Pat Williams

joins Robert on the show and talks about writing and researching some of his biggest heroes, starting with How to be like Mike, How to be like Walt, and even How to be like Jesus. Pat loves interviewing family and friends and learning about people and he shares what he learns in his books. He is famous for basketball but has a love for baseball and wants to bring the Major Leagues to Orlando with the Orlando Dreamers.

A little bit about Pat...

Today’s guest is a basketball Hall-of-Famer, known for co-founding the NBA’s Orlando Magic as well as serving as general manager for the Philadelphia 76ers, Chicago Bulls, Atlanta Hawks, and Orlando Magic. Also, one of America’s top motivational, inspirational, and humorous speakers, Pat Williams and his wife Ruth parented 19 children, Pat is a cancer survivor and the author of over 130 books.

Since 1968, Pat has been the general manager with teams in Chicago, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Orlando, including the 1983 World Champion 76ers. In 1996, Pat was named as one of the 50 most influential people in NBA history. In 2012, Pat received the John W. Bunn Lifetime Achievement Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Pat and his wife, Ruth, are the parents of 19 children, including 14 adopted from four nations. Pat and his family have been featured in Sports Illustrated, Readers Digest, Good Housekeeping, Family Circle, USA Today, and The Wall Street Journal.

Pat was diagnosed in February of 2011 with Multiple Myeloma, an incurable form of cancer. However, after several rounds of chemo, Pat’s doctors have told him that they are unable to detect any myeloma in his body and have given him a clean bill of health.

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Show Notes

Robert Peterson 0:31
Pat, thank you so much for coming on the show today. I'm excited to have this conversation and just been looking forward to chatting with you.

Pat Williams 2:28
Thank you, Robert, nice to meet you and look forward to your visit as well.

Robert Peterson 2:34
So my first experience with with your work is your book, How to be like Walt. And I just have to say it's one of my favorite business books and stories. And so can you tell us a little bit about how you got involved in in creating that?

Pat Williams 2:52
Well, I moved to Orlando 37 years ago, I had been the general manager the 70 Sixers for 12 years and picked up and moved here with the idea the mission of trying to bring an expansion basketball team to Orlando and we were successful in doing that the Orlando Magic but something else happening in addition to that whole basketball dream, I got Disney eyes, easy to do here. And I became particularly fascinated with Walt Disney himself. He had passed away of course at that point, but I began to run into former Disney executives who had worked with him back in California and I was always eager to pick their brain about Walt I just wanted to learn all I could about him. I wrote a book initially about Walt Disney's Five Secrets of Success. Go for the magic was the name of that but I wanted to dig deeper. And that's how this book came about how to be like Walt it was part of a series that I did with the Chicken Soup for the Soul publishers. We did about nine of those how to be liked books. But I dug into all things Disney I was able to track down just about every living Disney legend and I'm so glad we did it when we did because they're all gone now I think with the exception of one Bob Iger, I think everybody else is gone. So the timing could not have been better on that. And we I wanted to just find out from all these people who knew Walter worked with him or understood him, you know what, what was it about Walt Disney what was what made him unique? What made him special? What can we all learn from Walt and so that was the background of the book. Robert it came out quite a number of years ago. Now it's it's still in print as far as I can determine and I still hear from people who got some real meaning from from that book and learned a lot about Walt Disney's life lessons for all of us.

Robert Peterson 5:09
So, so you researched and did all the interviews to pull those, that those stories together. That's, that's incredible.

Pat Williams 5:17
I did and it was it was an absolute treat to track down all of those people that knew Walt and worked with him and get get a good story from there were an anecdote, something that maybe we hadn't heard before. I don't think we'll ever mind the depths of Walt Disney fully. But I think up to that point that was about as, as deep as we could dive into his life. And it was a it was a joy to do the research and great to write it. And then I think promoted after that, and, and the book is still out there. It's I still hear from people who have read it. And I got some meaning from that book. And I'm glad that we could bring Waldo alive like that.

