StreetWise vendors know their sports! [Left to right] Volunteer Bill Coats and vendors Russell Adams, John Hagan and Vince Collaso talk about their favorite Chicago sports memories.
Russell: Today we are going to talk about the greatest moments in Chicago sports history. My favorite sports memory was the ’85 Bears when they won the Super Bowl. I really enjoyed that because that was the first time in my life that a Chicago team had ever won something. The next day I was up there in 30-below-zero weather — cold — but everybody was celebrating. I took the day off from work and everything. I had a real good time. I was really excited about that. That’s my No. 1 pick.
Bill: Did you do the Super Bowl shuffle?
Vince: There are a lot of things, but here’s something that a lot of people may not remember. Phil Jackson has won 11 championships, six with the Bulls and five with the Lakers … When [Jackson] was in his last couple of years with the Bulls, the Lakers were pretty much the same team. And the Bulls played the Lakers in the United Center in, I believe, the 1997-98 season. That game, to me, was one of the greatest games I’ve ever seen. I mean, the Lakers had a commanding lead over the Bulls. The Bulls put on just a beautiful charge, and I’ll never forget, the Bulls, I think, were down by three. Toni Kukocč had the ball, and he shot three in Shaq’s face. Swish. The Bulls went into overtime. I’m telling you, I was screaming like a girl. The Bulls took the game.
John: I’m going to mention Sandberg. That’s what I want to get into … The moment for Ryne Sandberg was 1984 in a game against the St. Louis Cardinals. In that game, the Cubs were down 7-1 and 9-3. The game that put Ryne Sandberg on the roadmap to Cooperstown was seeing not one, but two game-time home-runs off the best reliever in the game, Bruce Sutter … What that game did for Ryne Sandberg is it really put him in the MVP and put him in the eyes of many people, not only in Chicago, but nationwide.
Bill: Yeah, that’s a great game. My own recall is again about baseball … I’m going to go to the White Sox winning the World Series … I’m a big Sox fan. The first game I ever went to I was 7 years old, saw Ted Williams and all that. I’m a big fan, and everybody knows it. What I did, I just cleared out the house. No guests, no interference, nothing. Just leave me in front of the TV, and I had never seen anything like it. They won all but one game out of 14 in a row. This doesn’t happen … I just was glued to that TV. It was really great, and I don’t think we’ll ever see the likes of it frankly … The last player in that group is Konerko.
Vince: Yeah, Paul Konnerko.
John: He’s gone. He retired, just like Derek Jeter, riding off into the sunset.
Vince: Shout-out to Paul Konerko. Great player. I don’t know if he’s going to make the Hall [of Fame]. It’s kind of tough at this point for guys who are in the 400s in the home runs — he had 439. The White Sox should have a White Sox Hall of Fame. He’s definitely a shoo-in.
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