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From practice to playoffs: the best press conferences in sports


allen iverson

Press conferences are one of the media’s greatest tools. One setting where journalists gather to ask coaches and players alike questions before or after games, or even practices. While the information they give is valuable, and hits the headlines moments after the person at the podium finishes his or her sentence, press conferences have also given us some of the best moments in sports, and some of the best rants.

He’s my quarterback

There’s no crying in baseball, but the NFL may be a different case. In 2008, after another disappointing Cowboys playoff game, Terrell Owens came to his quarterback’s defense. Through teary eyes, and sunglasses, Owens told reporters that they win and lose as a team. That they can point the finger at Romo, but “it’s really unfair.” He continues to sniffle and say “it’s my teammate, it’s my quarterback, and if you guys do that, it’s really unfair. We lost as a team.” Owens is known for being emotional, and he wasn’t afraid to show it.

Eli Manning just wants to answer some questions

Eli Manning had already won one Super Bowl ring when he found himself waiting on reporters to begin a post-game press conference. But the MVP was all alone, until one guy showed up wearing a backpack. That was all Manning needed, and the quarterback stepped up to the podium to take questions from the press.

Why we play

Herm Edwards did everyone a great service with this rant, reminding the masses what the real reason is for playing sports. We play to win the game. It doesn’t matter if you lose, you play to win. Edwards’ rant may go down as one of the greatest in history, and may be remixed to death, but the underlying message is pretty clear and correct. You play to win the game, you give it your all. Edwards sure gave this rant his all.

Dennis Green knows who the Bears are

The former Arizona Cardinals head coach went on a rant about the Chicago Bears that is known as one of the greatest rants in NFL post-game history. The Cardinals were up 23-10 against the Bears with just five minutes left in the game, but Chicago pulled off the comeback. Green was asked a question about his defense, but decided to answer something completely different. “The Bears are what we thought they were….they are who we thought they were, and we let them off the hook.”

Mike Gundy is a man

Mike Gundy does not like the way the press spoke of one of his players. The Oklahoma State University coach went on a rant about a piece published about one of his players, telling a press conference that “¾ of this isn’t accurate, it’s fiction, and this article embarasses me…” Nearly a minute into his rant Gundy yells that the newspaper is garbage, and so is the editor who let the article run. But at the 1:14 mark Gundy tells the press they should come after him because he’s “a man, I’m 40.” At the end the coach walks out of the press conference to a round of applause.

David Bennett’s cats & dogs

Truth be told, I’m still not sure what David Bennett is trying to say in his cats and dogs rants. One thing is for sure, his players need to be dogs. The Coastal Carolina coachmay not have been well known before this rant, which includes various cat imitations, but he sure was on the map after the video was posted everywhere. In his rant, Bennett tells his players they “need more dogs,” because there’s a cat in the house, and he won’t leave through the front door. Take a listen:

First, let’s win a game

Jim Mora doesn’t want to talk about the playoffs. After wrapping up talking about the Indianapolis Colts’ awful performance in a game against the 49ers, saying they threw away the game, Mora uttered a sentence that will forever be remembered: “Playoffs? Don’t talk about playoffs. Are you kidding me? Playoffs? I just hope we can win a game!” What makes the quote even better was the way in which Mora said it, for that, watch below:

Marshawn Lynch just doesn’t want to get fined

During the 2015 Super Bowl Media Day, then-Seattle Seahawk running back Marshawn Lynch made one thing very, very, very clear: he doesn’t want to get fined. Lynch was apparently threatened with a $50,000 fine if he didn’t make himself available to the media during the annual event. He made himself available, but the only thing he said: I’m just here so I won’t get fined.”

He answered with some sort of variation of the sentence for nearly five minutes, before calling “time” and walking out. At the end of 2015, Lynch was even granted the trademark for the phrase.

Bob Knight’s crystal glass

Bob Knight’s reaction to a reporter asking him about what one of his players will look like next year is absolutely priceless. The legendary coach first tells the reporters that he has no idea what the future holds and can’t see beyond the present. But then, in front of a laughing crowd, Knight proceeds to use a glass on the table as a crystal ball. Eventually, after a second question about next year, the crystal tells Knight: “what a sh*t question.” Too bad the connection wasn’t too great, we’d love to hear more about what Bob Knight sees in the future.

What we talkin’ about? Oh yea, practice

This has to be one of the most notorious press conferences of all time, which means a lot since Allen Iverson has had a lot of great rants in front of the camera. But everyone knows the practice rant, even if they’ve never actually seen the film. While answering a question about, you guessed it, practice, Iverson goes off for several minutes about practice.

“I’m supposed to be the franchise player, and we in here talking about practice. We talkin’ bout practice, not a game, not a game, not a game. We talking about practice.”

Practice.