NBA Legend Bill Walton Returns to Celestial Plane

So long, friend.

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So long, friend.

In a cosmic twist only he could have predicted, NBA legend and commentator Bill Walton has returned to the celestial plane one last time, sources tell End of the Bench, leaving fans, friends, and an entire generation of Grateful Dead fans in mourning.

Walton, a Hall of Famer and one of the most enigmatic voices in basketball broadcasting passed away peacefully in his California home Monday, surrounded by a cloud of incense that some say smelled suspiciously like his favorite "medicinal" herb. 

His final words, according to close sources, were something about "riding a cosmic wave into the astral hoop of eternity."

Friends and colleagues recalled Walton's unique blend of basketball wisdom and esoteric musings. 

"Bill was never just about the game; he was about the game of life, the universe, and everything in between," said fellow commentator and long-time friend, Marv Albert. "He’d often speak about intergalactic pick-up games and the zen of free throws. We didn’t always understand him, but god damnit did we love him."

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A string of achievements on the court and behind the microphone marked Walton’s career, but it was his colorful commentary, often sprinkled with references to mystical experiences and philosophical ponderings, that left a lasting impression. 

His alleged frequent drug use added an extra layer of intrigue and amusement, with fans wondering if his visions were induced by something more than just the beauty of the game.

In an official statement, the NBA acknowledged Walton's contributions to the game.

"Bill Walton brought an unparalleled perspective to basketball. His commentary was not just a narration but a journey into the metaphysical aspects of sports. Also, he was the only guy ever to bring acid into the locker room. We are forever grateful for Bill and the joy he brought to the world.”

In Heaven, Walton is rumored to have already taken up his new role as the celestial commentator. Early reports suggest he’s been seen floating above the Great Beyond’s basketball courts, offering tips on achieving nirvana through a perfect jump shot, and confusing angels with his detailed analysis of transcendental rebounding techniques.

"Bill always talked about the game as a spiritual journey," said former teammate Larry Bird. "I guess now he’s finally found the ultimate court. And if there’s a halftime show up there, it’s probably the trippiest thing you’ve ever seen."

Walton’s family has requested privacy during this time, though they did share one last cryptic message from Bill: "The game never ends, it just evolves. I’ll be calling the plays from the stars now, where the scoreboard is made of stardust and the referees are cosmic entities."

End of the Bench will have more on this story after we put one in the air for Bill.

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