• Nick Faggio

Predicting the 2021 Hall of Fame Class Inductees


The 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame class is headlined by a trio of greats: Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, and Tim Duncan. Any future group of inductees will struggle to hold a candle to this group.


That said, the 2021 class could be pretty spectacular in its own right. Let's look ahead at how next year’s candidates stack up.


Paul Pierce


Resume:

  • 10x All-Star

  • 1x NBA Champion

  • 1x Finals MVP

  • All-Rookie First Team

  • 1x All-NBA Second Team

  • 3x All-NBA Third Team


Paul Pierce has the most polished accolades of the 2021 Hall of Fame eligibles, and a probable lock to make the Hall on his first ballot. Pierce, who spent 14 years in Boston as one of the core faces of the franchise, rightfully returns to Massachusetts. But instead of TD Garden, the Truth will land in the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame in Springfield, MA.


A large market such as Boston requires every great player to live up to the hype for the entirety of their stay; Pierce did just that. From making All-Rookie First Team his introductory year to earning ten consecutive All-Star appearances, Pierce did it all.


The 2008 Finals MVP was one of the most hated players during his reign, but the animosity further solidified his dominance of 2000’s basketball, and his spot in the Hall of Fame.



Chris Bosh


Resume:

  • 2x NBA Champion

  • 11x All-Star

  • 1x All-Rookie First Team

  • 1x All-NBA 2nd Team


Chris Bosh’s career splits of 19.2/8.5/2 don’t jump off the page as necessarily Hall of Fame worthy, but his sacrifices and further accolades strengthen his argument to make the Hall his second-time on the ballot.


Although Bosh’s career ended prematurely due to blood clots, during his heyday he was the type of player that never got enough credit. (Playing alongside LeBron James and Dwayne Wade for six seasons would decrease anyone’s numbers.)


Bosh’s ability to space the floor played a crucial role in Miam’s two NBA championships. The “Rebound Bosh, back out to Allen” shot isn’t just iconic, but it might have even saved LeBron’s legacy. As an instrumental member of four consecutive title runs and eleven All-Star selections to boot, Bosh should end up in Springfield next year.



Ben Wallace


Resume:

  • 4x All-Star

  • 1x NBA Champion

  • 4x Defensive Player of the Year

  • 2x Rebound Leader

  • 1x Blocks leader

  • 5x All-Defensive First Team

  • 1x All-Defensive Second Team

  • 3x All-NBA Second Team

  • 2x All-NBA Third Team


Ben Wallace is the descendent of a forgotten generation of hoopers - his hard-nosed, pure paint dominance is a lost art in the modern game. Not only is Wallace an NBA champion, his four DPOY awards ties Hall of Famer Dikembe Mutombo for the most ever.


Just four All-Star appearances may be a knock on Wallace’s resume, but when he was good, he was great. Wallace had seven straight seasons where he averaged well over 10 rebounds per game. This includes grabbing 15.3 boards a night in 2002-03.


Wallace’s scoring was never particularly impactful, but his defensive marks are enough to land him in the Hall. “Body” averaged over three blocks per game for three consecutive years amid Detroit’s dominance in the mid-2000s. Ben Wallace’s “put on a hard hat and go to work” attitude sent him from undrafted rookie to all-time defensive great, a story in and of itself worthy of the Hall of Fame.


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