The last time Trajan Langdon stepped on the court was in 2011, when he led his Russian League team, CSKA Moscow, to a ninth-straight championship.
Winning is something the Anchorage native knows well, as he also directed his East Anchorage High School Thunderbirds to three straight state titles.
Now the “Alaskan Assassin” is about to be honored in his hometown, as the second player inducted into the Alaska Association of Basketball Coaches (AABC) Hall of Fame.
“I think it’s a tremendous honor,” Langdon told KTVA Sports by phone from Chicago, as he travels with the Brooklyn Nets as their assistant general manager. “I always had a ton of pride growing up in Anchorage, representing the state. Everybody there has always been great with me, followed my career and supportive, so to be added to a list of great names is an honor.”
Dave Porter, the president of the AABC, said his organization had no trouble with selecting Langdon.
“He is, in my opinion, the godfather of basketball in the state,” said Porter, who’s also the Houston High School athletics director. “He is the first one to go on and play Division One at a huge school like Duke.”
George Houston also knows about success. He led Juneau-Douglas High School to two state high school basketball crowns in his 14 years as the head coach of his hometown Crimson Bears.
Houston won 279 games to go along with 10 conference titles and a state title there as a player back in 1969. Houston will be the coach inducted in this year’s class.
“It’s kind of rewarding, but, to me, it speaks more to the players I had and their efforts,” Houston said by phone.
“He’s a very special person,” Porter said about Houston’s selection. “Not only after he’s retired, he’s still involved with the youth down there, doing what he can to give back, just a class act, high integrity, just a very special person. We think is a well-deserved candidate.”
Houston and Langdon are the third and fourth people to be honored in the hall of fame, but Alaskans still can’t see it, because it does not have a home. Organizers hope to have it located at Alaska Airlines Center, which is also where the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Sports Hall of Fame resides.
“Currently, it’s looking like we might do it during March Madness, and the state basketball tournament, maybe just bring it in there during that time, to have people take a look at it,” Porter explained.
For now, though, the focus is on a celebration of two men who helped put Alaska basketball on the map.