H.O.F. Watch – Dikembe Mutombo

11.30.07 10 years ago 31 Comments

Every day we’re taking one active NBA star with at least arguable Hall of Fame credentials and breaking down his chances of getting into the Springfield, Mass., hoops mecca. We’re looking at not just past accomplishments, but also how a player’s career realistically projects for the future. For a full explanation of the process, click here. Today’s candidate: Dikembe Mutombo.

DIKEMBE MUTOMBO (17th yr., Rockets/Knicks/Nets/76ers/Hawks/Nuggets)
10.0 points, 10.5 rebounds, 2.7 blocks per game

Why: One of those rare players who can take over a game without scoring or even being involved in his team’s offense. In his prime, Mutombo was good for about 14 boards and three blocks per night, not to mention countless altered shots. Offenses game-planned around Mutombo, and his mere presence would often cut off penetration before it even started. Deke has four NBA Defensive Player of the Year awards to show for it, including a dominant run where he won three DPOY trophies in a four-year stretch from ’95-98. He also has six All-Defensive Team nods, two All-NBA nods, and made eight All-Star games (grabbing 22 boards in the ’01 ASG). He led the League in rebounding average twice and in total rebounds four times, and led the League in total blocks five times while taking the blocks-per-game crown three times. On the NBA’s all-time career list, he ranks second in blocks and in the Top 20 in rebounds. Even as he’s passed age 40 and is playing out the tail-end of his career as a backup, Dikembe is still a shot-blocking force to be reckoned with who will pull down 10-plus rebounds when given starter’s minutes. Not to mention, off the court Mutombo’s extensive charity work has made him the preeminent goodwill ambassador and one of the great role models in pro sports.

Why not: Mutombo was never an offensive force — his highest scoring average for a season was 16.6 points per game, which he hit in his rookie year and never got close to again. In 11 playoff appearances he’s only made one legit championship run, with the Sixers in ’01, more often getting knocked out in the first or second round.

Our call: IN

The H.O.F. Watch archive
11/29 – Ron Artest
11/28 – Pau Gasol
11/27 – Kevin Garnett
11/26 – Manu Ginobili
11/21 – Amare Stoudemire
11/20 – Rip Hamilton
11/19 – Baron Davis
11/16 – Shaquille O’Neal
11/15 – Steve Francis
11/14 – Ben Wallace
11/13 – Sam Cassell
11/12 – LeBron James
11/9 – Tim Duncan
11/8 – Steve Nash
11/7 – Yao Ming
11/6 – Gilbert Arenas
11/5 – Robert Horry
11/2 – Kobe Bryant
11/1 – Grant Hill
10/31 – Dirk Nowitzki
10/30 – Tony Parker
10/29 – Elton Brand
10/26 – Carmelo Anthony
10/25 – Vince Carter
10/24 – Penny Hardaway
10/23 – Alonzo Mourning
10/22 – Allen Iverson
10/19 – Dwyane Wade
10/18 – Chauncey Billups
10/17 – Stephon Marbury
10/16 – Jason Kidd
10/15 – Shawn Marion
10/12 – Ray Allen
10/11 – Chris Bosh
10/10 – Chris Webber
10/9 – Paul Pierce
10/5 – Jermaine O’Neal
10/4 – Gary Payton
10/3 – Tracy McGrady

Around The Web