Pat Williams, the Orlando Magic executive who’s credited with bringing the National Basketball Association franchise to the Florida city in 1987, was diagnosed with blood and bone marrow cancer two weeks ago, the team said.
The 70-year-old senior vice president has multiple myeloma and underwent his fourth chemotherapy treatment yesterday, the team said.
“We have launched the treatment as fast and directly as possible,” Williams said on Orlando’s website. “The mission is remission. That’s the goal.”
Williams, who has written more than 70 books and raised 19 children, said he’s been told by his physician “the percentages are good” that he will reach remission.
“The only pain that I have is in my lower back area and some days are better than others,” said Williams, who has reduced his workload at the Magic’s office. “There’s a pattern of pain in my lower back and it’s intense at times.”
Williams led Orlando’s effort to get an NBA team in July 1986. On April 22, 1987, the league approved the franchise in Florida.