As very often in the Hall of Fame, the newcomer launches into a slew of thanks that range from a simple quick thank you, a small mention, to a tribute supported for a few minutes. This was exactly Chris Webber’s speech, like a Kevin Garnett did a few months ago.
As on the field when he was a player, “C-Webb” distributed the assists. He announced it from his first words.
“This honor is not just for a match, a series of playoffs or a season”, he begins. “For me, it’s the combination of perseverance, excellence and consistency. That’s why I want to take time to thank those God has placed in my path to get me here. First of all my parents, whom I love so much. My brother and sister, my nephews and nieces. Detroit, my wife… ”
The former Sacramento star also shared his love affair with sports, which began in school when she learned the story. He therefore had a thought for prestigious alumni, including baseball players or Bill Russell, also honored this year at the Hall of Fame, for his coaching career.
Isiah Thomas, “guardian angel”, Barkley, “favorite player”
Then he leaned over Isiah Thomas, his “Guardian angel” and the first of the two Hall of Famers who accompanied him on stage and brought him into the Pantheon.
“I’m 16, Zeke (Thomas’s nickname) call my house to see if he can come talk to us. After talking to my parents, he told me he knew what I was going through, and not to worry ”, says Webber, before being taken by the emotion. “You told me if I needed anything you would be there, financially, mentally. You gave me confidence, you validated my game. You protected me from vultures and that’s why I never needed to take money from anyone. You took your time and planted a seed. Thank you Isiah, I love you. “
The second Hall of Famer is Charles Barkley. Webber not only highlighted his career as a player, but also as a consultant as the former All-Star followed the same path.
“I am honored that you welcome me to the Hall of Fame. You have changed the way you play the wingers. You have shown me the path of life, and more than once. The first time was in high school. I had the chance to meet you. I was studying your game, I knew your attitude. You complimented and encouraged me. After our first meeting I thought maybe I could do what my favorite player thought I could. The second time, it’s a thank you that I would like to say to you on behalf of all the athletes for what you did after basketball. I have never quit this sport and it is thanks to you. You have served as an example, I throw flowers at you and I say thank you. “