Sixers

8 Jun 2001: Producer/director Penny Marshall and 76ers owner Pat Croce talk during Game 2 of the NBA Finals between of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Philadelphia 76ers at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers won 98-89. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Otto Greule Jr/Allsport.

On Wednesday night a popular figure in Philly sports makes his return. Pat Croce, the former team president from 1996 until 2001 will be back to ring the bell for the Sixers before they take on the Wizards in game 2 of their first round playoff series.

For millenial Sixers fans, Croce was the man to take the Sixers out of the basement. His energy was infectious. Whether it was high fiving other GM’s after winning the NBA draft lottery in 1996, or bungee jumping off a water tower during the 01 Finals run. Croce said the last time he rang a bell is when he exited his cancer treatment for the final time. Croce is the second prominent figure from the 01 team to ring the bell after Dikembe Mutombo rang it for Sunday.