Monday, May 25, 2009

Brian Grant and Parkinson's Disease

I didn't really follow basketball very closely after it was clear that the Nance-Daugherty-Price-Ferry-Williams-Brandon gang of the Cavs was going to fall to some new star named "Jordan." I wasn't totally ignorant of basketball - I still followed the Cavs, and knew about certain players and their style. For whatever reason, I always liked Brian Grant (and not just because, in ways that remain mysterious and inexplicable to me to this day, he was involved in the three-way trade between the Cavs, Heat, and Trail Blazers, when Cavs GM Wayne Embry somehow convinced Portland to take an overweight, out-of-shape, just-not-good-anymore, overpaid Shawn Kemp). I just like how he played, how he was fairly dominant yet not obnoxious or particularly gloating (though there's room for that, too).

Thus, it saddened me to know Grant has been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease at the young age of 37. I had a great-grandmother who I remember having it, and it devastated her so severely that, by the time she finally died, everybody was sad but ultimately glad she didn't have to suffer anymore. Everytime I see Michael J. Fox, Muhammad Ali, or anybody else who has it, I marvel at their strength and optimism. I'm glad to see Grant seems to be dealing with it well, and add him to my list of people I really, truly, deeply admire and respect and in some (undefined) way would like to emulate. My best wishes for him and his family and friends.