The Dream Shake - a Houston Rockets blog: Robert Horry for the HOF (plea #2)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Robert Horry for the HOF (plea #2)

Last night, Robert Horry set a new milestone: Most playoff games ever (238). He surpassed the record previously held by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. I guess it helps to be a Laker for part of your career if you want to play in a lot of playoff games (?)

This is just another playoff-related record for Mr. Horry. His name is all over the record book for various things accomplished in the months of April through June. Particularly in June... or did everyone forget the dude has seven rings. Seven! (More than MJ!)

Yes, it still hurts to see Horry in a Spurs jersey. It hurts a lot. But anyway...

Sadly, because the Spurs cannot win in even-numbered years and now trail the New Orleans Hornets 3 games to 2 after losing last night, I realized that the next game the Spurs play just might be the last time we see Robert Horry in an NBA uniform. Think about that for a second.

Thursday night could possibly be the last game of Robert Horry's career.

Horry was part of the loaded draft of 1992 (Shaq, Alonzo, Laettner, Harold Miner, etc. etc.).


Horry has won championship rings in 1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2007. Because the Spurs fear even numbers, I think it's safe to say Horry will not get ring #8 this year. And that's okay. (Just so long as Utah doesn't win a ring, I'll be fine.)

What kills me though is seeing this on ESPN this morning:

"won't get into the Hall of Fame..." Why the hell not? Why is Horry already precluded from even being considered a Hall of Famer? No, he has not been an All Star before. No, Horry does not average 20 points a game or grab 15 rebounds or some other hollow statistical marker you might deem notable. All the guy has done for 17 years is win. Win! That's what the game is about.

Put another way... every season Robert Horry has been in the NBA - his team has made the playoffs. Every. Single. Year. His bio is quite fantastic. So maybe Horry hasn't been named an All Star before... but whose career would you rather have? Robert Horry's? ... or Vince Carter's? (or even Tracy McGrady's?) Vince Carter may have been half-amazing at one time in his life, but he'd trade places with Horry immediately. So would McGrady.

So I readily acknowledge that Thursday might be the end of the career of my favorite player. All good things must come to an end sometime (like 22 game winning streaks...). Consequently, The Robert Horry for the Hall of Fame Campaign will shift into overdrive here whenever he officially hangs up the sneakers for good. Horry will forever be a Houston Rocket to me.

... nice hair, dude.


Eric said...

Take Olajuwon off the Rockets and see if Robert Horry still wins. Take Kobe or Shaq away from the Lakers and see if Horry still wins. Take David Robinson or Tim Duncan away from the Spurs and see if Rob still wins. My point is that the guy has been fortunate to be playing with some stacked teams. They are championship calber teams, and not because of Robert Horry. The guy is a good role player, but the HOF is for the best of the best.

grungedave said...

by that very same rationale, if you take Horry off any of those championship teams... none of those teams win the ring.

Certainly not in '94 or '95. Certainly not in '00 through '02 (where Big Shot Rob nicknamed solidified). Certainly not in '05 (when Horry won Game 5 by himself). Maybe in '07... though Steve Nash will disagree.

Eric said...

Why would they not have rings? Are you saying that those teams were not capable of winning a championship without Robert Horry???? I disagree with that.

grungedave said...

Each of those teams would have lost were it not for Horry. Fat Ass couldn't win without Kobe. Olajuwon never won until Horry came along. Duncan won once before Horry ('99 never happened).

Like I said, *maybe* the '07 Spurs would have won without him, but EVERY other one of those teams would have lost without Horry.

Presley said...

The Kings may very well have a championship if not for Horry. As a Rockets fan though, just the pass from Horry to Elie for the kiss of death shot in game 7 of the '95 semis excedes.

Matt said...

What an interesting debate.

I'd love for Horry to get into the HOF, he's a great player. But on any of the teams he's been on, if you were picking those players in a pick up game to win a game (using a little Simmons theory here), I don't think you'd take Horry higher than 4th in any scenario. At best. So you can't really put him in the hall. As much as it kills me.

Audry said...

Let's have a guy that averages 7 PPG and less than 5 rebounds per game and he's a hall of famer just because he happened to be on winning teams? I didn't realize all those teams won BECAUSE of Horry. If I ever see Robert Horry's name in the basketball HOF next to Dream, Magic, Bird and Jordan, that'll be the day I never watch another NBA game.

Chris Marlton said...

Robert Horry came into the NBA as a supremely athletic swingman power forward. He was instrumental in winning 2 huge NBA championships with the Houston Rockets; remember the three years before and after before to the Bulls. Horace Grant was coming off 3 titles, but was completely outplayed by Horry when Houston swept Orlando. It was Horry's help defence on Ewing that let Olajwon be free to play the way he did when Houston beat New York. Forget about the big shots, because we all know he's hit more game WINning shots in the finals than anyone in the ENTIRE HISTORY of the NBA; lets talk about the defence, the rebounding, the passing, the court sense, the leadership. Ask anyone who ever played with or coached Horry, they will all agree that he deserves to be in the NBA. 17 years in the league and he won 7 championships. That means one out of every 2.4 years he was in the league he walked away with a ring. That's not an accident, it's not a coincidence. They say Shaq couldn't win without Kobe, the truth is neither of them can win a championship without Horry. People forget that Horry broke his back. He lost his athleticism, his speed, but adapted his game to still be affective Everyone thought Horry was finished when he went to LA; general consensus in the league was that he wouldn't even play a lot of minutes in LA. But he showed everyone and did everything he needed to so his team could win. He didn't want the glory, or the fame, just the wins, for himself and his team. It's fair enough to say back in 2000 "Oh we didn't know he was going to take the big shot..." but by 2002, let alone 05 and 07 everyone KNEW he was going to take the shot and they couldn't do a THING about it. Accidents happen once, maybe twice, but not SEVEN times. People also forget about the path to the finals, every year in the western conference guarding Karl Malone, guarding Tim Duncan, guarding every power forward the league could throw at him AND STILL his team won. People thought he was finished in 2002 after the 3rd championship, but then what did they think in 05 when he single handedly (along with some dubious no calls when Tim Duncan tackled Billups whenever he drove to the basket) stole the championship from Detroit?

The Hall of Fame shouldn't be about only the players who put up 30 a game, it should be about the players who change the game, who affect the outcomes of the seasons they take part in. In the 17 seasons Horry played, only the Bulls, the Lakers, Spurs, Pistons and the Rockets won championships. That's only 5 clubs out of the 30-odd teams in the NBA. Horry was on 3 of those 5 teams. How does that sound, that he was an instrumental part of 3 of the five franchises that won championships while he was IN THE LEAGUE. No player has that kind of success follow them.

The only similar story is Dennis Rodman... and there's no doubt he'll be in the Hall of Fame, widely recognised as the best rebounder of all time, and the best defensive power forward of all time.

Horry needs more respect for his accomplishments, he won't get it because so few people understand the game of basketball... but he deserves it.