MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — NBA stars Vlade Divac, Sidney Moncrief, and Jack Sikma are the headliners of the 2019 class for the Basketball Hall of Fame.
The honorees were announced Saturday in Minneapolis before the Final Four. Interestingly, not chosen were Chris Webber, the NBA and Michigan star, as well as defensive legend Ben Wallace.
Among those who were selected are:
• Divac, the former Laker and King who made an NBA All-Star team, was elected for his international contributions to the game.
• Moncrief played for the Bucks and Hawks, was a two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, made an All-NBA team, is a five-time All-Star and four times made the All-Defensive Team.
• Sikma is an icon of the Seattle Supersonics, he helped lead that team to a title in 1979. Sikma is a seven-time All-Star is the only center in NBA history to lead the league in single-season free throw percentage at .922 (1987-88).
• Paul Westphal won a ring with the Boston Celtics in 1974, and in his career was a three-time All-NBA player and a five-time All-Star. He is a member of the Phoenix Suns Ring of Honor.
• Coach Bill Fitch coached in the NBA for 25 seasons, twice being named Coach of the Year. He led the Boston Celtics to a title in 1981 and still holds the highest winning percentage of any coach in Celtics history (.738).
• Bobby Jones, a legend in Philadelphia who helped the Sixers to their last NBA title back in 1983. Jones was a lock-down defender who was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team eight straight years, plus he was a four-time All-Star and in 1983 won the Sixth Man of the Year award. Jones started his career in Denver when the Nuggets were in the ABA and he made the ABA All-Star team, All-Rookie Team, and two times was on the league’s All-Defensive Team. He also has a silver medal from the disputed 1972 Olympics.
Other NBA players who are in are Al Attles, Carl Braun, and Chuck Cooper.
Also selected this year were WNBA great Teresa Weatherspoon, the Tennessee A&I men’s teams from 1957-59 (the first collegiate team to win back-to-back-to-back championships), and the Wayland Baptist University women’s team (which won 131 consecutive games from 1953-58 and 10 Amateur Athletic Union national championships overall).
The class will be enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts, on Sept. 6.