On the heels of Karl Malone’s epic takeover of the Gordon Monson show last week (and please do yourself a favor and read @monilogue’s labor of love transcription), we offer you these spectacular photos of Jazz NuSkin Dancer Madison Murray as a baby with Karl, Mark Eaton, and Mike Brown at the grand opening of “Brown Bear’s Burgers and Dogs” at 2223 Highland Drive in Sugar House on February 6, 1993.
Those who were following the team at the time might remember that Brown’s restaurant became the flash point for criticism from coach Jerry Sloan, who was annoyed at the “outside interests” that he felt were distractions contributing to poor play. Brown interpreted these comments as directed toward him and his restaurant and many felt it led to Brown’s eventual trade to Minnesota for Felton Spencer later that summer.
Brown said his role is less rigid in Minnesota. “My role isn’t as defined here. In Utah I guess it was to stand out on the edge and point out illegal defense,” he laughed. “My buddies said I was the best in the NBA at that. Here, it is a young team and everything changes each game. We try various ways to win.”
As a bizarre side note, Madison’s presence at the restaurant grand opening could have drastically altered the course of the NBA in the 90s. According to Madison, her parents got most of the players on the team to take pictures while holding her. Soon after the event, however, Madison came down with a bad case of chicken pox, which left her parents terrified that they’d infected the entire team.
To my knowledge, no one on the team got sick, but it would have been a bad prelude to the season ticket holder who caused a car crash with John Stockton during the playoffs that same season.
Check out the pictures below. As you can see, Malone even dedicated his picture and signed it.
I have to admit that I’m a little stunned to realize that current members of the Jazz dance team were still in car seats during the Stockton-to-Malone years, but it’s very cool to see that dancing for the Jazz has been Madison’s dream her entire life. Check out her Halloween costume when she was 15 months old:
Here’s the Jazz baby all grown up:
Thanks to Madison for sending us these pictures. You can follow her on Twitter: @madimurray1