Didier Monin, Organized Play Data System Manager
Editor's note: Over the course of the voting, we will occasionally be posting ballots of voters who wish to make their choices public, along with any additional analysis they used to come to their decisions. If other Selection Committee members wish to provide analysis and explanation of their votes for publication, click here.
I am proud to have been selected for the honor of casting a ballot in the Hall of Fame.
But you see, I'm not a big sports buff. While I like playing sports and participating, I'm plagued with bad memory and I do not like reading about or watching sports. I like even less talking about sports as I always end up mixing up names, events and dates. Well, the same is true for me and Magic, and I must say I hesitated accepting this honor because of that.
After some thinking I still decided to accept the honor, and be honest about it. I have been involved for a long time in Magic, and most of the names on the list were familiar enough. Because I'm so bad with memory, I know that my votes would go to players whose name stuck enough in my mind over all these years. And I see that it is, after all, as good an argument as any other to give a vote to someone.
Being in Europe when Magic Worlds and the Pro Tour started, it will be no surprise that the majority of the names that stuck in my mind are from this continent. Also, I believe there is a name in Magic that is unavoidable, and he is not European. So it was not difficult to pick out my first four nominees:
For the fifth nomination, things got tougher. There are a lot of players' names that I remembered from the early history of Magic I have been exposed to: Robert Dougherty, David Humpherys, Mark Justice, Darwin Kastle, Peter Leiher, Michael Long, Steven O'Mahoney-Schwartz, Chris Pikula, Michael Pustilnik, Shawn Regnier, Matthew Vienneau...
So which one to pick? Based on what criteria?
Well, despite my memory woes, I am blessed with access to another type of memory: an electronic one. Being the guardian of our DCI database has its perks, and I know this is a memory I can rely on, and that I can tap. So I began to look into this well of knowledge...
Would I take the player with the earliest DCI Number? Well, in this case that would be Michael Long for sure...
Would I take the player that played the earliest sanctioned event known to this electronic memory? Well, in this case that would be Darwin Kastle, for playing in Magicide IV Type I event on 12/16/1995...
Would I take the player who played the most Magic individual sanctioned tournaments? Well, in this case, that would be Michael Pustilnik, with no less than 710 sanctioned events played to this day...
I could not make up my mind, too much data, what to choose? Then it dawned on me...
The Magic Pro Tour Hall of Fame is very focused on competition, but ultimately, and above all, isn't Magic also fun to play casually? All these players have strong competition history. What about looking into a more casual sanctioned game play style in the recent years? Who stayed in touch the most with their inner casual gamer, while risking their precious rating points with less competitive gamers on the public place?
So I decided to look for the player who would have played the most in our sanctioned Friday Night Magic events. These events are the training grounds of many new players and are run by dedicated stores, keeping alive the local community spirit of Magic. I had found the selection method that would suit me the best!
Query was written and run...drums and bits started rolling, and from the electronic memory the name of my fifth pick showed up on my screen:
My ballot was finished. My votes are now cast. Job done! And good luck to all for their entry into the Hall of Fame!