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Poker Hall of Fame

Poker Hall of Fame
Industry Gaming
Founded 1979
Founder Binion's Horseshoe
Headquarters Virtual Presence
Key people Jack Binion, Creator
Owner Caesars Entertainment

The Poker Hall of Fame is the hall of fame of professional poker in the United States. Founded in Las Vegas, it was created in 1979 by Benny Binion, the owner of the Horseshoe Casino, to preserve the names and legacies of the world's greatest poker players and to serve as a tourist attraction to his casino. Binion was known for the creative ways in which he marketed his casino. In 1949, he convinced Johnny Moss and Nick "The Greek" Dandolos to play high-stakes poker heads up where the public could watch them. In 1970, he invited a group of poker players to compete in what would be the first World Series of Poker (WSOP). When Harrah's Entertainment, now known as Caesars Entertainment, acquired the rights to the WSOP in 2004, it also assumed ownership of the Poker Hall of Fame. Currently, membership in the Poker Hall of Fame is handled directly by the WSOP.

As of 2013, 46 people have been inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame, 21 of whom are still living.


Before the 2009 World Series of Poker, then-WSOP Commissioner Jeffrey Pollack announced that the process for becoming a member into the Poker Hall of Fame would undergo a slight modification. Starting in 2009, the Poker Hall of Fame started accepting nominations from the public. This move was intended to increase interest in the Hall. Almost immediately after this decision was announced, Party Poker started an online campaign to get its representative and World Poker Tour commentator Mike Sexton elected to the Hall. Other poker sites, namely PokerStars' Tom McEvoy, followed suit by pushing their own poker professionals. The requirements for the Poker Hall of Fame are as follows:

In 2009, 23-year-old online poker professional Tom Dwan was a finalist for the Poker Hall of Fame because of public balloting. As a result, a new age requirement was added in 2011. This rule, known as the "Chip Reese Rule", established a minimum age of 40 to be inducted into the Hall. This new requirement eliminated some players who were regular nominees over the previous years, such as Phil Ivey (35) and Daniel Negreanu (36).

The award

Admission into the Poker Hall of Fame is considered one of the biggest honors in poker. In his acceptance speech, T. J. Cloutier declared, "It's one of two things I've always wanted to win." Barbara Enright, the first woman inducted into the Hall, considers her induction to be a "lifetime achievement honor."

Before being acquired by Harrah's Casino, R.S. Owens & Company was commissioned to design an award for Poker Hall of Famers. The award was an 8-inch-tall piece of glass with a hand of cards sandblasted at the bottom, the winner's name, and the words "Poker Hall of Fame" in a circle. The circle had a gold emblem bonded to the glass and had the Binion's Horseshoe Casino logo in it. There was a gold plated base with three gold-plated stacks of chips.


Image Year Name
WSOP Winnings WSOP bracelets Notes
1979 Johnny Moss
The Grand Old Man of Poker
$824,922 1970 World Series of Poker Championship
1971 $5,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship

1971 Limit Ace to 5 Draw
1974 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1975 $1,000 Seven Card Stud
1976 $500 Seven Card Stud
1979 $5,000 Seven Card Stud
1981 $1,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo
1988 $1,500 Ace to Five Draw

