Blogtable: Which point guard nominees on Hall of Fame ballot get in this year?
Each week, we ask our scribes to weigh in on the most important NBA topics of the day.
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Jason Kidd, Steve Nash and Becky Hammon. All three point guards are first-time nominees on this year’s Hall of Fame ballot. Who gets in?
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David Aldridge: Uh, all of them? Why on earth not? They were three of the best ever, winning MVPs and championships and setting the bar high — way high — for what was expected from that position. See all y’all in Springfield this fall.
Steve Aschburner: All three? One glimpse at the 2018 candidates list — with the waiting period for eligibility reduced to three years into retirement — suggests this year’s HOF class will enter through the loading dock rather than the front door. In this case, regardless, all three belong. The first two I can attest to as an eye witness. No need to have the Hall without them. As for Hammon, people whom I trust and who saw her play sufficiently vouch for her worthiness. But since the basketball Hall voting process is part star chamber, part black box, I don’t get too worked up over “first ballot” vs. subsequent entry. Getting in at any point, as long as it’s not posthumous, is swell.
Tas Melas: We know they’re all getting in, let’s not waste anyone’s time putting it off a year or two, although Becky Hammon is not done breaking down gender barriers in basketball and her story is far from written. She reportedly was a candidate for the Milwaukee Bucks GM job last summer — her ascendance in the NBA, after a Hall of Fame worthy career in the WNBA, is just getting started. She’s gonna need a major addendum years from now
Shaun Powell: Jason Kidd and Steve Nash are arguably top-10 all-time at the point guard spot. Becky Hammon might also make a case for herself as a six-time WNBA All-Star and two-time All-WNBA first teamer and her stellar play internationally. (Although, I admit, I’m not even pretending to be enough of an expert on women’s basketball to know exactly where she stands within her gender.) Ultimately, they all should get in. But first timers? My bounce pass goes to Kidd and Nash.
John Schuhmann: Whether it’s this year or down the line, all three will be enshrined. Kidd and Nash, two of the five best floor generals in NBA history, should be locks this year, and I don’t see why Hammon wouldn’t be either. She was never thought of as the best point guard in the WNBA, but built up a pretty impressive resume in her 16 seasons, ranking in the top 10 all-time points (eighth), assists (fourth) and 3-point percentage (eighth). The Hall of Fame is about more than just the NBA and WNBA, so her accomplishments playing internationally can only help her case.
Sekou Smith: Jason Kidd and Steve Nash are locks. If not, go ahead and shutter the doors at the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame. And Becky Hammon’s case is just as strong, given her status as one of the WNBA’s top 15 all-time players (in 2011) and making the WNBA 20@20. But Kidd and Nash have to be no-brainers. We’re talking about two of the transcendent players at the position — an NBA champion (Kidd) and a two-time MVP (Nash) — who helped change the way the position was played. The fact they spent time as teammates (in Phoenix) and both, at different points, worked alongside another future Hall of Famer (Dirk Nowitzki) makes their status as first-time nominees even more interesting. Kidd’s basketball body of work is beyond reproach. And Nash’s college and NBA careers, even without a title, put him on solid HOF footing. It should be a point guard party with all three on the list.