In what seems like a cruel joke, Haywood was told by an NBA official that he had been inducted into the hall, but he found out on Friday that information was false. Haywood is understandably upset.
“This is so embarrassing,” Haywood told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “My stomach has been so bad I can’t eat, I can’t sleep. This isn’t a punch in the stomach. It’s below the stomach.”
Haywood was a four-time NBA All-Star and All-NBA player. Haywood was named ABA MVP in his rookie season after he unsuccessfully tried to challenge the NBA’s reserve clause and age restrictions following his sophomore season at the University of Detroit. The rule at the time was that players had to wait until their class graduated before moving on to pro ball.
Haywood averaged 20.3 points and 10.3 rebounds per game in 12 NBA seasons and one ABA season. His career was derailed by cocaine addiction in the late ’70s and early ’80s.