Sun 30 Mar 2008
(Monday. 1:34 in the morning. Air Canada Centre. Arena is empty, except for Bryan Colangelo, who is on the phone in his office.)
Bryan Colangelo: …he’s fast, you say? The fastest you’ve ever seen? Hey, now we’re talking. Tell me, how does he get along with the other sherpas?
(Suddenly, there is a knock at the door.)
Colangelo: (startled) Huh? Who’s there? Show yourself!
(Door opens. Jose Calderon peeks his head inside.)
Jose Calderon: Yen-eral Mana-yer? It ish just me, Ho-say.
Colangelo: Jose, it is 1:30 in the morning!
Calderon: I know, but I could no wait to talk at you. Ish very important.
Colangelo: Alright, Jose. (into phone) I’ll call you back. (to Jose) That was Jampa, our scout in the Himalayas. I’m trying to pick us up a defensive stopper. So, what is it?
Calderon: Well, Yen-eral Mana-yer, it is about Tee-yay.
Colangelo: T.J. Ford? Funny. I could have sworn I traded him… anyway, go on.
Calderon: Well, I am very worried. He ish having much trouble now that he ish no longer starting, and thish ish making him muy, muy sad. I think it would be best for the team if he wash the starting point guard de neuvo.
Colangelo: Why, Jose! That is very selfless of you.
Calderon: (blushes) Oh, Mishter Colan-yelo, you are embarr-asshing me.
Colangelo: No, Jose, I am very impressed. There are not many players who would do this for their teams. And I think you are right. Starting would mean a lot to T.J., and could be just the shake-up our team needs. I’m going to call Coach Mitchell. But I won’t forget what you’ve done.
Calderon: I just want what ish best for the team, ish all. I will now leave you to be.
Colangelo: Thank you, Jose.
Calderon: Shall I close the door, or leave it open?
Colangelo: Open is fine. Goodnight, Jose.
Calderon: Good night. (leaves)
Colangelo: (smiles) Well, I’ll be… (picks up phone)
(Tuesday. 1:18 in the morning. Air Canada Centre. Colangelo is in his office, doing one-armed push-ups.)
Colangelo: Seventy-six…seventy-seven…ugh, push it…seventy-eight…T-1000, T-1000…
(Suddenly, there is a knock at the door.)
Colangelo: (startled) Gah! Who’s there!?!
(Jose Calderon peeks his head inside.)
Calderon: Ish me, Ho-say.
Colangelo: (sighs) Come in.
Calderon: Mishter Colan-yelo, it is about Primoz Brezec. I have been noticing that ever since he came to us, he hash been having trouble making friends. I think it may be because hish locker is all the way at the end, near, how you say el servicio…the toilets?
Calderon: And I thought if I gave him my locker, he would be closh-er to the other players. And that would help him make friends.
Colangelo: This couldn’t wait until morning?
Calderon: I wanted to set it up before he came in tomorrow. He looked so lonely at the shoot-around.
Colangelo: Fine, Jose. That’s very nice of you. Now please, I have work to do.
Calderon: Gracias, I go now. (leaves)
Colangelo: (sighs) My word. (drops to floor, resumes push-ups) One…
(Wednesday. 2:02 in the morning. Air Canada Centre. Colangelo is in his office, sleeping on a bed of nails. Suddenly, there is a knock at the door.)
Colangelo: (wakes up startled) What in the…oh, for the love of…Jose?!?
Calderon: (excited) Hello, Mishter Colan-yelo!
Colangelo: What is it, Jose?
Calderon: I have planned a ‘Welcome to Toronto’ party for my new teammate Linton Johnson, and I was wondering if I could borrow the plane? We are going to take him to Disneyland and…
Colangelo: YES, FINE! Take the plane. Just…please, Jose, I need to get some sleep.
Calderon: Thank you. I am sorry, Yen-eral Mana-yer. Go back to the sleep. (leaves)
Colangelo: (deep breath, closes eyes) Mercy…
(Thursday. 12:54 in the morning. Air Canada Centre. Colangelo stands in the middle of his office, staring straight ahead, completely naked. Suddenly, there is a knock at the door.)
Calderon: (walking in) Mishter Colan-yelo…
Colangelo: Aaahh! Jose!
Calderon: Mishter Colan-yelo, Jack Armstrong needs a kidney…
Colangelo: (baffled) But he’s the t.v. guy. He’s not even on the team!
Calderon: Oh, but he ish such a nice man…
Colangelo: GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE!
(Calderon, startled, hurries out of room.)
Colangelo: GOD! (putting on kimono) What is wrong with him?
Calderon: (meekly from out in the hall) M..Mishter Colan-yelo? I…I am very sorry to bother…perhaps I may explain to you?
(Calderon slowly enters.)
Colangelo: (clenches fists, stares up at ceiling) You have one minute.
Calderon: Gracias. Gracias, mi capitan. I will use my one minute to try and explain why Ho-Say ish the way he ish.
Colangelo: 55 seconds.
Calderon: Si, si. It all goes back to when I wash growing up in Villaneuva de la Ser
aEna. A boy, no more than fifteen. My team was playing for the high school championship of Badajoz province. We were all to take the bus to the game together. But I had just finished practicing with one of my club teams, and I wash running very late. So I telephoned my coach and tell them to go ahead without me. That I would meet them at the game. But…I never get the chance…(lowers his head, sobs)…
Calderon: (covering eyes, crying) I SHOULD HAVE BEEN ON THAT BUS WITH THEM!
Colangelo: (softly) Oh my, Jose. I am so sorry. Were…were your teammates in an accident?
Calderon: (shakes head)
Colangelo: (softly) Then what was it?
Calderon: Mi madre…her car broke down on the way. And I…I never make it to the game.
Colangelo: (relieved) Oh. Oh, I see. And your team ended up losing the game.
Calderon: No, we won the game. (smiles) We had a big party. It was so much fun.
Colangelo: (confused) I don’t understand. What went wrong?
Calderon: Don’t you see? Don’t you see, Yen-eral Mana-yer? I HAD THE GATORADE! My teammates had to play the whole game…WITH A GREAT THIRST! (falls to floor)
Calderon: I swore…from that day forth…I would never let my teammates down again.
Colangelo: (calmly) Jose?
Calderon: (pounds fist on floor) Never again!
Calderon: (stops crying, sits up and wipes nose) Yes, Mishter Colan-yelo?
Colangelo: I want you to get up, leave, and I don’t ever want to see you back in here again. You are banned from my office.
Calderon: Que? But…
Colangelo: (gritting teeth) Did you hear me? I don’t care if Chris Bosh has been kidnapped by a gang of Basque separatists. You tell that to Coach Mitchell, and he will tell me.
Calderon: But I do not…
Colangelo: (booming voice) LEAVE!
Calderon: (hurries out of room, slams door)
(Colangelo slowly walks over to his desk and pours himself a tall scotch, which he downs in one gulp. He walks to the middle of the room, and closes his eyes.)
Colangelo: First round Orlando. First round Orlando. (drops kimono to floor, deep breath) First round Orlando. First round…