This column series on the Tokyo Apache appeared in The Japan Times in 2016, five years after the bj-league team played its final game. Former NBA coach Bob Hill guided the team during its last season, which was cut short by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. Ownership pulled the plug on the team. (Former NBA big man Robert Swift starred for the club, and future NBA player Jeremy Tyler did, too.)

I attended the Apache’s final game on March 10, 2011, against the Akita Northern Happinets, and many vivid memories of the team’s last season remain etched in my mind.