Jim “Pocket Bullets” Paris
Since 1979, when the Poker Hall of Fame was established by the owner of the Horseshoe Casino, Benny Binion, to honor the world’s greatest poker players, 50 world class poker players have been inducted. Johnny “The Grand Old Man of Poker” Moss was the very first inductee and with this announcement, the total is now 52.
The Class of 2016 added a couple of new members, Todd Brunson and Carlos Mortensen, to poker’s most exclusive club, the Poker Hall of Fame.
“It’s a true honor to be inducted by my peers into this prestigious institution,” said Todd Brunson. “I literally grew up attending these ceremonies and have always respected and admired its members. To join their ranks is the honor of a lifetime.”
Carlos Mortensen was heard saying, “I have been playing poker professionally for more than 20 years. This game has given me so many things that I have come to cherish. I’ve always wanted to be included among the great players who make up the Poker Hall of Fame. To be included with the legends makes me very happy. I want to thank my friends, the poker fans, and all the people who vote for me. I take this honor very seriously.”
The official induction will occur Oct. 26 at the Binion’s Gambling Hall in Las Vegas, kicking off the November Nine festivities just before the World Series of Poker Main Event final table at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino Oct. 30 through Nov. 1.
The criteria for the Poker Hall of Fame is as follows:
- A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition
- Be a minimum of 40 years old at time of nomination
- 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.
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.
Have any of you ever wanted to be known as a “kick ass” poker player? If you answered yes, then you best sit in on as many poker tables as you can to try to perfect your game. It’s possible, even if only remotely, that you could then be considered among the very best. Of course it’s a lot more likely that you’ll start to win more and, at the very least, have a helluva lot more fun.