Wednesday
Feb032010

Basketball Hall of Famer Richard "Dick" McGuire Passes Away At The Age of 84

(Springfield, MA) - Richard McGuire, voted the best player in St. John’s University history and seven-time NBA All Star passed away today at the age of 84.  McGuire was a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 1993.

Upon learning of McGuire's passing, Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame's President and CEO, John L. Doleva released the following statement, "Dick McGuire was a true friend to the sport of basketball and to the Hall of Fame.  He was beloved by so many and left an indelible mark as both a collegiate and professional player, as well as an outstanding coach."

McGuire, born on January 25, 1926 in New York, NY, played his college basketball under Hall of Fame coach Joe Lapchick at St. John’s University.  He would be selected as a Helms Foundation All-American in 1944 while leading St. John’s to the NIT Championship.  McGuire would receive the Haggerty Award in 1944 and 1949 which is symbolic of New York’s outstanding college basketball player and was voted as the best player in St. John’s history.  Along with his brother Al, former head coach at Marquette University, the McGuires comprise the only brother Hall of Famer tandem.  McGuire would play in the NBA with the New York Knicks from 1949-1957 and the Detroit Pistons from 1957 – 1960.  He would be selected to seven NBA All-Star games over the course of his career and led the Knicks to three-straight NBA Finals appearances from 1951 – 1953.  McGuire would coach in the NBA for seven seasons with the Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks, leading his teams to the playoffs five times.

Monday
Feb012010

Basketball Hall of Fame Announces Winners of 2010 Morgan Wootten Award

Award Recognizes excellence in high school coaching

SPRINGFIELD, MASS - -FEBRUARY 1, 2010 – The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today the 2010 winners of the Morgan Wootten Award for Lifetime Achievement in Coaching High School Basketball.  The annual awards, one for boys’ basketball and one for girls’ basketball, is named after the only coach enshrined into the Basketball Hall of Fame that exclusively coached high school basketball, Morgan Wootten. 

The 2010 winner of the Morgan Wootten Award for boys’ basketball is Robert Hughes.  Coach Hughes coached I.M. Terrell and Fort Worth Dunbar High School in Texas for 47 years prior to his retirement in 2005.  In his tenure, Coach Hughes collected five state championships and posted 1,333 victories which is the most wins in high school basketball history.  He passed Morgan Wootten’s record for victories in 2003.  For his efforts, Coach Hughes has been enshrined into the Texas High School Basketball Hall of Fame, Texas Sports Hall of Fame and the National High School Hall of Fame.

The 2010 winner of the Morgan Wootten Award for girls’ basketball is Rick Insell.  Coach Insell, who is currently coaching Middle Tennessee State University, coached Shelbyville Central High School for 28 years.  He guided Shelbyville Central High School to 10 TSSAA Class AAA state championships, two USA Today National Championships and compiled a 775-148 record over 28 years.  One of the pioneers of women’s basketball in the state of Tennessee, he is one of four coaches enshrined into the National High School Hall of Fame. 

“The selection of these two legendary high school coaches for this year’s Morgan Wootten Award continues the Hall of Fame’s goal of honoring excellence in the sport of basketball at all levels,” said John. L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame.  “These coaches have touched the lives of hundreds of basketball players and we are proud to recognize their lifetime achievement at the high school level.”

“Robert Hughes and Rick Insell represent the very finest in high school basketball.  As outstanding teachers, coaches and role models, they have touched the lives of thousands of young people.  I am extremely pleased that I will able to present the Lifetime Achievement Awards to these fine coaches,” said Hall of Fame Class of 2000 member Morgan Wootten.

The Morgan Wootten Award winners were selected by a nationally based committee comprised of Hall of Famers, national high school media members, tournament directors and others that have significantly impacted the game.  The awards will be presented by Morgan Wootten at the 2010 McDonald’s All-American Game events this March in Columbus, Ohio. 

