But I know this: The Warriors got me a trip home in June 2019, at a time I never would have been there otherwise. We watched Holzhauer lose that night, and I think Dad was disappointed to see the streak end. In the days that followed, the Warriors would lose Durant to a torn Achilles’, Thompson to a ruptured A.C.L. and the title to the Raptors.
The next week, Dad had a bad fall at home, breaking two bones in his neck. He spent the next few weeks recovering, rehabilitating and making plans to go home again. We had no reason to think he wouldn’t. But the fall set off a cascade of other problems, and one day I got a call that he’d been taken, unconscious, from the board-and-care facility to the hospital. Multiple organs were failing.
By the time I arrived back in California, he was effectively in a coma. Two nights later, he was gone.
At the time, I felt robbed of the chance to say goodbye or any of the things you imagine you might say when you know the end is coming. I guess I still sort of feel that way. But I am grateful for those final moments I got at his hospital bedside, and for one otherwise-ordinary evening in June, when the Warriors still reigned supreme, Holzhauer was undefeated and Dad could match wits with Alex Trebek from his recliner.
I don’t know if the Warriors can regain the magic that made them great. I don’t know if we’ll ever see them dominating the N.B.A. again, or owning the finals spotlight. But I’m thankful they did for those five years, and although I never-ever-ever root for teams, I’m quietly hoping they do it again.
Howard Beck covered the N.B.A. for The New York Times from 2004 to 2013.
The Scoop @TheSteinLine
The Knicks are expected to hire Jaren Jackson Sr. for a role with the Knicks’ @nbagleague team in Westchester, league sources say Jackson played 12 seasons in the NBA, won a championship with San Antonio in 1999 and, of course, is the father of Grizzlies star Jaren Jackson Jr.
The Knicks are targeting the late-in-training camp signings of the former Kings first-rounder Skal Labissiere and the former Celtics first-round pick James Young, league sources say, with both players expected to land with Westchester in the @nbagleague
The NBA has officially suspended random marijuana testing for the 2020-21 season …
Said NBA spokesman Mike Bass: “Due to the unusual circumstances in conjunction with the pandemic, we have agreed with the NBPA to suspend random testing for marijuana for the 2020-21 season and focus our random testing program on performance-enhancing products and drugs of abuse”
Marijuana remains a banned substance in the NBA based on the current collective bargaining agreement and while random testing has been suspended … marijuana testing in cases of “cause” remains in place