Former Kings star Chris Webber is one step from the Hall of Fame.
Webber, who averaged nearly a double-double for his career (20.7 points, 9.8 rebounds), was among the 14 finalists unveiled Saturday for this year’s Basketball Hall of Fame induction class.
He played 15 seasons with five franchises, including 6 1/2 seasons with the Kings, and was part of Michigan’s famed “Fab Five” group that headlined college basketball in the early 1990s.
“I don’t know what I’m most proud of,” said Webber, who was a five-time NBA All-Star, four of those appearances as a King. “I’m proud to be in the room with all these great individuals.”
Other first-time Hall of Fame finalists include Rollie Massimino, NCAA national championship coach of Villanova; longtime NBA referee Hugh Evans; Connecticut women’s star Rebecca Lobo; two-time NBA scoring champion Tracy McGrady; five-time All-Star Sidney Moncrief; Baylor women’s coach Kim Mulkey; Kansas coach Bill Self and two-time NBA champion coach Rudy Tomjanovich.
Previous finalists returning to the ballot include star point guard and Olympic gold medalist Tim Hardaway, winningest all-time boys high school coach Robert Hughes, Notre Dame women’s coach Muffet McGraw, former Wisconsin coach and four-time Division III national champion Bo Ryan and 10-time AAU women’s national champion team Wayland Baptist University.
“We are grateful to the 14 finalists in the Class of 2017 for the impact they have had on the game we cherish,” Basketball Hall of Fame Chairman Jerry Colangelo said. “To be named a finalist for the Basketball Hall of Fame is an incredible accomplishment.”
Inductees will be announced at the Final Four on April 3. Enshrinement ceremonies in Springfield, Mass., are scheduled for Sept. 7-9.
Finalists need 18 of 24 votes from the Honors Committee to be enshrined. Among this year’s candidates who did not make the finalist group: former Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson, Muggsy Bogues, Ben Wallace, Maurice Cheeks, Mark Price, Lefty Driesell and Eddie Sutton.
BY THE NUMBERS
1: Overall pick in the 1993 draft by Orlando, who then traded him to Golden State.
1: All-NBA first-team honors (2000)
5: All-Star Game appearances.
5: Teams that Webber played for (Golden State, Washington, Sacramento, Philadelphia, Detroit).
6: Playoff appearances in six full seasons with the Kings (1999-2004). He was traded midway through the 2004-05 season.
10: Playoff appearances in his career.
13: Rebounding average in 1999, his highest for a season.
14: Seasons played in the NBA.
23: Career triple-doubles.
26: Rebounds in a game against Indiana on Jan. 5, 2001, a career high.
27.1: Scoring average in 2000-01, his highest for a season.
51: Points in a game against Indiana on Jan. 5, 2001, a career high.
Bee Sports staff contributed to this report. Compiled by Noel Harris.