Former star NBA point guards Steve Nash and Jason Kidd head the list of first-time eligible candidates for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame class of 2018, the organization announced Thursday.
Nash, a two-time NBA MVP with the Phoenix Suns, ranks third in the NBA history with 10,335 assists. Kidd, the current coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, ranks second in assists (12,091) and career triple-doubles (107).
Ray Allen, the all-time leader with career 3-point baskets (2,973), is another first-time candidate. Other NBA stars eligible for the first time include Grant Hill, Chauncey Billups and Richard Hamilton.
Among coaches on the ballot for the first time are current West Virginia coach Bob Huggins and recently retired college coach Steve Fisher, who won a national title at Michigan and later revived San Diego State's program.
Current San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon is one of the first-time eligible women's candidates. Hammon and fellow first-time candidate Katie Smith (current coach of the New York Liberty) were college and WNBA stars.
Finalists will be announced during NBA All-Star Weekend. The Class of 2018 will be unveiled during the Final Four in San Antonio.