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A Simple ‘Yes’ Led to Lifelong Service

Herb Turetzky attended the New Jersey Americans’ first-ever ABA game in October 1967 expecting to be just a spectator. Turetzky, a student at LIU Brooklyn, arrived early at the Teaneck Armory. Max Zaslofsky, the Americans’ coach and GM who had attended the same high school as Turetzky, greeted him as he walked in, “Herb, can you help us out and keep score of the game tonight?”

Turetzky responded, “Max, I’d love to. I’m here, so why not?” Turetzky sat down at a wooden folding chair at half court and jotted down the lineups. That was more than 2,000 games and 53 years ago. Since then the team has moved to three different cities, played in eight arenas, and been absorbed into the NBA. And Turetzky is still setting in that wooden chair. “I’ve never left that seat since,” he says. “I’m still here and I’m still going.”

NBA official Bob Delaney calls him, “the Michael Jordan of scorekeepers.” And an article in Sports Illustrated referred to him as the "courtside constant." One simple “yes” led to a meaningful lifelong service.

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