The NBA is Back

 

 

“That was good for the soul,” Ernie Johnson says. He’s referring to Craig Sager’s introduction before the start of the 2015-16 NBA season on Tuesday night’s pregame show for Inside the NBA. And it really was.

The 64-year-old Sager lit up the screen — his jacket and tie combo fit perfectly with his usual outfits — when he came on, and we’re all very happy he’s back.

First diagnosed with leukemia toward the end of the 2013-14 season, Sager battled through and was back on the court in March of this year. That 11-month turnaround time proved premature, though.

Originally Sager had also been slated to cover March Madness for CBS, but he had to back out to focus on kicking the crap out of the cancer infecting his body. Thankfully, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra helped him in that quest in the best way possible: with chicken wings from Hooters.

Unfortunately, the cancer had returned, but Craig wasn’t going to let that prevent him from reporting on NBA games. After vowing to return this season, he was officially released from the hospital earlier this month.

So when Sager was tasked with presenting the start of the season Tuesday night, we sat up in our seat. Craig says opening night is a time for “everyone in the NBA” because the future is in front of every fanbase. He’s one of the only people who can say that and not sound corny.

It’s good to have the NBA back. It’s even better to see Sages.