When the Thunder won the Western Conference Finals on Wednesday night, coach Scott Brooks immediately knew he had to secure one extra ticket to the NBA Finals.
When Game 1 arrives against either Miami or Boston, that ticket will be waiting for the most strict, most powerful, most influential person in Brooks’ life — his 79-year-old mother, Lee Brooks.
“That’s going to be a great time in my family’s life,” Scott said. “It’s just nice to have her around.”
Scott is the youngest of seven children and was raised solely by Lee.
He never knew his father, who left when Scott was 2 years old and died without reuniting with his youngest son.
His mother still runs the family business, a car wash in Manteca, Calif., aptly named “Dribbles.”
It’s been 18 years since she ventured farther than Sacramento (60 miles north) to see one of her son’s games in person.
Her last significant road trip was to the 1994 NBA Finals when Scott was a reserve point guard with the champion Houston Rockets.