It was Christmas break, 1963, and I sat in the kitchen trying to stay awake while writing a homework essay. Homework during break just wasn’t fair, but it had to be done. I turned on the large portable orange and white radio that was my lifeline to the outer world, pointed the telescoping chrome antenna toward the window, and turned the dial to 1420 WHK.
Youngstown, at the time I arrived there, was mob-infested. For a news guy, that meant it was a great place to learn how to cover a city where you could get some dirt under your fingernails. Problem was, I was the weekend anchor …
Whenever I look through the press releases sent to me by the city’s professional playhouses that announce their roster of new season productions, the former actor in me gets the itch to perform in one of them. That feeling always fades, like a phantom ache where a surgically removed limb used to be, when I remember that my name pays the bills better when in the byline of a show’s review than in its playbill.
The Bulls were so young, future stars Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant were coming off the bench. And the Cavs? They had John Williams, Craig Ehlo and Dell Curry coming off their bench. These were two good teams who indeed would be battling it out in the playoffs for several years. This was not Michael Jordan’s “Shot” in Game 5 of the 1989 playoffs. It wasn’t a playoff game at all. It was just a March night in the NBA from decades ago at my favorite place to watch a game. The Richfield Coliseum.