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Duke and Jett Top Strong Women in Poker Hall of Fame Class - Poker Junkie

2 June 2012, By:
The Women in Poker Hall of Fame has announced its 2012 nominees on its website with several recognizable names - and a few you might not know - up for election.
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The Women in Poker Hall of Fame has announced its 2012 nominees on its website with several recognizable names - and a few you might not know - up for election.

Poker Junkie blogger Compncards has been actively following the WIPHOF since its inception in 2008 and today gives up who he thinks will make the cut and who he thinks should be in there.

Players First

Before I go into my picks, I feel I need to clarify my stances ahead of time. As a poker player, I view both the Women in Poker Hall of Fame and the Professional Poker Hall of Fame as showcases of the greats in the game of poker.

While I believe that there is a place for "contributors" to the game, I feel that those who played the game on a high level should be the ones that receive consideration above all others.

There are exceptions to this rule, but I will side with someone who has a track record at the tables over someone who never played or played scarcely.

My picks will tend to reflect that sentiment.

Duke and Jett Will Highlight Nominees

This year's class of nominees is probably the strongest class since the inaugural class in 2008 when we saw Linda Johnson, Barbara Enright, Marsha Waggoner and Susie Isaacs inducted.

Among the players on the list include Isabelle Mercier, JJ Liu, Karina Jett, Annie Duke, Nani Dollison, Victoria Coren and Debbie Burkhead.

I mentioned in a previous blog entry that the wording of the WIPHOF criteria had been changed and, as such, Annie Duke would get in this year.

I stick by that choice, and her induction into the WIPHOF is well deserved.

She is #3 on the Women's All-Time Money list and has two major titles to go with a WSOP Tournament of Champions title.

With over $4.27 million in career earnings, her achievements at the table are more than enough to get her into the Hall.

Throw in her work outside of the felt that includes penning multiple books, charity work and her stint with the Epic Poker League and she should be a lock.

Karina Jett is one of the most respected ladies at the poker tables and has been a staple of the games for decades. She has an impressive four WSOP final tables, including three final tables in the Ladies Event.

In addition, Jett is the Ambassador for the MGM Grand Poker Room and is on the board of the WIPHOF.

Personally, I would pick a couple of the others in the class over her for this year but I do think she is deserving of induction.

Dollison, Liu, and Burkhead Odd Women Out?

Three ladies on this list that I think should be in the WIPHOF but may get overlooked this year are JJ Liu, Debbie Burkhead and Nani Dollison.

Dollison is the other lady I nominated a few weeks back along with Annie Duke and I think her track record at the table is well worth considering.

Three WSOP bracelets and $770,000 in tournament cashes should be enough to get her in, but one has to wonder if the fact that most of her success came pre-poker boom is the reason she isn't already in.

JJ Liu has over $2.5 million in tournament earnings and has been a consistent performer for over 15 years.  The only real knock on her resume is that she does lack a major title.

The closest she came was in 2007 when she finished runner-up in the WPT Bay 101 Event. She also has four WSOP final tables with a runner-up finish in the ladies event in 2003.

Looking at Liu's resume, one cannot deny that she has shown the prowess to get inducted.

Debbie Burkhead is a player that isn't known to many, but she has been a staple in Vegas poker and in the poker community for decades.

Burkhead is a retired mid-stakes cash game player who nowadays plays the game primarily for fun. However, she still plays at a very high level.

She has final tables in just about every form of poker and has numerous ladies event titles, including the 2007 Orleans Open Ladies Event title.

In addition to her skill at the table, she has served as an author and editor for Poker Digest and currently works for Poker Player Newspaper as both a columnist and their National Sales Director.

Any of these three ladies would be well deserving of the WIPHOF and should be given a second look.

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