It will be hard to label someone as the "best", because it depends on what we mean by the word, the "best"? If we are talking about the most successful (money and fame), then yeah, we would have to name people like David Roth, etc... If we are talking about creativity, we would have to go further back to the pioneers like Bobo... However, when it comes to technical perfection, then people like Ponta the Smith get my vote. The thing about Japanese people, and this may sound stereotypical, but quite accurate, I ASSURE you (I live in Japan), is that, when they find a hobby, they don't diddle daddle with it. People here take their hobby to heart, and focus on nothing but the hobby. Often, doing more than one type of hobby takes too much time and money here, so they have to specialize. The way Ponta the Smith has put in time to master such simple sleights, and such difficult sleights, is far more worth of praise than other magicians I have seen. His dedication to the art of coins is the best I have seen.