The first World Series of Poker was not a freeze-out tournament, but rather a game with a set start and stop time. Benny Binion took a secret ballot that asked the players who the best player was. According to poker lore, everybody said that they were the best player. Binion then asked who the second-best player was, and Johnny Moss won.
- 1979 Nick Dandolos
Nick the Greek
$0 None According to poker lore, in the summer of 1949, in Nevada, Nick the Greek and Johnny Moss played in a five-month-long poker marathon at Binion's Horseshoe Casino. Nick the Greek reportedly lost about $2 million to Moss and on losing the final hand stood up and said, "Mr. Moss, I have to let you go." This heads-up match, which became a tourist attraction, is often cited as the earliest inspiration behind the World Series of Poker.
- 1979 Felton McCorquodale†
$0 None McCorquodale is credited with introducing the game of Texas Hold'em to Las Vegas in 1963.
- 1979 Red Winn† $0 None -
- 1979 Sid Wyman† $0 None Wyman was a noted poker player and owner of several Vegas casinos: Sands, Riviera, Royal Nevada and The Dunes.
1979 James Butler Hickok†
Wild Bill Hickok
$0 None Hickok was one of the best-known poker players in the world before the 20th century. He is one of three Poker Hall of Famers to die while playing poker (along with Tom Abdo and Jack Straus). Legend has it that when he was shot in the back in 1876, he was holding two aces and two eights. The hand has since been called the dead man's hand.
1979 Edmond Hoyle $0 None After writing a book on the game of whist, the phrase "according to Hoyle" become synonymous in card games with following the rules.
- 1980 Blondie Forbes† $0 None Forbes is credited with creating the game of Texas Hold'em.
- 1981 Bill Boyd $80,000 1971 $10,000 Limit Five Card Stud
1972 $10,000 Five Card Stud
1973 $10,000 Limit Five Card Stud
1974 $5,000 Five Card Stud
Boyd was the Director of Operations at the Golden Nugget from 1946 to 1982. Boyd is credited with establishing Robert Turner's game Omaha hold 'em as a casino staple.
- 1982 Tom Abdo† $0 None Abdo is one of three Poker Hall of Famers to die while playing poker (along with Wild Bill Hickok and Jack Straus). He died from a heart attack. According to legend, after suffering the heart attack, he asked another player to count his chips and to save his seat.
- 1983 Joe Bernstein † $21,000 1973 $10,000 Limit Ace to Five Draw -
- 1984 Murph Harrold† $0 None -
- 1985 Red Hodges† $0 None -
- 1986 Henry Green† $0 None -
1987 Walter Clyde Pearson
$212,100 1971 Limit Seven Card Stud
1973 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1973 $1,000 No Limit Hold'em
1973 $4,000 Limit Seven Card Stud
Pearson is credited with coming up with the concept of a freeze-out tournament.
1988 Doyle Brunson
Texas Dolly
$2,830,302 1976 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1977 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1977 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1977 $1,000 Seven Card Stud Split
1978 $5,000 Seven Card Stud
1979 $600 Mixed Doubles (with Starla Brodie)
1991 $2,500 No Limit Hold'em
1998 $1,500 Seven Card Razz
2003 $2,000 H.O.R.S.E.
2005 $5,000 No Limit Shorthanded Texas Hold'em
Brunson wrote Super/System, widely considered to be the most influential book ever written on poker.
1988 Jack Straus
$555,000 1973 $3,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1982 $10,000 Championship Event - No Limit Hold'em
Straus' 1982 WSOP tournament victory is considered to be one of the greatest comebacks in poker history. At one point, Straus had one chip remaining, and came back to win. This victory is considered to be the origin of the poker saying, "A chip and a chair", meaning that as long as a player has not been eliminated from the tournament, he or she still has a chance. Modern lore indicates that this happened at the final table, but the 1983 book The Biggest Game in Town implies this occurred on the first day of the tournament. Straus is one of three Hall of Famers to die while playing poker (along with Wild Bill Hickok and Tom Abdo).
- 1989 Fred Ferris
$150,000 1980 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw Ferris gained notoriety when the IRS seized $46,000 from him on April 22, 1983 while he was playing high-stakes poker at the Horseshoe.
1990 Benny Binion† $0 None Founder of the Horseshoe Casino and the WSOP
1991 David Reese
$2,230,079 1978 $1,000 Seven Card Stud Split
1982 $5,000 Limit 7 Card Stud
2006 $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. World Championship
Despite winning three bracelets, Reese was best known for his cash-game play. At 40 years old, he was the youngest person to be enshirined in the Poker Hall of Fame.
1992 Thomas Preston
Amarillo Slim
$436,748 1972 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1974 $1,000 No Limit Hold'em
1985 $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha
1990 $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha
After winning the WSOP in 1972, Slim sought to change the image of poker by appearing on national television and radio programs. Slim hosted the Super Bowl of Poker, considered the second most prestigious tournament at the time.
