Bulls join the NBA in mourning the loss of Craig Sager, an 'incredible human being'

Bulls join the NBA in mourning the loss of Craig Sager, an 'incredible human being'

MILWAUKEE—His suits preceded his smile, which preceded his work ethic. And unfortunately it all preceded a battle that TNT announcer Craig Sager couldn’t beat, as the Illinois native passed away Thursday following a battle with leukemia.

Known for colorful suits and probing questions, Sager was as embedded in the NBA fabric as any member of the media and beloved by seemingly everyone he came across in his three decades covering the NBA for Turner Sports.

The loss, while not unexpected given how long Sager has been battling the disease, still rocked NBA players, coaches and anyone associated with the league to their core.

“Like so many guys in our league, when you see Craig coming, you just put a smile on your face,” Dwyane Wade said. “When you see him in the building, you know it’s a big game. As a player you do everything you can to make sure that you get the interview with him at halftime or after the game.”

Whether it was his battles with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich or his hilarious All-Star exchange with Kevin Garnett, he always took the ribbing in stride and took even more pride in how he presented himself.

“You had a joke for him, you had a moment,” Wade said. “If as an individual, you can go through life and impact that many people, just being who you are, having fun in life and loving, then you’ve done an amazing job. He’s a legend, and his legacy he left behind and stories we’ll tell for years to come.”

Sager’s battle, going through three bone-marrow procedures, became the story of legend to go along with his never-ending work ethic, often shuffling from treatments in Houston to wherever he was scheduled to work, became a point of inspiration for the players he encountered and the fans who loved him.

“That’s an incredible human being,” Jimmy Butler said. “As many lives as he inspired, the smile he constantly had, to giving back in the tough times, we need more people like that. He definitely made the world a better place and gave a tremendous amount of people hope. He will be missed.”

Sager even got the notoriously-focused Popovich and Tom Thibodeau to loosen up during interviews, often becoming the subject of tributes from the players while trying his best to do his job.

“Very sad. He was a great man,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “I did have the opportunity as a coach when he was covering the NCAA Tournament down in San Antonio. I got to know him a little bit. He was just so great for the game, just a guy that always asked the right questions.”

And with no more questions to ask and no more bright suits to wear, the world seems a little duller with Sager leaving it behind.

How to watch Bulls vs. Bucks: Time, TV schedule and streaming info

USA Today

How to watch Bulls vs. Bucks: Time, TV schedule and streaming info

It's the first Illinois-Wisconsin border showdown of the season. The Milwaukee Bucks will host the Chicago Bulls in a Thursday night showdown.

The Bucks entered the season with aspirations of an NBA Finals appearance and potentially a championship. The Bulls came into the season hoping to contend for a playoff spot.

A win for the Bulls would be a statement to the league they can compete amongst the best, which they've already demonstrated against the Lakers in a tough loss, yet winnable game.

Here's how you can watch, listen and stream the game:

Date: Thursday, November 14
Time: 7:00 p.m. CST
Location: Fiserv Forum| Milwaukee, WI
TV: NBC Sports Chicago PLUS
Stream: MyTeams
Radio: 670 The Score/Univision Chicago 1200AM

NBC Sports Chicago Coverage

SportsTalk Live: 6:00 p.m. CST
Bulls Pregame: 6:30 p.m. CST
Bulls Postgame Live: 9:30 p.m. CST*
Bulls Outsiders: 10:00 p.m. CST**

* - Immediately following conclusion of the game
** - Immediately following conclusion of PostGame Live

Bulls Outsiders can also be streamed on Twitter and YouTube.

Can't watch this game because your provider dropped NBC Sports Chicago?  Go to MYSPORTSCHICAGO.COM or Call 1-844-700-NBCS to get your Chicago sports back!

Bulls Talk Podcast: Guest 670 the Score's Tony Gill


Bulls Talk Podcast: Guest 670 the Score's Tony Gill

On this edition of the Bulls Talk podcast, Leila Rahimi is joined by Kevin Anderson and Tony Gill to discuss the Bulls after 10 games, their offensive system, and the futures of Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter Jr.

1:15 - Tony believes who should be a Hall of Famer?

2:00 - On the Bulls offensive system and reliance on the 3-point shot

6:20 - What the analytics say about the Bulls offensive system

9:15 - What in-game adjustments Tony would like to see made

12:10 - On the Bulls roster and expectations

16:05 - On Markkanen and LaVine not being named team captains, is that a red flag?

18:40 - Which Bulls player do you believe has the highest ceiling?

25:10 - At what point are changes needed?

21:05 - On the Knicks game and Bobby Portis’ revenge game part 2

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

Bulls Talk Podcast


Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.