A star-studded Class of 2020, including Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant, will now be inducted in May at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Friday.
The induction festivities are set for May 13-15, 2021.
Jerry Colangelo, the chairman of the board of governors for the Hall of Fame, previously told ESPN that the original dates of enshrinement weekend, Aug. 28-30, and the proposed alternate dates, Oct. 10-12, were “just not feasible” because of the coronavius pandemic.
“The decision to reschedule Enshrinement into May of next year, along with diminished museum guest visitation and a very uncertain future regarding our multiple collegiate and high school basketball events this fall, has forced us to make these very difficult decisions,” Hall of Fame president and CEO John Doleva said in a statement. “Our goal now is to conserve resources so that we may stabilize in 2021 and return to our growth trajectory in 2022 and beyond.
“For this single event, and only because of the pandemic, we will relocate the entire event one time to Mohegan Sun which has been a long-time marketing partner of the Hall. Mohegan Sun has shown they can effectively operate a ‘near-bubble’ for our event which provides a more secure environment for our guests.”
The 2020 class also includes former Houston Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich, 10-time WNBA All-Star and four-time Olympic gold medalist Tamika Catchings, Baylor women’s basketball coach Kim Mulkey, Bentley College women’s basketball coach Barbara Stevens, former FIBA and IOC executive Patrick Baumann, and former college coach Eddie Sutton.
Colangelo previously said that there will be separate ceremonies for the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021, even though both events will be held in the calendar year 2021.
The Hall of Fame also announced that it had eliminated several full-time positions and cut pay for senior management by 25% to 40% due to declining revenues from the pandemic.
Information from ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan was used in this report.