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As part of its 200th episode, HBO’s “Real Sports” will collaborate with Sports Illustrated to present a feature piece on Denver Nuggets head coach Brian Shaw, a 15-year NBA pro whose life changed forever on June 26, 1993.
Shaw spoke this summer — just after his hiring to lead the Nuggets and just past the 20-year anniversary of the tragedy — about the accident that took his mother, father and sister, and resulted in him having custody of his 11-month-old niece Brianna, in an excellent feature by Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post.
Shaw said their presence is omnipresent. He doesn’t just think about his parents and sister every day, he feels them. He honored them at the Denver news conference when his dream became a reality and, after a dozen interviews with NBA teams, he finally became a head coach. They’re always with him.
“There will be times when I’m driving too fast, and I remember when I first started to drive, my mother would say ‘slow down,’ ” Shaw said. “And I’ll be driving, thinking about something else, and I can hear her voice say ‘slow down.’ And lo and behold, up the road there will be a highway patrolman there. So I feel that they’re still looking out for me.”
“The main thing I learned after the accident is that tomorrow isn’t promised. The more you experience things like that, it puts everything in perspective — what’s really important in life. … When you see people at odds, bickering or not speaking to one another, I’m always quick to jump in and say, ‘Listen, whatever you’re bickering about, it’s petty in the bigger scheme of things. Get over it and enjoy one another while you’re here.'”
Shaw’s interview appeared on the episode of “Real Sports” Tuesday night at 10 p.m. ET and PT on HBO.