Today’s column of the Daily Gossip is a tribute to the former New York Knicks forward Anthony Mason, who died at the age of 48.
“First I want to thank all those who offered prayers and well-wishes for my Father, our family really appreciates it,” his son, Anthony Mason Jr., said Saturday. “Overnight, New York City and the world lost a legend, a friend, a brother … but more than anything our father, Anthony Mason. As you all would expect our father — Big Mase — put up an incredible fight, dealing with a severe heart issue. I’m wishing this was something else I was writing, but Pops we’ve got to let you know we love you and know you’ll always be with us.”
Mason’s other son, Antoine, is a senior basketball player at Auburn, which played at Texas A&M Saturday. The Aggies held a moment of silence for the elder Mason.
Antoine Mason had said earlier this week that his father was “getting better” following multiple heart surgeries.
Mason’s family released a statement Saturday morning, saying that he “fought like a warrior to the very end.”
“We would like to thank everyone for their heartfelt thoughts and strong prayers,” the statement said. “Anthony felt each and every one. He fought like a warrior to the very end. Please keep your prayers and thoughts with us through this very hard time — it is a great loss for us. We ask for our privacy during this time.”
MASON’S CAREER NIGHT
In 2000, Mason led the Charlotte Hornets to a 110-101 overtime win over the Toronto Raptors with a triple double of 31 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists.
This was Mason’s best individual performance before retirement in 2003.