Wear your own colorful suit with pride

December 23, 2016 GMT

If you are a fan of basketball, you were a fan of Craig Sager.

San Antonio is a basketball town, so we imagine there are a lot of Sager fans in the Alamo City. Sager, the longtime NBA broadcaster, wearer of fabulous suits, died this month after a lengthy and public battle with acute myeloid leukemia. He was 65.

He was as courageous and optimistic in his fight with cancer as his suits were colorful and flamboyant.

In a landscape of media homogenization, Sager’s eye-catching outfits made him an instant character for television. He was a joyful moving rainbow on the sideline. He was a man of stripes, flowers, zigzags and swirls. He wore a lilac blazer with stylish confidence.

Sager’s unbridled enthusiasm for colorful clothing sometimes made him the butt of jokes. Future hall of famer Kevin Garnett once likened Sager to a Christmas tree ornament. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, a friend, once “answered” one of Sager’s questions with, “That’s the stupidest question I have ever heard.”

But Sager won over people’s hearts, in part, because he refused to snuff out his inner light. Likewise, in his battle against cancer, he won our respect. He exuded the best of the human spirit during the toughest of times. In the face of death, he was optimistic, brave, thoughtful and loving.

Popovich said that is exactly how Sager lived: “All of us who knew him understood that that fact was what he was all about as far as work was concerned, but he was a way better person than he was a worker — even though he was amazing in that regard.”

You don’t have to sport a crazy suit to stand out in the crowd. But it makes for a fabulous metaphor about life. Don’t be afraid to show your true colors — even if it’s a striped chartreuse suit. Follow your bliss all the way into the great unknown.