madiarsg's Blog

madiarsg

Nov 01

Godspeed Coach Lucas

By madiarsg Posted in: Blazers
I wasn't even born when the Blazers won their first championship.  I can about a year later, but I always heard about that series.  That series turned my family into huge Blazer fans, and they breed that love into me.  It wasn't Walton that they talked about, but "Luke."  How his presence on the court made that championship possible.  How he just could stand on the court, staring down a player that dared to challenge him, that could make people at home terrified, not to mention how that unlucky player felt.  

I never got to officially meet Maurice Lucas, but I did have the wonderful opportunity to be in his presence.  Years ago, I worked as an usher at the Rose Garden, and I was at a lower level entrance, my first time at one of the "high profile" entrances.  Coach Lucas was sitting in that section.  It was the season after we didn't make the playoffs, 2004-2005, and he was there, with his hand over his heart during the National Anthem, and leaning his elbows on his knees, and you could see him analyzing the game, so intent on watching what these guys were doing and why they were doing so bad.  You could tell that he wanted to be out there, to show those "young guys" how the game was really played.  I was too terrified to say anything - this was The Enforcer, for goodness sakes, how do you go talk to your idol?

Every time I saw him on the bench, or at the arena, I remembered that moment.  The intensity that was still there after all those years, the passion for the game still in full bloom, the commanding presence he had.  When I heard he had cancer, I thought "It won't take Luke."  Sadly, it did, and we have lost one of the true statesmen of the game, one of the great players whose dominance on the court was only matched by his compassion and humanity off the court.

RIP Maurice Lucas.  May you be at peace, where you have searched for it for the last few years here on Earth.  We carry you with us, always.

2 Comments

  1. Nicely written, from-the-heart piece. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on Mr. Lucas' passing. I think the closest I got to him was being at the Rose Garden - just being in the same building, but I feel that just being a part of the Blazer family, we are all in a way, close to him. May he rest in peace.

    by Anees on 11/1/2010 3:05 PM
  2. Nicely written- he will be missed

    by RedRudy5 on 11/1/2010 10:13 PM
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