A couple years later, after I’d given up coaching to avoid conflicts for my Web site, now ESPN HoopGurlz, I’d tell anyone who’d listen that I used to coach a kid who was (indeed, is) as explosive and fluid an athlete as any I’d seen across the country. They’d roll their eyes or, like so many TV commentators, mispronounce her name as “Frier-son.” Today, April 8, 2010, I wondered if anyone remembered that. When the Tulsa Shock called Vivian’s name as the 31st pick in the WNBA Draft, I wondered if anyone recalled her as the kid the HoopGurlz guy used to brag about.
I went to as many games as a guy with a Seattle Times paper route could afford, but I knew them all because of Bob. Tommy Kron and Tom Meschery. Dick “the Duck” Synder and “Downtown” Freddy Brown. Spencer Haywood and Slick Watts. They all came to life via a voice that cannot be described as mellifluous as much as it was unwavering.