Robert Peterson 6:08
Yeah, I really, I really like it, I read it. I've read it multiple times, because I'd like to read it over. Just because, for me, it's inspirational. I guess for me, I get I get so caught up in the day to day that the practical things of operating a business that it's hard to tap into the imagination side. And I think that's an area where Walt just lived and thrived. And so being able to use your book and your stories to, to tap into my own imagination is powerful.

Pat Williams 6:45
Well, that but Robert, that was one of his lessons that he taught all of us, free up your imagination, a shatter those mental restrictions that we often have in our brains, where we say to ourselves, Well, you know, I can only go so high, and no more. That's just where I am. And I think what would say, stop thinking that way. shatter those mental restrictions, because there's no limit to what you can do in your life. There's no limit to where you can go. no limit to what you can accomplish if you just have a freed up outlook towards life. And that was that was one of his great secrets, free up your imagination. And so I encourage people to follow Walt's advice on that. And it's amazing what we can do if we don't limit ourselves.

Robert Peterson 7:42
Absolutely. So what what's your favorite Walt story?

Pat Williams 7:48
Probably, many, many years later, after the book came out, we got word that the Walt Disney Family Museum was going to open outside of San Francisco. And I got an invitation to go. And it was a long trip across the country, but I felt I needed to be there. Walt Disney's daughter, Diane Disney Miller had been the architect of this museum. And in putting the book together, she had been so helpful to me, she talked to me about her father. She put me in touch with all of her children, so that I could talk with them about Walt and Lillian Disney as grandparents and I was able to get that done. So anyway, I got out to the museum and it was wonderful to go through all of that they had a nice dinner afterwards. The tour and I went over I saw Diane Disney Miller i She's dead. Ringer for her dad, you couldn't miss her

Pat Williams 9:01
have been more gracious. And then she said, Where are you sitting for dinner? I said, Well, I no particular place. She said, You'll sit here with our family. And she invited me to join dinner with her and her family at their table. What a thrill that was to be sitting there with Diane Disney Miller and Ron Miller, her husband and the Disney children. It was a very special moment I thought felled. And I was saddened when her life ended with an accident and now Ron Miller has passed away and but I never will forget how kind she was to me.

Robert Peterson 9:46
When it just shows the legacy right not just not just his legacy in business, and obviously the Disney enterprise and the impact that has but it's good to see that his family legacy matches is what he's created in, in the business world.

Pat Williams 10:04
Well, his great his grandchildren were sharpest could be. Diane Disney had a big family and I must have talked to five or six of those children, those grandkids and they were all just extremely articulate and bright, engaging. We got a lot of their stuff into the book. So I was, I was impressed with the whole Disney clan from from top to bottom.

Robert Peterson 10:33
Nice. So obviously working with the Orlando Magic and bringing the Orlando Magic you're trying to get the Orlando Magic started. I assume you worked with rich DeVos for helping to get that started.

Pat Williams 10:48
Well, actually, Robert, he came a little bit later, I brought it to Orlando in 1986. By the original magic ownership group, the head of that was a fellow named Jimmy Hewitt. And he brought me here and then we had a couple of years to get ready, three, actually, before we ever played. And then we played to the first two seasons. In the meantime, we were trying to bring major league baseball to Orlando back then this was 1991. And we needed an owner and I was introduced through a mutual friend to go up to Grand Rapids, Michigan. And I met with rich DeVos told him about our baseball efforts and asked him if he would consider being the owner. And he agreed to do that. And we went through that process, did not get the baseball team in that go around, they went to Miami. But Rich and his family felt very welcomed in Orlando, they felt very comfortable. Through that, that season. This would be the 9091 season, and he felt very warmly received. And so in the summer of 91, when the magic came on the market, the original owners decided to sell Rick DeVos and his family were first in line. And they bought the magic for $85 million. Today, all NBA teams are probably worth at least 2 billion or more. And Rich, really became part of Orlando he his family is grandchildren. They've owned the team ever since even though rich and Helen have passed away. But they I think it's become a family heirloom. We could do a whole show just talking about rich DeVos and the significance of his life. But that's briefly how he got involved here in Orlando.

