributed to the overall growth and success of poker with positive and lasting results.

Here are the players in alphabetical order and my opinions about each one.

(1) Tom Dwan – It’s really an honor for Tom to be a nominee at the age of 22. Obviously, he can’t meet the criteria that are listed. I think he is a fine player and barring something unforeseen, his picture will be on the wall someday.

(2) Barry Greenstein – Barry meets all the requirements. I think he was a much better choice when he was a cash game player only. He is in my top 3 or 4 choices.

(3) Dan Harrington – “Action Dan” as he is known would be a good representative of the poker world. He has a lot of interests outside poker, which will go against him.

(4) Phil Ivey – This is where I’ll get a lot of heat, because I think the Halls of Fame for any sport is for players whose careers have more to look back at than look forward to. Phil isn’t even at the height of his career yet but is a 100% cinch to be inducted soon. I’ve got a feeling I’m going to lose this argument which is OK if I do.

(5) Tom McEvoy – Tom is a long time ambassador of poker and is one of the old guys that I favor. I understand that playing for high stakes is different for everybody. You have to be a little bit crazy to play the stakes some of us play for, but Tom has put his time in at the tables.

(6) Men Nguyen – I’ve admired Men’s work ethic for years. Nobody has played and supported tournaments as much as Men. He has several player of the year awards as proof of that.

(7) Scotty Nguyen – Anybody that is called “The Prince of Poker” has to be a viable candidate. He is one of the best all-around players and he certainly meets the criteria well.

(8) Daniel Negreanu – What can I say here? go back and read what I said about Phil Ivey and pretend it’s here. Daniel is my choice to outlast any of the “young guns” people keep talking about Daniel and Phil both meet all 5 criteria.

(9) Eric Seidel – Eric is definitely one of my top choices. I think he is the consummate gambler. Besides being a great player, he has the best all-around disposition of anyone. He reminds me of Chip Reese, which is the highest compliment I can pay anyone.

(10) Mike Sexton – In my opinion, here is the #1 choice. Mike paid his dues at the table for years, gambled as high as his bankroll allowed and meets all the requirements for induction. Mostly, go back and read #5 in the criteria. Nobody and I mean nobody has contributed more to the success of poker than Mike Sexton. If he isn’t one of the people selected, something is wrong. I know of 3 votes from the living members at the HOF that Mike will get. Binion and Crandell Addington both assure me Mike will be their 1st choice, also.

So there you have it. It would be impossible to make a bad choice from this list of players. It will be interesting, to say the least, who the two inductees will be. Kudos to Harrah’s for changing the process!

-DB

Doyle "Tex Dolly" Brunson is a 10-time WSOP bracelet winner, best-selling author, and is known worldwide as the father of modern poker. His list of poker accomplishments and awards are endless.

 
Any views or opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the ownership or management of CardPlayer.com.
 

Comments

1Acehigh
almost 12 years ago

Mike Sexton imo deserves It for sure. As you said Phil and Daniel will be there soon enough. GL MS!

 
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dakege
almost 12 years ago

I think Mike and Barry should be inducted. Not only for what they have done at the tables but also off them. I like Daniel and Phil a lot, but I think is too early for them. There is no doubt in my mind they will be on the wall sooner than later.
"May all your cards be live and your pots be monsters"
Go MS and BG !!!

 
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cosmo1021
almost 12 years ago

DOYLE IF I COULD VOTE MIKE SEXTON, BARRY GREENSTEIN SHOULD GO THEY HAVE PUT IN THEIR TIME AN ARE BOTH QUALIFIED TO GO INTO HOF LIKE YOU SAID ALL YOU NAMED WILL GET THEIR, MY 3RD CHOICE IS A TIE DANIEL,AN IVEY.

 
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cosmo1021
almost 12 years ago

IF YOU READ TOM DWAN BLOGS AN HEAR HIM TALK YOU WOULD CHANGE YOUR MIND ABOUT DWAN HE SHOULD NOT EVEN BE MENTIONED AN I LIKE HIM VERY MUCH BUT HE IS NOT READY YET.

 
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rojan
almost 12 years ago

A top vote has to be Tom McEvoy? He has 4 bracelets,( in diferent games!) he has written 12+ books and millions of articles. He helped make our card rooms smoke free! He has always been accessable, He has promoted and made a living from poker for many years. He has played with all the big boys and suvived! He has met 4 of the 5 and playing huge cash games does not make you a champion, it just shows you are willing to take big risks.Plus,a big cash game is all relative to you personaly. We all are enamored with the big money, but the other 4 criteria are more important to be a hall of famer and respected champion!
PLUS Tom McEvoy won the Binion Cup! Who elae can say that????

 
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texasroadgambler
almost 12 years ago

A note to all of the objectionists to the criteria for induction into the HOF:

Even though some of you express your objections politely to the criterion for having played for high stakes, the fact remains that your objection to that criterion is irrelevant.

The criteria were established long before most of you were born or were at least too young to play poker.

The Poker Hall of Fame was not intended to be a reaffirmation of success at the tournament games. The history of the game is founded upon high stakes cash games.

Like it or not, that criterion will stand.

 
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kmantic
almost 12 years ago

Anyone who thinks Dwan should even be on the ballot needs to have their head checked. Dwan is my #1 choice in this category: "Best player to watch on TV." That's it. At 22-23 he doesn't even qualify for at least 2 of the 5 criteria. People like him because of his over-the-top aggressive style and he represents the internet community. Does that make him HOF material?

You know who would have been a 500% better choice who's more accomplished and has had some storms to weather in his poker career? Gus Hansen. Gus's game is has evolved past just shoveling chips into pots as a primary strategy. Even with Gus's accomplishments he's probably not ready for the HOF yet.

Only time will tell on Dwan but I don't think he's got "it". Then again, he's just a kid and a lot is going to happen in his life by the time he's even 30, let alone 40+ where he can have a realistic chance for HOF.

 
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texasroadgambler
almost 12 years ago

kmantic:

Durrrr's presence probably reflects the power of the Internet to influence nominations.

I predict that he won't get a single vote from the HOF members.

He won't get mine, and I am a member.

 
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DragonFly
almost 12 years ago

The HOF is surely not just about poker ability...It must also be an aknowledgement of the character of a player (Notice I said player instead of man...When will Harmon get a mention...or is the HOF only NL Holdem)...In my book, the way Scotty Nguyen behaves (2008 50K Horse), he should never get in....

Barry Greenstein has to be a big runner...First Class high stakes cash player...has beaten the best consistantly over a long period...Unassuming, respectful character that reflects well on the game...Has donated large amounts of poker winnings to charity...I reckon he checks the boxes of all 5 criteria better than any other candidate.

I once watched him give out the signed copy of his book when he got felted out a tourny...and the guy asked anyone at the table if they wanted it and gave it away before Barry coulda been 10 feet away...The lack of respect turned my stomach...if you don't want it...say thank you, take it home and throw it away...but I suppose not everyone can have the dignity of Barry, Dolly, Chip....oh, and Hellmuth (LOL..)

Sexton and Seidel 2nd and 3rd...

 
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