02/13/2022 True Friendships Last A Lifetime

Story time: I left the NBA back in 2006, to take a role as director of sales & service w the Chicago Sky, the 1st attempt a WNBA team made to run a franchise independent of an NBA team. It was a risk…but one my mentors told me was worth taking – getting a chance at a director level role at 26 yrs old & to prove we could make it work in a difficult spot. 

I met some amazing ppl in Chi: one was my COO, Steve. He’d never worked in sports before…but was a friend of the owner, & was a seasoned businessman. He knew how to run an org from the top. Yes sports is a diff animal than most…but together, we made a pretty decent team.

He had the business acumen I lacked at that pt in my career. I had the institutional knowledge of how team biz operates, having worked w teams throughout the NBA & WNBA over the past 5 yrs.

In the apt building I moved into, I met 3 guys who’d become my best friends in Chi: 2 were from Connecticut, 1 from Kentucky. 

I was impressed by the one from Kentucky & his work ethic. He moved to Chicago shortly after college – to prove he could make it on his own. It didn’t take long for me to offer him a job. Might be weird to have a friend working for you, but we had the relationship to be able to make it work. In the office, we both had a nose to the grnd attitude. 

We each met each other’s friends for the 2 yrs we all lived in Chicago. A number from Cinci & Kentucky helped us rip up Wrigleyville one too many times. My friends & even my fam came in town to help us explore the city as well.

Fast fwd to about 6 yrs ago – in the throes of my 2.5 yrs of hell, & Nick form Kentucky was getting married. I hadn’t left my house in forever…but was invited nonetheless. In fact, to make me feel more comfortable, he invited my father to the wedding to literally help me be there. He had me IN his wedding as a groomsmen.

Since then, time’s passed. Life’s been busy. My friend from Kentucky has had 2 kids. My COO moved on from sports. But here we are – all in LA for diff reasons (work, bengals fandom, tradition), all together again for the 1st time in 16 yrs. True friendships last a lifetime no matter the time apart.

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