POSTED: Feb 15, 2013 12:43 PM ET
HOUSTON, TX and SPRINGFIELD, MA -- The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today, at NBA All-Star Weekend in Houston, an elite list of players and coaches, as the 12 finalists from the North American and Women's committees to be considered for election in 2013. The recognition of being honored as a Hall of Fame finalist is a career highlight in the sport of basketball. This year's list includes six first-time finalists: five-time NBA All-Star Tim Hardaway, three-time National Coach of the Year Sylvia Hatchell, two-time NBA Championship coach Tom Heinsohn, nine-time NBA All-Star Gary Payton, five-time WNBA All-Star Dawn Staley and six-time NBA All-Star Mitch Richmond. Previous finalists included again this year for consideration are four-time NBA All-Star Maurice Cheeks, four-time NBA All-Star Spencer Haywood, four-time NBA All-Star Bernard King, five-time NCAA Final Four coach Guy Lewis, six-time NCAA Final Four coach Rick Pitino and four-time NCAA Final Four coach Jerry Tarkanian. The Class of 2013 will be unveiled at the NCAA Final Four in April.
"We are proud to share an incredible group of finalists for the Class of 2013 -- a distinct list of coaches and players who excelled at many levels of basketball," said Jerry Colangelo, Chairman of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Board of Governors. "It will be a difficult decision for the Honors Committee to select the final class members from this prestigious group of individuals, each of whom has given so much to the game."
Also announced today are five Direct Elects who are the initial members of the Class of 2013. They include Roger Brown voted in from the American Basketball Association (ABA) Committee, Edwin B. Henderson from the Early African American Pioneers Committee, Oscar Schmidt from the International Committee, Richard Guerin from the Veterans Committee and Russ Granik from the Contributor Direct Election Committee.
In 2011, these five new committees were established to each directly elect one nominee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. This change was made to ensure that the Hall of Fame maintains a strong focus on presenting accurate historical information while utilizing voting specialists who are intimately familiar with the special category they have been assigned to evaluate. These five directly elected individuals have officially been elected into the Basketball Hall of Fame and will be a part of the Enshrinement Ceremonies in September along with the eventual members from the North American and Women's committees.
The complete list of 12 finalists include from the North American Screening Committee: players Maurice Cheeks, Tim Hardaway, Spencer Haywood, Bernard King, Gary Payton and Mitch Richmond; and coaches Tom Heinsohn, Guy Lewis, Rick Pitino and Jerry Tarkanian. From the Women's Screening Committee: player Dawn Staley and coach Sylvia Hatchell.
The Class of 2013 will be announced on Monday, April 8 at a press conference in Atlanta prior to the NCAA's Men's Championship game. A finalist needs 18 of 24 votes from the Honors Committee for election into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The Class of 2013 will be enshrined during festivities in Springfield, Mass. on Sunday, September 8. Tickets to the 2013 Enshrinement and Induction Celebration are available by calling the Hall of Fame at (413) 231-5540.
Women's Committee Finalists:
SYLVIA HATCHELL [Coach] -- Hatchell recently became just the third Division I women's coach to win 900 career games and the only coach in history to win national championships at three different levels (AIAW, NAIA and NCAA). Since taking over at the University of North Carolina in 1986, she has led the Tar Heels to three NCAA Final Fours, eight ACC championships and the 1994 National Championship. She is a three-time National Coach of the Year (1994, 2006 and 2008) and three-time ACC Coach of the Year. She has led her teams to seven 30-win seasons and twenty-eight 20-win seasons. In International competition, she was an assistant coach for the 1988 Olympic Gold Medal team and a part of four World University Games.
DAWN STALEY [Player] -- As one of the most decorated players in women's basketball history, Staley was a three-time Olympic Gold Medalist (1996, 2000 and 2004), five-time WNBA All-Star and two-time National College Player of the Year (1991-92). She was named the USA Basketball Female Player of the Year in 1994 and went on to begin her professional career as a two-time ABL All-Star (1997 and 1998). As a collegiate player, Staley was a three-time Kodak All-America selection (1990-92) at the University of Virginia and she still holds the NCAA career record for steals (454). She led the Cavaliers to three NCAA Final Four appearances and was named NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player in 1991. She is the only player in women's college basketball history to record 2,000 points, 700 assists and 400 steals.
North American Committee Finalists:
MAURICE CHEEKS [Player] -- Cheeks has been involved in the NBA either at the playing level or coaching level since 1978. As a player, he was named to four NBA All-Star games, a four-time NBA All-Defensive team selection, member of one NBA championship team and set the steals and assist records for Philadelphia. This Chicago native would then go onto coaching careers with the Portland Trail Blazers and Philadelphia 76ers. He retired fifth on the NBA career list for both assists (7,392) and steals (2,310). Cheeks is currently an assistant coach for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
TIM HARDAWAY [Player] -- Hardaway was a five-time NBA All-Star (1991, 1992, 1993, 1997 and 1998) and an All-NBA First Team selection in 1997. He was a member of the 2000 Olympic Gold Medal-winning team. Hardaway played 13 NBA seasons scoring 15,373 points while averaging 20-plus points for four consecutive seasons. He currently ranks 13th in NBA history in both career assists (7,095) and three-point field goals (1,542). In college at the University of Texas-El Paso, he made his signature move -- the "UTEP Two-step" -- famous as the WAC Player of the Year in 1989. During his college career, he recorded 1,586 points and 563 assists. He was the recipient of the Jack McMahon Award for most inspirational player in 1990.