Robert Peterson 13:00
So I definitely want to come back to rich but I want to touch on we've we've rescheduled this podcast because you're still working to bring major league baseball to Orlando now in 2023. So 30 years later, this is still this is there's still an effort for this to happen. Well,

Pat Williams 13:19
we started originally in 9091, they decided to go to Miami then in the mid 90s. We tried again. And that's the that's when they went to Tampa Bay with expansion. And now baseball is good to expand again, at some point they told and said they're going to add two more teams, they like to get to 32 teams. And I think that's where it'll be forever. And we're back in the hunt again, we just feel Orlando has some special qualities. It's the 17th largest media market now in North America. In the next few years, we're gonna catch Denver. Then soon after, will catch Detroit and then eventually catch Minneapolis St. Paul. It's just it's just got that kind of a market. It's just growing so dramatically, and I think ready to be excellent to Major League Baseball city. So we're working hard at it. doing all we can right now to lay the groundwork. We got to get a ballpark funded, we got to get it built eventually. Got to find the right owner. We've got the marketplace and we've got a lot of pluses and we're trying to get all this done and turn this city into a Major League Baseball city as well.

Robert Peterson 14:39
Nice. So it's interesting to me because you spent 12 years as a GM for the 70 Sixers and then obviously your role in founding the Orlando Magic and bringing them so these NBA roots but you've been involved in Major League Baseball trying since the 90s as well.

Pat Williams 14:57
Well my roots are in baseball actually. I I went to Wake Forest. As a catcher. I played baseball there for four years. And then in June of 1962, I signed with the Phillies. I was a minor league catcher for two seasons with them, the 62 and 63 summers. And then that led to years in the front office in the Phillies farm system Miami and then Spartanburg, South Carolina. And that's where my career path was headed. But it it changed very dramatically with one phone call. When Dr. Jack Ramsay of the 70 Sixers wanted to hire me and bring me to Philadelphia from Spartanburg as the business manager, the 70 Sixers. It was a different sport. It came out of nowhere, but it was the first opportunity really, I'd had in a major league sport in a major city. And at age 28, I made that jump. And that started a 51 year career in the NBA. But I've never lost my interest in baseball, I've always followed it very closely. Read about it consistently. It's always been a big part of my life. And we have this big goal now of of bringing Major League Baseball to Orlando, we'll see how it works. We feel that we're far better equipped this go round, much bigger city, much more mature city we have we've had a history in pro sports at this point. And we're eager to see if we can pull this off.

Robert Peterson 16:40
That's that's pretty cool. So what obviously your connection to pro pro sports now having, you know, basically, your entire professional career, mostly, as you know, in the back office and making these things happen. How do you see the value the connection between professional sports and the city that they occupy?

Pat Williams 17:04
I think two things really provide spirit and spunk to any city. And that's those are those are big league sports, major league sports. And the arts. I think those are the two features that really give a city personality. And, and give people a reason to visit. And so if you count Mickey Mouse and Shamu as, as the arts, we've got a lot more of the arts in this area. We now have major league, the NBA major league basketball, and we have an MLS, MLS team, Major League Soccer Team. And but until you get baseball, you're not really considered a big league city. Baseball is the what is what sets you apart. And so that's why we're so determined to try and do this. And we feel very confident that we can make it happen, that baseball will be very successful here. So keep an eye on this, Robert, we're determined to try and pull this off. We'll see the timing. We don't know exactly what baseball's timing is. But the one thing we do know is that they want to add two teams get to 32 teams, I think they would want to I think their plan is to break it down more geographically, rather than leagues, eight to eight divisions of four, something like that. And we think that will be quite interesting, but we definitely want to be part of that.

Robert Peterson 18:52
Nice. Alright, so obviously a great deal of professional interest in in professional sports. And obviously, you know, working as a GM is, is quite a busy occupation in itself. And yet, you've written a significant number of books. What, what led you to write your first book and and then of course, what's driven you to continue writing books?

