Not long ago, guest poster and SportsChump significant other, BCole wrote about the night she took her youngest of four, who we’ve lovingly nicknamed LeBrode, to his first ever NBA game.
For months, she’d secretly planned and plotted his birthday present, the hour-long drive to Orlando to see Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks take on the Orlando Magic.
BCole is known to pamper so I don’t need to spoil the story by telling you how much she spent on these tickets… but they were lower bowl and didn’t come cheap. It was all LeBrode could talk about for months. The anticipation built as they counted down the days to see one of the NBA brightest stars, and LeBrode’s favorite player.
Unfortunately, tickets to professional sporting events these days are not for the financially feeble. With the term “load management” serving as a chink in the NBA’s armor, you never know who might (or sadly might not) suit up, which makes dropping a pretty penny on admission a risky endeavor.
Wouldn’t you know it, Giannis got hurt weeks before the game, BCole’s well thought out gift left her with buyer’s remorse. Giannis then went from injured, back to healthy, back to injured and then healthy again. As the big game approached, like checking a stock she’d invested in, we’d review injury reports daily with fingers crossed in the hopes he’d be good to go.
Their night finally arrived, with Giannis NOT on injured reserve! Nice! Although, by the time they got to Amway Arena, they found out that he’d fallen under the weather. Flu like symptoms. LeBrode was heartbroken, as was BCole, whose only wish was to see her son smile regardless of what she’d dropped on tickets. I could hear the womp womp all the way from Tampa Bay.
Fortunately, the dynamic duo made the most of their evening and a good time was had by all. Giannis sat on the bench in warmups and still interacted with the crowd as best he could, despite not playing a single minute.
LeBrode shrugged it off, knowing there would be other games in the future and understanding that you can’t always get what you want.
That’s when BCole and I had the idea to contact the Bucks’ organization directly to see if there was anything we could do. After perusing the Bucks website and finding a slew of different contacts, I stumbled upon one very helpful soul in the Milwaukee Bucks Guest Experience department, who shall remain nameless so that you all don’t bombard her with autograph requests.
I explained our predicament, how LeBrode had waited for months to see them play, how it was his first NBA game and how disappointed he was when he saw Giannis not in uniform.
That’s when the Bucks came calling, loving the fact that they had a young Bucks fan right here in Central Florida. They were responsive and corresponded promptly and sympathetically. This all took place during the post-season, the Guest Experiences did their best to ensure their guests had the best experience.
Wouldn’t you know it, before long, LeBrode received a personalized care package with autographs from Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez. His smile beamed ear to ear, his favorite team had not let him down.
So, a big and hearty thank you to the Bucks organization who made a fourteen-year-old smile from ear to ear. We’ll be back next year to do it all again.