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James Worthy to be inducted into National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame


The nickname "Big Game James" was bestowed on him at North Carolina, and now James Worthy's consistency in fulfilling that reputation at his alma mater has earned him a spot in this year's class of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame inductees. They will be honored Nov. 20 in Kansas City, Mo.

James was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame in 2003 for his role during the Lakers Showtime Era, when he helped secure three NBA titles, earned an NBA Finals MVP award in 1988 and appeared in seven NBA All-Star games. His college career also features plenty of accomplishments. Worthy, one of seven UNC players to have his jersey number retired, led the Tar Heels to two consecutive finals appearances in 1981 and 1982, including a championship the latter season.

As a junior forward, Worthy led the team in scoring (15.6 points per game) on a team that featured Sam Perkins and Michael Jordan, and he earned College Basketball Player of the Year honors along with Virginia Cavalier Ralph Sampson, who is also on this year's list of inductees. Highlights of the 1982 national championship game between North Carolina and Georgetown often feature Worthy making a signature steal from Hoyas point guard Fred Brown and a tip dunk over Georgetown center Patrick Ewing, which capped a 28-point performance on 13-of-17 shooting that earned him the NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player award.

The rest of this year's class includes coaches Bob Knight and Eddie Sutton, players Cazzie Russell and Chris Mullin and contributors Joe Vancisin and Eddie Einhorn.

-- Mark Medina

E-mail the Lakers blog at [email protected]

Photo: James Worthy in 2006. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

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Props to 'Big-Game' James. His game was so smooth, like Irish Whiskey. He carried that Tar Heel team on his back, MJ came along for the ride.

MM, justa, thanks for the well wishes. Right now I feel worse than Troy Murphy looks...


It's about time.


Congrats to Big Game James. He’s very deserving.

@TNT – Congrats on RCOTD. I’m looking forward to the big road trip also.

@DBDH – I’m not feeling Bibby. If the Lakers are going to pick up another PG/SG it should be someone with at least a defensive pulse and more of a creator.

@Cyber - Get better soon.

Why did it take so long?


Nice article on Horace Grant on the previous thread.

@Edwin – A Randy Newman sighting … very apropos for an Lakers blog. I hadn’t heard his award winning song before. Thank you sir!

@Mark G – nice Porgy & Bess follow up. I’ll follow up on your jazzy flow with this one because as Laker fans we are the “In Crowd”

Ramsey Lewis – In Crowd

LRob, that Ramsey Lewis was pretty groovy!

My Pops took me to see him once when I was like 16 or 17, I think at his Concerts By the Sea in Redondo, great show!

One more Soul Jazz tune, Horace Silver:

LRob, that Ramsey Lewis was pretty groovy!

My Pops took me to see him once when I was like 16 or 17, I think at his Concerts By the Sea in Redondo, great show!

One more Soul Jazz tune, Horace Silver:

Big Game of the most clutch players I've ever watched.

And that was a nice read on Horace Grant. Although his tenure here was short, I'll always remember him for playing a key role in our demolition of the rest of the league in 2001.

@ LRob - Indeed!

What the heck happened with the Clips and Rasual Butler? Dude would be killer on this squad! I think he makes a little too much dough for Dr. Buss and family.

Once again, Hinrich is a non-Laker. Hmff!


@ LRob - Indeed!

What the heck happened with the Clips and Rasual Butler? Dude would be killer on this squad! I think he makes a little too much dough for Dr. Buss and family.


Once again, Hinrich is a non-Laker. Hmff!


There is a Major Echo on this thread!

@ISLAND PRIEST... Excellent set of posts.
I agree with you 100% that the Lakers need to do a better job of getting the ball to Drew, especially when he has great low post position. Not only does feeding the Beast make him play harder on defense, but he has by far the highest shooting percentage on the team. I’ve really been disappointed at how inefficient we are feeding the post, especially against teams that try to front Drew. There were at least a half dozen times in the last few games when Drew had the fronting defender sealed and should have had a lob pass thrown. There were another two or three times when Drew made a great fake and spun around for a back door lob but again no pass was thrown. And finally, there were several instances where the Lakers had swung the ball from the strong side to the weak side corner where Drew had sealed his man right under the basket ala Shaq without the Lakers giving him the ball. My complaint is not necessarily Kobe and Pau getting too many shots; it’s really Drew not getting enough touches, especially since his passing has improved a lot.
I am not sure whether I would start Shannon in lieu of Fisher and if I did it would be at shooting guard with Kobe moving over to point guard because Shannon cannot really play the lead guard position. Fish has actually been playing much better lately, probably because he can smell the playoffs coming. The bigger question to me is what do we do about the point guard spot next year because Fish is definitely slowing down and we do not have a #1 draft pick for next year because we used it to make the Sasha trade to save $9M. At some point, the new Lakers’ coach next year might have to consider moving Kobe or Lamar into the lead guard spot. It’s much easier finding another shooting guard or power forward than a point guard. And while I’m hoping we will still be running the Triangle Offense, it would be great to see how a true point guard would improve it.

