When she returned with just the shirt to find him on one knee, Cheney didn't think anything of it. Holiday played it off as if he had bent over to tie his shoe.
“I didn't quite understand what was going on,” she said.
Holiday then asked her to bring everything out of the basket. She found the box but didn't open it, figuring it might be just a pair of earrings, until returning to find him on one knee again.
“My heart was racing,” said Holiday, whose wedding is scheduled for July in Southern California. “It was a good day.”
Holiday has had plenty of those lately. Before the season he signed a four-year contract that could pay him as much as $46 million, meaning he will probably spend at least the first seven years of his pro career in Philadelphia.
The 76ers (20-26) have stumbled with center Andrew Bynum sidelined by knee injuries, interspersing Holiday's dream season with occasional night terrors. His team's struggles were the primary reason Holiday thought he might be passed over for the All-Star team in favor of Milwaukee's Brandon Jennings.
“Losing definitely does stink,” Holiday said. “I mean, you can't really enjoy some of the games that you've had. Like I think I've had a career-high night or whatever and we still lost. I'd much rather have the win and had fewer points.”
The All-Star weekend Feb. 15-17 will be a family affair for the Holidays. Jrue's older brother, Justin, a guard with the Idaho Stampede, will compete in the Development League's three-point shootout.
Accompanying the siblings will be their parents; brother Aaron, a sophomore guard at North Hollywood (Calif.) Campbell Hall High; and sister Lauren, a freshman guard at UCLA, in addition to Cheney.
Jrue hopes to follow his fiancee to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics, fulfilling a mutual dream.
“The Olympics are such an amazing feeling and you can't describe it to people if they haven't experienced it,” Cheney said. “I would love for him to experience it and share that together.”
Holiday watched Cheney win gold last summer in London, sparking a jumble of emotions.
“I was excited because I wanted to experience that,” he said, “and I was a little jealous because I wanted to experience that. But it was inspirational.”
Kind of like a kid playing in the front yard, realizing that he's limited only by his imagination.
Distributed by MCT Information Services