Huddle Up with Gus
Huddle Up with Gus

Episode · 2 years ago

Peter King

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

He has been named National Sportswriter of the Year three times, is a household name in sports journalism, NBC Sports Writer Peter King joins the Huddle. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Welcome to our PODCAST, huddle upwith gusts, where we talked to guests about how sports help shape their life. I'm your host, former NFL quarterback, gusts fraud, and I'm joined bymy longtime friend and coach Dave Hagar. We are a RADIOCOM original podcast andyou can find us on the new radiocom out or anywhere you listen toyour favorite podcast. Now let's get in the Huddel so joining us today.He's written for sports illustrated. He's with NBC sports now. He's just soknowledgeable, just a great guy. Everybody in the NFL loves them. Theylove talking to them in the good times and baths. Joining US Dave today, Peter King. Peter, thank you for being on a show with us. Hey, good to be on with you guys. Thanks for asking.Yeah, so where we started to show, like always, is we go backto where you're from. We want to go back to when you grewup in Massachusetts and what was what started that love of sports for you.Well, I was born in Springfield, mass and raised in a border townand Connecticut, end field, Connecticut, and we're halfway between New York andand Boston. So you know, my father was a bit he was abig picture in high school and when I was a kid, the only thingI wanted to do was grow up and succeed Carl you Stromsky as the leftfielder of the Boston Red Sox. And after a while I figured what,you're probably not going to get to do that. So I loved writing,I loved English, I love reading and I said well, if I can'tplay it, maybe I can write about it, and that's really where itstarted. I'm really fortunate because when I got to be in probably fourth orfifth grade, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life.If I wasn't going to be a baseball player, I knew I wanted towrite about sports if I could, and so that was sort of a drivinginfluence in my life and my father really emphasized education. My mother was ahuge reader. She did crossword puzzles, she loved, she got me loveof jeopardy. You know, so words and sentences and reading and everything we'rereally really important in the kinghouse growing up. But you still had to go outand beat Carlio Stremsky when you were a kid. You said, Iwant to go out and play him. Did you have a group of kidsthat you went out and played with all the time? Of course, ofcourse. You know, when you were a kid, it's totally unlike itis now. You know, is you know, gus. I'm sure itwas the same for you growing up in PA. That I mean. Anyway, this is how it was for me. You know, at nine o'clock inthe morning we were out the door and that was it. We werenot back. We came back for lunch for a little while and then wewere out again a quarter to one and we're out until dinner and we're justplaying games and and running around and writing our bikes all our over these yeah, and and look, I mean I think a lot has been lost withkids today, and I'm not one of those. Oh my God, itwas so much better when I was a kid. I'm not sure it wasbetter when I was a kid, but I know that we were a lotmore physically fit. Yeah, right, I was a kid and the kidsare today. So I think that's one of the things that the kids missedtoday. Well, leave. The kids are stronger fingers now, though.Yeah, they get carpal tunnel a lot easier. Yeah, I know,I didn't know what carpal tunnel was growing up. You know, my dadwould just say leave the house, don't come back to the nine o'clock whistleblowsand then, you know, then I'll let you back in the house.That's about that was good. Yeah, it's a good way to be that'sa good way to be raised. I grew up in Arizona and so whenthe Coyote started howling we knew it was probably yeah, come in, Iyou go home. Yeah, and put down the whiffleball back. So oneof the questions we always asked all of our guests, and Dave usually askedthis question. I think we're hitting over ninety percent on so I think wemight get a good chance here. Well, we already kind of give him alittle preview of it. Did you play whiffle walls as a kid?I loved whiffleball, but it was actually the game that we played more andI don't know if you ever played it, but the tiny ball, it waslike the golf the Plastic Golf Ball. It was called a peg ball,okay, and we used to play with that and my brother used toused to pitch and he would throw knuckleballs and it was impossible to hit thatlittle ball when it was dancing all around. Right, I loved whiffleball as akid. I thought it was the best. What kind of that woulduse a whiffleball bat? Oh, yeah, yeah, the thin yellow yeah,Thin Yellow Bat. That's what we'd use. Dave get mad at mebecause I love to use the big fat red one because I just like tohit home runs, you know, and we all it was a lot,because I can never hit with that little yellow bat. It was well,just you were able to. Yeah, it was. It took a littlebit more finesse. Yeah, the bit the red one was ridiculous. Yeah, that was the best one. The Red One was too easy. Wasn'tread. Was To yeah, well,...

