Active NBA players and the Hall of Fame? | Bonehead Picks

How many active NBA players will be in the Hall of Fame?

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After one of the best World Series in history, much of the focus in professional sports will head to the race for the playoffs in the NFL and the early season NBA action. The NBA is in a great place right now, with an historically dominant Golden State Warriors team, and a multitude of talented players spread out on teams like the Cavaliers, Rockets, and Thunder that will attempt to bring them down. Young talents like Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and Aaron Gordon are examples of the bright future of the NBA. While the NBA is as popular as ever with as much young talent as ever, there are still many older NBA players who would end up in The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts if they retired today. Let’s take a look at which active NBA players would be heading to Springfield in categories such as Locks (first ballot Hall of Famers), Book It (Hall of Famers), Work To Do (getting close to Hall of Fame consideration), and Not Quite (will be hard-pressed to make it to Hall of Fame).

Locks (First Ballot Hall of Famers)

  • LeBron James-A no brainer top five all-time NBA player
  • Dirk Nowitzki-Even without the NBA championship in 2011, Nowitzki would easily be in as a game changing power forward
  • Chris Paul-The lack of postseason success doesn’t deter from tons of All-NBA and All-Defensive selections he has earned
  • Dwyane Wade-One of the best shooting guards of all-time without a doubt
  • Kevin Durant-The NBA Finals MVP with the Warriors solidified his already strong case and let’s not forget four scoring titles
  • Stephen Curry-The Hall of Fame needs arguably the best shooter ever who changed the NBA
  • Dwight Howard-Sports fans might cringe but Howard was a star and sometimes superstar in Orlando for a significant period of time and compares favorably to Hall of Fame center Dikembe Mutombo
  • Pau Gasol-Even without the international accomplishments, being the second best player on the Kobe-led two-time Lakers champion teams of the late 2000s helps Gasol’s case

Book It (Hall of Famers)

  • Russell Westbrook-Winning the MVP in historic fashion was important in his candidacy but Westbrook has been a dynamo for a nice period of time before Durant left
  • James Harden-He is putting up incredible numbers and those will drown out the “questionable” defense
  • Carmelo Anthony-Although his reputation as a one-dimensional scorer isn’t quite fair, Anthony’s resume has plenty of quality beyond the Olympics
  • Vince Carter-He isn’t quite Dominique Wilkins, but eight-time NBA All-Star who has aged relatively well while being a highlight reel during most of his career
  • Tony Parker-He was often the second best player on the Duncan-led Spurs teams and has four All-NBA teams and a 2007 NBA Finals MVP
  • Manu Ginobili-Wildly respected but he is in on the combination of the NBA and international accomplishments
  • Kevin Love-Being part of the deep postseason runs with LeBron and the Cavs adds to the impressive production he had with the Timberwolves

Work To Do (getting close to Hall of Fame consideration)

  • Blake Griffin-His post-CP3 career will play a huge role in his ability to get into the Hall of Fame
  • Kawhi Leonard-He is just getting started as a legitimate superstar but the arrow is pointing up
  • Draymond Green-A couple more Defensive Player of the Year awards along with a couple more Warriors championships would do it for the best defensive player on the high-powered Warriors
  • Klay Thompson-He is on his way but questions remain about whether he will finish his career with Golden State
  • Kyrie Irving-It will be fascinating to see how things go in Boston

Not Quite (would be hard-pressed to make it into the Hall of Fame)

  • John Wall-Exciting to watch but needs to lead his team to multiple deep postseason runs with the Wizards and maintain his production
  • LaMarcus Aldridge-His chances are on life support at age 32 but he will get postseason opportunities to rehab his image
  • Derrick Rose-Will likely be the only NBA MVP not to be in the Hall of Fame due to the myriad of injuries
  • Joe Johnson-Quietly made seven NBA All-Star teams but definitely feels more Hall of Very Good than Hall of Fame
  • Rajon Rondo-His career had some promise at points but he has become a nomad


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