- 1993 Jack Keller
Gentleman Jack Keller
$1,583,845 1984 $5,000 Seven Card Stud
1984 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1993 $1,500 Omaha Limit
- 1996 Julius Oral Popwell†
Little Man
$0 None -
- 1997 Roger Moore $337,628 1994 $5,000 Limit 7 Card Stud -
2001 Stu Ungar†
The Kid
$2,078,838 1980 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1981 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1981 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1983 $5,000 Seven Card Stud
1997 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
Ungar won back-to-back WSOP Main Event bracelets in 1980 and 1981, and won the event again in 1997. He and Johnny Moss are the only players to have won the main event three times.
2002 Lyle Berman $1,412,649 1989 $1,500 Limit Omaha
1992 $2,500 No Limit Hold'em
1994 $5,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Draw
2002 Johnny Chan
Orient Express
The Great Wall of China
$4,148,868 1985 $1,000 Limit Hold'em
1987 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1988 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1994 $1,500 Seven Card Stud
1997 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
2000 $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha
2002 $2,500 No Limit Hold'em Gold Bracelet Match Play
2003 $5,000 No Limit Hold'em
2003 $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha
2005 $2,500 Pot Limit Hold'em
Chan (10), Doyle Brunson (10), Phil Ivey (10) and Phil Hellmuth (14) are the only players with ten or more WSOP bracelets.
2003 Bobby Baldwin
The Owl
$604,900 1977 $5,000 Seven Card Stud
1977 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1978 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1979 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
Baldwin has worked with several casinos in various capacities due to his poker expertise.
2004 Berry Johnston $2,057,168 1983 $2,500 Match Play
1986 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1990 $2,500 Limit Hold'em
1995 $1,500 Limit Omaha
2001 $1,500 Razz
At the time of his induction into the Hall of Fame, Johnston had the most WSOP cashes of any poker player. Having cashed in at least one event every year from 1982-2010, Berry holds the record for longest streaks at 29 years.
2005 Jack Binion $0 None Binion was the first host of the WSOP in 1970 and successor to the Horseshoe legacy after the death of his father, Benny Binion.
  2005 Crandell Addington
$122,650 None -
2006 T. J. Cloutier $4,349,316 1987 $1,000 Limit Omaha Hi
1994 $1,500 Limit Omaha 8 or Better
1994 $2,500 Pot Limit Hold'em
1998 $2,500 Pot Limit Omaha Hi
2004 $1,500 Seven Card Razz
2005 $5,000 No Limit Hold'em
Cloutier is the only person to have won bracelets in all three types (Pot Limit High, Limit High, and Limit 8-or-Better High-low split) of Omaha.
2006 Billy Baxter $1,162,517 1975 $1,000 Deuce to Seven
1978 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1982 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1982 $2,500 Ace to Five Draw
1987 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
1993 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
2002 $1,500 Razz
In the case of Baxter v. United States, Baxter fought the Internal Revenue Service and won the right to count poker winnings as earned income. Because of the ruling, poker winnings are taxed at a lower rate than other forms of gambling.
2007 Barbara Enright $413,385 1986 $500 Women's Seven Card Stud
1994 $1,000 Women's Seven Card Stud
1996 $2,500 Pot Limit Hold'em
Enright is the only woman to have advanced to the final table of the WSOP Main Event. She was the first woman to win three WSOP bracelets and the first to win an open event.
2007 Phil Hellmuth
The Poker Brat
$8,048,640 1989 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1992 $5,000 Limit Hold'em
1993 $1,500 No Limit Hold'em
1993 $2,500 No Limit Hold'em
1993 $5,000 Limit Hold'em
1997 $3,000 Pot Limit Hold'em
2001 $2,000 No Limit Hold'em
2003 $2,500 Limit Hold'em
2003 $3,000 No Limit Hold'em
2006 $1,000 No Limit Hold'em with rebuys
2007 $1,500 No Limit Hold'em
2012 $2,500 Seven Card Razz
2012 $10,400 WSOPE Main Event
2015 $10,000 Seven-Card Razz
In 1989, at age 24, Hellmuth became the youngest person to win the WSOP main event. He held this distinction until 2008, when 22-year-old Peter Eastgate captured the title, and subsequently by Joe Cada in 2009. Hellmuth won his record-breaking 12th bracelet in the 2012 $2,500 Seven-Card Razz Event. He won his 13th bracelet in the 2012 World Series of Poker Europe Main Event, with his 14th bracelet coming in the 2015 $10,000 Seven-Card Razz Event. Hellmuth holds the records for most WSOP cashes (95) and most WSOP final tables (49).
2008 Dewey Tomko $2,687,900 1979 $1,000 No Limit Hold'em
1984 $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha
1984 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
Tomko has won over $4.9 million in tournament poker. Tomko has played in every WSOP since 1974, the longest streak ever.
- 2008 Henry Orenstein $202,100 1996 $5,000 Seven Card Stud Orenstein is the patent holder of the hole cam, which allows audiences to see player's hole cards. At the time of his induction, he was a producer of Poker Superstars Invitational Tournament and High Stakes Poker.
