The Hall of Fame on Tuesday released the lineup of presenters for Friday night’s Hall of Fame ceremony in Springfield, Mass., a group with the kind of star power to attract a separate spotlight despite having no role other than standing a few feet away while the members of the Class of 2017 give an acceptance speech.
Each inductee picks their presenter(s), the only stipulation being that the representative who joins them on stage must be in the Hall. If the new Hall member is not present to choose, as often happens with deceased inductees, the basketball museum selects on their behalf.
The list for this year:
- Zelmo Beaty, presented by Lenny Wilkens.
- Darell Garretson, presented by David Stern.
- Allen Iverson, presented by Larry Brown, Julius Erving and John Thompson.
- Tom Izzo, presented by Gary Williams.
- John McLendon, presented by Wayne Embry, Sam Jones, Isiah Thomas and Thompson.
- Shaquille O’Neal, presented by Erving, Alonzo Mourning, Bill Russell and Thomas.
- Cumberland Posey, presented by Earl Monroe.
- Jerry Reinsdorf, presented by Phil Jackson and Scottie Pippen.
- Sheryl Swoopes, presented by Van Chancellor and Nancy Lieberman.
- Yao Ming, presented by Dikembe Mutombo, Russell and Bill Walton.
It’s hard to imagine many better gatherings of centers than a night with Russell, O’Neal, Walton, Mourning, Mutombo and Yao in the same building. And that list of coaches: Jackson, Brown, Wilkens, Izzo, Thompson and Williams.