Drew Deener talks Ware excitement


by WHAS editors


Posted on November 7, 2013 at 7:32 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- It might be the loudest the KFC Yum! Center has ever been during an exhibition game.

“As soon as he got up from the bench, all you heard was just cheering for like 5 minutes straight,” said fan Niya Anderson.

“I make up my sheet to broadcast games. I have 13 spots on the roster. I didn't have one for Kevin Ware because he wasn't supposed to play, so I was surprised obviously, as anyone else that he jumped in there,” said WHAS-TV play-by-play announcer, Drew Deener.

“I honestly thought I would air-ball my first shot, but when it went in, everything went back to normal,” said Kevin Ware.

“We were like everyone else; we were sort of in awe. I had chills calling it. I know Bob did,” Deener said.  “I was sitting next to Bob [Valvano] on the game when he broke his leg. So, it was nice to be able to call it with him as he made this comeback.”

The world is watching. Last night, his return checked in at number 4 on the ESPN Top Ten Plays of the Day. Many have waited for Ware, but now that he's back, the memory of his injury is in the back -- or the front -- of everyone's mind.

“I'm calling it and every time he jumped you're thinking, 'oh my gosh! Could this happen again?’” Deener said. 

Ware knows fans will have a tough time getting used to any contact he encounters on the court.

“I don't think they ever will. I heard when I slipped and fell everyone kind of went ‘uh!’ but it was just a bad close-out on my part,” Ware said.

He also knows the fan support will keep pouring in.

“We all know that he's going to come back better and stronger,” Anderson said. 

Tickets are still available for the University of Louisville Men’s Basketball Season Opener on Saturday versus the College of Charleston.