I always brought that one I playedso that anybody could use it, but it was a lot more fun.But so, so you're going through this. You got a lot of a lotof did you play any sports? Were you? And Oh, yeah, you can all that my yeah, I play Little League Baseball. Iplayed. I played soccer when I grew up. I played football until Igot cut from my from my pop warner team in sixth grade and I wasso ticked off at the coach that I said that's it, I'm playing soccer. So I played soccer seven through twelve grade. We had a really goodteam in high school, so it was not that big a deal. Thesoccer team was better than the football team. But my big sport in high schoolwas baseball and you know, I played. We had a really kindof big time American Legion baseball team my senior in high school. We wouldall over New England. We played in all six states. I had ahome run one night in Carlton Fists Home Park in Keene, New Hampshire,and that was like the highlight of my life. It's like because I wasa big Red Sox fan as a kid, but I loved baseball. Get thisstory. So I get accepted and I enroll at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, and so I decide that I'm going to walk onto the baseballteam. It won't try to walk on for the baseball team. Now MikeSchmidt went to Ohio. You Bob Brindley? They had they had really good teamsin those days. So I walked on to the baseball team in theday. I get there, there's a hundred and thirty three kids walking on, you know, trying right now. Yeah, hundred and thirty three.It four tryouts and the coach stands up and he goes, well, youknow, I'm going to bring out of this try out today, I'm goingto bring seven candidates onto our team. And I just looked around and,you know, I said, I think the numbers are against all of us. So, anyway, that was like my last baseball experience. So howmany people walked away at that point? Now, everybody, everybody's everybody stayed. But it was kind of a crappy practice. You got five swings andthey asked you to throw three balls from center field, second, third andhome, and that was the tryout. And and I thought it was reallyI don't know, I thought it was just Bush lead. So I endedup writing a note and sticking it on the baseball coaches door at Ohio youand I just said I hey, listen you, it's your team. Blah, Blah. I really think that I could be competitive and I really Iwant a chance. I want a real chance. And believe it or not, the phone rang in my dorm room that night and he said show uptomorrow, tomorrow at three o'clock, you know, with the with the otherseven, I'll give you a shot. So I always appreciate it that.That's right. I didn't make it, but he did. He gave memore of a shot than then then a three minute try out, right,but that talks a lot to what it takes to get your shot though,right. Yeah, many people would never even make the effort that you madeto say hey, I believe I can be here. You got to giveme that chance and we hear those stories all the time and that's pretty amazingthat you did that and he actually gave you a shot. Most people would, I think. Yeah, but I also like gust when I talked tokids. Now you know our business, the newspaper magazine Journalism Business. Foryoung kids, man, it's not good and and I always tell kids todaythat if you can't take rejection and you can't take a long row, wouldyou know you're not going to be able just to walk into a job.It's just not happening. But I think there always be a place for storytellingand for storytellers, but it's just that you've got to be able to havethe ability to get slapped around a little bit it's really I bet. Ibet it's a lot what you had to put up with and try to makeit to the NFL, because there's probably a lot of people who told youknow, and that's what the business is in journalism right now. Everybody's tellingpeople know. Well, it's got to be tough because the kids aren't comingout with the same passion right they're not reading books like they used to,they're not doing the same things just like we talked about. They're not goingout in socializing the way we did. I can't imagine trying to write aboutbaseball now where you don't even kids don't even go to the game and scoreit, like when I was a kid, us to go the pirate games andscore the game. Yeah, I'm the way. Hey, listen,I am the Weirdo in the crowd all the time because I get the weirdlooks because I still keep scoring at the baseball games and I just I lovedoing it. My Dad taught me when...