SPENCER HAYWOOD [Player] -- One of the elite big men in basketball history, Haywood landed on the basketball map as a member of the 1968 Olympic team, then joined the ABA in 1969 and eventually played 12 years in the NBA. The four-time NBA All-Star (1972-75) averaged over 20 points per game six times during his NBA career while accumulating 14,592 points and 7,038 rebounds during that span. He was a two-time All-NBA First Team selection (1973-74) and a member of an NBA championship team with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1980. In the ABA, he holds the single-season records for most minutes played (3,808), most field goals made (986), most rebounds (1,637) and highest rebounding average (19.5). He was the ABA Rookie of the Year, All-Star Game MVP and League MVP in 1970 when he led the league in points, points per game, rebounds, rebounds per game, minutes played and field goals. In the 1968 Olympics, he led the team in scoring on the way to the Gold Medal. Haywood was also a unanimous First Team All-America selection in 1969 for the University of Detroit.
TOM HEINSOHN [Coach] -- Heinsohn won two NBA Championships as the head coach of the Boston Celtics (1974 and 1976) and earned NBA Coach of the Year honors in 1973. He coached the Celtics from 1969-1978 while recording over 400 wins and five first-place finishes in the Atlantic Division (1972-77). He set the single-season franchise mark with 68 wins in 1973. Heinsohn was the recipient of the Jack McMahon Award in 1995 and the Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009. He was also enshrined into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1986 as a player.
BERNARD KING [Player] -- King is a four-time NBA All-Star, two-time NBA First-Team selection, NBA All-Rookie Team selection and was the NBA Comeback Player of the Year in 1981. Originally from Brooklyn, New York, he was a First Team All-America at the University of Tennessee before an NBA career that included stints with the New Jersey Nets, Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks and Washington Bullets. He averaged over 22 points per game during his 15-year career including a 34.8 points per game average in the 1984 NBA Playoffs.
GUY LEWIS [Coach] -- Lewis led his University of Houston program to five NCAA Final Four appearances (1967, 1968, 1982, 1983 and 1984) and nearly 600 wins during his 30 years as head coach. He won National Coach of the Year honors in 1968 and 1983. A graduate of the school in 1947 he began as an assistant coach in 1953 until he took over four years later. His tenure included 14 NCAA tournament appearances, 10 Sweet Sixteen appearances and registered three 30-win seasons. During his career, he coached 29 future NBA players including Elvin Hayes, Clyde Drexler, and Hakeem Olajuwon, all current Hall of Famers.
GARY PAYTON [Player] -- Known as "The Glove" for his defensive prowess, Payton was a nine-time NBA All-Star and nine-time NBA All-Defensive First Team selection. He was an All-NBA First Team selection in both 1998 and 2000 and was named the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1996. The two-time Olympic Gold Medalist (1996 and 2000) ended his NBA career ranking fourth all-time in steals (2,445) and eighth in assists (8,966). He won an NBA championship with the Miami Heat in 2006. Prior to the NBA, Payton was the Sports Illustrated National Player of the Year in 1990 while at Oregon State and holds the school's all-time marks for points, assists and steals.
RICK PITINO [Coach] -- Pitino is the only coach in men's history to lead three different schools to NCAA Final Four appearances as he did with Providence College, University of Kentucky and University of Louisville. He led Kentucky to the 1996 National Championship and then reached the title game again with the Wildcats the following year. He has won over 600 games in his collegiate career, reached the Final Four six different times (1987, 1993, 1996,
1997, 2005 and 2011), led his teams to 21 postseason appearances and won nine conference tournament championships. He earned Coach of the Year honors from different sources three different years. Pitino also held two stints as an NBA head coach with the New York Knicks and Boston Celtics, leading the Knicks to two playoff appearances.
MITCH RICHMOND [Player] -- As a member of Golden State's famed "Run TMC" Richmond was a six-time NBA All-Star (1993-1998). He was the NBA Rookie of the Year in 1989, received three All-NBA Second Team selections and earned MVP honors at the 1995 NBA All-Star Game. He played 14 seasons in the league while scoring 20,497 points and averaging more than 21 points per game for 10 consecutive seasons. He was a member of the NBA championship team with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2002. Richmond participated in two Olympics, earning a Gold Medal in 1996 and Bronze Medal in 1988. As a star at Kansas State, he was a UPI, The Sporting News, and USBWA Second Team All-America in 1988. He averaged 20.7 points and six rebounds per game in his collegiate career.
JERRY TARKANIAN [Coach] -- Known as one of the most passionate coaches in the game of basketball, Tarkanian recorded 990 wins during his career with an 81% winning percentage that included leading the University of Nevada-Las Vegas to four NCAA Final Four appearances (1977, 1987, 1990 and 1991) and the 1990 NCAA Championship. During his career, he led three different schools to NCAA Tournament appearances (UNLV, Fresno State and Long Beach State), including 21 post season appearances, 14 NCAA tournaments, 13 Sweet Sixteen appearances, seven Elite Eights, 17 conference championships and four 30-plus win seasons. Tarkanian is a four-time National Coach of the Year (1977 Kodak; 1983 UPI; 1984, 1990 Basketball Times). At the junior college level, he still owns the highest winning percentage of all-time at .891. He has coached 44 future NBA prospects including 12 First Round draft picks. Off the court, he was the recipient of the Roy Campanella Humanitarian Award and the Dream a Dream Foundation Inspiration Award -- the only basketball coach to receive the award.