Pat Williams 19:18
Well, Robert, you've got to had to write a book, you've got to have a topic that is just absolutely burning up inside of you, and desperate to get out. I think that's the best way to describe it. My first book, however, I was not desperate to write a book. I hadn't even thought about it. But a young writer in Chicago named Jerry Jenkins sought me out and suggested that we write my life story. Now at that point, I was 32 years old. There wasn't much of a life story, but he was adamant about it. He got a publisher And, and that book came about it came out in the fall of 1974. And there were a few other ideas after the Sixers 83 title, run, and we won the title, we wrote a book about that marvelous season, wrote a marriage book wrote a book of one line humor somewhere in there. But it really didn't start to explode until I got down here to Orlando and wrote a book about Walt Disney and wrote another book about leadership and other books about the magic of teamwork. One thing after the other, and the next thing, you know, it really began to move, very, very fast ideas came, publishers contacted me. And I began to really take this seriously. And began to seek out different ideas that might might have potential for books. And over these last, almost 50 years now, they keep rolling. There's still more ideas in the pipeline. I think I'm at the 131 mark now, with books written and we got a few more coming. So we'll see where it all leads. But you've got to have a topic that is just burning within, then you've got to find a publisher. That's the other key point. And then you've got to figure out, how do you outline it and how do you write it and all of the above, it's not an easy process. But once the once the book bug bites, I've noticed that it bites pretty hard and you want to keep going.

Robert Peterson 21:52
Well, obviously, if you've written 131 books, the book beat you pretty hard.

Pat Williams 21:59
That's true. And we'll see where it leads. People ask me what I write about, well, I write about success. I write about leadership, I write about teamwork. I, I've written some biographies. I've written faith based books as well. So it's kind of a wide field that I've taken on over the years.

Robert Peterson 22:26
Yeah, I mean, absolutely. I think to write 131, you'd have to be pretty, pretty wide open. So you mentioned that to be like Walt was part of a series. Was there another favorite in there besides be like, what?

Pat Williams 22:44
Well, the first one I did that came up long, many years ago was How to Be Like Mike was about Michael Jordan. And I dove deeply into his life. Then, we did a book called How to be like Jesus. That was fascinating. There weren't any of the original disciples around to interview but we, we put that together and then the publisher wanted this rich DeVos book, How to be like rich to us. The co founder of the Amway organization, remarkable man, and we did that book.

Pat Williams 24:15
Then came Walt Disney I wanted to definitely wanted to do how to be like Walt knew it was a big undertaking. Then the other one I wanted to do is Coach John Wooden, how to be like Coach. Then the other one I wanted to do is how to be like Jackie Robinson. And that was another fascinating project that we did a few more after that, but I was very, very grateful for the publisher HCI health communications. They were the Chicken Soup for the sole publishers. And we had a wonderful time putting those books together. There's still out there in many forms. I still hear from people and I'm planning that that series you You know, had a good impact on people?

Robert Peterson 25:03
Well, you just added six more books to my list. So I'm gonna have to get at least all six of those. So

Robert Peterson 25:13
I guess my, for me, Jackie Robinson sounded the most interesting. Besides Jesus, I have a strong connection to Jesus, but how to be like Jackie, and and that, how did you research that story and share a little bit about the insights that you learned from writing that book?