I was six or seven years oldand I've kept score. I wouldn't say every game, you know, sometimesyou go to a game for business or something, but virtually every game I'vebeen to since I was seven years old. I've kept score. I think it'sjust fun. It just adds the enjoyment of the game. It's alost art, for sure. Well, yeah, but if you just goto the game to watch there's a lot of downtime. The Games are,yeahnger now, all right, but it does give you like, okay,who's coming up? I got to get ready to score it. I keeptrack and you kind of understand the game a little bit better when you dothat. And I think probably in journalism the same thing with kids nowadays werethey're losing that art form. I mean, look, there's still are a lotof kids who grow up with the burning desire to do this job,both in news and sports. There's a lot of them, but there's alsosome who, what's the right word to say they? I mean there's stillare some people who get into this business who who they want to write,you know, and that's their thing. and I tell everybody listen, youbetter be able to be varied, you better be able to be versatile andto do a lot of different things in this business because, like when Iwas a kid and Ohio, the only thing that we did. This isa funny story, because I didn't even journalism school is so different these days. I went to Ohio with the exact same time as matt lower went Ohioright, and because the TV part of the curriculum in the College of communicationswas totally different from the curriculum in the journalism school. So basically I nevereven knew Matt Lower in college. Like I've met him since, obviously,and I said, man, that's crazy. We were at the say in schoolfor we are crossed each other for three years. I never knew him, right, because you just didn't know the people were doing TV, becauseall I was doing was, you know, print journalism and right. So that'show much it's changed. Now, if you go you're going to tryto experience everything in in a journalism and communication school. Well, how importantis it now that you have to understand social media in journalism? I mean, look, you got to do it. I mean at NBC now you knowpart of what I do after I write something. You know there's socialmedia team at NBC and they'll figure out, they'll read my column and they'll saythis is what we think is going to get people interested in reading it. You got some of our Kayler Marie this week. He's hot. Let'sget him. You know, everybody's interested in Kyla Marie. Oh, yougot Patrick Mahomes in the column this week. Let's highlight that, and so they'llsend out social posts about that. And so I do some of thattoo. But and I'm not saying you can't teach an old dog tricks atall, because I'm into social media because you have to, you have tobe. But mostly I just try to let what I write speak for itself. Just to cover the today show. He went to school matt lower.I went to school with Savanna Guthrie in the School Media Arts at you there. Well, so see, how about that? Right exactly, though,I didn't know that. Yeah, that she was the cousin of my longtimegirlfriend Yvana Lopez. So, yeah, all kind of down. Hey,listen, is that a trivia question I can actually use? That's probably somethingyou could use. Yeah, you can. We we went to high school togethertoo. So yeah, whether she remembers me or not, she she's. I saw insurance now, Peter, she's. Did she ushould make anyone? I'm sorry. Did she use your nickname? What you talked to you? Fortunately, she didn't know the nicknames that we talked about the other day. I was just checking. Yeah, no one knows about those except nowthat you've been broadcast last night. I'm they're not flattering, Peter, andI'm glad you've missed those. So fear, when you were in Ohio and you'relooking to go work, did you understand that you wanted to be insports, specifically football? Are you just were going any job you want it? No, I never. You know, it's funny, Guss. When Iwas at o you, I never I didn't write sports, I wrotenews. In fact, my senior year I was pretty convinced I'd probably becovering the State House and living in Columbus or I don't know, it justtrying to get a job somewhere writing about politics. Maybe you're writing some newsthing, because we were. We were always taught that even if you wantedto be a sports writer, you should really learn all aspects of the ofthe business. You should write about everything. So I really got into report thenews. I was the managing editor at the school paper my senior yearand I really thought that that's what I...

...wanted to do with the news side. But Anyway, I was I was happy taking any job and and honestly, my first job out of college was at the Associated Press in Columbus andI had to get up every morning and do the farm report at forty fiveam, you know, and call and find out how much the hogs coststhat day. And so I don't know that I didn't actually love it,but it was fine, you know, because that was I had a fulltimejob in journalism. So, you know, I just think that was one ofthe things that that really taught me. That taught me, you know,even more of a love for journalism because I knew that I just wantedto do the job. I really truly didn't care if I were if Iwas going to do something in news or if I was ever going to geta job in sports. And when the sports editor the Cincinnati in quirer calledand asked me to cook be a general assignment guy farm, that was great, and I don't mean this disrespectfully to that, but if they had nevercalled, I was still going to be really good at some aspect of journalismand I would have been very happy about it too. So I and everythingended up working out right. So we've inter I think that's very interesting howyou put that, because we've also interviewed Sally Jenks and Christine Brennan and andLeslie Visser, and they're just talking about, you know, a little bit aboutequality, but just more about we just love doing our job and wewanted to get the best. We didn't care what we were reporting on rightever job we were given. We just wanted to go out and give itall and give a great product back. And one of the things they saidwas because we did that and we gave such a great product, then thatlet us make the next step. And I think that's what you're kind ofsaying, is that I you just wanted to work hard. You don't carewhat it was. I just wanted to make great great stories or product.You know what I you know, I'm sixty two years old now. WhenI was fifty six, sports illustrator gave me this, the ability to dothis website called the mmqb. I ran it for five years and what wasreally interesting about it is that, you know, I got to hire peopleand I got to work with people and that was really that was a funthing to do. But the one thing I learned about that is that youknow the business and in doing something really different and editing and