College basketball broadcasting legend Dick Vitale returned to the booth for ESPN’s broadcast of the Gonzaga-UCLA game on Tuesday night in Las Vegas, just one month after he revealed that he’d been diagnosed with lymphoma.

When Vitale revealed the lymphoma diagnosis in an essay on Oct. 18, he said that he planned to continue working while undergoing six months of chemotherapy.

Tuesday night featured the perfect game for the voice of college basketball to make his return to the ESPN booth: the No. 1 team (Gonzaga) in the country vs the No. 2 team (UCLA) in the country.

Here’s a look at Vitale arriving in the arena before the game:

At the beginning of the broadcast, ESPN play-by-play man welcomed Vitale back to the booth, and Vitale got very emotional:

“It’s great being here, Dave. I didn’t want to cry. I can’t believe I’m sitting here. It’s really a big thrill for me. I want to thank all of you people that sent me so many great messages. ESPN, Jimmy Pitaro, all my buddies at ESPN. I want to thank certainly my family and all the fans. You’ve been unbelievable.”

During a break in the game, ESPN reporter and college basketball analyst Sean Farnham had young Gonzaga and UCLA fans show off “Dickie V” and “Never Give Up” jerseys for Vitale.

Vitale said, “Get me their addresses! I’ll mail ’em something! I wanna mail ’em a gift!”

While it’s been a very emotional night for Vitale, he’s still bringing his usual enthusiasm and catchphrases with the commentary.

Vitale also spoke about the need for less hate and more love.

Welcome back, Dickie V. College basketball isn’t the same without you.

[Photo Credit: ESPN]

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

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