Phoenix Suns celebrate new Ring of Honor banners during halftime ceremony
Oct 29, 2023, 12:50 PM
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
The Phoenix Suns unveiled permanent banners for their Ring of Honor members during a halftime ceremony in their home opening victory over the Utah Jazz at Footprint Center on Saturday.
The new banners commemorating the members of the Ring of Honor are suspended from the rafters above the west sideline of the seating bowl. The uniform number and last name are featured on the banners of the player inductees, while non players have their years of tenure and last name displayed.
More than 60 former players were invited to the game to witness the celebration of the 15 honorees. Each Suns Ring of Honor member was also presented with a commemorative watch.
The 15 current members of the Ring of Honor that had banners and murals unveiled are Alvan Adams, Charles Barkley, Tom Chambers, Jerry Colangelo, Walter Davis, Cotton Fitzsimmons, Connie Hawkins, Kevin Johnson, John MacLeod, Dan Majerle, Al McCoy, Steve Nash, Joe Proski, Dick Van Arsdale and Paul Westphal.
As previously announced, the team will add two more banners for Shawn Marion and Amar’e Stoudemire as part of their official inductions this season.
Stoudemire will be the 17th player officially in the Ring of Honor.
In addition, murals from local artists were painted around the concourse of the upper level of the arena.
If you aren’t in the upper level tonight, head on up there and take a lap to see the Ring of Honor murals from local artists. Very cool! pic.twitter.com/mJoujRoV9r
— Kellan Olson (@KellanOlson) October 29, 2023
“This is an incredible night for all of us,” Steve Nash said. “We’re all excited for this team and this year. Huge honor for all of us, but there’s also a lot of alumni up here that we’re also connected and tied to that mean a lot to us.”
When the Footprint Center was renovated in 2020, the banners hanging in the rafters were substituted for an ever-changing LED ribbon board that sat just below the upper deck.
“The members of the Ring of Honor played a central role in creating the organization’s storied history and it was important that we honor them in a way that will always be on display,” said Mat Ishbia, owner of the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury. “These legends helped define the Suns and are integral members of our family, connecting all generations of our fans throughout the past 55 years. The permanent banners and murals will serve as a constant tribute to their contributions to the team’s history and how they paved the way for the next era of Suns basketball.”
Charles Barkley, who was named MVP in 1993 and also led the Suns to an NBA Finals appearance that same year also gave a speech during the ceremony.
“I just want to say thank you, thank you, thank you to Mat [Ishbia] and the entire Phoenix Suns organization,” Barkley said. “You guys are the best, you all are the best and I’m saying this a hundred times… I ain’t leaving Arizona until I’m dead.”