Phil Galfond Offers Poker Hall of Fame Pick; Says Two Should Be Inducted Per Year
Phil Galfond has yet to make an appearance at the 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP), and as he told PokerNews, right now he has no plans to play live.
“But who knows, plans change,” added Galfond, who has been playing online at WSOP.com.
While Galfond hasn’t been at the WSOP – well, at least Phil as his wife, Farah Galfond, has been competing – the three-time bracelet winner is still weighing in by his relatively new newsletter “PG’s Takes of the Week.”
One of the topics the online poker legend, who prior to the WSOP inserted himself in some drama involving Doug Polk and Charlie Carrel with a pointed letter, was that of the Poker Hall of Fame. Right now, the public is being solicited for nomination.
“The nominations for the Poker Hall of Fame are now open, presenting voters with a familiar dilemma: there are simply too many great options to choose from,” Galfond wrote before giving his picks.
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First, he addressed the “builder” side of things by noting last year’s nominees in Matt Savage, Isai Scheinberg, and famed WSOP commentating duo Norman Chad and Lon McEachern, the latter of which was a recent guest on PokerNews’ The Chad & Jesse Poker Show.
“I think all of these legends are deserving, but my vote would go to Isai Scheinberg,” Galfond wrote. “He and PokerStars grew the game an incredible amount over the past two decades. Since his departure from PokerStars and the online poker operator space, it’s become more and more obvious to me that he made many decisions for the betterment of the game, even when it may have been to the detriment of his bottom line.”
His Player Pick
As for players, they must meet the following criteria if they’re to be inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame:
- A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
- Played for high stakes
- Be a minimum of 40 years old at time of nomination
- Played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers
- Stood the test of time
For Galfond, Brian Rast is the player the most deserving, at least from the list of last year’s nominees.
“The only argument I see against Rast is that he is younger than most candidates, but Brian’s career has spanned the two most competitive decades in poker history, and he’s been competing at the top for the entire time,” wrote Galfond before citing Rast’s tournament accomplishments, which includes five gold bracelets, a Super High Roller Bowl win, and nearly $24 million in lifetime earnings according to The Hendon Mob.
Galfond continued: “Most importantly, for anyone familiar with the high-stakes poker world, he did all of this while primarily being a nosebleed cash game player. He battled in the nosebleed NL games out in Macau, and he’s been a staple in the big Bobby’s Room game for as long as I can remember.”
“He may be the best all-around player in today’s game.
Galfond then pointed to the late Doyle Brunson’s 2018 endorsement of Rast as further proof of his accolades.
“He may be the best all-around player in today’s game,” Brunson had said.
Galfond concluded: “Brian has proven himself at high stakes time and time again over the past two decades, and not as a single-game specialist, but at every discipline he decided to take seriously.”
One of the major grips about the Poker Hall of Fame is that there exists a backlog of deserving players and builders given there’s just one inductee. In fact, this was a point of debate on the latest episode of The Chad & Jesse Poker Show featuring Poker Hall of Famer Jack McClelland.
In his newsletter, Galfond pointed out that a lot of the stars from the online poker boom, many of who are towards the top of poker’s all-time money list, will soon turn 40 and become eligible, thus complicating the backlog even further.
“If something doesn’t change, there will be a lot of deserving talent who never make poker’s Hall of Fame – Not just these ‘young guns’ but all of the older generation who’ve not yet made it in,” Galfond correctly pointed out.
So, what’s the solution? For Galfond, it would help if the WSOP went back to inducting two people per year instead of one, something they actually did prior to 2020.
“Time to switch it back,” said Galfond. “Two players per year!”
For those wondering, Galfond will become eligible for the Poker Hall of Fame on January 16, 2025, when he turns 40 years old. If something doesn’t change, he could very well find himself in the logjam, though many would consider “OMGClayAiken” a first-ballot Hall of Famer!
Check out Galfond’s 2023 WSOP bracelet hunt, which has thus far been limited to playing online:
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Executive Editor US, PokerNews Podcast co-host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.
In this Series
- 1 Here's the Full Schedule for 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP); Win Main Event for Life!
- 2 Reigning Main Event Champion Espen Jorstad Eyes "Crazy Summer"; Plans to Play Full 2023 WSOP Schedule
- 3 6 Las Vegas Facts That Sound False But Are Actually True!
