Michael Cooper and Marques Johnson among 2022 NBA Hall of Fame finalists – CBS Los Angeles
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — As part of NBA All-Star Weekend, a three-day event beginning Friday, the NBA announced its 2022 NBA Hall of Fame finalists.
11 finalists were named, all with prolific playing or coaching histories that have taken basketball to the level it is at today.
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Among those lucky enough to be instilled in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame are former Laker Michael Cooper, former Clipper and UCLA Bruin Marques Johnson and former Los Angeles Spark coach Marianne Stanley.
Cooper’s roots are almost entirely in Los Angeles. He was born in the city in 1956 and went on to play basketball for Pasadena High School and later Pasadena City College before transferring to the University of New Mexico. After spending two years in New Mexico, he was selected by the Los Angeles Lakers in the third round of the 1978 NBA Draft.
He would spend the next 12 years with the franchise as a key part of the Showtime era of Lakers basketball, winning five NBA championships during the span. He was also named to eight NBA All-Defensive Teams, five of which were first-team nods. He was also named the 1987 NBA Defensive Player of the Year.
A shooting guard by trade, Cooper finished his NBA career with 7,729 points, 3,666 assists, 2,769 rebounds and 1,033 steals.
After his playing career, Cooper would move into coaching, when he joined his old team in 1994 as an assistant coach under former teammate Magic Johnson and then Del Harris. He then joined the Los Angeles Sparks in the same capacity for a single season in 1999, before being named the team’s head coach in 2000. He would retain this position until 2004, leading the team to two WNBA titles. (2001, 2002) and a Coach of the Year award in 2000. Cooper joined the NBA in 2004 with the Denver Nuggets where he first served as an assistant coach before being named interim head coach at from the same season. After this brief stint, he would head to the NBA D-League, where he would lead the Albuquerque Thunderbirds to a league championship in 2006. in 2009, when he left for the University of Southern California women’s basketball team; a position that lasted until 2013, where he led the Trojans to a WNIT runners-up spot and a 72-57 record. He took over as head coach of the Atlanta Dream in 2014, where he remained for three years before returning permanently to Los Angeles.
In 2018, he will make a brief stopover in the “Big 3” basketball league with 3’s Company. After just one season, he became coach of the Chadwick School men’s basketball team until 2021 when he moved to Culver City High School in the same capacity.
In his 12 years as a WNBA coach, he made the playoffs eight times, finishing with a 230–158 record.
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Another Los Angeles native, Marques Johnson was born in Louisiana but grew up in South Los Angeles, where he attended Crenshaw High School. He was named Los Angeles City Division 4-A Player of the Year in 1973.
Johnson, a small forward, would join John Wooden at UCLA the following year, where he helped the Bruins win the NCAA national title in 1975. He was later named National Player of the Year in 1977, as as well as Pac-8 Player of the Year and a consensus First Team All-American in the same year. His outstanding performance that season led to his selection as the No. 3 overall selection in the 1977 NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. While with the Bucks, he was named to four All-Star Games, one All-NBA First Team, and two All-NBA Secondary Teams.
He remained with the Bucks until 1984, when he joined the Los Angeles Clippers. In 1986, Johnson was named to his fifth All-Star Game and was named NBA Comeback Player of the Year. Johnson’s time as the Clipper would end in 1987 before joining the Golden State Warriors in 1989, despite a career-ending neck injury in 1987.
Johnson’s number was retired by the UCLA Bruins and Milwaukee Bucks. He finished his NBA career with 13,892 points, 4,817 rebounds and 2,502 assists. In 2013, he was inducted into the NCAA College Basketball Hall of Fame. He is also a member of the California Sports Hall of Fame and the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame.
After his playing career, Johnson briefly made a foray into film with roles in the basketball films “White Men Can’t Jump” and “Blue Chips”, as well as “Love and Action in Chicago” and ” Forget Paris”. He joined KFWB-AM as a Clippers analyst before eventually settling as an analyst for the Milwaukee Bucks, a position he currently holds.
Marianne Stanley has been coaching professional and college basketball for over 45 years now, spending time with the Los Angeles Sparks in 2000 and from 2008 to 2009. She also served as head coach at USC, University of California , Berkeley and Stanford University. , among many other stops, including his current position as Indiana Fever head coach.
Stanley was named WNBA Head Coach of the Year in 2002 for his time with the Washington Mystics. She was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002. Stanley was also on the 1986 coaching staff for the USA FIBA World Championship gold medal winning team.
She is already a member of the Naismith Hall of Fame, but in a different capacity. She was one of many enshrined teammates in 2014, as part of the 1972–74 Immaculata College squads that won three consecutive national titles during that span. A film was also made about the team titled “The Mighty Macs”, which was released in 2011.
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The full class of 2022 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Finalists is:
- Lea Andrews
- Earn money
- Michael Cooper
- Hugh Evans
- Manu Ginobili
- Tim Hardaway
- Bob Huggin
- Johnson Brands
- George Karl
- Marianne Stanley
- Lindsay Whalen