It was just as egregious as Dennis Johnson not getting in for as long as he was denied but a tremendous injustice has finally been rectified today: former Celtic Jo Jo White has finally been inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Jo Jo won a pair of titles with the Celtics in the 70s. Playing alongside John Havlicek and Dave Cowens, he was pivotal in the championships, and was the 1976 NBA Championship MVP. He made 7 All Star games and would consistently increase his production in the post-season.
White and five other electees will be enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield at a ceremony on Friday, September 10. White’s head coach, Tommy Heinsohn, will also be enshrined as a head coach this year. Heihnson was inducted as a player back in 1986 and will become one of only four people to be enshrined as a player and coach, alongside Bill Sharman, Lenny Wilkins and John Wooden.
Players Dikembe Mutombo, Spencer Haywood and Lisa Leslie, referee Dick Bavetta and coach John Calipari have also inducted.
Jo Jo's unfortunately been passed over because of all the other great guards he played against: Jerry West, Lenny Wilkens and Oscar Robertson (towards the end of their careers), Walt Frazier, Tiny Archibald, Dave Bing, Earl Monroe, Gail Goodrich and Pete Maravich. But just because there were so many spectacular players (before overexpansion diluted the league) doesn't mean Jo Jo shouldn't have been in a long time ago. And unlike DJ, he will not receive the honor posthumously; he's been very active in recent years appearing at Celtics' games.
Maybe we can thank Mitch Richmond being inducted last year and Reggie Miller just before that. Since Miller wasn't a better played than Richmond, it got those who really knew the game from the 90s thinking: "if Miller's in so should Mitch." Then Mitch getting inducted would make other folks say: "Richmond never won shit, how can Jo Jo not be in there!?"
Fortunately that's now corrected. Personally I also think Sidney Moncrief should be in the HOF over both Richmond and Miller as well.
Celticslife congratulates Jo Jo for his this long overdue acknowledgement.
tb727 4/06/2015 02:22:00 PM Tweet Edit