It's the Pac 12 Tournament and Bill Walton is ending the year with a bang. The redhead has had a glorious return to the broadcast booth working games for the Pac 12 Network and ESPN this year after being sidelined due to health reasons. Walton was in rare form today, even by his Grateful Dead infused high standards, so much so that the Pac 12 actually sent a press release with some of his best quotes from the early action. But those were nothing compared to what Walton said coming out of commercial with the Pac 12 mascots coming out of a limousine. It was worthy of a double take, a spit take, and any other _____ take you could muster. Bill Walton made a joke about being in the limosuine with ESPN's shiny new NFL analyst Ray Lewis, who just happens to have a bit of history with limos:
"I was way in the back with Ray Lewis and it was unbelievable how much fun, oh my gosh, how many people were in there!"
Dave Pasch's deadpan reaction may be the perfect complement to the clip.
If Bill Simmons can get kicked off Twitter for a few days for a tepid critique of Skip Bayless, what's going to happen to Walton for that punchline about Ray Lewis? Better get the #FreeWalton hashtag ready as a preemptive strike.
UPDATE: And fittingly enough, Walton also made a Bill Simmons joke after Dave Pasch suggested he'd get in trouble for only hocking Southwest Airlines. Again, Pasch plays his role as the straight man excellently. I'll have to check the record books, but I think Bill Walton may have just put together the greatest half in Awful Announcing history.
We'll provide updates throughout the evening to see if Walton keeps this performance up. Of course, he could also be escorted out of Las Vegas by ESPN security at any moment.
UPDATE: Here's some of Walton's best quotes from the second half...
"Fans beyond description, dancing angels of mercy, what more could you ask for. It's all happening."
Dave Pasch says working with Walton this weekend will age him 8 years. Walton: "Your wife's been calling me."
Pasch: "How much of that is instinctual as a shot blocker, how much of it is teaching?"
Walton: "100 percent of both."
"Lorenzo Romar just pulling his hair out!" (Romar is bald)
Walton on Arsalan Kazemi, "His parents own a candy factory four hours south of Tehran, oh my gosh how sweet it is."
"Both teams riding quasars all the way to the top of the mountain and the promised land."
Walton: "So many things here have defied rational thought."
Pasch: "You're not kidding."
@AndrewBucholtz Can they suspend all of the fake Bill Walton accounts as a punishment?
@FattMemrite on a side note, saw your pic at a glance earlier, thought it was Jamal Masburn. Needless to say, I am disappointed its not.
@FattMemrite lmaooo! I am glad I'm not the only one then, cuz this is hard to listen to.
@cmatt3 I was just watching him call a game. He's such an old "in my day" fart
@willkgeorge Haha haha this makes so much sense now.
Both Walton and Simmons can be offensively ignorant at times. I'd be happy if they both retired, but censored - no way. Let them babble: http://sportsliterato.com/bill-simmons-basketball-book/
That performance by Walton was excruciating last night. If you are just watching to hear crazy stuff he says, maybe that can be entertaining. But if you are trying to watch the game, Bill is brutal. Please no more Walton.
A tour de force of nonsense MT @awfulannouncing: Last nite Bill Walton turned in 1 of the great announcing perf. in the hist. of Western Civ
@bkoo my guess is he won't be brought back due to the Lewis & Simmons references.
@awfulannouncing Walton prob just woke up bleary-eyed & confused asking what time the Oregon-Washington game starts today.
I would to see Walton back with Ralph Lawler calling Los Angeles Clippers games if it's just only for one other time.
@awfulannouncing Pasch is terrible. He could at least have a witty comment
@awfulannouncing I think Pasch's line after the Duck tripped coming out of the limo was pretty solid,too:"He just got back from a Dead show"
@awfulannouncing beats everyone else completely ignoring it and fawning over him. Probably will cost him though
@awfulannouncing He must be blown out of hiw mind, bo?
I love Bill Walton. He's my second favorite basketball analyst, behind only Hubie Brown. It's too bad that Bill gets relegated to the college game. I really want to see him get back to doing NBA games at some point.
@richarddeitsch OMG that was genius, WWL can't suspend him can they? I mean it bad already but ...
@awfulannouncing so we're not dismissing that then? Hahaha!
@richarddeitsch yes or no, Pasch makes the situation worse\/more uneasy with his "we'll just dismiss that..."?
@hojo0705 Hahaha nice. I just look for odd topics to write about when I have time. Maybe NBA look-alikes are next.
@sportsliterato Nice job plugging your lame blog, douche.
@chrismarbellow No. It was pretty funny, in fact.
@FattMemrite critique on your article: Should have mentioned Starbury, he is having a career year for the Beijing Ducks. :D
@FattMemrite lol well nothin against KG, but the amount of randomness it would take to put Mashburn as your pic would've been overwhelming.
@FattMemrite hahaha gotta love REAL athleticism, who needs LBJ.
@FattMemrite when all else fails, Gieger and\/or Ostertag, are always the answer.
@hojo0705 I was thinking about choosing Matt Geiger but I would've lost any female followers I have.