Pat Williams 25:32
Well, I started with his widow, Rachel Robinson, who just turned 100, by the way, but this would be back some years, and I was able to make contact with her. She gave me her blessing saying on that book, and then it was a matter of tracking down as many people in and out of baseball, who I could get a hold of, who had a thought or a story, a memory, an anecdote about Jackie. And that was fascinating. And unfortunately, there were still a good many of the old Dodgers still living, who I was able to reach. And many, many of the opponents of Jackie, during those years that he was in the big leagues. And then on beyond that, so I did hundreds of interviews, actually, on that book, hundreds of people that I could track down and get an observation, you get a thought. And as I was doing all this, I couldn't help it be just overwhelmed really, by the courage of the man. You know, breaking the color line in 1946, originally in the Dodger farm system, and, and then up to the big leagues, his benefactor branch, Rickey, the president of the Dodgers had told him in doing this, that Jackie for two seasons, was going to have to turn the other cheek, he was not going to be able to fight back. He was gonna have to turn away, no matter what was said to him or done to him. Mr. Rickey made it very clear, Jackie, if you go off wild outpouring here, you know, if the whole thing's gonna collapse, and this experiment is not gonna work, then you've got to promise me Jackie that you will not fight back and, and Jackie made this statement, he said Mr. Rickey, you mean you're looking for a ballplayer who's who's afraid to fight back? And he said, No, no, no, no, exactly. But in for a ballplayer with the courage not to fight back. And then there was a long pause in that meeting, a long pause. And, and Jackie finally piped up and said, Mr. Ricky, I will abide by what you want, I will I will not fight back for two seasons, that was the deal. And I'm not sure Jackie realized at that point, what it was gonna be like, but it was it was really wasn't easy. The things that were said to him the things that were done to him on the field, it was he was very, very tough for particularly for such an intense competitive athlete as Jackie Robinson. He was a fighter. You know, that was that was his makeup. But for two seasons, he knew he had to honor what Mr. He had asked him and told him and then after those two seasons is would now be 1949. Ricky said, Jackie, the, the, the limits are off. Go be yourself. And now Jackie, could argue with umpires and, and they didn't have to put up with any nonsense that was said to him. He, he was given full, unleashing and it's quite a story. It's remarkable story, the more so I encourage people to read about Jackie and study him. He's an important American played a very important role in this country. And it's important to know about it.

Robert Peterson 29:23
Absolutely. I think the more the more we can study. For me, it's still heartbreaking to look back and see the way that human beings have treated human beings and in our own country, within our, you know, lifetimes even and the things that this shouldn't This shouldn't be true here. These things happened and

Pat Williams 29:47
there were times in writing that book as I be put some of those stories in place. I found myself choking up and weeping and my thinking what How? How can we be so mean to people? How can we be so cruel to fellow human beings, it really is a very emotional experience writing that book. We've been called so many stories through there that I picked up. And particularly from the old ballplayers who were there with him and, and saw what he took, and how he dealt with it. I was, I was very emotionally whipped up by that book. So it's called How to be like Jackie how to be like Jackie Robinson, and I think far, far beyond baseball fans. I think it's an important book for anybody who studies American history.

Robert Peterson 30:50
Absolutely. So the advantage of writing a book like how to be like Rich is, you were able to meet rich and be involved in not just his personal life, but his business life. And so I'd love for you to share a little bit about rich because I, I love I love his faith. I love what he's the testimony of his family. And and I think the testimony of his businesses. And so what what would you share about rich if you were asked to talk about rich and I know it could take up a whole show but

Pat Williams 31:28
Robert, I came away from that book, feeling that a rich DeVos probably was the most unique businessman in the history of our country. And let me explain that. extremely successful with his Amway company became even extreme, extremely wealthy man. But it did not really alter him. He was extremely generous in his giving. He he was extremely loyal to his hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan. He and his partner Jay Van Andel, were so giving to that community of Grand Rapids didn't turn his back on his hometown. His children, his four children, all turned out well, as well as a slew of grandchildren who have all turned out well, that doesn't always happen. And he never wavered with his faith. He grew up in a Christian home in Grand Rapids, his faith was always real to him. But there's a tendency as you become prominent and famous and quoted, you know, you begin to hide that faith he never did. He was very open about his faith, not not in an uncomfortable or obnoxious way, or haughty manner, but he just was very comfortable talking about his faith. You know, I've, I've heard him and seen him introduce many times that big offense, and the introducer would rave about him and go on and on and on, and rich would just stand up and said, I, I'm, I'm Rich DeVos, just just a sinner saved by grace, amen. That's, that's how we would respond to these introductions. Just just a sinner saved by grapes. And he was a lovely man, lovely man. And, but but as you really study his life, I came away thinking, I don't think we've ever had a businessman like him. who stayed consistent, didn't go off the deep end. At a solid marriage. His children turned out weg was it read father? Terrific grandfather. I've never heard anybody say anything but kind things about it. I just came away. absolutely convinced that we haven't any haven't seen in the business world. Anybody quite like him.

Robert Peterson 34:15
So how is he is a basketball basketball team owner, because that was a new transition. Right? That was something new that that he brought in.

