Matt Savage Kicks Off Push for Linda Johnson in Hall of Fame

by , Jan 28, 2010 | 5:47 am

She theoretically has my vote:

21 Comments to “Matt Savage Kicks Off Push for Linda Johnson in Hall of Fame”

  1. TOCurmudgeon

    Strongly agree that Linda Johnson belongs.

  2. Fifth Street Journal

    Greenstein needs to get in before anyone else is considered, or I have to start doubting the system.

  3. Kevin Mathers

    How about Erik Seidel?

  4. Fifth Street Journal

    Talented tournament player, but he didn’t beat Chip and Doyle in the biggest games on earth for a decade. So no, his place in poker history isn’t up there with Barry.

  5. scott diamond

    Barry and Linda BOTH deserve to be in the HOF!

  6. Gerry Klawitter

    Linda belongs, get her in there.She got there the hard grinding it up from small limits to the big ones. She also has down more to advance charity from poker than almost anyone.

  7. Fifth Street Journal

    lol at her deserving to be in before Barry.

  8. DanM

    learn your history, dude. while matt has obvious reasons for wanting to see a famed tourney director get in, i think even barry might make the argument that linda deserves due consideration vs. anyone.

    though linda has never stopped competing on the table, she has done a shitload off — for years and years.

  9. Jan Fisher

    There are so many deserving people for the HOF. Linda has done so much for poker both on and off the felt I’d love to see her inducted. The list of deserving candidates is long, very long, but I say “go Linda!”

  10. Fifth Street Journal

    I think a hall of fame should primarily be composed of the best players. Sure, someone like a Henry Orenstein should be in, but I think too much emphasis is being given to things other than poker achievement.

  11. Kevin Mathers

    Here’s the list of Poker Hall of Famers elected since 2001:

    2001 Stu “The Kid” Ungar
    2002 Lyle Berman Johnny Chan
    2003 Bobby Baldwin
    2004 Berry Johnston
    2005 Crandell Addington Jack Binion
    2006 Billy Baxter T.J. Cloutier
    2007 Barbara Enright Phil Hellmuth
    2008 Henry Orenstein Duane “Dewey” Tomko
    2009 Mike Sexton

    From this list, how many (if any) do you feel don’t belong?

  12. Fifth Street Journal

    The point is, if Linda Johnson got in it would primarily be for off-the-felt achievements… and those aren’t on a Henry Orenstein level. Barry should already be in based on his poker achievement. I know you’re aware that Doyle agrees with me about Barry, and Doyle’s seen more poker history than any of us firsthand.

  13. DanM

    Roger Maris only held one key record in baseball – yet he’s a hall of Famer. No offense to Henry Orenstein, but Linda has 60 career cashes and 8 wins over the course of more than 30 years.

    On top of that, she helped launch PartyPoker and the World Poker Tour, and I think the TDA. She also founded CardPlayer Magazine. And she did much of this at a time when women were hardly welcomed in the poker world.

    Sounds worthy of consideration in my book. But hey, what do I know … I’m just a HOF voter.

    I will bet you $100 right here right now, that if I were to go to Doyle Brunson and say: “Linda Johnson, Hall of Fame, yes or no?” his answer would be a definitive and immediate yes.

  14. DanM

    just to add a little more to this, here’s why i think off-the-table endeavors are slightly more important:

    because if your only accomplishments are ON the table … what have you contributed to society? nothing? A true professional gambler is kinda a sad soul — because they are in it only for the money, Yet what have they done to contribute to society? NOTHING? I personally could never be proud of such an existence. So if that’s all you’re gonna do, you better be really damn good. Phil Ivey or Stu Ungar good.

    No one can doubt that Linda, for decades, has given back to the game — in meaningful, industry-changing ways.

    I’m slightly biased, though, because back when I was a super-nobody in poker, just some dipshit running an amateur tournament at a titty bar … whenever I had a question about tourney direction (should the flop come out all at once, or three cards one at a time, for example), she always graciously and thoughtfully replied to my emails, even though she hardly had to. Why? Because she obviously cared about the game for way more reasons than the money she stood to win.

