NEW ORLEANS (AP) — David Stern is going from the NBA commissioner’s office to the Hall of Fame.
The recently retired Stern was elected Friday to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and will be enshrined with the class of 2014 on Aug. 8 in Springfield, Mass.
Alonzo Mourning, Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, Kevin Johnson and Spencer Haywood are hoping to be part of the class. They were chosen as finalists, with the full class to be unveiled April 7 during the NCAA men’s Final Four.
Stern retired on Feb. 1 after exactly 30 years as commissioner, during which he brought the league to its greatest success. Jerry Colangelo, chairman of the Hall of Fame board, said the Hall hopes to have a special spot to display a tribute to Stern.
“He deserves to be recognized in a huge way,” Colangelo said.
Stern was elected by the contributors committee. Also directly elected to the Hall of Fame were Lithuania star Sarunas Marciulionis by the international committee, former Indiana Pacers coach Bob “Slick” Leonard by the ABA committee, former New York Knicks player Nat “Sweetwater” Clifton by the early African-American pioneers committee, and former Temple star Guy Rodgers by the veterans committee.
College coaches Eddie Sutton, Nolan Richardson and Gary Williams were also finalists, as were former women’s coach Harley Redin and the women’s team from Immaculata College, which won three straight national championships.