Hall of Fame Daily – Tight Tommy Guevin

Few current players know about the escapdes of one Tight Tommy, a man who was this close to winning Pro Tour #2, and that much closer to getting punched out during more than a few matches in his career. Every Magic player owes it to themselves to learn more about one of the original clown princes of American Magic.

Rumors, rumors, rumors. Out of curiosity, how many of you out there saw anyone on the ballot cheat? I am not saying they are honest or dishonest. I am just wondering who out there has concrete information? There is a lot of noise out there about a number of the people on the ballot, yet no one seems to have any proof. Mark Rosewater has the right to vote for whomever he wants to vote for. He was appointed to the committee, let him have his voice. If he is wrong and you are right, it’ll come out in the wash, but you all seriously need to back off, particularly those of you who aren’t in the know. I certainly have no proof against anyone, only assumptions and innuendo. Would I let some of this affect my vote? Yes. Would I criticize someone for not letting it affect their vote? No way.

I am not trying to say that everyone on the ballot is an honest man. Magic and the DCI have not always done the best job of discouraging cheaters. However, before people run around making accusations and judgments, let’s try to remember we live in a civilized society with the presumption of innocence.

I also wanted to say that I changed my mind about Brian Hacker. I think he should be voted in this first time out. I still doubt he will, but after writing the piece on him, and thinking about it more, I think he should definitely make it.

Anyway, enough of all that jibberjabbin. You came to hear about a hero of Magic’s past, and I have one of my personal favorites. For all you Peter Szigeti fans out there, you should know that this man laid the groundwork for him. Thomas Guevin, aside from having a last name that no one has ever been able to confirm the pronunciation on, was the original clown prince of Magic.

Tom has been around for a very long time. He first appeared on the map losing in the finals of the second Pro Tour ever to fellow Hall of Fame hopeful Shawn “Hammer” Reginer. Tom had to excuse himself in the middle of the match. Some report, though he denies it, that he was so nervous that he had to run to the men’s room and vomit.

His numbers may not look that impressive, but he did average nearly 5 points per Pro Tour he attended, which equates to the Top 48. He has played in 30 Pro Tours, which about middle of the road for this class, and… okay, I’m gonna level with you. Tom’s resume is not what would get him a vote.

Tom’s personality, however, is second to none. Whenever he starts a match, while rolling to see who goes first he will always throw his d20 as high in the air as his upper body strength or the ceilings will allow. While at the time of his early success, Hammer was the true master of trash talk, Tom picked up that mantle and ran with it. Not only could Tom get into your head with his trash talk, he would so thoroughly bash you with his words you’d be relegated to the fetal position sucking your thumb.

Tom had a habit of angering people as he talked. I remember he was watching Jason “The Type Two King” Opalka play in a money draft. He was harassing King so much that King picked up a chair and chased Tom out of the room. Neil Reeves? Neil is as cool as the other side of the pillow. In fact, I have never seen him get riled up in my life. However, at the Team Pro Tour, when Bob Maher was playing Tom, Neil was ready to come across the table and pound Tom into the ground over some of the things he was saying to Bob.

Tom definitely made contributions to the Magic community. While he wasn’t a prolific strategy author, his articles were among the most sound and helpful the game has seen. He also never was shy about making his opinions heard. I had a Crooked Scales out while playing in a PTQ a few years back. I kept saying “heads or tails?” with each activation. Tom blurted out “That’s what I like to hear at a Magic tournament, ‘heads or tails!'”

Tom also tried to help Fellow Hall of Fame hopeful Mark Justice incite a riot when David Mills was ejected without prize from the Top 4 of a Pro Tour for playing a spell before he added the mana to his pool. Ironically, this style is now perfectly legal.

Tom is also well known for his crafty play. Tim Aten was observing him in a match against Gerry Thompson. Tom drew his card for the turn, called a judge, pulled the judge aside and asked some questions whispering, then returned to his seat. When Tom sat back down and picked up his hand, Tim saw that Tom’s entire hand was land. [This sort of shenanigan is now practiced with some frequency by Osyp Lebedowicz. – Knut]

Tom also did a tour as an announcer. He would get behind the mic from time to time and put on one of the most entertaining shows you have ever heard. Before once such appearance, fellow first ballot member Rob Dougherty gave Randy Buehler a penny. He told Randy, “This is the Tom Guevin truth indicator. When ever Tom says anything, flip it. Heads it’s the truth, tails it’s false.”

Tom has been playing a long time, and always crops up when you least expect him. I’d love to see him get in, but he just doesn’t have the resume, and as entertaining as the intangibles are, they aren’t going to carry him in. I just hope he keeps trying, because he is a great player and a great showman.


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