The Tennis Curmudgeon

RIP Bud Collins

Bud was a great guy not just for tennis but for anyone who ever met him. I don’t think I ever met anyone who didn’t have fun around him.

Requiescat in pace, Bud.

After my tennis days I covered the game for a time. Bud was often around and was easy to find because there would always be laughter. One week the tournament was at a very upscale tennis club. Some time in the middle of the week when matches are few and we’re all looking for something to do some of the guys in the press box wanted to see if I still had any game left.

We repaired to a court behind one of the grandstands. Being an upscale tennis club, as mentioned earlier, we had champagne on the court. Literally on the court. Tiny plastic champagne glasses (the club knew better than to give us real glass) littered the court. We were laughing and hitting and drinking and trash talking when I hear my name called from the veranda.

I knew the voice.

We hadn’t seen Bud doing an interview for later broadcast.

“Yeah?” I said seeing Bud leaning over the railing with the player and crew behind him.

“If you wanted to be on a broadcast with me you should have been a better player.”

We laughed so hard people turned around in the stands and the umpire asked ‘the people behind the grandstand’ to keep it down. Even when Bud would call you out it was in style.

Hell of a guy and a very good tennis player. Don’t let his ‘aww shucks, I’m a hacker like you’ routine fool you. Bud had game.

And he always will.


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Reblogged this on Tennis Abides.

Comment by Dan Martin

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