Gary Payton, Larry Johnson visit Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame – PHOTOS

payton-hall-of-fame-2Recently, two more former NBA superstars have visited the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, to talk about their careers, and meet with fans.

Those two were Gary Payton, and Larry Johnson. Previously, such former players as Tyrone “Muggsy” Bogues and Richie Guerin have visited the Hall of Fame as well.

Johnson, a two-time NBA All-Star (1993, 1995) played 10 years in the NBA, 5 of them with the Knicks. He averaged double-double in his first two seasons with the Charlotte Hornets (19.2 ppg, 11 rpg and 22.1 ppg, 10.5 rpg respectively). He averaged double figures in scoring in 9 of his 10 NBA seasons.

After being traded from the Charlotte Hornets to the Knicks before the 1995-1996 season, Johnson was never the same player he was in Charlotte, because of injuries and back pains.

He led the NBA in minutes per game during the 1992-93 season, averaging 40.5 mpg. He was named to the NBA All-Star team twice, in 1993 and 1995.

Johnson averaged his best 15.5 ppg and 5.7 rpg with NYK in 1997-98. He retired after the 2000-2001 season.

As for Gary Payton – he enjoyed a successful 17-year NBA career, and he’s best known for his 13-year tenure in Seattle, where he established himself as one of the best defensive point guards of all-time.

Payton played 1335 games in the NBA (1233 started), averaging 16.3 points and 6.7 assists over the course of his career. He averaged over 20 points in seven of his 17 seasons, with his career-high average of 24.2 points coming in the 1999-2000 season.

The point guard reached three NBA Finals, appearing in one each for the Sonics, Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat. Payton finally got that elusive first ring as a member of the 2005-06 Heat.

Payton will be inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame in September of 2013.


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