Hoffarth: Bob Miller night fit for the king of Kings
By Tom Hoffarth
At this juncture in the “Bob Miller Thank You Tour,” there’s a statue, banner and bobblehead that come into play.
The first, you can gaze upon outside Staples Center starting Saturday with a ceremony that starts at 7 p.m. – or watch inside on the video screens, or at home on Fox Sports West.
It’ll take place about 10 feet west of where the Chick Hearn statue currently sits, and that’s immensely appropriate – Hearn, the Lakers Hall of Fame play-by-play man, was assigned by then-team owner Jack Kent Cooke to find a new Kings broadcaster prior to the 1973 season. Hearn picked Miller.
The two will now be the official steel-reinforced greeters for fans entering the downtown arena, even if it’s a country western concert (which would be the Midwestern native’s favorite).
The second, you can watch unfurled during a presentation at center ice during a celebrity-filled to-do starting about 7:30 p.m. Like Hearn, Miller will be the only non-player in franchise history with a giant piece of felt hanging from the ceiling with his name on it.
It speaks volumes.
The final one, officially a BOBlehead, is something you can take home and talk to whenever you get nostalgic. It may not talk back, but it will nod in agreement with whatever you say.
This is another heady and humbling moment for the 79-year-old Miller, who could have walked away on his own terms from the Bob Miller Press Box at Staples Center, named that way 20 years ago.
But quadruple bypass heart surgery, followed by a mild stroke during his recovery, made the ultimate retirement decision much easier for him, wife Judy, his kids and grandkids. There is no better time than now to become a team ambassador rather than make another back-to-back road trip to Calgary and Ottawa in the dead of […]