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2023 Basketball Hall of Fame class: Dirk Nowitzki, Dwyane Wade, Pau Gasol and Tony Parker headline finalists

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We’ve reached the final stages of the selection process for the 2023 Basketball Hall of Fame class. On Friday, the Hall announced the 12 finalists for induction in this year’s class. Some of the names will be familiar NBA legends, while others come from slightly more surprising backgrounds. Below are the 12 finalists for induction this season:

  • Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade.
  • Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki.
  • San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker.
  • Los Angeles Lakers big man Pau Gasol.
  • San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
  • Amherst coach David Hixon.
  • Purdue coach Gene Keady.
  • Three Rivers Community College coach Gene Bess.
  • Kansas coach Marian Washington.
  • WNBA legend Becky Hammon.
  • Texas A&M coach Gary Blair.
  • Stanford guard Jennifer Azzi.

Nowitzki and Wade, who faced off against one another in the NBA Finals twice, are the obvious headliners of the class. Both are revered as the greatest players in the history of their franchises. Nowitzki spent his entire career in Dallas, while Wade took brief sojourns to Chicago and Cleveland.

It is fitting that Popovich and Parker could enter the Hall of Fame together, as the two won four championships together in San Antonio. Popovich won a fifth next to Tim Duncan, who was inducted in 2021, and their longtime teammate Manu Ginobili was inducted in 2022. Gasol played for San Antonio briefly at the end of his career as well, though he is better known as a Spurs rival while winning championships with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The name fans likely haven’t heard of on that list is Bess, who coached at the junior college level for his entire career, but has earned finalist status as the winningest coach in the history of college basketball with a record of 1,300-416. The Basketball Hall of Fame is notably not limited to just the NBA, but rather, encompasses the entire world of basketball.

The inductees for the class of 2023 will be announced at the Final Four in April. The induction ceremony then takes place in September. 

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