The 5 Greatest Moments in Becky Hammon’s Hall of Fame Basketball Career

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A'ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces celebrates with head coach Becky Hammon after winning the 2022 WNBA Finals

Becky Hammon has made her mark in American basketball, from college to the WNBA and NBA. From 1999 to 2007, the point guard split her professional playing career between the New York Liberty and San Antonio Stars. However, her Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame induction recognized much more than her time as a player.

Eligible since 2017, Hammon’s official moment has arrived. Her big day took place in Springfield, Massachusetts, on August 11-12, 2023. In celebration of her spot in the Hall of Fame, here are the five greatest moments in the former WNBA superstar’s basketball career, considering her records and accolades.

1. Becky Hammon hits the 5,000-point mark in the WNBA

One of Becky Hammon’s most celebrated accomplishments will always be the day she passed 5,000 points in the WNBA. The South Dakota native hit that key milestone in 2011 while playing for the San Antonio Stars. 

Hammon was just the seventh WNBA player in history to hit that marker. Given how much of her career was spent filling in the offseason on foreign teams, Hammon likely scored far more points across her professional career than the 5,000 she made in the WNBA.

2. Becky Hammon makes NBA history when Gregg Popovich gets ejected

The 46-year-old WNBA legend also made history in the NBA. From 2014-22, Hammon served as an assistant coach under the San Antonio Spurs’ Gregg Popovich. Just the second woman to land the title of assistant coach in the NBA, Hammon was the first female to do so on a full-time, fully salaried basis.

That role landed her another opportunity that will hopefully be matched soon. When Popovich was ejected from a game on December 30, 2020. Hammon, as the top assistant, stepped into the head coach role for the rest of the game. She was the first woman to take on this role in the NBA.

3. Becky Hammon becomes the first rookie WNBA coach to win a championship

Starting with the 2022 season, Hammon returned to the WNBA as a coach. She joined the Las Vegas Aces — the new name for her old team in San Antonio — and made her mark there incredibly quickly.

As the Basketball Hall of Fame official website reports, the former Stars great led the Aces to a championship during her first season as head coach. No rookie coach had ever accomplished that feat in the WNBA before.

4. Becky Hammon’s jersey is retired by the Stars/Aces

Hammon is a superstar in WNBA history, and one of her teams made a point to honor that fact. Her jersey was retired by the San Antonio Stars in 2021. The recognition carries over to the team’s new iteration, the Aces, where she now serves as head coach.

Sports Illustrated reports that the once-undrafted player came into her own during her eight years with the Stars. Hammon remains the Aces’ leader in assists, three-pointers, and free-throw percentage.

5. Becky Hammon has one of the all-time great college basketball careers

Hammon missing the draft was somewhat of a shock, given how successful Hammon was at Colorado State University. From 1995-99, she played for the CSU Rams and set several all-time records at the school.

According to the CSU Rams official website, the three-time All-American still holds these CSU women’s basketball records:

  • Career points: 2,740
  • Points per game: 21.92
  • Field goals made: 918
  • Three-pointers: 365
  • Assists: 538

Apparently, that wasn’t enough to make the fiercely competitive WNBA draft. But once Hammon did get into the league, she more than proved her worth. Now, the Basketball Hall of Fame recognizes her accomplishments.