If Oakland Raiders great Tom Flores hadn’t already put the city of Sanger on the national map, a former Sanger Herald reporter certainly did Tuesday.
Though, oddly so.
Mike Wise – a Fresno State alumnus who worked briefly at the Sanger Herald before becoming an award-winning sports journalist that included a lengthy stretch at the New York Times – referenced Sanger three times during ESPN’s morning SportsCenter.
And he did it while talking about NBA stars Kevin Durant and Paul George.
“This is a KD setup,” Wise said while discussing George being traded from the Indiana Pacers to the Oklahoma City Thunder, which is Durant’s former team.
“If it was so great, why didn’t you stay?” Wise said, referring to Durant’s move from Oklahoma City to the Golden State Warriors last year.
Then, Wise went back in time to make an interesting analogy.
“This is like I had my first job at the Sanger Herald,” Wise added. “God bless the newspaper outside of Fresno, California.
“A guy who went to school with me said ‘I got a job at the Sanger Herald, where you used to work.’
“I said: ‘Aww, you’re going to love it man. They’ve got great Mexican food in this one area. This high school is all hyped about the … ’ ”
Just go to Sanger.
Former New York Times reporter Mike Wise while talking about Paul George and Kevin Durant
Perhaps catching himself going on a tangent with details, Wise abruptly stopped his description of Sanger and got to his point, which still wasn’t fully clear how it related to Durant and George.
“What I was saying was, I don’t want you competing for jobs that I’m actually trying to get now,” Wise said. “Just go to Sanger.”
That’s when a SportsCenter anchor tried to interpret Wise’s analogy.
Rather than George go to the Cleveland Cavaliers, as had been rumored, and potentially make it more difficult for Durant’s team to repeat its championship, Wise was suggesting that Durant had other motives in convincing the former Fresno State star to play for the Thunder.
“You go to Oklahoma City and I’ll keep winning titles with the Warriors since you’re not going to Cleveland,” the SportsCenter anchor said. “It was a setup?”
To which Wise responded: “Correct. Correct. (Durant’s) probably giving him his reservations at the best steakhouse in Oklahoma City because he wants him there.
“The OKC doke.”