2009 Mike Sexton $910,792 1989 $1,500 Seven Card Stud 8/0B Sexton has live tournament winnings in excess of $3 million. He has made 21 final tables at the WSOP, including a bracelet in Seven Card Stud 8/OB in 1989. Sexton has been a commentator on the World Poker Tour since season one.
2010 Dan Harrington
Action Dan
$3,524,476 1995 $2,500 No Limit Hold'em
1995 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
Harrington has co-authored the Harrington on Hold 'em and Harrington on Cash Games series of books. He is also the 1995 WSOP Main Event champion.
2010 Erik Seidel
$4,352,051 1992 $2,500 Limit Hold'em
1993 $2,500 Omaha 8 or better
1994 $5,000 Limit Hold'em
1998 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw
2001 $3,000 No Limit Hold'em
2003 $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha
2005 $2,000 No Limit Hold'em
2007 $5,000 World Championship No-Limit Deuce to Seven Draw Lowball w/rebuys
Seidel has captured eight WSOP bracelets. Seidel was runner-up in the 1988 World Series of Poker main event to Johnny Chan. The final hand was featured in the 1998 film, Rounders.
2011 Barry Greenstein
The Robin Hood of Poker
$2,676,821 2004 $5,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Draw
2005 $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha
2008 $1,500 Razz
"The Robin Hood of Poker" is known for giving his tournament winnings to charities.
2011 Linda Johnson
The First Lady of Poker
$140,296 1997 $1,500 Seven Card Razz "The First Lady of Poker" was a publisher of Card Player Magazine and was instrumental in the formation of the Tournament Director's Association (TDA). At the time of her election, she served on the TDA Board of Directors and was heavily involved with the World Poker Tour as both a public relations director and tournament announcer.
- 2012 Eric Drache $289,513 - Drache was the World Series of Poker’s tournament director (1973 to 1988). He is also credited with the concept of satellite tournaments.
2012 Bryan Roberts
$276,650 1974 $5,000 No-Limit Deuce to Seven Draw
1975 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship.
Roberts was the winner of the 1975 WSOP Main Event.
2013 Tom McEvoy $1,307,010 1983 $1,000 Limit Hold'em
1983 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
1986 $1,000 Limit Razz
1992 $1,500 Limit Omaha
McEvoy has won 4 WSOP bracelets, including the 1983 Main Event. He was the first player to win that event after earning a seat through a satellite. He has also written over a dozen books on poker. McEvoy was instrumental in the effort to have smoking banned in card rooms
2013 Scotty Nguyen
The Prince of Poker
$5,074,729 1997 $2,000 Limit Omaha Hi-Lo
1998 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship
2001 $2,500 Pot Limit Omaha
2001 $5,000 Limit Omaha Hi-Lo
2008 $50,000 World Championship H.O.R.S.E.
Nguyen was the winner of the 1998 WSOP Main Event and the 2008 $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship, the only player to win both titles. He has made 9 World Poker Tour final tables with one title, making him one of four players to have a WPT title and WSOP Main Event bracelet. Altogether, Nguyen has accumulated over $11,000,000 in tournament winnings.
2014 Jack McClelland $29,414 None McClelland has had a career in poker operations for more than forty years. He was the WSOP tournament director in the 1980s, and was the manager of the Bellagio poker room from 2002 to 2013.
2014 Daniel Negreanu
Kid Poker
$14,641,365 1998 $2,000 Pot Limit Hold'em
2003 $2,000 Limit S.H.O.E.
2004 $2,000 Limit Hold'em
2008 $2,000 Limit Hold'em
2013 WSOP APAC $10,000 No Limit Hold'em Main Event
2013 WSOPE €25,600 High Roller No Limit Hold'em
Since turning professional at the age of 22, Negreanu has become one of the most successful and recognizable players in poker. He has won 6 WSOP bracelets, is 3rd on the all-time WSOP money list, and is the only 2-time WSOP Player of the Year winner. He has also won 2 WPT titles, was player of the year in season 3, and is 2nd on the WPT career money list. With total live tournament earnings of almost $30 million, Negreanu has the most career winnings in poker history. Global Poker Index named Negreanu the player of the decade from 2004-2013.
2015 Jennifer Harman $998,801 2000 $5,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Lowball
2002 $5,000 Limit Hold'em
Harman was the first woman to win two WSOP bracelets in open events. She has made 12 WSOP final tables, two WPT final tables, and has nearly $2.5 million in live tournament winnings. A fixture at high stakes cash games, Harman is the only woman who regularly plays in the Big Game at the Bellagio.
2015 John Juanda
JJ, Luckbox
$4,702,392 2002 $1,500 Limit Triple Draw
2003 $2,500 Limit Seven Card Stud
2003 $2,500 Pot Limit Omaha w/Rebuys
2008 WSOPE £10,000 WSOP Europe Main Event
2011 $10,000 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship
Juanda has over $16.7 million in tournament winnings, including 5 WSOP bracelets, an EPT title, and 6 WPT final tables.
Denotes player who is deceased.

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