Former Sonics player and coach Paul Westphal is also a finalist. The full Hall of Fame class will be selected at the NCAA men’s Final Four at Minneapolis in April.
Former Sonics star Jack Sikma is among 13 finalists, announced Friday, for enshrinement later this year into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Former Sonics player and coach Paul Westphal, Chris Webber, Bill Fitch, Marques Johnson, Sidney Moncrief, Bobby Jones, Eddie Sutton, Ben Wallace and Teresa Weatherspoon are among the other finalists.
Sikma was an All-Star in seven consecutive seasons, had a brilliant shooting touch and helped Seattle win the 1979 NBA title. Westphal was a stellar player and coach. He played alongside Sikma for the Sonics from 1980-81 and coached the team from 1998-2000. He won a title with the Celtics as a player in 1974.
Webber, part of Michigan’s Fab Five and a five-time NBA All-Star, was a finalist for the third consecutive season.
Fitch is a two-time NBA coach of the year who led Boston to the 1981 NBA championship. Johnson was a five-time NBA All-Star and an NCAA champion under John Wooden at UCLA. Jones was a four-time NBA All-Star, a huge part of Philadelphia’s 1983 NBA-title-winning team and the league’s sixth man award winner that season. Moncrief was a two-time defensive player of the year and a prolific scorer.
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Sutton is a College Basketball Hall of Fame inductee and was the first coach to take four schools to the NCAA tournament. Wallace was a massive part of the Detroit Pistons’ run to the 2004 NBA title and a four-time defensive player of the year. Weatherspoon was one of the first true stars of the WNBA, and a five-time All-Star.
Also selected as finalists were Leta Andrews, who won 1,416 games in more than 50 years on the sidelines; Hugh Evans, a referee in the NBA for 28 years; Barbara Stevens, the longtime coach at perennial Division II power Bentley and a winner of more than 1,000 games.
The Curt Gowdy Award winners for media contributions went to Marc Stein of The New York Times and retiring Los Angeles Clippers announcer Ralph Lawler.
The full Hall of Fame class will be selected at the NCAA men’s Final Four at Minneapolis in April.