Idaho’s Greatest Basketball Players
As we get closer to the NCAA Basketball Tournament, one of the most exciting sports events of the year, I decided to go back to find the greatest basketball players in Idaho history. This would include players who either grew up here or played their college basketball at any Idaho college. Here are the top four:
4. Luke Ridnour
He might be the most well-known person on this list and you may not understand why the former Oregon Duck would even be on this list, but technically he qualifies because he was born in Coer d’Alene. He had a pretty good NBA career that ended with being traded four times in six days!
3. Chandler Hutchinson
Chandler Hutchinson is the first member of the Boise State Broncos basketball team to be drafted by an NBA Team. He was the 22nd pick of the draft last year for the Chicago Bulls. His rookie season hasn’t gone as planned. He’s been hurt and has been sent down to the G-League team to recover.
2. Ron Boone
“The Legend,” as he was known never missed a game in his professional career. Officially, he played in 1,041 consecutive games, but he claims that his streak is much longer than that because he hadn’t missed a game since the 4th grade! He is the number three all-time leading scorer in ABA history and the only one of the top five that isn’t a member of the Hall of Fame. He ended his career in the late 70’s with the Utah Jazz, where for the past 31 years he’s been the television voice of the team.
1. Gus Johnson
It’s not even a question about who the greatest basketball player in the history of Idaho is. It’s Gus “Honeycomb” Johnson. He’s the only one that played in the state and is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame. He played for both the Boise State Broncos and the Idaho Vandals before going onto an NBA and ABA career that saw him play in five all-star games because of his explosive scoring and great defense. He was one of the NBA’s first dunk artists and even broke three backboards! His number 25 was retired by the Baltimore Bullets (now the Washington Wizards).