HOUSTON – Gary Payton, Tim Hardaway and Mitch Richmond were among 12 finalists announced Friday for election into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Former Houston Cougars coach Guy Lewis, current Louisville coach Rick Pitino and UNLV coach Jerry Tarkanian also are finalists for the 2013 class. The others are former NBA stars Maurice Cheeks, Spencer Haywood and Bernard King, longtime North Carolina womens coach Sylvia Hatchell and five-time WNBA All-Star Dawn Staley. Boston Celtics great Tom Heinsohn, already inducted as a player, is a finalist in the coaching category.
The announcement of the finalists kicked off All-Star Weekend in Houston. The 2013 class will be announced at the Final Four in April.
Roger Brown, a star for the Indiana Pacers in the ABA, was directly elected for induction along with Brazilian great Oscar Schmidt, former NBA deputy commissioner Russ Granik, six-time All-Star Richard Guerin and Edwin Henderson, a black player from the early part of the 20th century.
Granik was the NBAs executive vice president from 1984 to 1990 and was the president of USA Basketball from 1996 to 2000.
Russ Graniks induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame is so richly deserved, NBA Commissioner David Stern said in a statement. The entire NBA family is thrilled that Russ is receiving this tremendous recognition.
Bosh to get start
Chris Bosh will start in the All-Star game, giving the NBA champion Miami three starters for the East.
Bosh replaces injured Boston guard Rajon Rondo in the starting lineup and will join teammates LeBron James and Dwyane Wade as starters Sunday.
All statistics online
Sure, James has been on an amazing roll, but what about what Wilt Chamberlain did in 1962?
Now fans can study both in one place.
The NBA put its entire statistical history online, launching a website that allows fans to review box scores, shot charts, game logs and newer data.
Previously available only to teams and league personnel, and only recently to media, its there for everyone at NBA.com/stats.
Team Chuck rolls
Kenneth Faried had 40 points and 10 rebounds and entertained the crowd at the end with a series of dunks, leading Team Chuck to a 163-135 victory over Team Shaq in the Rising Stars Challenge.
For the second straight year, the rosters of both teams were a mix of rookie and second-year players.
West celebrities win
In Houston, Usain Bolt joined the East team in the All-Star celebrity game to have a little fun. He had no idea the West team would take the game so seriously.
Five-foot-2 comedian Kevin Hart took most valuable player honors in leading the West to a 58-38 win over Bolt and the East on Friday night.