Bryan Altman, CBS Local Sports
The world watched with bated breath on Saturday evening as American Pharoah made history by becoming the first horse in 37 years to win the Triple Crown with a wire to wire win at the Belmont Stakes. Mainly because of the vocal limitations of our equine friends, it was American Pharoah’s jockey Victory Espinoza that handled the on-the-field/track postgame press conference, and boy was it a memorable one. Espinoza was raw and emotional immediately after winning and couldn’t help but blurt out “holy s***,” on live television in the immediate aftermath of his historic victory.
But hey, that’s what we’re always hoping for when we interview athletes immediately after a game. Here are some of the best on-field postgame interview moments in recent sports history.
1. Bart Scott “Can’t Wait”
When the Jets lost to the New England Patriots 45-3 in the regular season nobody really gave them much of a chance against the Patriots when the two teams met in the playoffs. However, the Jets managed to win 28-21, probably largely thanks to the massive chip on their should after that first loss earlier in the year. Bart Scott certainly wasn’t trying to pretend that revenge didn’t feel oh so good.
2. Richard Sherman “I’m The Best Corner In The Game…”
Whatever happened between Michael Crabtree and Richard Sherman that lead to the bitter hatred between the two might never fully be known by the public. Still, it’s created a great on-the-field rivalry, which has in turn lead to some great on-the-field interviews after the fact, including this gem from Sherman after his pass deflection (pass intended for Crabtree) sealed the Seahawks’ fate as NFC Champions.
3. Paul Pierce “I Called Game”
Hubris: The proud sponsor of the on-field/court post-game news conference. When Paul Pierce hit his buzzer beater the words flowed off his tongue just as perfectly as the basketball had flowed off his hands just a few seconds earlier. He called game, and game it was.
4. MLB – Brian Wilson – “I Wanna Rage, Right Now”
When you look as interesting as Brian Wilson you expect him to say interesting things. Immediately after helping the San Francisco Giants win Game 5, Brian Wilson responded to a question on national television as if it were asked to him by a friend on a casual Friday night. ‘So Brian, what are you thinking for tonight?’ “I wanna rage, right now.” Classic.
5. Kevin Garnett – “Anything Is Possible”
Immediately after winning his first NBA championship with the Boston Celtics Kevin Garnett was overcome with emotion in a few different ways. The interview if memorable and chilling as one of the most intense players in the NBA released with a primal scream, followed by tears of joy, followed by just yelling at the camera. Emotional wreck Garnett is one of my favorite variations.
So often postgame press conferences are vanilla and useless. So cheers to the brilliant men and women who decided to start interviewing players when they’re at their most volatile and emotional right after a big win or a crushing defeat – we owe you a debt of gratitude for making postgame interviews palatable once more.