Previous award boys’ basketball award winners have included Jack Curran (Archbishop Molloy, NY), Joe Gallagher (St. John’s College, DC) and Ralph Tasker (Hobbs High School, NM).  Previous winners of the girls’ basketball award have included Leta Andrews (Granbury High School, TX), Jim Smiddy (Bradley Central, TN) and Dorothy Gaters (Chicago Marshall, IL).

About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame:

Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate, men and women.  For more information on these and other upcoming events, please visit our website at www.hoophall.com or call 1-877-4-HOOPLA

Thursday
Jan212010

Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2010 to be Enshrined on August 13th

-- Week-long Basketball Festival to be staged in Springfield, culminating with Enshrinement Ceremony at Springfield’s Symphony Hall --

SPRINGFIELD, MA – The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame today announced new plans for its annual Enshrinement Ceremony, now scheduled for August 13, 2010 in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball.  The enshrinement ceremony will be staged at Springfield’s Symphony Hall, highlighting a week-long series of events celebrating basketball for youth, families and the local community.

“After careful consideration, the Basketball Hall of Fame is moving the date of the Enshrinement Ceremonies for 2010 and the foreseeable future,” said Chairman of the Basketball Hall of Fame Board Jerry Colangelo.  “There are a variety of reasons for the change from the mid-September date, not the least is the fact that the 2010 FIBA Men’s World Championship will be held in Istanbul, Turkey from August 28 to September 12. After weighing many options, we believe the second weekend of August is a better fit for everyone involved in the enshrinement ceremonies.”

The finalists for the Class of 2010 will be announced on Friday, February 12 and will be amongst the greatest candidates for enshrinement in recent history, including last year’s legendary class. Eligible and nominated this year for consideration for the Class of 2010 are players Karl Malone and Scottie Pippen, the late Coach Jim Valvano, and the 1992 USA Basketball “Dream Team,” among many others.

“With the prior dates in direct conflict with the Men’s World Championship and the real possibility of a Hall of Fame tribute to the ’92 USA Basketball Dream Team by members of the USA teams, both past and present, we feel confident that the week leading to August 13th will be the perfect time to celebrate the enshrinement of the Class of 2010,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “We will work with the local community and our growing number of business partners to schedule a week of activities for fans who can plan a trip to Springfield as part of their summer vacations.”

Detailed plans for the 2010 Basketball Festival will be announced at a later date, but basketball fans can expect new exhibits at the Hall of Fame, community events, a major 3-on-3 tournament, and basketball clinics for fans and coaches, along with appearances by Hall of Famers, basketball legends and celebrities.  Tickets for the 2010 Enshrinement ceremonies will go on sale on February 12 when the finalists are announced at a press conference as part of the NBA All-Star Game in Dallas.

“The Basketball Hall of Fame continues to be an innovative partner and a critically important resource in creating new events that help drive the economic tourism engine here in Western Massachusetts” said Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno.  “We are extremely excited about this new, extended Basketball Festival and look forward to working with the Hall and the entire community to maximize these opportunities for Springfield and the entire region.”

Last year’s Basketball Hall of Fame enshrinement was among the most successful events in the Hall’s history, as Springfield welcomed the legendary class of Michael Jordan, David Robinson, Coach C. Vivian Stringer, Coach Jerry Sloan and John Stockton as the Class of 2009. The enshrinement ceremony was staged for the first time in Springfield’s Symphony Hall, where the elegant setting also doubled seating capacity.  The event was televised globally by ESPN and was supported by several local community events, including a public rally at Springfield’s MassMutual Center. 

“These new plans allow the Basketball Hall of Fame to make our premier event more accessible to fans as we establish a week long celebration designed to reach all of the Hall’s constituencies,” said Doleva. “The Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement of 2010 will make a positive social and economic impact for the city of Springfield and the entire region while providing basketball fans and tourists from all over the world with a great reason to visit the Hall of Fame and the birthplace of basketball.”

 

Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate, men and women.  For information, please visit our website at www.hoophall.com or call 1-877-4-HOOPLA.

Wednesday
Jan062010

Premiere of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s “On The Shoulders of Giants” Postponed

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar today announced the postponement of the world premiere of the documentary "On the Shoulders of Giants," previously scheduled at the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts for January 15, 2010. The event will be rescheduled on a future date to be announced.

