Posted by Neil Paine on August 13, 2010
When Scottie Pippen, Dennis Johnson, Karl Malone, & Gus Johnson get enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame this evening, it will represent not only the culmination of a lifetime's hard work and dedication by four great players -- it will also establish the greatest collection of winners to ever enter the HoF at once.
Or at least, according to my calculations it will. Recall that in posts like this, I estimated the W-L record of a player's team when he played thusly:
"...take the team's winning percentage in all games ... and multiply by the player's games played for wins, then subtract that from his games for losses."
It's a kludge, I admit, but in the absence of pre-1991 playoff gamelogs, it's the best we can do -- and it's not too inaccurate for such a simple solution. Anyway, according to that method (and combining regular-season + postseason wins), Malone, Pippen, & D.J. are all among the 20 winningest NBA players to ever lace up a pair of sneakers:
Not only that, but the Class of 2010 boasts the most combined playing wins of any group of enshrinees ever:
|2010||Karl Malone||1043||2008||Hakeem Olajuwon||791|
|2010||Scottie Pippen||939||2008||Patrick Ewing||743|
|2010||Dennis Johnson||827||2008||Adrian Dantley||503|
|1993||Julius Erving||647||2006||Joe Dumars||644|
|1993||Calvin Murphy||483||2006||Dominique Wilkins||587|
|1993||Dick McGuire||414||1990||Elvin Hayes||699|
|1993||Dan Issel||404||1990||Earl Monroe||534|
|1993||Bill Walton||287||1990||Dave Bing||443|
|2009||Michael Jordan||812||1980||Oscar Robertson||658|
|2009||David Robinson||742||1980||Jerry West||653|
|2003||James Worthy||713||1987||Walt Frazier||533|
|2003||Earl Lloyd||314||1987||Rick Barry||481|
|1982||Hal Greer||670||1987||Pete Maravich||297|
|1982||Slater Martin||512||1987||Bob Houbregs||82|
|1982||Willis Reed||405||1995||Kareem Abdul-Jabbar||1223|
I typically don't advocate blindly assigning wins & losses to players just because they happened to be on a team that won or lost, but in this case you really have to give props for the sheer amount of winning that went on under these guys' watch. I mean, in 36 combined seasons by Pippen and Malone, their teams only missed the playoffs once (Pippen's Bulls sat out in 2004, his final season)... How insane is that?
So when you watch the proceedings tonight, keep in mind the ridiculous win totals this class racked up. If winning is truly the only thing we should be concerned about, then this is the greatest HoF class of all time.