Chris Webber has been announced as an NBA Hall of Fame finalist for the jubilar fifth time, as he is amongst 13 other people, including the likes of Paul Pierce, Chris Bosh, Tim Hardaway, Ben Wallace, and more. Webber not being in the Hall of Fame already has been a hot topic of discussion for years now, as fans around the world are wondering if “C-Webb” finally makes it.
It is very surprising that a player of Webber caliber isn’t already in, but as always, there are reasons and facts to back that up. When you look at some of the names that will be inducted for sure in this class, like Chris Bosh, you can’t help but think that Webber was better than Bosh in his best days. Webber was a power forward ahead of his time in his prime, a great passer that could stretch the floor pretty good and bang down low with his athleticism.
Some people would say he had a better college career, as his days with the Michigan Wolverines as the centerpiece of the iconic “Fab Five” definitely put him in a good place that has to be mentioned when you tell the story of basketball. His NBA career wasn’t too shabby, as he ended up averaging 20.7 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game, which puts him in the Top 100 in the history of the NBA when it comes to points and rebounds per game.
Webber’s glaring problem in his career was staying on the floor, as he missed a lot of time during his career. That ultimately caused him to dip in the statistical rankings, not achieving the illustrious benchmark of 20 000 points and 10 000 rebounds that make you a lock for being a Hall of Famer. Nevertheless, he managed to grab the Rookie of the Year Award, 5x All-Star appearances, and 5 All-NBA Selections.
He never managed to win a ring, as that is also a huge reason some people don’t respect his legacy enough. He was a great player, but he never managed to get his team over the hump. He was very close in 2002 with the Sacramento Kings, but he fell short against the Lakers in a very controversial Western Conference Finals. If he managed to squeeze by the Lakers that year and beat the Nets, he probably would have won Finals MVP and a ring, as that would one hundred percent kill the need for this discussion today.
Still, when you mention Webber’s name in the NBA circles, he gets a lot of love, as he was a unique talent and a loveable personality that we often see analyzing today’s NBA on TV. Even though he has many fans, that doesn’t stop him from having critics that feel he didn’t utilize his talent enough, leaving a lot on the table, as he could have done more with his skillset. They think that stopped him from being amongst the elite big man of his time like Shaq, Duncan, Garnett, or Dirk, as he was constantly in their shadow.
Talent alone doesn’t get you in the Hall of Fame. It is more based on accolades and cultural impact. Webber doesn’t come to mind as his accolades were cut short due to missing a lot of playing time, but you can’t deny the impact he had, especially during his college career and the “Fab Five” days. In my opinion, Webber was a very talented and great power forward with a great career that could have been even better if there was more luck. But that doesn’t diminish the fact I think “C-Webb” should have been in the Hall of Fame a long time ago. Hopefully, this is the year for him.