hiring people,and I used to have to go on the road and try to sell adsand things like that. So I got to know kind of the every otherpart of the business right the thing I learned, thing I learned about itis that I really love this one thing, which was gathering information and trying todisseminate it in a manner that people would love to read. And andagain, I've also done TV. I've done quite a bit of TV.In fact, one of the most fun things I've done is going to beon TV here in a couple of weeks. I sat down, I went toKansas City in August and I got far to come up and I gotfar mahomes and Andy read and you know, as you know, obviously read coachedfar as his quarterback coach when he won an mvp in Green Bay andthen twenty one years later he coaches Patrick Mahomes when he wins the MVP inKansas City. So it was really it was really what was fun about itis we went and and I brought tape of five far plays and five mahomesplays and we watched it and all three of them just talked like they weresitting around in their kitchen saying wow, what were you thinking of here?What were you doing there? And so that's going to be on in acouple of weeks and those are the kind of things. Look, if Idid that just writing it, it wouldn't be as good, right, becauseyou wouldn't really see far OFFN mahomes interact. But we're actually doing a half hourTV show that's going to be on NDC sports network on October thirty.Because the video was so good it's going to be on TV to but youknow how TV stories all right, three and a half minutes and it'll befun that story, but it won't be everything it could be. And sothough, but anyway, I just love the story, right, you know, I love I got such a kick out of being in the same roomfor forty five minutes with far mahomes and Andy Reid, just trying to getinto the heads of those guys. Yeah, I never got to play for Andy. I know a lot of stories about Brett as far as like hisdemeanor and way he was around people in the jokester and just had a lotof fun playing the game, you know. And what's what is Patrick Mahomes like. I don't, I mean just I watch him and it seems likehe has a little bit of that Brett...

...far where God really relate to him. He's I said to somebody the other day when I told him that Idid this, they said, wow, what do you I know what you'veknown far forever, but what do you think mahomes? And I said he'slike a mature far, because I'm just telling you, far is they're tellingfart stories and stuff and all of that, and he just far was the ultimategood time Charlie Guy. He righte. He just he had so much fun, you know, doing this and Mahomes that's fun too. But he'sa little bit of a business. Got A business streak in them. But, but, but the one thing I really, really like about Mahomes isthat he just loves he loves football. He loves talking about football, heloves thinking about football. He he has this thing that you just know whenyou're sitting there talking to him, you just say, this guy can't waitto get out of here so that he can go do something footballish. Andand I'll tell you this, I'll tell you this quick story. So youknow we're walking out of it. We're walking out of the field house atthe chiefs thing where we went out and I had this little field of dreamsthought and far said he'd go along with it, and so I just said, would you guys be okay if we just went out and you guys playedcatch, and and Mahome said Yeah, sure, that'd be great. Soanyway, we went out and we played catch and we were walking away.Far was signing some stuff for people and talking to some people with the chiefsand Mahomes looks at me and he goes, man, that was really fun.So he just, you know, he just he he loves football andI think when he was standing there playing catch with far, he goes this, he looks at me and he goes, this is surreal. Yeah, andit was just you just I appreciate guys. I don't care what walkof life you're in. I really appreciate guys who really love it and whoare not afraid to show that love of it. Yeah, I know that'sso familiar to me because when I was playing for the Redskins and Terry Bradshawcame and interviewed me one time. Well, I grew up in Pittsburgh and thatwas mine. I don't know. That's why I had number twelve andI was just sitting there. I wanted to ask him like a thousand questionsand he's interviewing me. You know, what was it like on this play, and what did you do that you know, and all that, andI never got to but it was just great to sit there with them andhe actually signed a football with me. It was it was a very surrealmoment. You know, when you watch somebody that you idolize and then you'redoing the same thing that they did and then they're coming back and talk toyou. It's a I'm sure those pretty interesting for Patrick going through that.Patrick was what was really the other thing about it that was really kind offun is that this was Mahomes is day off, okay, and I hadtold the PR guy, look, forty five minutes Max, forty five minutesMax. Well, it was two hours in fifteen minutes and the Pr Guy, you could tell, was a little bit nervous and and he's walking around. But I mean, I'm just telling you, if far could have stayed, mahomes would have stayed right you know, he just he had the time.I'm just telling you that he had a ball and and that's one ofthe things when I see people like that, that I love stories like that becauseyou know this, you've been around the game. You know if thePR guy will come to you and say, Hey, would you do this?I mean, with the rare exception of Terry Bradshaw coming into town,but the most part, Hey, Washington Post writer wants to talk to youor or whoever wants to talk to you. Okay, yeah, all right,you know, let's see how fast we can get this done. Andboth far and Mahomes, I could just tell you know when they're totally intoit, and they were totally into what it was just fun. Well,I think that's where that clip came from. Right. They did the nobok passes. Yes, yeah, I saw that on the day. Yeah,yeah, well, you know, they're so similar in the way they play. You thrown from different body positions, kind of fearless and armed, sidearm. Yeah, just, yes, gun slingers, as that's the oldturnstre guns. What's my nickname? You don't call me the Belgian bomber?Yeah, that's it. Yeah, it didn't get on. I think you'regonna say I thought you were going to say the Pittsburgh Gun slinger. No, no, I never played. If I don't play for the steelers,that might have come, but that might have gone on. Belgian bomber hasbeen bigger here. Belgian bomber would have been really good. Polish cannon,I've heard, to Polish cannon. Yeah, just Eastern Europe, Bo yeah,that's what my twenty three and me says. Just like these in Europe. Belgian bomber. Thanks. Right. So you're at the you go toCincinnati, choirer, you're moving on. So how does that transition for youto go to sports illustrated? Well,...

