That memory might pale in comparison to this one.
For the first time in 27 years, a father will coach against his son as a player when the Clippers take on Mike Dunleavy Jr. and the Golden State Warriors.
The elder Dunleavy had been out of coaching after being fired by Portland following the 2000-01 season, leaving him in the broadcast booth or in the stands last season—his son’s first in the NBA. Golden State selected Dunleavy Jr. with the third overall pick in the 2002 draft.
Now the two will finally square off on the court in a game that truly matters. Father and son met twice in the preseason, with the home team winning each time and the younger Dunleavy scoring 19 points in both contests.
This rare kind of father-son matchup in the regular season is the NBA’s first since Nov. 9, 1976, when the New York Nets’ Jan van Breda Kolff scored six points playing against his father, New Orleans Jazz coach Butch van Breda Kolff.
Regardless of what happens, it should be a night to remember for the Dunleavy family.
Dunleavy Sr. had one of his own on Tuesday, when he got his 400th career coaching victory as the Clippers defeated the Atlanta Hawks 115-103. Quentin Richardson’s career night of 32 points and 16 rebounds helped Dunleavy become the sixth active coach to reach 400 wins and 30th in league history.
“It means I have been around awhile. It’s nice but I don’t keep track (of wins) myself,” Dunleavy said. “Hopefully I have 400 more wins left in me.”
His son’s team, meanwhile, is coming off a big win. Dunleavy, averaging 15.7 points per game, was held to 10 on 4-of-13 shooting but the Warriors came away with an 87-85 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.
While Golden State has won three of four, Los Angeles has won its only two games since returning to the United States. The Clippers opened the season in Japan, losing back-to-back games to Seattle.
STANDINGS (through Nov. 12): Clippers - 6th place, 2 GB, Pacific Division. Warriors - 3rd place (tied), 1 1/2 GB, Pacific Division.
PROBABLE STARTERS: Clippers - F Corey Maggette, F Chris Wilcox, C Predrag Drobnjak, G Richardson, G Keyon Dooling. Warriors - F Clifford Robinson, F Dunleavy, C Erick Dampier, G Calbert Cheaney, G Nick Van Exel.
TEAM LEADERS: Clippers - Maggette, 24.3 ppg; Richardson, 8.5 rpg; Marko Jaric, 4.3 apg. Warriors - Dunleavy, 15.7 ppg; Dampier, 14.4 rpg; Van Exel, 7.5 apg.
2002-03 SEASON SERIES: Tied, 2-2.
LAST MEETING: April 14; Clippers, 122-113. At Oakland, Calif., Elton Brand scored 26 points and matched his career high with 23 rebounds to lead Los Angeles. A third-quarter fight between the Warriors’ Troy Murphy and the Clippers’ Sean Rooks sparked a Golden State comeback that fell short.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Clippers - 1-1 on the road; Warriors - 4-2 at home.
INJURIES: Clippers - F Brand (foot); C Josh Moore (back); F-C Olden Polynice (neck); F Glen Rice (knee). Warriors - G Jason Richardson (ankle); F Murphy (foot); C Evan Eschmeyer (knee); F Popeye Jones (knee).