- »2020 Poker Hall of Fame Inductee Announced on December 30
2020 Poker Hall of Fame Inductee Announced on December 30
The nomination process for the 2020 Poker Hall of Fame has started. Poker fans from all over the world are invited to nominate a player they deem worthy. Only one person is inducted this year, which was the case between 1980 and 2004.
Every vote between now and December 11 is used to identify worthy nominees. The list is whittled to a final list revealed on December 16. A panel made up of 32 living Hall of Fame members casts the final vote and the winner becomes the 2020 Poker Hall of Fame inductee.
That immortalized player is announced during the WSOP Main Event heads-up finale on December 30.
The open-nomination process will bring up a lot of names, including the eight players still eligible from 2019’s voting. You can vote for anyone to be the 2020 Poker Hall of Fame inductee if they meet the criteria below.
- Be a minimum of 40-years-old
- Played for high stakes
- Played consistently well and gained the respect of their peers
- Must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
- Stood the test of time
- For non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker with indelible positive and lasting results
Possible 2020 Poker Hall of Fame Candidates
Last year saw two inductees in the shape of David Oppenheim and Chris Moneymaker. The eight players who reached the final vote are still eligible and it’s likely they’ll receive many votes.
Chris Bjorin has found himself on several shortlists and would be a worthy 2020 Poker Hall of Fame inductee. The 72-year-old Swedish-born pro has more than $5.7 million in cashes and two WSOP bracelets. He ranks seventh in the number of WSOP cashes with 92.
Bjorin has definitely stood the test of time. He’s cashed for more than $100,000 in 19 different calendar years.
David Chiu arrived in the United States from China when he was 18-years-old. Chiu started life as a restaurant owner before becoming a poker dealer. His career as a poker player stemmed from being around chips and cards.
Chiu is now 57-years-old and has accumulated more than $8 million in tournament winnings. This impressive sum is helped by Chiu winning five WSOP bracelets. He also won the 2008 WPT World Championship for a whopping $3,389,140.
Eli Elezra was a lieutenant in the Israeli army before he became a poker player. Elezra suffered a leg injury during the Lebanon War in 1982 and was left bedridden for a time. It’s during this enforced downtime he discovered poker.
Elezra has played at the highest level for 20 years, mostly as a cash game player. He’s no slouch in tournaments, however, with more than $3.7 million in winnings and four bracelets.
Will The Magician or Jesus Be Inducted?
Antonio “The Magician” Esfandiari won the inaugural Big One for One Drop in 2012 for $18,346,673. That alone isn’t enough for a place in the 2020 Poker Hall of Fame. His combined winnings of $27 million, three bracelets and two WPT title is, however.
Chris “Jesus” Ferguson has more than $9 million in winnings and six WSOP bracelets. Ferguson won the Main Event in 2000 and was the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year. Those stats are enough for inducting, but Ferguson was part of the Full Tilt Poker scandal, too. It’s a major blot on his copybook and something that may stop him receiving votes.
Ted Forrest has six bracelets to his name, three coming in his debut appearance. Forrest went to the 1993 WSOP and won the first event he played, a $5,000 Seven-card Stud tournament. He won another two bracelets in stud and Omaha Hi-Lo over the next three days!
Mike “The Mouth” Matusow is one of the two remaining 2019 nominees eligible for a place in the 2020 Poker Hall of Fame. Matusow has almost $9.5 million in earnings thanks in part to 15 WSOP final table appearances. Those final tables include Main Events in 2001 and 2005. The Mouth has four bracelets on his poker resume.
Huck Seed has cashes dating back to 1990 and total winnings of $7,649,864. His largest cash weighs in at $1,000,000, his reward for taking down the 1996 WSOP Main Event. Seed doesn’t play much poker these days so is unlikely to add to his four bracelets.
Who Gets Your Vote?
Which player gets your vote? Is it one of the eight pros mentioned above or someone else? Bjorin gets my vote because he ticks all the boxes and then some.