Milwaukee Bucks: Marques Johnson named finalist for 2021 Hall of Fame class

Mar 24, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports)
Mar 24, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA (Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports) /

While we can all can hear him call Milwaukee Bucks games, could we see Marques Johnson make an induction speech later this year?

The Bucks legend was announced as a finalist for this year’s Naismith Hall of Fame class Tuesday afternoon, all of which was presented on the Tuesday edition of ‘ESPN’s The Jump.’

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Just as he was last year, Johnson is once again included in a star-studded class that features the likes of Chris Bosh, Paul Pierce, Ben Wallace, Chris Webber, among others in the players category.

Whether Johnson will eventually be named as an inductee in this year’s Hall of Fame class remains to be seen and we’ll have to wait until May 16 for who all will make in this class.

While the Milwaukee Bucks have honored Marques Johnson, he still waits for his call to the Hall of Fame.

As alluded to before, this isn’t Johnson’s first rodeo when it comes to being a finalist to enter the Basketball Hall of Fame. Johnson was even asked about his case into the Hall of Fame by’s Steve Aschburner in January 2019, which he was a part of alongside his long-time teammate Sidney Moncrief and was subsequently inducted that year:

"“My name just kind of stays in nomination. Y’know, I’ve come across some Web sites about guys who are Hall of Fame-worthy based on “win shares” and other analytics, and they say I am deserving of that. And I probably could have played another four or five years if not for the neck injury, so the numbers would have looked a lot better. But five All-Star Games, first-team all-NBA, second-team NBA a couple of times. I played for some great teams in Milwaukee. There’s an honor in being nominated with Willie West, my high school coach, and Sidney Moncrief. I’d like to see Sidney and myself both get in, but it’s out of my hands. Just got to see what happens.I’m definitely one of those guys who’s not a shoe-in. But looking at some things the other day, I thought, I might get to the point where I become an “early African-American pioneer.” [laughs]”"

Unfortunately, the wait continues for Johnson, despite the case he laid out and individual accolades he earned over his NBA career as well as the Bucks’ success under legendary coach Don Nelson. The point that Johnson mentioned to Aschburner about his career-ending neck injury disrupted his longevity as a player and eventually led him to retiring at 33 years old following a brief stint and reunion with Nelson in Golden State during 1989-90.

However, Johnson’s wait until the Naismith Hall hasn’t deterred him from making the College Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013 or the Bucks having finally retired his no. 8 jersey nearly two years ago.

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We’ll have a few more months until we’ll hear whether Johnson will finally be among this year’s Hall of Fame class and hopefully, Johnson won’t have to wait any longer to be deservedly among his peers and idols in Springfield.