Mike Breen thanks Knicks, Walt Frazier, fans for ‘unbelievable kindness’ after losing his home to fire

Mike Breen, Knicks
Nov 13, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; ESPN play-by-play commentator Mike Breen looks on during a game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center. The Lakers won 120-94. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The consummate pro he is, long-time New York Knicks play-by-play anchor Mike Breen returned on air last Tuesday night, just a week after losing his Long Island house to a massive fire.

Toward the end of the MSG Network’s broadcast of the Knicks-Detroit Pistons preseason game on Tuesday night, Breen took a moment to reciprocate the ‘unbelievable kindness’ his family received this past week.

“I didn’t want to take anything away from the game. I just want to give a heartfelt thanks to so many people who offered kindness and support this past week after the fire at my family’s home on Long Island. [It’s] just a reminder for me of how many wonderful people are in my life. Yourself included.

All family here at MSG, the Knicks and Madison Square Garden, there will never be enough words adequate words to tell you how truly touched we all were and what a difference it made. Me and my family are the beneficiary of just unbelievable kindness. So thank you to so many.”

Mike Breen to Walt Frazier via MSG

Frazier responded: “You’re a good man, always giving. [You’re] Always caring and sharing.”

Breen, who lost all his possessions including personal memories during the incident, spent the last week dealing with insurance companies and trying to secure clothes for his return to the NBA broadcast. He did not have time to thank all people — from fans to his broadcasting peers and network executives — who offered kindness and support.

Breen was vacationing with his wife in California when the fire engulfed their house. Per TMZ, the incident happened on Sunday at 4:03 a.m. when the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department received calls from Breen’s neighbors.  

The 61-year-old broadcaster is on his 31st season in NBA broadcasting. Famously known for his signature call play ‘Bang!’ after every big shot, Breen began his career in 1991 as the Knicks’ radio play-by-play announcer on WFAN. He was later promoted to their TV broadcast for MSG after Marv Albert’s firing in the wake of his infamous sex scandal.

Inducted to the Hall of Fame last year, Breen has also been the voice of the NBA on ABC and ESPN, appearing in every Finals series since 2006.

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