Alan Seiden, a New York basketball legend and former ticket broker, died Saturday, May 3, two and half years after suffering a debilitating stroke. He was 71 years old.
Seiden first starred on the basketball court in the mid-1950s for the Jamaica (NY) High School team, leading them to the New York City title in 1955, and he was also the leader of the St. John’s University team that won the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) title in 1959. He was inducted into the St. John’s Hall of Fame in 1986 and won the Frank C. Haggerty Award as a Most Valuable Player in Metro-area sports the year he lead St. John’s to the NIT championship.
For several years, Seiden ran his own ticket brokerage called Hudson Tickets in Fort Lee, NJ, specializing on sports and Broadway tickets like so many of the metro-New York brokers do. He was also a devoted collector of sports memorabilia.
“He was a good person,” said Manny Goldstein, a principal with Manhattan Entertainment. Goldstein’s company is also located in Fort Lee. “He was a pretty nice guy.”
After college, Seiden was drafted by the then St. Louis Hawks, but he never played in the National Basketball Association, a point which reportedly saddened Seiden for much of his life. He had been a starting guard on the St. John’s team under coach Joe Lapchick, and he was honored as a consensus All-American during his college career.
Donnie Oddo, one of the owners Executive Tickets NJ, said his company was only about half a mile away from Seiden’s Hudson Tickets in Fort Lee, but Oddo knew more of Seiden through his exploits on the basketball court. Oddo is a St. John’s graduate and often heard of Seiden’s legendary play.
“He was a great player, an all-time great for St. John’s,” Oddo said.
Seiden never married, but is survived by his mother, a brother and sister.