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The best sports team ever — on vinyl

Boomer Grandpa — Loren Else column sig

My wife is on one of her projects. I get out of her way. She has been playing our record albums that we have had since high school, college and our early days as a married couple. She hopes to get rid of the majority of them but wants to ensure they play without skipping.

She has unearthed some strange albums of mine, including an album from “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” television show and, get this, a play-by-play highlight album of the 1969-70 New York Knicks championship season in the National Basketball Association.

At the time, I was a fan. Fifty years later, this is still my favorite pro basketball team. For basketball enthusiasts, this group was the epitome of teamwork, as they focused on defense and sharing the ball.

A starting guard that season for the Knicks was one of the all-time-coolest basketball players ever named Walt “Clyde” Frazier. Even his name was cool.

I also was a fan of Knicks players Bill Bradley and Dave DeBusschere. When I used to (wait, I still do) shoot baskets, I would pretend I was one of them.

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The sports page finally has a little more punch to it these days. We are progressing in the right direction. The Minnesota State High School League is moving forward with selected fall sports.

I’ve kept busy and haven’t missed professional games that much, but now that some sports have been rebooted, it’s great to see and hear Twins baseball on television and radio. This team is exciting to watch. I’ve always loved the game of baseball, and that will never change.

I watched the Minnesota Wild win game one (and their only win) in their hockey playoffs. I tuned in for a short time to both a professional men’s and women’s basketball game. With no fans, the contest seems like a pick-up game at the local YMCA. I even watched a tennis match for a few minutes with no fans — strange.

Sports have transformed in recent years. A few of my friends have boycotted professional sports for various reasons. I get it. I will not question friends or family who take a stand regarding their beliefs regarding businesses, restaurant chains, products or professional sports.

There have been boycotts in our history that have accomplished positive change. Nowadays, there seems to be lots of boycotts going on, from both sides of the political spectrum. Emotions run high.

I’m not a boycott guy. I don’t feel qualified to judge anyone. I don’t care what the views of a millionaire CEO are or who they support politically. If an athlete wants to make a statement, it’s a “Whatever” for me. I don’t know them, nor will I ever meet them.

I’m not sure who first coined the slogan “Life is short,” but I like it. We are all surrounded by negativity, daily. I personally do not care to enlarge that circle.

Just the other day, my granddaughter mentioned how negative the news is. I want my granddaughter not to view me as someone who dislikes certain people, but one who is kind to all people.

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Sports teams can bring us together. We need them at all levels. I hope and pray that high schools are able to play all sports this school year and these young athletes get the opportunity to compete in a game they love.

I hope we can “Row the Boat” for Gopher football. I look forward to the Vikings vs. Packers football match-up so I can make disparaging comments about the Packers.

I don’t think my 50-year-old New York Knicks record album is worth much — except to me. My wife owns several Beatles records. I asked her if she was going to get rid of any of those albums. She said, “No. 'Let It Be.' ”

Loren Else lives in Rochester and also writes the Post Bulletin’s “Day in History” column. Send comments and column ideas to Loren at news@postbulletin.com .


Photo - Let It Be & BB.JPG
A couple of the Elses' prized records in their record collection. (Contributed photo)

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