Former Indiana Pacers center Mel Daniels will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as part of the 2012 class on Friday. Daniels finished his career with seven All-Star appearances and averages of 18.4 points and 14.9 rebounds per game over nine professional seasons. He won ABA MVP honors in the 1968-69 season and again in '70-71. Daniels also claimed First-Team All-ABA honors four times and Second-Team All-ABA honors one time. According to Basketball-Reference, his closest statistical comparisons are Yao Ming and Brad Daugherty.
The 6'9 big man from Detroit first joined the ABA as the No. 9 overall pick of the 1967 Draft, and he went on to play six seasons for the Indiana Pacers (ABA), one season for the Memphis Sounds (ABA) and one season for the New York Nets (NBA). He played as a member of three championship teams for the '70, '72 and '73 Indiana Pacers.
According to Pacers.com, Daniels has fallen ill and will not be in attendance at the enshrinement ceremony.
For a schedule of the ceremony and information on the other 11 inductees for 2012, be sure to stop by SB Nation NBA's Hall of Fame storystream.