Thursday, January 29, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Mourning thanks doctors, kidney donor at hoop Hall

By
From page B2 | August 09, 2014 |

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Alonzo Mourning first thanked all of the usual people when he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame: His coaches, his teachers, and the foster mother who raised him.

Then he turned to those who made it possible for his unique journey to the sport’s highest honor.

With one of the doctors who performed his kidney transplant in attendance, the former Georgetown and Miami Heat star discussed the disease that threatened his life and almost ended his career. He also thanked out his cousin-turned-kidney donor, Jason Cooper.

“There was such purpose to my life at that point and I never doubted — no matter how long the odds — that it was possible,” Mourning said during Friday night’s induction ceremony. “I just thought, ‘This is much bigger than me.’ I had a goal set to win a championship that was denied when I got kidney disease.”

Mourning returned to win the 2006 NBA title with the Heat and complete a career that led him to the Springfield shrine. He was inducted in a class that also included former NBA commissioner David Stern, NCAA championship-winning coaches Nolan Richardson and Gary Williams and six-time NBA All-Star Mitch Richmond.

The women’s team from Immaculata College was also honored, along with Lithuania star Sarunas Marciulionis. Former Indiana Pacers coach Bob “Slick” Leonard, the late Nat “Sweetwater” Clifton of the New York Knicks and the late Guy Rodgers of Temple rounded out the class.

Stern was honored for his three decades of leadership that transformed the league from struggling teams and tape-delayed finals to an international juggernaut. His introductory video included praise from NBA stars like Michael Jordan, Bill Russell and Magic Johnson but also from Nelson Mandela.

“Everything we do is always about the game,” Stern said, asking the entire crowd to stand so he could thank the former players, fans and family members who made the league’s success possible. “The reason I’m here is because of thousands of people over the years who have done so much.”

Stern had five current Hall of Famers welcome him into the Hall, from Russell, the former Celtics star, to former deputy commissioner Russ Granik — a group that represented his wide-ranging influence as he rose from working at his father’s deli to the pinnacle of the sport.

“Under his leadership, the NBA rose to terrific heights, on and off the court,” Richmond said in his acceptance speech.

Stern’s induction capped a festive night at Symphony Hall in downtown Springfield, across the highway from the museum that commemorates the city’s claim as the sport’s birthplace.

Williams, who led Maryland to 11 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances and the 2002 title, said enshrinement in the hall was “as big a thrill as you can get as a coach.” Then came Arkansas’ Richardson, who celebrated his induction with a revival-style speech peppered with swipes at referees and jokes about God and the devil playing basketball.

Richardson recounted a playing career in which he went from 21 points per game to 14 and belatedly realized it was more important to win. Thanking his teachers and coaches and family, he said, “You have to have a team to reach a dream.”

“This isn’t talking about a national championship team,” he said. “This is about the team that helped raise Nolan Sam Richardson Jr.”

Leonard, the winningest coach in ABA history, followed with a contrasting style, accenting his quiet tone with a Southern drawl and guessing that he was one of the oldest inductees in the Hall’s history.

“For me, it took a while,” Leonard. 82, said, “but I’m going out in style.”

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
1st release for birds with mysterious goo a success

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Council backs beer, wine sales for Vacaville store

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

 
Vacaville police seek help to find sex offender

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
Sweep by sheriff’s team nets 4 arrests

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 3 Comments

 
Travis starts work on Functional Fitness Center

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Boy Scouts to screen award-winning film

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Church makes ready for health, wellness fair

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
4-H Annual Presentation Day returns in February

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Vacaville SWAT team serves search warrant

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

 
Real estate occupancy continues to climb

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

 
Fairfield police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
Suisun City police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

.

US / World

 
Air Force probing alleged ‘treason’ remark by general

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Expect tiny tuxes but no real puppy love at doggy weddings

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Large salmon release planned

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Violations mount for toxic recycler

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Quake rattles N. California coast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Second arrest in student stabbing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
Marshals track down missing treasure hunter

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

‘Drunk’ excuse falls flat in Vandy rape trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Attorney General nominee defends Obama immigration changes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

Police seek law to alter Google app

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Euro coast guards scramble to locate Syrian ghost ship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Chinese regulators go after online sale of fake goods

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Investigation stems from police-involved shooting outbreak

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Hezbollah missiles kill soldiers

By New York Times | From Page: A6

 
ISIS extends hostage deadline

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Tape: Scientist offers to build nuke bomb targeting New York

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

Editorial Cartoon: Jan. 29, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Just be honest and come forward

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

 
A truly misinformed writer

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 27 Comments

India now has 322 billion reasons to fix economy

By William Pesek | From Page: A7

 
Don’t brush off bullying

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7, 2 Comments

.

Living

Today in History: Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Jan. 29, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Deadbeat boyfriend ruined my relationship with my granddaughter

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

 
Horoscope Jan. 29, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Theater legend Joel Grey reveals that he is gay

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5, 2 Comments

Super Bowl advertisers aim not to offend

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
.

Sports

Kings center DeMarcus Cousins hoping to make All-Star team

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Rodriguez wrestlers pull out 34-24 win over Wood

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Solano men cruise past LMC for biggest win of season

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

NFL players who started young show more thinking problems

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
GM John Schneider has been architect of Seahawks’ success

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Patriots not dwelling on last Super Bowl loss in Arizona

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Woods returns to Phoenix with plenty of memories

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tony Stewart acquires national sprint car series tour

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Kobe Bryant has surgery, expected to be out for 9 months

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Korda, Lewis, Munoz tied for lead at LPGA season opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Head of NCAA enforcement: Academic misconduct on rise

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Chicago Cubs’ Ernie Banks statue moved downtown for tribute

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
This date in sports history for Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9