The 2023 Poker Hall of Fame Nominations Open; Galfond’s Take on the Current System 13 Jun

Founded in 1979, the Poker Hall of Fame honors individuals who have exhibited outstanding skills in poker, shown integrity and fair play, and contributed to the overall growth and success of the game.

As of 2023, the prestigious group comprises 61 members, including poker legends like the late Doyle Brunson, Chris Moneymaker, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, and more. Each year, the nominees are voted for by the public and inducted into the HoF by existing members and media.

This year, the 2023 Poker Hall of Fame nominations are open until June 18th, and everyone can cast their vote here. Fans have an opportunity to nominate up to three individuals aged 40 or older. Whether players or non-players, all nominees should have made a significant contribution to the game of poker. The top 10 nominees will be reviewed by the Poker Hall of Fame Governing Council, and the existing members will cast their votes.

Does the Poker Hall of Fame need an update?

One of the key figures in the poker world and probable future Hall of Famer himself, Phil Galfond, has recently shared his perspective on the 2023 Poker Hall of Fame. In his recent post here, Galfond suggested potential updates to the system, which may need to be better suited to accurately reflect the rapidly changing landscape of poker, especially in light of the online poker boom and all the young talent it provides.

Galfond predicts an influx of eligible players over the next decade. According to The Hendon Mob, a significant majority of players at the top of the All-Time Money List are currently aged under 40. If the system remains the same, there could be a vast number of deserving players from both the older and younger generation who might not receive their deserved recognition in the Hall of Fame.

A simple solution would be to increase the number of inductees per year. Before 2020, this was the norm, and two individuals were inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame before they switched to a single-entry. Galfond argues that the timing was the worst, and we tend to agree.

The question of the matter is determining the optimal number of inductees each year. Phil proposes reverting to the previous practice, but many might argue that that’s not nearly enough. On the other hand, it’s essential to strike a careful balance not to dilute the honors and recognition it offers.

In 2022, the Women in Poker Hall of Fame chose to induct four new members into their ranks, a move that was met with widespread approval within the poker community.

Photo courtesy of PokerGo.