...my last year in Cincinnati covered thebangles one thousand nine hundred and eighty four and into the spring of eighty five. Is An incredible team to cover because the coach was Sam white in hisfirst year. He was crazy in a good way for a writer. Collinsworth was on that team. That was boomers first year there. He wasa rookie. I mean, you know, it was so it was like thewild west in those days in this business, because boomer gets drafted inthe second round out of Maryland and I just said, you know, thebengals were kind of a cheap organization. Yeah, so I just said,you know what I'm going to do, found out what flight he was on. I went to the Cincinnati airport and pick them up. I'll did drovethem. Yeah, I drove them back to the Bangles Riverfront Stadium at thetime, but you could do different things in those days. I went tonewsday after that covered the giants, or four years covered parcels and Lawrence Taylorand Sims and then in eighty nine sports illustrate, he called and I tookthe job. I never even asked them how much I was going to makebecause I didn't care. I said this is absurd. I never in mylife dreamed I would work there and then I ended up there for twenty nineyears. So it was a as a it was a heck of a lifein this business. So at sports illustrated you've written about every player. You'vewritten everything that we could ever imagine about the game that I love, thatI played forever, that a lot of fans love. What was your favoriteinterview you've ever done? I think there were two things that were really Imean, look, I did a did a lot of things there that werereally fun, but I I this would have been in like my second yearthere, I got on the bus with John Madden in Pleasanton, California andI took the bus to the Dakota apartment building in New York City and Iwas on the bus with him for three thousand miles and it was pretty funch. How much film did he make you watch? This is he he was. He was a nut and he really was. He was crazy. Buthe also was a big sleeper on the bus and he had he had whatI when I went back and toured the bus, it was like a highestsuite on wheels, the whole thing. The his room was luxurious. Itwas like the back forty percent of the bus was his room and so butanyway, that was really fun because you know you're on this thing with himfor three days and he's got nowhere to go. He's a total, absolutecaptive audience and in those days there's not all the ways to communicate. Hedid have a phone on the bus but he didn't use it hardly at alland and basically he was there just talking for we talked for six or sevenhours every day, three days in a row. It was fantastic. Sothat was fun one, but probably. The other one was in ninety six, I think a spring of ninety six. I had grown kind of close tofarm at that time and written a bottom a lot for si and heasked me. He said, Hey, listen, I'm having my first golftournament this, you know, this spring, and I'm trying to raise a hundredthousand dollars for boys and girls clubs down here in Mississippi. Would youcome? And I said, Oh, yeah, I'd come. So hewanted me to play golf and I'm terrible at golf. And the night beforeI was going to go, the phone rings. It's far, but hegoes, Hey, listen, you're gonna read tomorrow I'm entering Rehab for forViking and addiction, and so I got to go tomorrow. I'm basically beingforced to go and but we still want to have the golf tournament. Wouldyou would you still come? And I said, of course I'll come andhe said yeah, I really need to raise the money I promised these people. On so anyway, and he was about to get off the phone,I said, excuse me, Mr Most Valuable Player the NFL, but youjust told me you're going into Rehab. King shot hold on a second.You know what I do, and so I just said, you know,I just said, Hey, listen, I'd love to write about it.He goes, well, that's fine. I want you to think of thisfor a second. This was like a Tuesday night and sports illustrated in thosedays, first of all, there was no Internet and sports illustrated in thosedays was already put to bed for the week. It wasn't going to comeout basically until the following Wednesday. So...