*Double Tap*



DBDH, Don't Blame yourself, I did the same thing!

Laker Tom - I agree that Bynum doesn't get enough touches. The Lakers have been better with getting Pau looks, but not so much with Andrew. The good thing about Andrew in his growth is that before he would check out of the game and not hustle that much. Now he's probably the main defensive ingredient with his shot blocking, length and overall hustle. While the Lakers always want a solid defensive effort out of Ron Artest, that's more of an individual matchup. Andrew's presence epitomizes how the defense needs to play as a unit, helping out on help D, making sure their rotations are organized and that people are communicating.

There should also be a new thread within the next half hour or so. It's in the editing process right now

Duke Snider, Brooklyn passed away at 84. His era is sadly disappearing in the baseball landscape.

Who is the closest resemblance of Big Game James today? Is it LO, Artest or Walton? I guess nobody is close enough. Supposing our PG during the 80's was not Magic and Lakers employ the triangle, can he accomplished HOF standing in the NBA?


Based on the level of BEAST MODE exhibited by James Worthy's incredible post game (Worthy Spin, floaters, lay-ins, short jumpers, etc...), I believe he could've succeeded within the confines of the Triangle. His ridiculous FG% wasn't based solely off of fast breaks and Magic's particularly perfect passing prowess. Worthy was efficient beyond his peers.

By the way, no one is close to James Worthy in any way throughtout the L, let alone the Lakers.


I think the reason Drew doesn't get as many looks in the post as Pau or Kobe is because he is not as savvy a passer as the other two. I'm sure the scouting report on Drew is once he gets it in the post, he'll try to force a shot so it's ok to double team him. He doesn't usually find the best person to pass it to other than right back out to the person feeding him the ball. I think once he improves his passing game, teams will be less reluctant to double team him and he will face more one on one matchups which will greatly increase his offensive output.

Maybe we can bring in Vlade to help him with his post passing game.

Drew had been playing a bit tentatively since coming back from his knee injury. This seems to have changed since the all star break. He is going after it. I agree with other posters. He shoots a high percentage. Get him the ball! When Ron locks down their best guy, Kobe facilitates, Pau and Drew are aggressive, and Lamar brings it off the bench, the Lakers are very tough to beat. I can't wait for the return of the Killer B's to give our starters some rest. We have won against good teams and dominated lousy teams lately. I hope that we can keep it up and get some playing time for the rookies. We are not getting any younger… ;-)

The switch is called DEFENSE. When we bring the D, good things happen.

It is amazing how every year about this time the Lakers start playing great. Credit has to go to PJ for holding things together and steering the ship to its destiny.

I looked at the schedule this morning and I have to say it is a little scary starting next week. 4 away games against very good teams (San Antonio, Atlanta, Miami, and Dallas) and then we come home to Orlando... This is where the rubber hits the road. We can’t fall further back in the standings. It is winning time baby!

I am a Lakerholic.

@SCOTTIE PIMPIN... There is no doubt that Drew is not as savvy a passer as Kobe or Pau who are both more experienced but if you have been watching the last few games, Drew has done an outstanding job passing the ball out of the post and making plays for his teammates. In fact, in the four games since the All-Star break, Drew has had 8 assists, including at least 1 assist in every game, an average of 2 assists per game, and a season high of 4 against the Clippers. That’s pretty damn good, especially considering that Pau, who had 13 assists in the same 4 games, gets 2 or 3 times as many touches as Drew, most generally at the high post where he is often a passer first. Drew also has been doing an excellent job quickly moving the ball when double teamed. Bottom line, I don’t believe Drew’s passing skills are a valid reason for not giving him more touches.

@LakerTom - I made the just about the same point about the recent improvement in Drew's passing from the post just a little while ago in a different thread. It wasn't all that long ago when that type of recognition and reaction was beyond the big guy's game. He's definitely getting closer to where we would all like him to be. Considering OKC's early shooting percentage I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that AB's 5 blocks and the additional altered shots that came out of that were a major factor yesterday's close win.

@ISLAND PRIEST & @LakerTom - RE: Shannon at the Point(?)

Also from my earlier post:

Comment on Shannon Brown & playing the Point: Shannon brings a lot to the team off the bench - his energy has been very instrumental in a lot of games this year - especially the 3rd & 4th quarter comebacks, but he still plays out of control way too much to consistently play the point. Point has to keep the offense from devolving into a series of inconsistent one-on-one possessions. I think SB is actually pretty easy to defend when he's the ball manager in the half-court offense. He's effective in transition and when he's moving off-the-ball in the half-court. Develop his game by playing to his strengths before you try to hand him the keys to the bus.

Typo- Worthy was finals MVP in 1989, not 1998.

Hey, I love James Worthy, but UNC did not win the NC in '81. Lost 63-50 to bob knight's Hoosiers . I know... I was watching. But yes he did lead the Heels with 28 points in '82.

Congratulations Big Game James! A very well deserved honor.



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