Posts Tagged ‘Mel Daniels’

Pacers’ Hall of Fame Streak Continues

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HANG TIME WEST – Thanks to talent, the fluke of timing, and, most of all, to Jerry Colangelo, the Hall of Fame is becoming an annual Pacers’ reunion.

This is Year 3 — and technically No. 4, with a good chance at adding more after that — of a party that will continue two weeks from today when the late Roger Brown is inducted as part of the Class of 2013 in ceremonies in Springfield, Mass. Perhaps Springfield should be known as East Indianapolis.

The Pacers’ showcase started in 2010 when Larry Bird, an Indiana legend who did not play for the home-state team but became a coach and executive with the team, was inducted. That enshrinement was as a member of the 1992 Olympic squad, the Dream Team. Bird himself was inducted in 1998.

In 2011, Chris Mullin went to Springfield after a 16-year career that included three with the Pacers, the first two as a starter before a limited role on the 1999-2000 club that won the Eastern Conference title.

Then, in 2012, Reggie Miller was one of the headliners as Mel Daniels also went in via the ABA committee.

Daniels led to Brown this summer through the same ABA channel Colangelo, the chairman of the Hall, instituted in 2011 to give special attention to areas of the game he felt had become overlooked. And that same category could lead to election in the years ahead for two strong candidates from the Pacers’ ABA days, coach Bob Leonard and forward George McGinnis. Another former player, Freddie Lewis, could get some attention from that committee, while Donnie Walsh, the former head of basketball operations and current consultant, will remain on the ballot as a Contributor.

The organization’s roots in both leagues will be on full display on Sept. 8, when Miller and Daniels will be the presenters as Brown is inducted and Roger Brown Jr. is scheduled to accept on his father’s behalf.

“I’m very close to all of the old players,” Jeannie Brown, Roger’s former wife, said from Indianapolis. “We really stayed connected and always have. When Roger and I moved to this house, Mel helped us move because he had a truck. He helped us move in and the guys used to always come over here. We have a huge yard here and they’d be out there with bow and arrows shooting and practicing. We’ve stayed close. I talk to everybody a lot.”

http://www.nba.com/halloffame/2010/

Daniels May Get Belated Hall Salute

 

The Hall of Fame has discussed inviting Mel Daniels to the 2013 enshrinement ceremony for an overdue public salute after illness forced the former Pacers star to miss his induction as part of the Class of 2012.

Officials at the Springfield, Mass., basketball museum have considered the classy move in light of Daniels being kept from his planned celebration in September by a urinary tract infection. His wife accepted the award on his behalf, and another former Indiana great, Reggie Miller, also spoke of Daniels during his own enshrinement speech, noting their close friendship by referring to Daniels as “Uncle Mel.”

“It was kind of a mixed bag,” Daniels said of watching the ceremony on television. “I understood the situation. There was nothing I could do. I felt I disappointed a lot of people by not being there. But I felt really good about going in.”

Daniels would not be enshrined again. More likely, he would be included in the 2013 program for a belated introduction and round of applause in recognition of his ABA days, an area of the history of the game Hall officials have tried to spotlight the last two years.

Daniels said he would “most certainly” go if invited, but preferred all the attention next year go the that group of inductees.

“I think it should be someone else’s turn,” he said. “It’s a nice thought (to possibly be invited back). I appreciate the gesture. But I think I had my moment.”

Except that he didn’t really, and now the Hall may do something about it.

Sampson Looks Forward To Coaching

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Ralph Sampson, a former star center, a current father, about to officially become a Hall of Famer, said Thursday he may look into a new path: coaching.

The Atlanta resident said he never previously gave serious thought to getting on a bench because he didn’t want to spend so much time away from his two sons. Now that one is out of college – Ralph Sampson III attended the University of Minnesota and played for the Bobcats in the Las Vegas summer league after going undrafted – and another is established in school, the elder Sampson is thinking the time is right.

“I haven’t pursued it regularly in the past, probably like most people have or I should,” he said. “Now that my son is going to be a junior at East Carolina, I may look at it more seriously. I wanted him to get established first. My other son is out of college. I look every year at what coaches are doing what, when and where. You think, ‘Oh, maybe that’s not the right time.’ This year may be my time.”

There does not appear to be anything on the immediate horizon with most staffs in the college and professional ranks set, but Sampson could begin with a lesser role in player development, as opposed to spending every game on the bench. Or he could become a tutor in the mold of former Rockets teammate Hakeem Olajuwon.

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Jordan, Magic Among 2012 Hall of Fame Presenters

HANG TIME WEST – The Hall of Fame on Tuesday announced a star-studded group of presenters for the induction ceremony next Friday night in Springfield, Mass., a list headed by Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson that is powerful enough to overshadow most of the actual inductees.

Their role is strictly ceremonial, nothing more than standing on stage as the enshrinees speak. And some choices are assigned for a person or team without a personal connection to a current Hall of Famer, as the rules require. But some in the past have been interesting selections – Jordan requesting David Thompson despite not having any relationship, Karl Malone choosing Willis Reed against the same backdrop, both in nods to home-state heroes – and the presenters this time are noteworthy for the number of all-time greats.

The complete list of enshinees and their presenters:

All America Redheads — Teresa Edwards.

Lidia Alexeeva – Will not be present.

The late Don BarksdaleBob Cousy.

Mel DanielsWayne Embry and Artis Gilmore.

Phil Knight – Jordan and John Thompson.

Katrina McClain – Edwards, Julius Erving, and C. Vivian Stringer.

Hank NicholsHubie Brown.

Don NelsonChris Mullin, Bob Lanier and Satch Sanders.

Reggie MillerCheryl Miller, Charles Barkley and Johnson.

Ralph SampsonKareem Abdul-Jabbar, Erving, and Barkley.

Chet WalkerBilly Cunningham, Earl Monroe, Adrian Dantley and Isiah Thomas.

Jamaal Wilkes – Abdul-Jabbar, Johnson, Rick Barry and Bill Walton.

In all, officials are expecting approximately 50 Hall of Famers to attend, either as participants or to watch and join in private functions.

Hall of Fame Announces Class of 2012





Former Pacers scoring star Reggie Miller and Don Nelson, the winningest coach in league history, headline the Hall of Fame Class of 2012 announced Monday in New Orleans in the basketball museum’s latest attempt to address previous oversights.

While Miller’s selection was not a surprise, he did go from not being a finalist in 2011 all the way to election this time. Nelson went from finalist to missing the cut in ’11.

Jamaal Wilkes made it to Springfield, Mass., some 26 years after he retired. Ralph Sampson, elected largely on the strength of a dominating college career at Virginia, last played in 1992.

Hank Nichols, a long-time college and international referee, also made it via the North American Committee.

Maurice Cheeks, Bill Fitch, Bernard King, Dick Motta and Rick Pitino fell short of the required 18 votes from a secret panel of 24 voters comprised of members of the media, NBA and college game.

Katrina McClain, a former star at Georgia and two-time Olympic gold medalist, and the All American Red Heads, a barnstorming team from 1936 to 1986, were elected by the Women’s Committee.

Mel Daniels (ABA), Don Barksdale (Early African American Pioneers), Lidia Alexeeva (International), Chet Walker (Veterans) and Phil Knight (Contributor) were announced in February as inductees.

Enshrinement ceremonies are Sept. 7 in Springfield.