HOUSTON - Former Houston Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich told FOX 26 Sports he was informed by a representative of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame that he was not elected into the Hall this year.
He was one of the finalists.
Tomjanovich led the Rockets to NBA championships in 1994 and 1995 and was head coach of the USA men’s team that won the gold medal in the 2000 Olympics.
“I still believe it’s a great honor to be considered, and hopefully something will happen down the road,” Tomjanovich said.
Tomjanvovich has always said he is happy to be in the Hall of Fame conversation.
“That’s nice. That’s the positive,” Tomjanovich said.
ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy, also a former Rockets coach, has said many times, and again during this interview, that Tomjanovich is a Hall of Fame coach.
“I don’t underestimate the challenge of selecting coaches that are very close in achievement, but I am absolutely stunned that the totality of his career has been overlooked once again,” Van Gundy said.
“Everything he’s done in coaching says elite. We put in college coaches all the time. I just can’t believe Rudy (isn’t in), I just don’t get it. When you’ve had a chance to really look at what he’s done and you continue to overlook that, I’m absolutely shocked.”
Hall of Famer Calvin Murphy, Tomjanovich’s former teammate and roommate with the Rockets, is shocked as well.
“Are you kidding me? I don’t know what they’re looking for in a Hall of Famer,” Murphy said. “You’re going to tell me his numbers don’t match up to the coaches who are in the hall now?
“I’m speechless. That’s not fair.”