The Bat was talking about Crandell Addington and why fish and rogues should also be in the Hall of Fame…
Addington also holds the record for most Texas Hold’em poker Main Event final tables with seven. But to give you an idea of how the size of the fields have changed he only cashed four times. Since Doyle Brunson has called Addington a No Limit Texas Hold’Em legend one has to wonder if he meets the Bat’s second criteria for induction. Maybe Doyle was just boosting his ego so he’d sit with him and stack off some of his self-made money.
Unfortunately for the Bat, in truth, Addington’s exploits may be undervalued he was from the old school poker school of thought. He was at his apex beating the cash games when the World Series was just a clever ploy to bring action players to town. He played solely professional poker from the early sixties to the eighties and funded his businesses with his winnings. Not the reverse. Would be nice if he were a donator but he wasn’t. Hmmm… looking deeper the Bat is hard pressed to find another fish in the Hall.
Well, besides fish, the the Hall of Fames also needs rogues. The guys that became legends like Sam Grizzle and Eskimo Clark. Guys who have tasted the get rich quick attributes of poker and the get broke quicker realities of the game. They are legends for different reasons and they need to be celebrated to. They are sometimes donators and sometimes winners but their personal stories tell Nick the Greek like vissitudes that only a professional gambler can understand and relate to. The fact they’ve been grinding along for long is proof to their staying power and the power of the game. The colorful characters of poker should be recognized because that is a bit of what the game is about.
Unlike trying to find a fish in the Hall of Fame, there are plenty of rogues to chose from. Most have resumes that show not only were they rogues but they were also great players. Let’s open the doors to those that weren’t exclusively winners. One that fits that catergory is Julius Oral “Little Man” Popwell. The Hall of Famer has zero bracelets and zero live tournament cashes but the 5’6, over 300 pound player (no wonder the Bat likes him), crushed billiards games and five card stud games.
He might have been a little bit shorter than the guy pictured but he was no less a hefty man stud. He regularly played as an equal to Johnny Moss. After operating lottories and card games from his house in Birmingham, AL he was incarcerated.
These days poker likes to sweep these rogues under the carpet. But poker would be no where without them. In fact, if not for the players that tested fate by opening up their homes to games that would attract the road warriors from the depression to the Casino era the gambler might never have been a career. Take many professional poker players and there is a backstory worth telling. Some of their pasts is lived in shadows and shadiness but part of the allure of poker is playing these types of people at their own game and beating them.
Right now, there is a guy who can’t seem to win for losing. Just a couple of years ago he was one of the best No Limit tournament players in the world. Hansen isn’t much of a rogue though he is a bit of a scamp at least to the ladies. It appears Gus Hansen is down 10 million in online action on one site. He might make the Hall of Fame as a winner but if he doesn’t make it the Bat will certainly push for him in ten or twenty years to make it to the Hall of Fame because of what he gave back to the game as a loser. Isn’t that what Hall of Famers are supposed to do? Give back to the game?