Three of the biggest names — and from the outside, most deserving — apparently did not make it into the Hall of Fame this year. Chris Webber, Marques Johnson, and Ben Wallace reportedly did not make the cut.
Vlade Divac did, as selected by the international committee. Also, Sidney Moncrief, Paul Westphal, Bobby Jones, and coach Bill Fitch are in.
The official announcement of the Hall of Fame class will come Saturday afternoon in Minneapolis (home to the Final Four), but the list of who is in and who is out has started to leak, and as it always seems to be with the Hall of Fame there are deserving but odd choices. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN broke a lot of this news.
Paul Westphal, Sidney Moncrief and Bobby Jones are among the 2019 class to be elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, sources told ESPN…
Also selected for induction via the International Committee was Vlade Divac, sources told ESPN. Chuck Cooper, the first African-American drafted in NBA history, was selected by the special direct-elect Early African-American Pioneers Committee, and Golden State Warriors patriarch and former coach and guard Al Attles will be announced as an inductee as a contributor, a source told ESPN’s The Undefeated.
Three prominent finalists for the 2019 class — Marques Johnson, Ben Wallace and Chris Webber — were not selected for enshrinement, sources told ESPN.
It’s a solid Hall of Fame class, and those that got in (and more we don’t know about yet from the college and women’s game) deserve their spots.
Still, I am confused by some of the “old boys network” choices of the Hall of Fame voters. Again. Not that people such as Divac or Moncrief are not deserving — they are — but who gets in and who is left out can be hard to wrap your head around. Seemingly every year it’s the same. Unlike NBA end-of-year award voting where the votes are public — both who has a vote and who they voted for — the Hall of Fame voting is secret. We do not know who makes the call.
Webber deserves to be in. He has the resume: four-time All-NBA player, five-time NBA All-Star, 1994 NBA Rookie of the Year, he averaged more than 20 points per game for nine seasons, and that’s just in the NBA — remember this is the “Basketball Hall of Fame” so being a key part of the “Fab Five” at Michigan that went to two Final Fours, and more importantly revolutionized the college game, counts toward getting in as well.
Ben Wallace has a strong resume, too: four-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, he helped lead the Pistons to an NBA title (2004), made the NBA All-Defensive team eight times (five times first team), three times made the All-NBA team, and was a four-time NBA All-Star.
Those resumes stack up well with the people who got in, but for whatever reason they did not make the cut.