Suns.com Round Table: Suns Man Cave
Which item do you currently own that you would be most proud to display in your man cave?
Greg Esposito:The best piece of Suns history I currently have in my man cave is a ticket stub autographed by Charles Barkley from the game he scored his 20,000th point. Not only is it great to have something historic signed by the Round Mound of Rebound himself, but the ticket brings back memories of being at the game as a young teenager and sitting just four rows from the court (the best seats I ever had as a fan). Whenever you can combine a personal story with a piece of Suns history, it doesn’t get any better than that.
Brad Faye: Well, I’m pretty proud of my signed Dick Van Arsdale bobble head. I don’t believe there are a lot of people who can lay claim to such an item. I also have a Tim Thomas shoe that I’ve convinced myself is the shoe he was wearing when he hit the shot in Game 6 vs. the Lakers. I have no real evidence of this, but it’s nice to pretend. I’d have to say, however, it’s the autographed Steve Nash jersey I had signed the year before I was hired on as an intern. Nash was on my fantasy team, and was kind enough to personalize the jersey for me, “Brad, glad I could ‘assist’ your fantasy team this year.” Puns are fun.
Matt Petersen: A truly 90s-looking Suns t-shirt autographed by Jason Kidd, Cliff Robinson, Tom Gugliotta and then-head coach Danny Ainge. The four of them were doing a fan autograph session at Arrowhead Mall right before the 1999 NBA Playoffs. I was 15 and this was my first up-close encounter with NBA players. My two big realizations that day: 1) how huge NBA players are and 2) t-shirts are a pain to autograph if you don’t bring a solid backing for it. I went home elated over the autographs and mortified at the irritation I may have caused in getting them.
What item would you most like to obtain for your man cave?
Espo: If you look in the rafters you’ll notice something is missing. No, not the 1992-93 Championship banner, although the Bulls did steal that from fans. What you’ll notice that is no longer hanging up there is the 1992-93 Western Conference Championship banner and the old banners designating the retired jersey numbers in Suns history. They’ve been replaced with the ring of honor and placards representing each of them. If I could have any piece of Suns memorabilia for my man cave it would have to be one of those banners. Nothing symbolizes the success the franchise has had than those and it’d be a fun conversation piece seeing as it would take up an entire wall in the room.
Faye: Is it too much to ask for Charles Barkley’s MVP trophy? Since it probably is, I’ll say a replica banner of the championship banner I hope to someday see us hanging up in this building.
Petersen: a. An autographed Kevin Johnson jersey. There’s a lot of reasons behind that, not the least of which is that every kid – including me – clamored to wear No. 7 in the late 80s and 90s. There’s a reason every Suns fan smiles and/or nods his head when someone else pays homage to KJ. It was more than his fearless slashing and deft passing skills on the move. He meant something to the franchise, its fans and me, to the point where that “something” still resonates today.
Is there an item that you would do everything in your power to keep as far from your man cave as possible?
Espo: This one was easier to decide than it was to realize Miley Cyrus’ performance at the VMA’s was offensive to everyone with or without vision and hearing. The piece of memorabilia that would turn my stomach at its mere presence in my home would have to be an autographed Robert Horry Suns jersey. Is there anything that embodies more of the pain and agony of being a Suns fan than that one item?
It not only represents the trade that sent Charles Barkley to Houston and ended the most interesting and exciting era in team history, it also represents one of the most embarrassing moments involving a player and a coach (the now infamous towel toss incident) and the hip check that ended the Nash era championship dreams. Add in the fact that Horry played for three of the most hated teams in team history, the Rockets, Lakers and Spurs, and you couldn’t have a worse thing in your man cave.
Faye: Man, it’s going to be tough to top Espo on the autographed Horry jersey. I can obviously go with a Paxson-related item here, or maybe even a still-shot of Mario Elie delivering the “Kiss of Death.” But if I had to choose one item that I wanted to make sure would stay as far away from my man cave, I would have to say it’s a Tim Duncan jersey. I know people will want to go with Kobe Bryant here, but a Duncan jersey not only represents something anti-Suns, but… if I can be blunt… is really, really boring. Nobody wants anything hanging up in their man cave that causes people to yawn. I’m about to get killed on Twitter, aren’t I?
Petersen: The 1964 Kennedy half-dollar coin used to determine who would receive the first pick in the 1969 NBA Draft. You know the story. The Suns called heads, it came up tails, and Phoenix lost out on Lew Alcindor, who later became all-time leading scorer Kareem Abdul-Jabaar. That piece of mint couldn’t have been a worse omen when it comes to luck. It carries a minimum of 10 curses based on all the bad bouts with chance the Suns have suffered over the years. Definitely don’t want that kind of karma in my home.