I'm thinking to myself, well,I still want to interviewing for it, you know, and I said youtalked to anybody else? He goes no, and so we talked for about fortyminutes and he was unbelievably good. He was totally forthcoming and went tothe S be's that year, in the early year from the S be's,and to get through it he took fourteen victing and he just told me everythingabout what happened. And so at the end of it there's a long pauseand he goes, he goes. You know, everybody always comes up tome and they say, man, what a great life. Man, Iwish I was you, and they said, would they wish they were me?Right now going into Rehab for six weeks tomorrow and Kansas. I don'tthink so, but he said that's what it you know, to get togo through all this pain that I had. That's what it took to be me. But Anyway, I don't want to see the funny part of thestory. Just imagine these days, when it the MVP of the NFL givesyou this tremendous expose a and he's going into Rehab the next day. Justthink about this for a second. I had to sit on that for sevendays. That didn't appeal year anywhere for seven days and when it came out, it blew up. It was the biggest story, you know, theweek, obviously, but but anyway, that's how the business has changed.You know, I said, on the biggest story in sports for seven daysbecause there was no other outlet for it. Right, and now you can't seeit's up for seven seconds now. Yeah, it's out that fast.You would have been you'd have been typing the whole time on your phone ashe's talking. And Yeah, I mean, that's well. I would have,I probably would add, to write something immediately. I would have.I don't know whether it would have been on NBC. It would have beenon NBC nightly news, might have gone on Sports Center, and did itget a few guest gigs? Who knows, but it would have. It wouldI that? I mean I probably talked to him seven or eight o'clockat night that night, by eleven o'clock I would have been the most mediaaccessed person in the world. Right. I would have told the story ahundred times, but that's all one hundred million followers. Yeah, that's right. That's how much the business changed over the years. What do you thinkthe greatest game is the Brett ever played? Was it when his father passed againstthe raiders? Well, when you consider everything that he had to gothrough when he played in that game, yeah, you throw four touchdowns threehundred ninety nine yards, you're on the road, you're playing in the blackhole, I would say that is it. But my feeling is he had agame in ninety five against the Vikings where I think they won thre thousandeight hundred and thirty five for the division lead, and my recollection, thatwas really his coming out party and I remember covering that game and thinking thisguy's going to be great for a long time and he was. Yeah,you really was, and it's just remarkable because, I mean, I playedthe game for a while and didn't play nearly as many games as him,but I've had so many injuries. But the games that he played continuously.It's just unfathomable to me that that two hundred and eighty three games in arow. It's it really is that he never missed, never missed and Ywas was just an immense presence and leader and led his team like no one'sever seen. I think he we've had so many great players in his game. I don't know what I mean. It's probably hard for you to rankthe quarterbacks, but he I mean, what do you think that that?Well, can you know what was interesting? What was interesting, Guss, isthat this past summer, springing summer, I was on a panel of thirtypeople who picked the NFL's all time top one hundred players, and thatwas really an interesting task. That had becred. The reason it was sohard is that all the people you had to leave off Yay and and andI remember the debate about the quarterbacks and some people were talking. You know, not to get too far into this, but some people or it was clearthat they weren't going to include far on the list of their top tenquarterbacks, and I just I just thought that was insane and I still doand I don't know if I don't know the results of it at all,so I don't know who made it, who didn't make it or anything likethat, but I think any list of the top ten quarterbacks of all timewithout far off, even though he did not have a lot of great momentsin the postseason. I think any list that didn't that far am on itwould be a faulty list. Do you so? When you made that listof the top one hundred players, they...

