Shaq and Iverson headline Hall of Fame's 10-strong class of 2016

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Football News

The Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame has today officially announced the 10-strong class of 2016.

Headlining this year's inductees are Allen Iverson and Shaquille O'Neal, both of whom will be heading for Springfield, Massachusetts as first ballot members.

Class of 2016

Confirmed to be joining Shaq and 'The Answer' at the enshrining ceremony are Chinese center Yao Ming, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo, six-time WNBA All-Star Sheryl Swoopes and Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf.

Four others will be inducted posthumously. They are former NBA referee Darrell Garretson (a veteran of 2,000 games), groundbreaking African-American coach John McLendon and former stars Cumberland Posey and Zelmo Beaty.

Iverson and O'Neal are, though, the star names of the 2016 class and, considering their respective NBA resumes, quite rightly so.

Shaq has four rings to his name after three titles with the Lakers and one with the Miami Heat, and was Finals MVP on three of those occasions. 'Superman' was also named the league's MVP in 2000 and currently ranks seventh all-time in the scoring charts with 28,596 points.

The now 44-year-old has a whole host of other NBA achievements too his name that, simply put, are too long to list. His induction, therefore, comes as no surprise.

Speaking after the announcement was made this afternoon, O'Neal said he would like Julius Erving to be the one to bring him up into the Hall when the time comes.

Iverson, meanwhile, was the NBA MVP in 2001 and averaged 26.7 points per game through his career - battling against his 6 foot stature to become a huge influence on the current generation of NBA stars.

A.I. also ended his career an 11-time All-Star and led the league's scoring charts in four separate campaigns.

The Philadelphia 76ers legend remains one of the best ever players never to win a Larry O'Brien Trophy, but is widely credited as the main reason for the franchise's run to the 2001 NBA Finals.

The entirety of the 2016 class are worthy of their place in the Hall, and that includes the other player to play in the NBA this century, former Houston Rockers center Yao Ming.

The Chinese big man's career isn't as long or as illustrious as some, but, off the court, he played a huge role in helping expand the NBA into Asia.

On the hardwood, Ming was an eight-time All-Star and averaged 19 points and 9.2 rebounds through his career.

Shaq, Iverson, Ming and the rest of the class of 2016 will officially be enshrined between September 8-10.

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