The World Series of Poker crowned their newest World Champion in Scott Blumstein early Sunday morning. During the Final Table broadcasts the WSOP announced that Phil Ivey and David “Devilfish” Ulliott were the 2017 Inductees to the Poker Hall of Fame.

Ivey and Ulliott were chosen among ten candidates by the living 27 PHOF members and an 18-person Blue Ribbon Media Panel. Other candidates up for voting were David Chiu, Mori Eskandani, Ted Forrest, Thor Hansen, Mike Matusow, Max Pescatori, Matt Savage and Huck Seed.

Ivey is tied for second with 10 WSOP bracelets with Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan. “I want to thank the living members of the Poker Hall of Fame, as well as, the media who voted for me to be part of the Poker Hall of Fame,” said Ivey. “It’s an honor to be inducted alongside legends like Chip Reese and Doyle Brunson. I love the game of poker and the game has done a lot for me.” 

Phil Ivey winning his 10th bracelet in a 2014 Eight Game Mix event. (Photo: PokerPhotoArchive.com)
“I am one of the lucky people who has been able to make a living playing a game which was always my passion,” said Ivey. “Thankfully, I’m just as passionate about the game today as when I first stepped into Binion’s Horseshoe to play my first-ever WSOP. Thank you to my family, my friends and all the poker fans across the world that supported me in this journey.”

Ivey hasn’t played any WSOP events in three years – his last cash came in the 2014 Main Event in 430th place. He’s one of the winningest players in the world but currently caught in two different law suits, with two different casinos, in two different countries concerning edge sorting during Baccarat sessions.

Ulliott passed away from cancer in April 2015 after decades of being a fixture on the European poker circuit. His brash style, table talk and custom jewelry made him a fan-favorite whenever he appeared on TV. He won his bracelet in a 1997 Pot Limit Hold’em event, collected 33 cashes and earned $1.7 million in his WSOP career.

The Ulliott family released the statement: “As a family we would like to thank the general public, media and current Poker Hall of Fame members that voted David into the Poker Hall of Fame. We know he will be up there strumming on his guitar and probably asking what took so long! Howe might say it – I think you all know! There isn’t a day that goes past when we don’t of him and miss him but today we are so proud and delighted that takes his rightful place in poker history – the legend of the Devilfish lives on!”

“One thing we know he would be happy about is the progress of John Hesp in the Main Event, a regular at Napoleon’s in Hull, David’s home city in the UK. John represents what poker is all about – a true game of the people. There are too many people to individually thank but we would particularly like to thank Rob Yong and Simon Trumper of Dusk Til Dawn in Nottingham for their support and also we welcome Kings Casino’s offer to commemorate David’s induction into the Poker Hall of Fame and the WSOPE in October. Just remember, as the Devilfish would say – ‘Life is a blast. It doesn’t last. Live it long and live it fast.’”

David “Devilfish” Ulliott was well-known for his line of jewelry. (Photo: PokerPhotoArchive.com)
The PHOF now has 54 members, 28 living, and was established in 1979 and elects two members each year. The main criteria for the PHOF are:

– A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition.
– Be a minimum of 40 years old.
– Played for high stakes.
– Played consistently well, gaining 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.