The Poker Hall of Fame is a big deal, in fact, it only had 21 living members until this year. Daniel Negreanu and Jack McClelland were the two poker players selected to join the hall of fame this year out of 10 nominees.
The other 8 nominees were:
- Bruno Fitoussi
- Bob Hooks
- Ted Forrest
- Jennifer Harman
- Humberto Brenes
- Mike Matusow
- Chris Bjorin
- Huck Seed
Any poker fan of the last decade can recognize the quality of those nominees, but even so, Negreanu and McClelland made strong cases for induction into the hall of fame that could not be passed over.
Daniel Negreanu’s Contributions to Poker
Negreanu has had a legendary career thus far, and there are no signs of it stopping any time soon.
There are few players with the passion and ability that Negreanu possesses, which is part of the reason why he is loved by most of the poker community. Affectionately named “Kid Poker”, the Canadian has won 6 WSOP bracelets, and has a whopping 31 WSOP final table appearances.
Negreanu is the last of a generation of players. He dropped out of school in order to play in underground games, and despite failing multiple times, his passion and determination was rewarded with the accomplishments as a professional poker player that we see today.
On top of being a great player, Negreanu has also served as an ambassador of the game, especially once onine poker exploded. He has been a PokerStars pro since 2007, one of the longest serving sponsored professionals.
Jack McClelland: A Poker Legend
The younger demographic of poker these days knows Jack McClelland as a prolific tournament director. He has hosted hundreds of tournaments and was the driving force behind the expansion of poker through much of the United States and other countries like Russia and Isle of Man.
After 5 decades as a poker director and player, McClelland called it quits in 2013. He’s seen it all during his career, from launching the first ever WPT event in 2002, to seeing it off as his last event, knowing that he had a great impact on its success.
While McClelland’s calling was in the administrative side of poker, that doesn’t mean he was a terrible player. McClelland had a solid 9 tournament cashes and one win during his career. While they aren’t Negreanu-esque numbers, most players would be thrilled to share similar accomplishments.
The Poker Hall of Fame is the ultimate acknowledgement of skill and passion in the world of poker. You’ll be hard pressed to find anyone that doesn’t believe that Negreanu and McClelland do not belong.