HoopsHype Hall of Fame rumors

April 4, 2014 Updates

One of the most beloved athletes in South Florida sports history is going into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Former Miami Heat center Alonzo Mourning received word Wednesday that he has been selected as a first-ballot inductee. For a professional athlete, there is no higher honor. Mourning, now an executive in the Heat’s front office, was at AmericanAirlines Arena on Thursday but did not speak with reporters. Miami Herald

April 3, 2014 Updates

The NBA doesn’t have a Hall of Fame, leaving the duty of honoring its all-time greats to the Basketball Hall of Fame – an organization hung up on honoring players and coaches (way too many coaches) based on accomplishments at lesser levels. Its processes are both screwed up and secretive (though maybe the former will get marginally better). Advice: Never predict who will be enshrined, and don’t dwell on who should be enshrined. It doesn’t make sense and won’t make sense. But that doesn’t mean we can’t take a few moments to honor those elected in what’s still a huge honor. Five former NBA players were finalists this year, and two were reportedly elected. In: Alonzo Mourning Mitch Richmond Out: Tim Hardaway Kevin Johnson Spencer Haywood NBCSports.com

April 2, 2014 Updates
March 19, 2014 Updates

The Hall of Fame has discussed ending some or all of the five categories that gave candidates an easier path to enshrinement the last four elections, an outcome that, if it happens, would most noticeably impact former players and coaches from the ABA. “Let’s put it this way,” said Jerry Colangelo, the chairman of the Springfield, Mass., basketball museum. “This year, for the first time, we brought that up, to say, ‘You know, when we did this, we said it’s not forever.’ The concept was we felt people had slipped through the cracks. This was a catch-up kind of a thing, so we’re not locked in. We need now to review it each year, to say maybe we’ve taken care of what needed to be taken care of in this category or that category. But it’s just too early to say what we’re going to do.” NBA.com

While eliminating the categories would make the path to enshrinement harder in most cases, it would not end chances. It would simply return to the days of all candidates needing two rounds of voting for induction, a contrast to the current plan of a single, smaller election for nominees in the Contributor, ABA, Early African American Pioneers, Veterans and International fields. Receiving the necessary support — currently at least 18 votes from a 24-member panel — would additionally become more difficult because most candidates would be weighed in the same North American committee against the biggest names from the NBA and NCAA. NBA.com

International representatives could still have separate elections and would likely remain a regular at enshrinement ceremonies every summer. Certainly a winner from the Contributors category will be as voters salute important work off the court. A lot of the winners from there, including David Stern in 2014, are getting in with any selection process. NBA.com

March 3, 2014 Updates

Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says he would be interested in returning in some capacity to the Milwaukee Bucks, the franchise that drafted him first overall in 1969. Bucks owner Herb Kohl said in December he was looking to add to the ownership group in hopes of building a new arena and cementing the team's long-term future in Milwaukee. Abdul-Jabbar said before the Bucks' game Monday against Utah that no one had approached him, though he would "definitely offer" his services if he got a call. Later, he told the crowd he hoped "everything works out so that the Bucks stay here." Abdul-Jabbar was in town to promote a new tourism ad for the state of Wisconsin that played off his acting role in the movie "Airplane." Boston Herald

March 2, 2014 Updates
February 15, 2014 Updates

Unfortunately, his time in the sun was brief. Marciulionis had similar success the next season for the Warriors in an injury-plagued year, then spent the final three seasons of his career with three teams before retiring. He did return for the 1996 Olympics, once again helping Lithuania to a bronze medal, giving him three Olympic medals in his international career. Marciulionis went on to thrive as a businessman after retirement, and now his legacy is secure. He helped foster basketball in a nation that has competed in six consecutive Olympics, winning three medals, and he and Sabonis, forever linked as Olympic teammates, are linked again as Hall of Famers. New York Times

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson on being named a finalist for the 2014 Basketball Hall of Fame: Via official statement from his office: “It is a tremendous honor to be chosen as a finalist for the Hall of Fame and I am sincerely humbled. It is especially gratifying to be recognized by the Committee for all of the hard work and effort we all put into the game. To be considered along with three great peers of mine, Tim (Hardaway), (Alonzo Mourning, and (Mitch Richmond), as well as (Spencer Haywood), is icing on the cake,” said Johnson. Sulia

Even after knowing he’d received the honor for a few days, longtime Knicks broadcaster John Andariese still had a hard time accepting he’d been named the Curt Gowdy Award winner for electronic media Friday, the same day the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, which gives out the Gowdy Award, announced the first five members of its 2014 induction class. “It was a surprise during this past week, and it was a very nice thing to go into,” Andariese told The Post by phone. “I almost thought, ‘My gosh. How can this happen?’ I guess I’m a little older here now or something, though I have the feelings of someone more youthful, believe it or not. “It’s just a thrill. It’s still inside of me right now that [feeling of], ‘Is this really happening?’ It’s been a long time.” New York Post

February 14, 2014 Updates

David Stern is going from the NBA commissioner's office to the Hall of Fame. The recently retired Stern was elected Friday to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and will be enshrined with the class of 2014. Stern retired on Feb. 1 after exactly 30 years as commissioner, during which he brought the league to its greatest success. NBA.com

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