- 4 How to Decide Which WSOP Tournament(s) to Play
- 5 Registration for 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP) is Now Open
- 6 How to Stay Healthy in Las Vegas During the WSOP
- 7 WSOP Main Event Champions 2015-17: McKeehen, Nguyen, Blumstein
- 8 PokerGO's 2023 WSOP Live-stream Schedule Covers Biggest Events and More
- 9 2023 Main Event Maynia Could Be Your Best Chance of Playing at the WSOP
- 10 A Look at the 2023 WSOP Online Bracelet Schedule – How to Deposit
- 11 Five Reasons Winning Poker Players Lose Money at the WSOP
- 12 Five Questions to Ask Yourself at Your First WSOP
- 13 Interview: Vice President Jack Effel Looks Ahead to 2023 WSOP
- 14 World Series of Poker Addresses Solver Concerns, Clarifies RTA Policy
- 15 Negreanu, Deeb Again Highest Valued WSOP $25K Fantasy Draft Picks
- 16 PokerNews Staff 2023 WSOP Predictions – Will Ivey Play? Hellmuth vs. Negreanu?
- 17 Let the Games Begin: 2023 World Series of Poker Officially Underway
- 18 WNBA Champion Kelsey Plum Kicks Off WSOP Mystery Millions
- 19 5 Poker Tax Facts to Remember Heading into the 2023 WSOP
- 20 Introducing The Chad & Jesse Poker Show; Two Episodes a Week During 2023 WSOP
- 21 PokerNews Podcast: Catching Up w/ WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart
- 22 Negreanu or Hellmuth — Who Will Have the Best 2023 WSOP?
- 23 Some of the Best Poker Players Who Haven't Won a WSOP Bracelet
- 24 Quads, Runner-Runner & Other Crazy Hands From the WSOP $25,000 High Roller
- 25 2023 WSOP Featured Females: Maria Konnikova & Kristen Foxen Making Runs
- 26 Phil Ivey, Doug Polk in Action at Epic WSOP $25k Heads-Up Tournament
- 27 Five Tournaments Fans Don't Want to Miss at the 2023 World Series of Poker
- 28 Five Reasons Winning Poker Players Lose Money at the WSOP
- 29 We Asked ChatGPT to Predict the WSOP $25K Heads Up Championship
- 30 Doug Polk Headlines the Final Four in WSOP $25K Heads Up Championship
- 31 Two $1,000,000 Prizes Pulled in WSOP Mystery Millions
- 32 Five Questions to Ask Yourself at Your First WSOP
- 33 Andrews Suffers Brutal Beat on $5K Freezeout Bubble; Hellmuth Deep in $600 Deepstack
- 34 The Two Failed Bluffs in One Week that Cost Doug Polk $700k
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- 36 Badugi Primer - Get Ready for A Brand New WSOP Tournament
- 37 2023 Poker Hall of Fame Nominations Open; Rast, Scheinberg, Savage Frontrunners?
- 38 Estes Nabs Second WSOP MI Online Bracelet; Kershaw Victorious in First PA Event
- 39 Steve "Cuz" Buckner & Lon McEachern Recent Guests on The Chad & Jesse Poker Show
- 40 Is Today the Day Isaac Haxton Finally Wins His First WSOP Bracelet?
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- 42 Sarah Herzali Comes Up Shy of Being First Female Bracelet Winner of 2023 WSOP
- 43 A Look Inside Phil Hellmuth's WSOP Break Room: How Does He Fit on that Couch?
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- 45 Man of the People: How Daniel Negreanu Bagged Top 4 Stack on $300 Gladiator Day 1a
- 46 PN Podcast: Poker Hall of Famer Jack McClelland Shares Stories About Doyle Brunson & Stu Ungar
- 47 Poker Player Spikes Quads on River to Escape WSOP $50K Bubble
- 48 2023 WSOP Hands of the Week: Polk's Miracle Two Outer; Accidental Exposure Saves Tull from Bubble
- 49 Phil Galfond Offers Poker Hall of Fame Pick; Says Two Should Be Inducted Per Year
- 50 Poker Boom 2.0? WSOP Attendance Crushing Last Year's Turnout
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- 53 WSOP Player of the Week: Josh Arieh Makes Poker Hall of Fame Case
- 54 Next Fedor? This German 22-Year-Old is Taking the 2023 WSOP by Sturm
- 55 Daniel Negreanu Quietly Having Success in Large Field Events at 2023 WSOP
- 56 Mike "BrockLesnar" Holtz Running Away with WSOP.com Player of the Year
- 57 Jennifer Harman Remembers Doyle: "He Was Like a Marshmallow Puppy Dog to Me"
- 58 Aces, Kings, Kings, and Queens - You Won't Believe this Epic 2023 WSOP Hand
- 59 Jason Koon's Stack Pulled from WSOP $250K Super High Roller as Wife Enters Labor
- 60 Meet The WSOP App Thrill Team
- 61 TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Things To Do In Las Vegas During The 2023 WSOP
- 62 Phil Ivey Bubbles the 2023 WSOP $250,000 Super High Roller
- 63 Unknown Poker Player in Town for Father's Day Randomly Enters WSOP $250K
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