On a warm Thursday afternoon in Springfield, MA 11 amazing careers in the basketball world were celebrated as they entered the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
The Class of 2017 inductees include all-time winningest boys high school coach Robert Hughes, WNBA icon and ESPN Analyst Rebecca Lobo, two-time NBA scoring champion and former Toronto Raptor Tracy McGrady, three-time Consensus National College Coach of the Year from Notre Dame Muffet McGraw, and two-time AP College Coach of the Year Bill Self.
McGrady is a 7x NBA All-Star but the one question he says he cant get away from his his 13 points in 35 seconds. It’s when he was with the Houston Rockets and help the team comeback to beat the San Antonio Spurs. A moment fans of the sport still can’t stop talking about but McGrady says it hasn’t impressed his kids.
“I made my kids watch it,” he said before expressing surprise at how little his kids trust his basketball judgement. “Here I am with an orange jacket on about to get inducted in the Hall of Fame. I put them guys in the gym and try to tell them something, they act like I don’t know (enter swear word here). They act like I don’t know nothing, man. So that’s why I’ve got to show them, like, this is what I used to do.”
The home town hero of the day was Rebecca Lobo. Anyone in Connecticut knows who she is and she glowed as she spoke about her home State.
“I never really thought that someday, I would get my own beautiful orange jacket, or that I would be up there,” Lobo said on Friday referring to the Hall of Fame jacket handed out to every inductee, and to the rounded ceiling of the Hall of Fame, where faces of the inductees look down on the centre court. “”I’m a product of the 413, as they say these days,I grew up in Southwick. From kindergarten through 12th grade, I went to Southwick public schools. I was raised by my family, but also by the community. (I was) very involved in Western Mass. basketball. This is who I am, this community, and hopefully it takes as much pride in this as I am.”