On the same day it was announced that a team called the Stars will return to this state, one of the Utah Stars' greats players, Zelmo Beaty, was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Beaty joins Allen Iverson, Shaquille O'Neal, Tom Izzo, Sheryl Swoopes, Yao Ming and Jerry Reinsdorf, among others, in this year's class.
The announcement was made in Houston in advance of Monday night's NCAA Tournament championship game between Villanova and North Carolina.
A undersized center, Beaty was the MVP of the ABA playoffs the year the Utah Stars won the ABA Championship in 1971. "Big Z" also played for the St. Louis and Atlanta Hawks and was a 2-time NBA All-Star. Prior to that he averaged 25 points and 20 rebounds at Prairie View A&M. He was inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2014.
Beaty passed away in 2013 at the age of 73.
Iverson was an 11-time NBA All-Star who was named rookie of the year in 1996-97. The top overall pick in the 1992 draft, O'Neal was a 15-time All-Star who was the NBA MVP in 2000 and a three-time NBA Finals MVP.
Izzo, the Michigan State coach, won a national title in 2000 and has taken his team to the Final Four seven times. Swoopes helped Texas Tech to a national title, won four titles with the Houston Comets, was a three-time WNBA MVP and won three Olympic gold medals.
Yao was the top overall pick in 2002 and was an eight-time NBA All-Star playing his entire career for the Houston Rockets. Reinsdorf has been the owner of the Chicago Bulls and White Sox for more than two decades.