Four months after the pandemic-delayed induction of the Class of 2020, including Kobe Bryant, the Hall community gathered to enshrine 16 more new members for 2021 — its biggest class ever. Many in the crowd wore masks. Three-time WNBA MVP Lauren Jackson wasn’t able to attend her induction because she was in Australia in lockdown.

Bill Russell, who was inducted as a player in 1975, was honored for his coaching career, becoming the fifth person to be inducted as both a player and a coach. But to former President Barack Obama, his greatest role was what he accomplished off the court during the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

Paul Pierce and Chris Bosh headlined the NBA crop.

Others joining the Hall were Villanova coach Jay Wright, defensive Pistons star Ben Wallace, two-time NBA champion Chris Bosh, longtime Portland and Sacramento coach Rick Adelman, Washington and Sacramento All-Star Chris Webber and two-time Olympic gold medalist Yolanda Griffith.

WNBA president Val Ackerman, longtime coach Cotton Fitzsimmons and scouting pioneer Howard Garfinkel were inducted as contributors. Clarence “Fats” Jenkins was picked by the Early African American Pioneers Committee, Croatia and Chicago Bulls star Toni Kukoc was tabbed by the International Committee, Bob Dandridge by the Veterans Committee, and Pearl Moore from the Women’s Veterans Committee.