Harvey Araton is one of New York’s–and the nation’s–best-known sports journalists, having covered thousands of Knicks games over the course of a long and distinguished career. But the person at the heart of Our Last Season, Michelle Musler, is largely anonymous–except, that is, to the players, coaches, and writers who have passed through Madison Square Garden, where she held season tickets behind the Knicks bench for 45 years. In that time, as she juggled a successful career as a corporate executive and single parenthood of five children, she missed only a handful of home games. The Garden was her second home–and the place where an extraordinary friendship between fan and sportswriter was forged.
That relationship soon grew into something much bigger than basketball, with Michelle serving as a cherished mentor and friend to Harvey as he weathered life’s inevitable storms: illness, aging, and professional challenges and transitions. During the 2017-18 NBA season, as Michelle faces serious illness that prevents her from attending more than a few Knicks games, Harvey finally has the chance to give back to Michelle everything she has given him: reminders of all she’s accomplished, the blessings she’s enjoyed, and the devoted friend she has been to him.
Chock-full of anecdotes from behind the scenes and cameos from Knicks legends–from Frazier, King, and Ewing to Riley, Van Gundy, and many more–the story of Harvey and Michelle’s nearly four decades of friendship is a delight for basketball fans. But at its core, Our Last Season is a book for all of us, offering a poignant and inspiring message about how to live with passion, commitment, and optimism.