2020 Hall of Fame announcement, enshrinement still on as planned
Despite almost every other significant sporting event being postponed or canceled, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame has decided to push through with its upcoming annual events. According to NBA insider Brian Mahoney of The Associated Press, the announcement of this year’s batch of inductees in the spring as well as their enshrinement later in the summer will go on as scheduled, though the reopening of the Hall of Fame itself has been delayed:
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame planned to reopen after construction on March 23, but has decided to delay that until May 1. Class of 2020 announcement still planned for April 4 and enshrinement weekend Aug. 28-30.
— Brian Mahoney (@briancmahoney) March 17, 2020
The announcement of the inductees always takes place at the Final Four, which has been canceled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. With social distancing strongly encouraged, it would not be a surprise if the announcement takes place behind closed doors. Usually, this event is done with several media outlets in attendance, but given the current situation, necessary precautions must be taken.
As for the actual enshrinement, it isn’t scheduled for until five months from now, so the hope is this pandemic is contained by then. Nonetheless, it’s anyone’s guess how things will pan out over the next few months, so it certainly wouldn’t be a shock if this is also pushed back.
Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, and Kevin Garnett highlight this year’s list of candidates, with all three fully expected to be announced as the inductees come April. All three individuals had a significant impact on the game during their time in the NBA, but Kobe is obviously the most sentimental pick here. It has been nearly two months since the Los Angeles Lakers legend tragically passed away in a helicopter crash, and his legacy will be honored by the Hall of Fame this year.