CLEVELAND — Craig Sager has never worked an NBA Finals game.
Until Thursday night, that is.
Sager, the flamboyantly-dressed sideline reporter for TNT, has signed a one-game contract with ABC to work Game 6 of the NBA Finals, ABC announced on Wednesday. Sager and Dorris Burke will share sideline reporting duties.
“I’d like to thank Turner and ESPN for approaching me with this tremendous opportunity to be part of the Finals broadcast team,” Sager said 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 very special one and this is a great honor.”
Sager has been battling leukemia, and while he has twice fought it back it into remission it is not there now.
He is one of best broadcasters in the sport and someone beloved by fans, players, and coaches alike. Because he has worked for Turner Broadcasting (TNT and NBA TV), and they have not had NBA Finals broadcast rights, he has never been able to do one of those games.
Kudos to ABC/Disney and Turner for making this happen.