Former Celtics star Kevin Garnett, late Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, and Bentley University women’s basketball coach Barbara Stevens are among the 2020 inductees into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield.
Bryant, who died with his daughter in January in a helicopter crash in California, won five NBA championships and was an 18-time All-Star in 20 seasons with the Lakers. The prolific scorer ended his career with 33,643 points.
Garnett played 22 seasons in the NBA between the Timberwolves, Celtics, and Nets. The 15-time All-Star and 12-time All-Defensive player was a key component of the Celtics’ 2008 championship team, averaging 20.4 points and 10.5 rebounds during the 2008 playoffs to lead the C’s to their first title since 1986. The Celtics will retire Garnett’s No. 5 during the 2020-21 season.
Stevens has been at the helm of Bentley’s women’s program since 1986 and previously coached at Clark University (1977-83) and UMass (1983-86). She is 1,039-232 overall and 882-191 at Bentley. Stevens, a Southbridge native and Bridgewater State graduate, led Bentley to a Division 2 national championship in 2014 and is a five-time Women’s Basketball Coaches Association Division 2 Coach of the Year.
“I am so honored, I am so humbled to be included in this unbelievable class of inductees into the Hall of Fame,” Stevens said in a release from the Bentley athletics department. “This is something that is overwhelming.
“The incredible emotions that I felt after receiving the call from the Hall of Fame Friday afternoon, I can’t even put into words.”
The other inductees are:
▪ Five-time NBA champion and Spurs legend Tim Duncan
▪ Former Oklahoma State men’s coach Eddie Sutton
▪ Two-time NBA champion coach Rudy Tomjanovich
▪ Four-time Olympic gold medalist and 10-time WNBA All-Star Tamika Catchings
▪ Baylor women’s coach Kim Mulkey
▪ Longtime FIBA executive Patrick Baumann.
Enshrinement events are scheduled for Aug. 28-30 in Springfield, with the formal enshrinement ceremony set for Aug. 29 at Springfield Symphony Hall.