The final list of nominees for the 2009 Poker Hall of Fame was announced on Tuesday and the ballot is loaded with the game’s biggest names. It is now up to the 15 living Hall of Fame members and the 15-member Media Panel to cast their votes before the inductees are revealed on Saturday, November 7.

The nine selected candidates are Barry Greenstein, Dan Harrington, Phil Ivey, Tom McEvoy, Men Nguyen, Scotty Nguyen, Daniel Negreanu, Erik Seidel and Mike Sexton. Any of those nine who receive at least 75% of the vote will be inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame, which will be part of a special Hall of Fame dinner ceremony at the Rio Hotel in Las Vegas during the dinner break of the World Series of Poker Main Event Final Table.

The voters must determine which nominees most deserve an induction this year. Each candidate is voted the following criteria:

–A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
–Played for high stakes
–Played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers
–Stood the test of time
–Or, for non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results.

Current Hall of Fame members also have the ability to add a write-in candidate — someone they feel deserves consideration — but were not among the list of finalists this year. This write-in candidate will be added to the 2010 nomination list automatically. The voting members will receive their ballots this week and have until October 2, 2009 to submit their completed forms.

Before starting the 2009 WSOP, the 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 this year, the Poker Hall of Fame started accepting nominations from the public.

Ten players received the required number of votes to make the nominees list. Tom Dwan, known as “durrrr” online, was the lone preliminary nominee left off the final ballot. The nosebleed cash game specialist only recently burst onto the poker scene but quickly gained worldwide fame after proposing a challenge to anyone in the world (except Phil Galfond) that believed they could beat him in a four-table heads-up format on Full Tilt Poker.

“With all due respect to Mr. Dwan, one of the games most exciting young players, he does not currently meet the criteria for Hall of Fame selection”
, said a member of the Poker Hall of Fame Governing Council. “We wish him well and expect he will again be considered once he has ‘stood the test of time’.”

The inductees will be invited to a special dinner held and hosted in their honor where they will give their induction speech and be awarded their commemorative trophy. Each of nine of the finalists will be invited to the dinner, and room will be reserved for additional family, friends, the current Hall of Famers and the media voting panel.


  1. joe hennelly says:

    I am disappointed that Eric Drache, former VP of Poker Operations, and a player who meets
    all the criteria for nomination, did not make the finals. joey41

  2. joe hennelly says:

    I used to play with Mike during the 1970’s at the Dunes, when Chip Reese was the
    Poker Room Manager.

    One day, we were playing 30-60, 8 or better, he had a paint on 3rd street, caught
    another paint on 6th street, and to my shock, showed me the wheel at the river.

    He had an A-2, in the hole, I aways enjoyed playing with Mike, truly a gentleman.


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