As I came down the escalator right at the end of the April 9 game against the Minnesota Timberwolves who managed to win by one dadgum point, my heart hurt. However, when I saw Adam sitting calmly at his broadcast desk, getting ready for his post-game duties beside the empty chair that belongs to Michael Holton who no doubt would be on his way in seconds, I felt a calmness that comes from witnessing a professional at work.
I've been blessed to get to know Adam over the years since the 2011-2012 season when I first became a Portland Trail Blazers' season ticket holder. He's not only professional, he's honorable, personable, and possesses an inner strength that allows him to take what life deals and handle it day by day with care and grace. And I know for certain that he's a great guy to come upon when you need a hug!
Adam, I hope that you enjoy seeing this photo and that you and Lindsay don't mind that I've altered your NBA.com Trail Blazers broadcasting bio to reflect what's happened with your dear Murphy. Plus, I added Carly's sweet name, too. Cade would be all over me if I forgot to do that!
Found on the Web: Adam Bjaranson begins his fifth season as the Trail Blazers Television Studio Host in 2014-15, teaming up with Michael Holton for the Toyota Pregame Show and the McDonald’s Halftime Show, shot live from the 100-level concourse of the Moda Center. Prior to joining the Trail Blazers, he spent nine years anchoring sports in the Portland market with both KPTV (FOX) and KGW (NBC). Bjaranson has won numerous awards for broadcasting excellence, including the Oregon Association of Broadcasters “Television Sports Announcer of the Year” in 2008, as well as the Associated Press Award for “Best Sportscast.” The Warrenton, Ore., native’s first taste of work in the NBA came as an intern for the Golden State Warriors radio network in 1995-96. Following that, he landed his first television job in Coos Bay, Ore., in 1997, before spending the next four years at KVEW-TV (ABC) in Kennewick, Wash. Bjaranson graduated from Portland State University in 1995, before heading down to San Francisco State University to hone his broadcast skills. He is involved in numerous charities, including Caddies 4 Cure and the NW Autism Foundation. During his free time, Bjaranson can be found on many of Oregon’s incredible golf courses or collecting sports memorabilia. Bjaranson resides in Beaverton with his wife Lindsay, son Cade, their daughter Carly, and their two beagles — Murphy and Oden.
Sadly, I have to report that Murphy recently went to doggie heaven, as Adam put it. Here's what his wife Lindsay wrote on Facebook, in honor of their sweetheart: I've been struggling to find words that adequately express our deep love for Murphy and the unbearable sadness we're feeling with his passing. They say dogs are like family. Well, first of all we never use the word "dog" to describe Murphy or his brother Oden. And I would take it even further. Murphy is the reason this family even exists. First he brought Adam and I together to love and care for him. Then along came Odie to be a companion to Murphy. He taught us how to be parents and put someone else's needs first. He taught us how to worry, make tough decisions, laugh and get over the small stuff, and that no matter how bad a day you're having, there's someone at home who loves you and can't wait to see you come through that door.
Murphy, buddy, coming home will never be the same. We are the parents we are today because of you. You were so patient and ever loyal, even when you had to share our attention with Cade and Carly. Seeing Cade look to the sky and pick out the cloud he thinks you're laying on both warms and breaks my heart at the same time. You are forever in our hearts and we will see each other again. Until we join you, enjoy Dog Heaven buddy.
Forever our "firstborn."