Tim Hardaway said he got the news Wednesday, that he had fallen short in the final vote for 2013 induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. He was disappointed, but hardly crushed.
"Because I'm going to the Final Four anyway," the former Miami Heat guard joked Friday.
Final Four weekend in Atlanta not only includes Monday's official announcement of those selected to the Hall, but also the Michigan-Syracuse national semifinal on Saturday that features his son, Tim Hardaway Jr., with the Wolverines.
"So I knew I was going to be happy either way," he said in confirming to the Sun Sentinel that he had failed in his bid for induction.
"I think you should never anticipate going in unless you're Michael Jordan or John Stockton or Karl Malone or someone like that," he said. "I'm happy for everyone who got in."
Among those who formally will be named for induction Monday is Gary Payton, who will become the first former Heat player to be enshrined in Springfield. Payton helped the Heat win the 2006 NBA title, also spending the following season with the team.
"I'm happy for Gary," Hardaway said.
To Heat power forward Udonis Haslem, a Payton teammate on that 2006 Heat championship team, the title completed Payton's Hall resume, the lone championship of Payton's career.
"At some point," Haslem said, "when you get older, it's not about individual accolades any more, it's about winning the ring. I think that definitely solidified it."
Payton had solidified his individual credentials well before he arrived in South Florida, best known for his seasons with the Seattle SuperSonics.
"He deserves it," Haslem said. "You think of the amount of work he put in and being a two-way player, which is rare. Mostly you get offense out of a guy or you get defense out of a guy. Gary did it on both ends of the floor."
Hardaway falls short of Hall; Payton first Heat player in
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Apr 5