Sunday’s matchup between the Phoenix Suns and the Oklahoma City Thunder is an emotional encounter for Monty Williams. In 2016, during his lone season as an associate head coach for the Thunder, Williams lost his wife, Ingrid, in a tragic car crash. The Thunder organization has not forgotten about that devastating incident, and they made sure to honor coach Monty’s late wife on Sunday as they hosted his Suns.
In a classy move to express their respect and admiration for both Monty Williams and his late wife, the Thunder decided to vacate Ingrid’s seat in the stadium. When Monty caught wind of this gesture, the Phoenix shot-caller could not help but get all emotional:
“Today would’ve been my wife’s birthday,” Williams said. “They honored my wife by not allowing anybody to sit in her seats. When I found out, it really messed me up”
"Today would've been my wife's birthday. They honored my wife by not allowing anybody to sit in her seats. When I found out, it really messed me up"
Suns coach Monty Williams thanked the Thunder organization for honoring his late wife.
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) April 2, 2023
Ingrid Williams would have been 51 today. Her untimely passing left Monty Williams to care for their five children, with which he’s doing an admirable job as a single father. The Thunder clearly knew that this was a special occasion for the Williams family, and they set aside all the competition on the basketball court to honor Ingrid on her birthday.
Nevertheless, there’s still a game to be played. Monty Williams will have the memory of his wife on his mind and in his heart, but he will still need to coach his team when they take on OKC. The Suns are still fighting for home-court advantage in the playoffs, as they look to fend off the defending champions Golden State Warriors, who are currently 1.5 games behind Phoenix for the fourth seed in the West.