It’s become a bit of a tradition, my daughter and I go together to final Spurs home game of the season. A couple of years ago, we made it to Dirk Nowitzki’s final NBA game, and I still tear up remembering his reaction to the send off San Antonio gave him. Most of that night was spent explaining why Dirk was such an important player. At five, she didn’t quite get it. Even comparing him to Tim Duncan did little to validate the man’s career.
At age seven, my little one is a bit more aware. She asks a ton of questions (my apologies to the couple sitting behind us) and notices every little aspect of what is going on.
I had begun to think her interest in the Spurs was waning. For one, the pandemic had taken us out of the going to games. Second, Bryn Forbes moved to Milwaukee. She and Bryn’s son used to be in the same class and that was when her interest in my television watching began to flourish.
On Friday, I cut out of work a little early, went and picked us up some Tim Duncan jerseys, and made a pilgrimage to the AT&T center to see the Tim Duncan Hall of Fame trophy display. I think walking into the building piqued her interest.
So by Sunday, she was ready to go. She, again in her Duncan, and I in my Fiesta Lonnie Walker IV, grabbed some popcorn, a pretzel, water, and a Red Bull (hey, I’m old, what can I say) and made our way to the seats.
For the next three hours I saw a side of my daughter I had never seen at a game. Her excitement levels were off the charts. As I mentioned, she asked all kinds of questions about plays, fouls, why Pop kept pulling Keldon, and mostly wondering aloud if the Spurs were going to get it together and win.
There should be no spoiler alert for anyone reading this site, but when the Spurs tied it all up, Elizabeth just about lost it. She was bouncing off the seat and screaming, waving her hands in the air and cheering on players that I don’t think she’d even seen play very often.
When Tre Jones went to the free throw line, she was vibrating with the consistency of a hummingbird. And when he missed the second shot and Keita Bates-Diop tipped in the miss for the lead, I knew she was one of us.
With a killer three, E’Twaun Moore ruined what would have otherwise sent us home walking on a cloud. But my protégé didn’t let it ruin her day. She simply shrugged off the loss, gave Devin Vassell props for trying to get off that last shot, and gawked over her fiesta beach towel as we made our way home.
Life is good, Pounders. The season may be over, but the Spurs live on. I can’t wait to see what they have in store for next season, and I can’t wait to share it with my live-in Spurs fan.
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