Adrian Dantley is the first Jazz man going to the Hall that played most of his time in Utah. I won't repeat much from what I've said about Dantley on my old site (from the links above).
But suffice to say, without AD, we probably don't have the NBA in Utah. When asked why the Jazz didn't change their team name when moving to the Beehive State, Frank Layden replied something to the effect that they didn't think the team was going to be around long enough to bother.
And it probably would not have been had it not been for the All-Star Dantley. Stockton and Malone may have put Utah on the map, but AD anchored the team in Salt Lake. He's probably done more than anyone other than LHM to keep the Jazz from moving to another market.
The Jazz were his fourth team in as many years after he was drafted. It's amazing that a player that scored 20+ and shot 80% from the free throw line was moved as often as he was.
Maybe it was for the best though. In Utah, he became the man. He was to the Jazz what Michael Jordan would be to the NBA. He was Utah's first bonafide star and became an All-Star.
Why it's taken this long to be finally enshrined is anyone's guess. He stated that he turned off his cell phone because he couldn't bear to be disappointed again. He has the stats to be in there. Perhaps if the voting committee were given player's stats minus their names he would have been selected by now.
But I guess that's all bygones now. Just like he should have had his Jazz number retired before it was, it's good to see a wrong righted.
We'll be able to go through this again next year as Stockton becomes eligible and will be a first-ballot HOFer. He'll be followed by Malone and then probably Sloan at some point.
And if we're lucky, we'll do it again in 20 years or so when Deron & Booze are there.