As the large print above would indicate, the list of finalists for 2009 induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame is filled with huge name no-brainers. (That is not a commentary on any recent Bobcats moves.) The NBA released the list today; the finalists will be formally presented on All-Star Friday this week in Phoenix. (UPDATE: The NBA release didn't exactly name the finalists -- it mentioned everyone who is likely to be a finalist in order to drum up interest in the official unveiling Friday.)
Michael Jordan's induction is the easiest vote of all-time; if any joker leaves him off to make a point or the headlines, his head will be served up for dessert at MJ's Hall ceremony. I figure the same can be said for David Robinson and John Stockton, but people with quills often
Two coaches without titles might have different outcomes: I suspect Jerry Sloan will get in without trouble, while Don Nelson's lightning rod status of fundamentals usurper might delay his induction a few years (or permanently, I fear). Dennis Johnson, Maurice Cheeks and Chris Mullin will be on the ballot, along with two Knicks legends (Richie Guerin and Bernard King).
If D.J. doesn't get in this time, the voters ought to be corraled and lectured by Bill Simmons for a few hours. D.J. belongs in the Hall. If Dick Motta doesn't make the finalist list next season, the expert panels should be corralled and lectured by Dick Motta for a few hours. RESPECT DICK MOTTA!