Stuart Scott may not dunk basketballs or score touchdowns for a living, but after battling cancer twice he more than deserves a spot among the playmakers. The 48-year-old ESPN sports announcer, who appeared to be on the way to fully getting back on his feet, revealed in January that he is battling cancer for the third time. Rather than become discouraged over another bout with the disease, Scott is taking the bull by the horns, determined as ever to triumph over cancer again.
"I never ask what stage I’m in," he told the New York Times. "I haven’t wanted to know. It won’t change anything to me. All I know is that it would cause more worry and a higher degree of freakout. Stage 1, 2 or 8, it doesn’t matter. I’m trying to fight it the best I can."
Scott’s fight with cancer dates back to when he was first diagnosed with the condition in 2007 with cancer of the appendix while undergoing an appendectomy. To date, the father of two has had 58 infusions of chemotherapy, which hasn’t prevented him from returning to ESPN.
In fact, Scott is making sure cancer doesn’t get the upper hand by using mixed martial arts and high-intensity cross-training workouts to restore the energy that chemotherapy takes out of him. While experimental treatment may raise an eyebrow for some, Scott admits that he has considered going that route for his battle.
"We’ve talked about doing a clinical study," the commentator said, "which I might do at some point. We’re going to see what happens with this new drug. And I guess I could go back to my old regimen. There is some evidence that it did some help, but chemotherapy is not an exact medical science. I heard an oncologist say that in the world of oncology, two and two doesn’t equal four, it equals five or six or three."
Scott speaks frequently about his daughters, with pride and melancholy. He is divorced from their mother and they share custody. Taelor, the 19-year-old, is in college.
When he first learned he had cancer, the girls asked him a lot of questions. Taelor once asked if the cancer would kill him, he recalled. "I said: ‘It could, and that’s why we’re doing everything we can. That’s why I’m taking every medicine I can and that’s why I keep working out so we can keep traveling the way we do and so I can act silly and goofy and keep embarrassing you.’ "
Now the girls ask fewer questions. He figures that they are typical teenagers who prefer not to discuss what scares them. "I know they worry about it," he said, "probably more than I want them to."