Australian basketball great Andrew Gaze elevated to legend status in hall of fame

Russell GouldNCA NewsWire
Not Supplied
Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: News Corp Australia

There is little doubt in the mind of any Australian that Andrew Gaze is a legend.

But it’s now official, with the five-time Olympian set to be elevated to legend status in the Australian Basketball Hall of Fame joining his dad, Lindsay, as one of only six people to be given the ultimate accolade.

Hailed as “The Factor” by three-time NBA champion and long-time Australian teammate Luc Longley, Gaze’s long list of accomplishments both in Australia and at international level bear repeating.

Gaze played 297 games for Australia across five Olympics, where he is the second all-time leading scorer at the Games with 789 points. and four world cups, where he’s still the third highest all-time scorer.

SD/I /Sydney  Olympic games 15 Sept 2000 Opening Ceremony.  Aust Team during march past - Flag bearer  basketballer Andrew Gaze leads the team into Stadium Australia.Pic.Gregg/Porteous sport olympics olympic2000 flags uniforms sydney2000
Camera IconAndrew Gaze as the flag bearer at the Sydney Olympics Pic.Gregg/Porteous Credit: News Corp Australia

Locally, his record will be hard to match. A two-time NBL champion, seven-time league MVP, top scorer for 14 seasons, points record holder (18,212) and all across 578 games, also an NBL record. The NBL season’s MVP award is also named after him.

“I knew Andrew Gaze by the code name The Factor. And that he was,” Longley said, paying tribute to Gaze.

“As his teammate with the national team spanning 22 years, he lived up to his name without fail. His ability to get it done every night and find ways to score when others couldn’t was consistent with greatness.

“In an era when Australian basketball was finding its feet internationally, The Factor was our spearhead and foundation. When you had Andrew on your team you always felt like you were in the game, and he kept us in lots and won us even more.

Basketballer Luc Longley hugging with Andrew Gaze after win.
Basketball - Australia vs Italy match at Sydney Olympic Games 28 Sep 2000.
Camera IconGaze and Luc Longley at the Sydney 2000 Olympics. Credit: News Limited

“I took special delight watching confounded weary Euro and US defenders who had misjudged him badly during the pre-game eye test.

“The Factor was a legend as far as I was concerned and I’m proud to see it recognised. Now that he’s not The Factor anymore I might just start calling him Legend.”

Gaze said he was “beyond honoured” to be elevated to legend status and join his father on the esteemed list.

“To follow in my father’s footsteps is a dream I never dared to imagine. I am eternally indebted and grateful for the opportunities the game has provided me and my family,” he said.

“I am acutely aware that the recognition I have received would not be possible without the support and guidance of my teammates and coaches.

“Thanks to the awards committee for their support. I am humbled that the selection committee feel I am worthy to sit alongside some of the great contributors of the game.”

Gaze’s elevation will be celebrated at a hall of fame event on July 1.

Andrew Gaze & father Lindsay celebrate Melbourne Tigers victory in NBL grand final 01/11/97.
Basketball Gaze/fam
Camera IconAndrew Gaze and father Lindsay celebrate the Melbourne Tigers’ victory in the 1997 NBL grand final. Credit: News Corp Australia

Basketball Australia legends

Alistair Ramsay MBE OAM (dec)

Betty Watson OAM

John Raschke OAM

Lindsay Gaze OAM OLY

Michele Timms OAM OLY

Andrew Gaze AM OLY

Originally published as Australian basketball great Andrew Gaze elevated to legend status in hall of fame

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