...said we're going to have ten quarterbacks, five running backs, five receivers. Is that kind of how winner?They just said we want to find the best players that ever. No,they said we're going to have x number and every position. So there wereten quarterbacks, that we're going to be that, we're going to be there, and so I think there were six guards, six tackles. I don'tknow it, but but it was. It was very you had every positiongroup in as since you would debate each one and then you would vote onit and then whatever happened happen. You know, we don't know and Iwon't know. I think it'll start to come out in November and they'll do, I think, a couple of position groups every week. Is How they'regoing to release it. Did you go through it and you're like, interviewedthis guy. He was kind of a jerk. I don't really want toput him on the list now. I mean, that's a weird thing.That's that's what weird thinks. Because for the hall of fame, Yeah,you're on your you vote for the hall of fame as well. Yeah,yeah, we always hear, Oh my God, you didn't put Charles Haleyin because for a long time, because he was a jerk to everybody.And I laugh and I said, you know, can you give us justsome tiny bit of credit for for being professional? You know, it's likeyou saying that if one of the receivers you didn't like, you know,on your team and I hate that guy and he's open on Sunday and you'renot going to throw to him. I mean that you give give yourself alittle bit of credit for being professional. So if guys a jerk, sowhat? I don't care. I mean, you know, and so that's oneof the things that I think is always funny. Like there was abunch of that, because I didn't vote for art monk for the hall offame for a long time. I remember and and I'm I don't, Idon't. I tell people who I vote for. I never I don't hidethat. I mean I feel almost like you owe it to somebody. Youknow, that's it's party. If you're going to if you're going to vote, you ought to be willing to stand behind your vote. You know,I believe to. So I would. I'd go to Washington some times andthe monk faction would. I remember a conductor on the Amtrak train, becauseI lived in New York, when I got off the train, he lookedat me disgustedly and he said you won't vote for monk, you know,and you know. So I don't know. You just I did not vote forbecause I had anything to do with per personality. It was just that, even though you made all the catches, I covered the giants in those daysand they were always much more worried about Gary Clark and Ricky Sanders.But but be that as it may, I just you know, you tryto do the job the right way. And you just let the chips fallwhere they may. Right, I'm putting a little bug in your ear formy Buddy Henry Ellard. So I'm just hoping we every alert is is adeceivingly good candidate, in part because of his returnability. That's that's the thingabout his life that he doesn't really get credit for. I think he's avery good candidate. Guss, I really do. Dave, tell him whata tender's doing now. Well, I was going to say he's something Ididn't know, and maybe this is universally known the football world, but howgood a route runner he was. Oh yeah, he was you. Ithink he said he's maybe the best rout ever change speeds and one of theBest I've ever seen her played with because, you know, he would run acorner round dig or anything, and it just was I learned so muchfrom just playing with him. You know the great coaches, I mean Iwas with no where for a long time, Cam Cameron, Mike Marts and learneda lot of how to throw routes. But when you have a receiver likethat that teaches you like that you can throw it early and the timingof it, it was just amazing to learn from Henry, and I'll tellyou one thing. We interviewed him the other day and he came on withus and he is still triple jumping at fifty. How does he fifty nine? Fifty nine and he still jumps fifty three, forty three, forty threefeet. He set the record for his age group and I'm like, Henry, you're making a field, ha ha ha. I mean, that's justthis is kind of athlete he was. Well, he dismissed. He missedthe national record by a quarter of an end when he was in call,when he was in college. Yeah, so Henry and I, one ofour fit my favorite stabs with Henry is I never threw a pass to Henrythat wasn't a first down. No, yeah, it's exactly right. It'spretty interesting. I never knew that and somebody came up and I looked itup and is like wow, that's pretty interesting. Henry was just yeah,he was just a great guy, you know, he was just a wonderfulperson. So you're at sports. I mean you're just iconic and sports illustratedand I think you've done such a great job. I mean I have otherfriends who are writers and you know Mike Really well. Silver it might belike a totally different writer than you and but that's what people like to andit's it was great, you know.

And I I never got to knowyou as well as I knew Mike, just because my wife's crazy and hername's and your wife's name man, and I'm sure we'd all get along.Of Her and Mike always hit it off. I don't know why. Yeah,they just did. But Mike is a different kind of writer. ButI always have appreciated your writing on how you just told the story of theplayer or of the game or of the NFL and what's going on. Yeah, I appreciate that. Look, we all have our own strengths, youknow. Look, Mike was incredibly valuable in the way he wrote, inthe way he reported, because he was the best at getting people to tellhim stuff away from the field. I mean he just he was great atit and there's a skill for that and it wasn't my fault alcohol. Yeah, that's why, whatever it takes, whatever it takes, but look,everybody, everybody's got their own way of doing things and and and I alwaysthought that one of the reasons why, I mean I'm guessing Sid and ninetyseven. Why we had such a good team at Si is that, youknow, we had Paul Zimmerman, who was just a total football nut job, you know, who knew everything about it. You know, you hadme, who was sort of the work or be at silver who was goingto get inside the lives of everybody you played and I just I thought,I thought at the time we had a really good team. You