In 17 years of TNT's NBA coverage, and as a 34-year veteran reporter for Turner, Craig Sager's never covered the NBA Finals.
Tomorrow night, that changes. Thanks to a landmark deal between TNT and ESPN, which is broadcasting the NBA Finals, Sager will resume his normal sideline reporting duties alongside ESPN's sideline reporter, Doris Burke.
Famous for his flashy suits, Sager has been in the headlines lately as he faces his latest test in a long battle with leukemia. Earlier this year, Sager revealed that, despite previous treatment successes, his cancer had progressed and was no longer in remission.
He said doctors gave him three to six months to live without any treatment. As he continues his fight, he has continued to provide sideline coverage through the NBA season and into the NBA playoffs.
"Craig is an iconic member of the NBA family who indelibly makes his mark on each and every broadcast," said ESPN executive vice president of production and programming John Wildhack, in a statement. "I know our entire team is delighted to work with Craig for Game 6.
"We all agree his professional reputation is second-to-none, though it's his personal reputation -- that of class, selflessness and respect -- which makes this even more special for our team. We hope that this will be a special night for Craig and for NBA fans."
Sager, for his part, is ready to go.
"I'd like to thank Turner and ESPN for approaching me with this tremendous opportunity to be part of The Finals broadcast team," said Sager, in a statement. "I've been watching the series very closely and, while I do not want to distract in any way from the event itself, I look forward to being in the building for what will be an incredibly exciting Game 6.
"The NBA community is a very special one and this is a great honor."
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