Kevin Johnson, former Suns point guard and current Mayor of Sacramento, was today announced as a finalist for the Basketball Hall of Fame.
He will be joined by Dikembe Mutombo, John Calipari (college), Tim Hardaway, Spencer Haywood, JoJo White, Lisa Leslie (WNBA), Bill Fitch, Dick Bavetta (referee), Bo Ryan (college), Robert Hughes (college) and Lita Andrews (college).
This is Johnson's second consecutive trip to the finalists' list.
Johnson' career is generally considered short (just 12 seasons), but he was fabulous in those 12 seasons. For his career he averaged 18 points and 9 assists per game, and during his prime (from 88-89 to 93-94), he averaged 20 points and 10 assists per game.
Johnson missed out on the Hall of Fame last year, and may well miss out this year, but the growing feeling among Hall of Fame watchers is that he is eventually going to get in (read this story for a further breakdown).
As Justin Kupatko of Statitudes LLC notes, the only other players to have have at least 3 seasons with averages of 20 points and 10 assists are Magic Johnson, Oscar Robertson, and Isiah Thomas. This is strong company for KJ statistically.
The weaknesses to KJ's candidacy, as Kupatko points out, are his short career, his lack of real star power (only 3 All-Star appearances), and his lack of a great playoffs track record.
Here's hoping KJ can get past the last hurdle this year!
Enjoy this clip of KJ highlights!