Pat Williams 34:24
It was never on the team. I don't think he was a particularly rabid basketball fan up to that point. But he became one. And that team became part of his family. He, he loved those ballplayers loved love the love the magic, he he just became just an absolute wonderful, wonderful owner. He did not interfere. He hired the best people he could and let them work left them alone. If after a period of time you had not been successful, you would probably wait to move on, but he never you could never blame him and saying, he made me do this or forced this or that, or maybe trade that never happened, never happened. He let you do your job and rewarded you if you did well. And if you didn't, well, then you knew it was time to park. But I would I would classify him as the very best kind of owner you could find. If you if you were running a ball club or was scouting or coaching, he let you do what you had it what you thought was best. So he and he became very attached to this team, to the point that his children then took over now that now the third generation the the grandchildren are in charge, by and large.

Robert Peterson 35:54
Well, I know that he loves to travel the games and

Pat Williams 35:57
story. Well, he is and he did, he took French to the game, he always liked to take them to dinner and enjoy a ballgame and sit with him down close to the team bench. He passed away a few years ago, his wife did his well he lived into his early 90s. And just was this special man special friend. I'm so glad I got to meet him on that trip up after grand wrap. Bids was the Labor Day weekend of 1990. And I went up there to tell him we needed an owner for this baseball effort. And, and in a matter of minutes, he said, I'll do it. Which was quite remarkable. He said I'll do it till the National League I'll do it. And it didn't work out. But as I said, when the magic were on the market, the next summer he and his family were first in line.

Robert Peterson 36:59
Well, it's interesting how your conversation to bring him into baseball probably set up the connection to buying the magic, otherwise, that would have never ever come to be and what an incredible legacy that the Orlando Magic had become.

Pat Williams 37:15
Well, that's true. If he if he had not come down here and gotten interested in involved in that baseball effort. No, we wouldn't have known of him and he wouldn't have known a boss that never would have happened. The club was going to be sold but it wouldn't have been sold to their family. But he had a head start from coming down through for the baseball efforts but went to Magic Games and, and just was treated so not warmly. And he just felt very much at home here. He and his family both they were just treated so warmly. And listen, that happens in Orlando, it's the kind of community that we have here. And he just felt embraced and wanted to be part of it when the magic became for sale. But and right now, the magic of the DeVos family is, well this this French is just gonna be under their ownership for many, many years. The this next generation is enjoying what's going on and they're gonna be here for a long time.

Robert Peterson 38:21
Alright, so now obviously you had 51 years in, in the NBA so so huge connections to basketball and obviously a love for the sport developed. Tell me about writing How to Be Like Mike, obviously right now his story is out with the Nike connection and Nike making those choices. And all the things that that happened out of a relationship with a professional basketball player and a business in the sponsorship level that those that story is gaining popularity right now. But tell me about your connection to Mike and writing that story.

Pat Williams 39:01
Michael retired after his second year with the wizards and I had been I had really developed a speed about Michael How to Be Like Mike, because he was the most real you got to save one probably the most unique athlete of all time. Colorful, interesting, there was a lot to him. And I began to try and put those pieces together. And this speech I gave numbers of times they went over quite well. And I thought this could probably be your book. And so I tracked down the publisher phoning Peter vegs Oh, at health communications. I knew them from the Chicken Soup for the Soul period. And I was able to reach out to him and talk to him about this idea and a little convincing but he agreed to do it. gave me a $5,000 advance and big money back then.

