Becoming an ardent fan of something is usually a trait we develop at a younger age, when we have the time and energy to devote ourselves fully to our new love. To pick up a particular brand of fandom in your mid-60s? That's all the more impressive. To go 40 years obsessing over your new obsession, within driving distance of where it performs, and never see it in person? Let's sum this up — to pour over every San Antonio Spurs game for 40 years (even when the Spurs were actually "the Dallas Chaparrals") , not be gifted a single ducat over that time, and eventually see your first Spurs game in person at the age of 104? That's Theresa Sanchez's story, as relayed by the San Antonio Express-News:
A volunteer at HCR Manor Care, who happens to also be a season ticket-holder, gave Sanchez and four other residents, along with their plus-ones, tickets to Monday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers. Staff and other residents at the nursing home selected the five lucky attendees.
"I was so surprised when they told me I was coming," Sanchez said. "I never thought I would come to a game, and this year, they're pretty good."
Monday's game, if you didn't know, was a 124-89 whuppin' that the Spurs put on the Portland Trail Blazers, a game that saw San Antonio (who figured in absolutely none of the prognosticators' picks for this particular realm in the preseason) clinch the top spot in the West.
Put that in your pipe — nobody had the very, very veteran Spurs on the radar of top Western teams this year, and yet 13 years after winning their first title with Tim Duncan in a starring role the group still managed to take the top regular-season honor. And, 13 years after her 91st birthday, Theresa Sanchez was finally able to see her guys play live. Sporting a Manu Ginobili jersey, and a pair of signed Ginobili-endorsed sneakers that Manu gave her when she turned 100. And, during the blowout Spurs win, the team introduced her to the cheering crowd on the scoreboard above the court.
Yeah, this year's Spurs? "They're pretty good."