PHOENIX — Jim Paschke has been with the Milwaukee Bucks as their play-by-play announcer for 35 years. He has seen some really good moments, like the 2001 Eastern Conference Finals, and a lot of bad basketball. But now, he is retiring, and we caught up with him just moments before Game 1 against the Phoenix Suns.
Lance Allan of TMJ4 Sports: "Jim, is this win one for Jim on the retirement tour?"
“Well it’s not about Jim, but if they want me to be a lucky rabbit’s foot, I’m happy to do that. This is the first time I’ve been to a Finals game, so I’m pumped!” he said.
Allan: "So what is it like for you? All these years. Let’s be frank and I can say it. You saw some bad basketball. Did you ever think this was possible?"
“Of course I thought it was possible,” Paschke says. “And I thought Giannis would play in Game 1 too. Of course I did!”
And over a long lean time, Paschke is relishing this.
“Now the Bucks need four more victories to pay all of this off, for the great fans in the state of Wisconsin and Milwaukee and the organization,” Paschke says. “Fifty years is a long time, right? Forty seven since they were in the Finals, so I’m nervous. Every day seems like it lasts 48 hours instead of 24. That’s just the way it is in the Finals. I’m loving every bit of this.”
Paschke has a special relationship with Giannis. And they legitimately bonded.
“Well it just happened in our interviews,” Paschke says. “We don’t hang out together. We’re friends in terms of saying hello every day at practice. And we do that one interview a year where great things just happen, so I can’t really explain that Lance, but it’s been wonderful and I’m so happy he’s playing!”
And getting to this point deserves praise, past and present.
“Senator Kohl deserves a lot of credit,” Paschke says. “Always should get credit for buying the team and then selling it to owners who could make this happen.”
Allan: "You want to go out with a ring my friend?"
“Well of course I do,” Paschke says. “That would be wonderful, but it’s not about me, Lance. It’s about the Milwaukee Bucks.”