Robert Peterson 40:08
The bike book was the first

Pat Williams 40:10
of this series. I'd written a few other books by name, but, but he agreed to do it. And I then just went after it full bore. I tried to track down everybody in basketball and beyond, who might have played against him played with him. I got to all those people, media types, everybody that had any sense of Michael Jordan, I was able to get to them all the way back to his growing up in Wilmington, North Carolina, I was able to get some of his little league coaches, it was fascinating. And we put that all together, I wrote it with a phony Michael wind, rabidly gifted wordsmith. And that book came out and and it was in print, I still think, you know, you still see it in some bookstores today. It was, it was a, it was a big success, because primarily because Michael was such a fascinating character to begin with. And this was a nobody had ever written it quite from this angle. It was a motivational biography. In other words, what can you take from Michael Jordan, what are the qualities you can take and apply to your life? Michael is not a perfect human being, you know, flawed like the rest of us. But boy, there's so much to take his commitment, his drive, his work ethic, his perseverance, his his leadership skills, some much to learn from Mike. And so that writing that book was a great treat. It was a great thrill. And I was very pleased that it did so well and and still is out there. Mike hasn't played in a long time. You know, his career ended long ago as a player but we'll never forget him. You'll always be sports icon in this world. And I think people will still enjoy that book immensely.

Robert Peterson 42:19
So what is your favorite anecdote or your favorite aspect of Mike, that you'd like to share?

Pat Williams 42:30
Well, probably it's an it's an anecdote that I got an too late to put it in the book. But it's probably my favorite. Michael was playing against Utah. And they had a player named Jim les from Bradley University LDS. And there was a play in the game, where Jim last got an offensive rebound and was driving down the court. Michael caught him from behind, blocked a shot. And a photographer took a picture. I guess a year two later, Jim had been traded. But he's in Chicago, playing against the bulls in the chute around that morning. Jim took that picture that he had that photograph from earlier and had Michael sign it for him. So that night, amazingly enough, same play unfolds. ball off the backboard, Jim bless grabs it. Heads down the court. Michael catches him from behind. Block blocks the shot, knocks Jim less into the photographer's and Michael leans over and yells at him the game is still going on. He said I'll sign that when to

Robert Peterson 44:15

Pat Williams 44:18
He said I'll sign that when to Oh. Boy, he, he always had he always had the last word. He always he was he was a tense competitor. He thrived on competition. He didn't want to just beat you. He wanted to pummel you. You know, he wanted to equip you. And he loves to compete. Love to win. But but the competition really drew out the best in him. He fought on that.

Robert Peterson 44:59
Alright, bye So now you're working on bringing a Major League Baseball team to Orlando. But you also have another book project, what's your latest book? And how can people find it?

Pat Williams 45:10
Well, there there is a book coming out that I didn't really write, but it's called How to be like Pat Williams named John's, a fellow named John Simmons wrote it, it's gonna be out later this year. I've got a book on aging. It's coming out this year called happy in the homestretch how to age well. And we're working also on a leadership book, kind of a leadership encyclopedia that I've learned over the years, what are the what are the key words in this leadership language? And we've just gotten started on that. And it'll be out probably a year from now. So there are some still some ideas. And I've got a feeling that if, if this baseball thing works Don't be shocked. Let me let me get this off. All right, worries. Do not be shocked. If there's a book about the birth of the Orlando dreamers baseball team, you know, I'm Lando

Robert Peterson 46:25
dreamers because the magic is already taken.

Pat Williams 46:31
Yeah, the magic word, a word that is indigenous to your community. I never did understand the Utah Jazz. I mean, they started a long ways from Detroit, Orleans. They moved to Utah and they just stayed the jazz. Well, we want we want to name that part of our community. We thought the magic captured that and I think dreamers as well. Walt Disney was a dreamer, Arnold Palmer came here with big golf dreams. We had an astronaut named John Young who walked on the moon big space dreams. I came here with big basketball dreams years ago. So we think dreamers kind of captures the people who come here and move here. These 80 million visitors from around the world, they come here with big dreams about a vacation. So a dreamer seemed to fit for now the Orlando dreamers baseball team,

Robert Peterson 47:31
I ring to it.

Pat Williams 47:37
Now that's great. That's great. Well, Robert, I'm so happy to have met you. And I appreciate

Robert Peterson 47:42
you taking the time today to hang out with me. We always end every episode with our guests sharing their words of wisdom that what would you share with our entrepreneurial audience? Well, I

Pat Williams 47:51
probably would take a word from the late John Wooden Coach Wooden, who made this statement he said make each day your masterpiece. Now there's a good challenge for us. Make each day your masterpiece. So if you if you so much. Thank you, Robert. I'm so glad to have visited with you and appreciate your time. Thanks.