ESPN losangeles: Hall of Fame

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Vote now for the 2011
ESPN Los Angeles
Hall of Fame

The five inductees to the 2011 ESPN Los Angeles Hall of Fame (with percent of votes):
1. Magic Johnson (79.1)
2. John Wooden (64.9)
3. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (62.8)
4. Wayne Gretzky (42.7)
5. Sandy Koufax (38.2).

How do you think you did? Live

Note: If they're still active, they're not eligible.

Visit the discussion page to talk about who you think should be considered for the inaugural Hall of Fame class.

About this project

Welcome! Stay around for a while Video

Nominee photogallery

ESPNLA Hall of Fame: The 20 men and women Photo Gallery

Columns

Woj: An impossible mission »
Markazi: Who's next? The odds are ... »
Shelburne: Vin in a class by himself »
Markazi and Shelburne: The great debate »
Markazi: Hey, it's harder than it looks »
Shelburne: Time out! Moments of clarity »
Springer: You should know Bob Waterfield »
Markazi: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's complexity »
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on Kareem »
Debate: Is Phil more L.A. or Chicago »
Adande: The importance of legacy »

Meet the panel

ESPNLA Hall of Fame: The Panel Video
J.A. Adande defends his picks: On the clock Video
Steve Mason defends his picks: On the clock Video
Arash Markazi defends his picks: On the clock Video
Ramona Shelburne defends her picks: On the clock Video
Steve Springer defends his picks: On the clock Video

OK, that's debatable

Some of the great Latinos in L.A. sports Video
Who are some of the best and worst owners? Video
Who is iconic is debatable. Moments are perfect Video
The Bo Jackson Effect: Our streaking stars Video
Football's rich history in Los Angeles Video
Some overrated players in L.A. history Video
Some active icons that are destined Video
Some of the great women in L.A. sports Video

710 ESPN

Mason & Ireland: Hall of Fame one-hour special Listen
The nominees: A rundown of the Hall of Fame Listen
Should three Lakers make the first five? Listen
Who are the automatics once they retire? Listen
The greatest moments in L.A. sports history? Listen

Kareem on Kareem

 


By Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Special to ESPN.com

Video

Who are some of the more overrated players in L.A. history. No. 5 at USC came up in the debate. Watch Watch Video

Which current cast of players and icons who should considered as soon as they retire? Watch Watch Video

Photo gallery

Check out the 20 candidates for the
ESPN Los Angeles of Fame: Gallery Photo Gallery

Editor's note: As part of the ESPN Los Angeles Hall of Fame voting process, our panel debated Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's place in Los Angeles' sports history. We asked Kareem to address his relationship with fans and the media through the years in his own words, as well.

It is always a complicated issue for me when it comes to dealing with the public. Being instantly recognizable has its own powerful effect on the way that things affect me. It makes it very difficult for me to embrace even more public attention because that attention generates even more interest in my life and demands on my time.

Any celebrity has to find a balance between what they can give the public and their own personal needs. When a person in this position can go out in public without having to handle the notoriety and public curiosity that are attached to their lives, they can reach a balance between what they must give the public and their own personal needs.

I am in a situation where I cannot ever have any anonymity when I am in public. Most people in that position most often would rather not deal with the constant demands that they can expect when they go out into the public. It is something to be avoided.

I have always appreciated the fans who have followed and appreciated my career, but I can't always give them what they want when I encounter them in public. I've had many bad experiences with demanding fans, and I know that I've disappointed some fans who wanted nothing more than a brief exchange with me because of the way they enjoyed my career.

In recent years, I've tried to be more accommodating because of the fact that I, too, have been a fan and I've enjoyed meeting my heroes and sharing a word or two with them. So I guess that things balance out when they come full circle. It might just work out that I will be voted into the ESPNLA Hall of Fame and enjoy the experience with all the fans.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the NBA's all-time leading scorer and the author of several New York Times best-selling books.