… another idiotic move by Bulls‘ management. I guess it just wasn’t enough to chase away Phil Jackson, Michael Jordan and trade away the rest of the championship-era players. The Bulls just had to go and fire public address announcer Ray Clay, known for his stirring introductions of Michael Jordan during the Bulls renowned pre-game ceremonies.
Rumors abound that Clay is being fired for wanting to give Jordan his traditional intro when he returned as a Wizard to play the Bulls last season. The intro he wound up giving him was rather subdued and drowned out by a standing ovation. Talk is that the Bulls were upset with Clay for not announcing the next player right away, a typically clasless move on their part.
This is a perfect coda to the Jerrys’ dismantling of the championship team. I guess that if “organizations win championships,” as Jerry Krause famously said, Clay was one part that was expendable. But I disagree. As miserable as it is to attend a Bulls game nowadays, one of the few bright spots was the pre-game ceremony. Even though Clay didn’t have any Pippens or Jordans to introduce, he still did a magnificent job. His voice was an ineffable part of the Bulls experience. There are many great memories from the Jordan championship years. And Clay’s call, “From North Carolina! …” is one of them.
The subconscious reason for Clay’s firing may be the fact that whenever he opened his mouth, Jerry Krause and Jerry Reinsdorf were painfully reminded of what once was and no longer is. They didn’t want him around reminding them of what they destroyed. Here’s to hoping he lands on his feet someplace else fast, and at double the salary. I wonder if the Wizards have an opening for a public address announcer?