Among the 13-member class that'll be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame this year, there are a few no-brainer selections — and the notable absence of a Kings legend.
Many Kings fans and sports media seem baffled that Chris Webber has again been left out of the Hall. Webber, who retired in 2009, was a finalist this year and in 2017.
After this year's class was officially announced Saturday, SBNation's Tom Ziller wrote bluntly that he belongs in the Hall, so "Stop snubbing him."
This year's class was headlined by legends Steve Nash and Jason Kidd. It also included Grant Hill and Ray Allen; and Ziller argues that Webber, at his peak, was as good or better than the latter two.
His NBA body of work seems solid enough, at a glance. The first overall pick in the 1993 draft, Webber's stats and accolades include five All-Star appearances, Rookie of the Year honors (1994) and a rebounding title (1999). He averaged 20.7 points per game and 10.0 rebounds over 15 seasons.
Sports media on Twitter also said the snub is tough to comprehend.
Fans are perplexed, too. An aptly named amateur website, NotInHallofFame.com, has Webber listed as the fourth-best player who's not in the Hall. But since it hasn't been updated to reflect Saturday's selections, Webber will jump to No. 1 — the four previously mentioned 2018 inductees round out the fan site's top five, with Hill at No. 5.
Webber played the bulk of his career, from 1998-2005, with the Kings, who retired jersey No. 4 upon his retirement.
What's holding Webber back, then?
Ziller and a few others on Twitter theorize that Webber's involvement in a scandal at Michigan, in which program booster Ed Martin gave inappropriate cash loans to players, has rubbed Hall of Fame voters the wrong way. Michigan forfeited its final win in the 1992 NCAA tournament and the entire 1992-93 season, also erasing Webber from its record books.
Webber also infamously tried to call a timeout in the 1993 title game against North Carolina, even though his team was out of timeouts.
Both the scandal and the timeout incident were the subject of a 2011 ESPN documentary, "The Fab Five."
Hall of Fame voters takes players' entire careers into account, college time included.
Among other explanations, a column by Bleacher Report from 2018, near the end of his playing career, claimed that Webber "never reached his highest plateau," and a lack of an NBA championship win might make his road to the Hall a tough one, but not impossible.
The 13-member class will be enshrined in September.