  15. Kevin Mathers

    Roger Maris isn’t in the Hall of Fame. And I agree that Linda Johnson will eventually get into the Poker Hall of Fame, especially since there’s only one other woman in there now.

  16. DanM

    Oops. My bad. Undo everything else I said.

  17. Fifth Street Journal

    Doyle has talked about his short list publicly. I don’t remember Linda Johnson being mentioned.

    We’re expecting, what, zero to one players to get into the HOF every year? The most deserving need to get in first.

    Comparing off-the felt accomplishments, Orenstein is reasonably credited with creating the poker boom: hole-card cams = poker on TV = poker boom. Starting CardPlayer and the TDA are certainly great accomplishments, but don’t have anything like Orenstein’s effect on the poker world. I don’t know that it rises to the “indelible positive and lasting results” of the selection criteria (which I think are pretty good).

    “if your only accomplishments are ON the table … what have you contributed to society? nothing?”

    That isn’t part of the selection criteria, and I don’t think it should be. It’s a POKER Hall of Fame: it should be primarily about playing the game poker. Just like a baseball hall of fame should primarily be about playing the game of baseball. If you wanted to start another award, e.g. like the Academic All-America in college sports, that’s another thing, but I don’t think the two should be mixed up. Not if it goes so far afield as “contribution to society” anyway.

  18. DanM

    Very valid points. I do think you give too much credit, however, to Orenstein, and all I’m saying regarding the players-only is that the bar is really really high. I mean otherwise you’d end up with a guy in there who ends up pawning his bracelets on eBay. Errrr ….

    Selection Criteria for the Hall of Fame is straightforward and the standards are high:

    A gambler must have played poker against acknowledged top competition,
    Played for high stakes,
    Played consistently well, gained the respect of peers,
    And 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.

    OK, she still qualifies according to the above criteria. But I just happen to be one person who has less respect for someone who only wins on the tables, and therefore requires a higher standard of excellence.

  19. DanM

    I just learned that Orenstein is responsible for the success of the Transformers. That’s pretty awesome!

  20. scott diamond

    Don’t be so Chauvanistic Men! I agree with Dan here! Linda desrves to be in the Poker Hall of Fame not only for her accomplishments on the felt but off!

    To many people idolize athletes and feel they are “Role Models” in our society because they can hit, throw catch a ball or run, skate fast! They get into the Hall of fame not for their accomplishments always. Look at Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa. They have the statistics but because of the alleged and now confirmed steroid use they are being denied.

    I believe what athletes do off the field is as important as what they do on the field and this should be a consideration, We have announcers in all the sports Hall of fame for what they do.

    Barry and Linda have done some wonderful things on and off the field of play in Poker and I think this is GREAT for Poker and if more of this was shown to the public, our sport would be more acceptable to the skeptics who think poker players are just degenerate gamblers.

    We need role models like Linda and Barry in our society and we should award those who give countless hours of their time and money to help others. Its a great quality and along with the skills they have obtained how can one argue otherwise.

  21. BJ Nemeth

    To think that there is some kind of “order” that has to be followed as to who is voted in next is silly. That type of thinking is only possible if you have a private selection committee, and I don’t think anyone wants to go back to that.

    Barry Greenstein is a lock to make the Poker Hall of Fame, as is Erik Seidel. When? That’s a different question. Linda Johnson will also be inducted at some point. (Hopefully sooner rather than later.) She not only has my vote, but I will actively lobby on her behalf.

    One correction: Linda didn’t start Card Player magazine; June Field did. Linda Johnson did publish the magazine for about 8 years during the 1990s, and had a tremendous influence on the industry.

    Remember, it’s the Poker Hall of Fame, and not the Poker PLAYERS Hall of Fame. Linda Johnson has done far more for the long-term success and acceptance of the game than most people realize. She didn’t pave the way for women in poker, she paved the way for ALL OF US in poker.