Both Tracy McGrady and Grant Hill came into the league with a lot of expectations. Both were McDonald’s high school All-Americans and both were drafted in the top ten in their respective draft classes. Both were said to be the next "Michael Jordan" (I don't know how many times we have heard that before).
They may not have been able to live up to all the hype, but you can't deny what these two accomplished in their primes. Let's take a look at their resumes for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame created by me.
One of the most electrifying athletes ever to step onto a basketball court, Tracy Lamar McGrady was one of the greatest offensive scorers of his generation.
McGrady’s athleticism and physical abilities made him one of the most prolific scorers the game has ever seen. His athleticism and raw talent were complemented by his passing ability and high basketball IQ, making McGrady one of the most difficult players of his generation to guard.
Throughout his career, McGrady accomplished some pretty remarkable feats. He led the Houston Rockets to second longest regular season winning streak of all time (22 in a row). The only team to have a longer win streak in the history of the NBA was the Los Angeles Lakers with 33 in a row, led by Wilt Chamberlin and Jerry West.
Tracy McGrady was known for being able to single handedly take over a game in the closing minutes. He will always be remembered for one of the greatest individual comebacks of all time when he scored 13 points in 35 seconds, taking the Houston Rockets from an eight point deficit to win the game against the San Antonio Spurs.
• Seven-time All-Star (2001-2007)
• Two Scoring Titles (2002-2003, 2003-2004)
• Became the third-youngest player in NBA history to claim multiple scoring titles, trailing only Wilt Chamberlain and Bob McAdoo
• Became the ninth player in NBA history to win consecutive scoring titles
• Seven-time All-NBA Team member (2000-2005, 2006-2008)
• Career Regular Season Average: 21.6 ppg, 6 rpg, 4.7 apg
• 22 game win-streak (second longest in NBA history)
• Most Improved Player (2000-2001)
• Stands as the all-time leader in regular season scoring average for Orlando (28.1ppg)
• Stands as the all-time leader in postseason scoring average for both Orlando (32.0 ppg) and Houston (28.0 ppg)
At 6’8", Hill continued Larry Bird’s transformation of the small forward position by acting as a point guard in a small forward's body.
His offensive repertoire was a blend of powerful drives to the basket and mid-range jump shots. His fundamentally sound game accompanied by his passing ability made Hill a tough match for opposing teams.
Hill dominated the small forward position from the start of his rookie year. He became the first rookie in NBA history to lead the league in All-Star votes. In his second year in the league, Grant Hill beat out Michael Jordan in All-Star voting by 17,000 votes.
Most importantly, in an era where professional basketball players seemed arrogant, obsessed with fame, and diva-like, Grant Hill was precisely the opposite. He was known for being a great man not just on the court but off the court.
As a collegian at Duke University, Hill led the Duke Blue Devils to back-to-back national titles and three national title appearances all together. Hill will forever be remembered for his game-winning, 75-foot pass to teammate Christian Laettner in the overtime win against Kentucky in the 1992 East Regional Final.
• Seven-time All-Star (1995-1998, 2000-2001, 2005)
• Led his team in points, rebounds and assists per game three times (Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlin are the only other two players in league history to lead their team in those categories for three seasons)
• Five-time All-NBA Team member (1995-2000)
• Career Regular Season Average: 17.9 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 4.5 apg
• Averaged 20 points, 9 rebounds, and 7 assists in a season (became the first player since Larry Bird to average those numbers)
• Olympic Gold Medal (1996 Olympics)
• Co-rookie of the year in 1995
• Back-to-back NCAA Championships in 1991 and 1992
• First team All-American in 1994
They both put up similar stats to Walt Frazier and Clyde Drexler but neither of them have the titles or even a playoff series victory for that matter.
I don’t know that there is a clear cut winner here. On the one hand, Grant Hill achieved some things that hadn't been done in a long time but his prime was cut short by a broken ankle. He only had six seasons where he dominated the game.
On the other hand, McGrady had eight successful seasons where he was considered one of the best players in the game.
I think you could argue for either one. You could say that Hill contributed more to basketball with his Gold Medal in the 1996 Olympic games, and his back-to-back titles at Duke and you would have a good point. Actually, a lot of Hall of Famers made it to the Hall of Fame because of their collegiate performances (i.e. Bill Bradley, K.C. Jones, Bob Houbregs, and Tom Gola).
I would argue that McGrady has the better resume based on longevity of his dominance in the NBA (ironic because they will probably not make the Hall of Fame because they weren’t able to stay healthy).
Hall of Fame Resume goes to…McGrady.