"I treasure my affiliation with the Basketball Hall of Fame and have always strived to give my very best to the game of basketball," said Abdul-Jabbar, enshrined in the Hall of Fame as a player in 1995.  "I set the same standards for "On the Shoulders of Giants" as I did as a player, and that standard was to present my very best.  As we finalize the production of the documentary, we are experiencing some minor delays which will be resolved soon.  I look forward to traveling to the Hall of Fame for the premiere in the near future."

Abdul-Jabbar and the Hall of Fame apologize for any inconvenience to fans and will work together to reschedule the event.  Fans will be notified of the new date, and details will be posted online at Http://www.hoophall.com as soon as they are finalized.  Fans seeking additional information can contact Fran Judkins at fjudkins@hoophall.com or by calling (413) 231-5508.

Tuesday
Jan052010

Basketball Hall of Fame Announces 20 Finalists For Bob Cousy Award

List of 73 candidates down to final 20

JANUARY 5, 2010 – The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts announced today 20 finalists for the 2010 Bob Cousy Award presented by The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.  This annual award is given to college basketball’s top point guard and is named after Hall of Famer and former Boston Celtic great Bob Cousy.  An original list of 73 candidates made up of players from Division I, II and III schools was trimmed by a Hall of Fame appointed, nationally based committee to the below list of 20. 

“This list makes up college basketball’s elite at the point guard position,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.  “These 20 players in contention for the award all have skills that Mr. Cousy would be proud of.  The Hall of Fame looks forward to having these players compete for one of college basketball’s most prestigious awards.”

“We are so proud at The Hartford to play a part in this important program and offer congratulations to the 20 finalists,” said Kevin Connor, executive vice president and director of Hartford Life Distributors.  “All 20 represent strong values of teamwork, skill and the relentless pursuit of excellence.  These are all values we share at The Hartford.”

The current listing of 20 finalists for the 2010 Bob Cousy Award presented by The Hartford will be narrowed down to 10 players by February 1st and than further to five players by March 1st.  The final five players in contention for the award will be presented to Mr. Cousy and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee.  These Hall of Fame committees are made up of top college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, Sports Information Directors and Hall of Famers.  The winner of the 2010 Bob Cousy Award presented by The Hartford will be awarded at the Hall of Fame’s Class Announcement on Monday April 5th in Indianapolis as part of NCAA Final Four weekend.

Previous winners of the Bob Cousy Award have included: Jameer Nelson (St. Joseph’s), Raymond Felton (North Carolina), Dee Brown (Illinois), Acie Law (Texas A & M), DJ Augustin (Texas) and Ty Lawson (North Carolina).  For more information on the 2010 Bob Cousy Award presented by The Hartford, log onto www.cousyaward.com

Bob Cousy Award Finalists 

Chris Warren, Ole Miss

Denis Clemente, Kansas State

Deonta Vaughn, Cincinnati

Devan Downey, South Carolina

Greivis Vasquez, Maryland

Jeremy Lin, Harvard

Jerome Randle, Cal

John Wall, Kentucky

Jon Scheyer, Duke

Kalin Lucas, Michigan State

Kemba Walker, Connecticut

Malcolm Delaney, Virginia Tech

Manny Harris, Michigan

Matt Bouldin, Gonzaga

Nic Wise, Arizona

Ronald Moore, Siena

Scottie Reynolds, Villanova

Sherron Collins, Kansas

Talor Battle, Penn State

Trevon Hughes, Wisconsin

About The Hartford:

Celebrating nearly 200 years, The Hartford (NYSE: HIG) is an insurance-based financial services company that serves households, businesses and employees by helping to protect their assets and income from risks, and by managing wealth and retirement needs. A Fortune 500 company, The Hartford is recognized widely for its service expertise and as one of the world’s most ethical companies. More information on the company and its financial performance is available at www.thehartford.com.

About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame:

Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the birthplace of basketball, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate, men and women.  For more information on these and other upcoming events, please visit our website at www.hoophall.com or call 1-877-4-HOOPLA