Former Sacramento Kings player Chris Webber deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. But does he deserve it more than Ben Wallace?
In nearly every voting process on Earth, there exist the inevitable snub; the guy who deserves a spot but is left out due either to strong competition or unfair polling. For fans of both the Sacramento Kings and Detroit Pistons, the snub comes every year when the Basketball Hall Of Fame conducts its enshrinement process.
Chris Webber and Ben Wallace are two of the most notable NBA players to be missing from the Springfield campus. Yes, it is the “Basketball” Hall Of Fame and not the “NBA” Hall Of Fame, so there is a slew of international players that you may have never heard of who have been inducted instead of Webber and Wallace. They are decorated in their own regards, and certainly deserve a spot. Whether or not they deserve a spot over the NBA guys is debatable, but that is not why we’re here.
We want to instead know who the bigger snub is, who deserves the Hall more. We want to know which fan base has a bigger gripe when the voting is conducted every spring.
Was Webber the better all-around player? Sure. But that is not what gets you inducted. One of the main components is a player’s resume, and Wallace’s is extensive. He was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year four times and was selected to the same amount of All-Star teams. He made an All-NBA team six different times and led the league in rebounding twice. In 2002-’03, he averaged 15.3 rebounds, 3.2 blocks, and 1.4 steals per game.
He also has the thing that eluded Webber throughout his career: a championship ring.
Webber’s resume is nothing to sneeze at, either. He, too made the same amount of All-NBA teams and All-Star appearances (5) and won Rookie of the Year. He led the NBA in rebounding in 1999. But unlike Wallace, Webber was the best player on a team that should have been crowned a champion in a highly competitive era. The Kings built around Webber in those years, complimentary pieces playing to his strengths. He was undeniably the face of a franchise that many remember fondly, a franchise that should have been able to provide him that elusive ring.
So Who Deserves The Nod?
Is Wallace’s resume better? Probably. But it was Webber who won the eye test, the one who passed the “more valuable” test. He once placed fourth in MVP voting. Wallace’s highest ranking in that department was seventh.
What truly holds Webber back is his off-court issues and reputation. He started his career as a part of the Fab Five, which defined his legacy from an early age. There are also the legal issues stemming from illegal money from a University of Michigan booster that have clouded Webber’s image even further after his playing career. This is certainly an issue that factors in to the yearly snub.
As for Wallace, we’re not exactly sure why he’s not in the Hall. He doesn’t have any notable off the court issues, and was by all accounts an outstanding teammate. He has the resume, he has the ring.
As big of a snub as Chris Webber is, and as much as we love him, Ben Wallace is more deserving of an induction in to the Basketball Hall Of Fame.