The NBA’s Golden State Warriors won 73 games this year, topping the record set by Chicago in 1996, but that Bulls season will always be special for me. It was the perfect combination of a long, cold winter, lots of televised weeknight games, my pizza-making skills, and a wife and daughter who marveled at Michael Jordan.
One day in February I came home to find a birthday cake. Not for me, but for Michael. My wife recalls the baker asking “How old will Michael be?” and she answered “33.”
When the playoff arrived, I spent four hours on the phone hearing Ticketmaster’s busy signal. I was about to give up when an operator answered and told me everything was sold out except SRO tickets to “Game K,” the designation for the sixth game of the third round, in other words, a game that might not happen. I bought some just in case at $18 each. The Bulls bulldozed through Miami, New York and Orlando before meeting the Seattle Supersonics for the title. The teams traded victories until Chicago was ready to deliver the knockout in the sixth game, “Game K.”
It was Sunday, Father’s Day. My family gave me a beautiful Chicago Bulls watch with the date already inscribed. We traveled to the United Center, posing near the Michael Jordan statue before the Bulls won the NBA title.