The craziest story ever



We’re all mourning the passing of Bill Walton. Not only was he a legendary basketball player, but he was also an incredibly entertaining commentator.

I only met Bill once, but it was a wild experience, straight out of a movie.

In 2007, I was still with the Seattle Sonics. My wife and I went to Las Vegas for the NBA All-Star game. After checking into Caesar’s Palace, we decided to stroll through The Forum shops.

Out of nowhere, a woman approached us, asking, “Do you like Elton John?”

Now, I’m naturally skeptical, so I cautiously say, “Yes,” bracing for a sales pitch.

She must have read my mind because she immediately said, “I’m not selling anything. There’s an Elton John concert in an hour at The Colosseum, and I have two extra tickets. They’re yours if you want them.”

Uhhhh… YESSSS!!

She handed us the tickets, and we practically floated to the show.

Once inside The Colosseum, we found out it was an open bar. Whaaaat?!  This keeps getting better…. Don’t mind if I do!! 

With drinks in hand, we head to our seats. An usher checks our tickets and leads us down the aisle, row after row. I’m thinking, “Wow, these are pretty good seats.”

We finally reached our seats: in the middle section, on the aisle… in the FRONT row!!

My wife and I exchange looks of utter disbelief.
WTF?!  What… is… happening??!

We looked around and saw NBA legends everywhere. Two rows behind us were Steve Kerr, Bill Walton, and David Stern. My wife, who isn’t a big sports fan, offered to get their autographs. Before I could say anything, she was off.

Being incredibly personable, she quickly joined their conversation. I just sat back and marveled. A few minutes later she returned with our tickets signed by all three. That’s when we learned this was a private Elton John concert for the NBA and its guests — plus us!

The concert began, and Elton John was incredible. As the show neared its end, a security guard approached us, and my heart sank. 

Whose seats are these? Are we about to get kicked out? Arrested?  My mind began to spiral on every worst-case scenario. 

The guard arrives, and I slowly look up, ready for my jail fate.

Then he says, “You can go on stage if you want.”

WTF?!  What… is… happening??!

Fueled by a few drinks, I sprang up and dragged my wife with me. Before we knew it, we were on stage, leaning against Elton’s red piano as he sang “Rocketman!”

My wife and I then found ourselves dancing on stage as Elton continued singing.  
I looked over and Bill Walton is now on stage playing the drums.  Bill and I made eye contact and, with a huge smile on his face, gave me a nod and wink. Perfect way to end an unforgettable night.

To this day, I have no idea who that woman was, but the lesson is clear: if someone asks if you like Elton John, say “YESSSS!”

RIP, Bill. Thanks for making an already special evening even more special.

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