have soyou said Paul was like the most knowledgeable probably that you've said writer. Heknows the most. He was the most knowledgeable guy about football who I've everwho I've ever covered the game with. There's a bunch of new guys nowwho are coming in who really are great at it. Andy Benoit, whoI hired it the MMQB, is really incredibly good and I think in timehe's going to be every bit as good as Paul Zimmerman was. But PaulZimmerman, the reason he was great is that he could watch every game andtell you exactly why something happened in the game. Wow, I used tosee him. I remember seeing him in a locker room one time with MattMellon and they must have been Twenty Min, I mean Zim, needed to gotalk to Montana or whatever it is, when they were when melon was withthe niners, and he he didn't care. He was more interested injust breaking down the exes and o'es of Matt Melon and that was his cupof tea. He loved that. So what player do you think that you'veever been around is the most knowledgeable about the game manning? I agree withthat. Peyton is just he's absurd. In fact he was. You know, I used to tell him he reminded me of like you know sometimes whenyou hear a golfer interviewed after a game, he will say right away, hesaid, okay, on the fourth hole, you know, I hitthe I hit the three would off the tea and and I hit it toa hundred eighty yards from me from the green, and on the way downI'm telling the Caddie, listen, I want to hit the nine iron rightnow in the caddie say no, hit the eight, and so we're goingback and forth and then I hit the eight and I did. And thememories of this and even years later you can say, well, I cameup to sixteen in Augustin and I said I really want to hit this strong. Had A little crosswin there. I had to hit it through the wyou know, it's just absolutely nuts how much guys know and Peyton manning isexactly that way about I bet I could ask him about his comeback in Tampawhen they had to score twenty one points in like the last six minutes tosend it to overtime to win. When he was with the colts, andI'm telling you I because I've asked him about this before, he knew everyplay of every of each of the three drives. Well, that's a newand he dissected everyone and he's I've had it so that he'll be on hisway home from a game and I'd be and I'd call him and and wehave a conversation about the game and he'd be sitting in his driveway and Iknew that I was taken personal time, but he wanted to get it exactlyright. He just he was a total, absolute nut job about about details andthat's why he was so great. So that intelligence. How long doyou think that extended his career? You know, if he didn't have ifhe had the same talent but his intelligence was as good, do you thinkthat he wouldn't have played as long? I don't think he would have playedas long. He just you know, I say sometimes when people talk tome about my most memorable guys I covered, I say things like, you know, find something that you love one...

...third as much as Peyton Manning,love football right and you'll have a happy life. Yeah, he just hewas one of those guys. I slightly worried about him when he left footballbecause I said he'll never find anything he likes as much. But he's oneof these guys when he gets into this media stuff a little bit, heis really, really good at it. Yeah, he's excellent at it infact, and this series he's doing about the history of football, if youwatch it year in off of how good he is at doing something totally differentand doing it really well. He's just he just a really, really brightguy who's going to be good at whatever he tries. I think we definitelygoing to be better than his insurance. What does his insurance come out like? Nation his skin though, the United way commercial on a SML. That'sone of the great all that was one of the great one where he's wherehe's drilling these kids out on this field in New York. That was awesome. Well, him talking about how he didn't want to do it, likebecause you know he's a great person, he didn't want to go out anddrill these kids with a football and the parents were like no, just hithim and he's like are you sure? There? I guess, and sohe said, all of a sudden I'm like at these kids that are likeeight years old, I'm drone him in the face on the football. Itwas pretty funny. It's a great it's a great, pretty good comic.I mean, well, that's one tho. It's classic for sure. Um,Peter, you touched on this a little bit, but you're transition fromsports illustrated to money morning quarterback and TV. Tell us about like how that went, because I mean I think Peter's more from from many people, morerecognizable now than he was even as a sports ulst writer. Well, hispicture was only like this big and true, right. Yeah, now is?Yeah, well, it's different. You know, it's really different.If you start to do TV, it just is, and I done TVon and off since one thousand nine hundred and ninety five. But once youget on NBC and you're doing a bunch of stuff for NBC. It justyou're just a lot more recognizable. But again, I never really you know, I was in the studio, I think, for nine years and footballnight in America and Hey, look, it was great. The opportunity waswonderful, but at the end of the day I just I kind of likewriting about the games and I like going to the Games and I like doingfeatures, TV features. They're fun because NBC spares no expense and they doit the right way. But at the end of the day, if yougive me a column to write, that's what I'm happiest and Luckily I've beenable to do that now at NBC. That's probably what I'll do for thenext couple of years and then we'll see what happens. Yeah, I can'timagine it. Your column this week isn't about officiating. I mean it.Well, I'm right. You know what, it's funny. I wrote a lotabout officiating on Monday because I think that, you know, the NFLpassed a by law to change their rules for pass interference and to make themreplay reviewable, and for some reason our river on is brought it out himselfand adopted this policy himself, that that he was not going to overturn anyrules that he didn't want to overturn, and I just think it's ridiculous.He and he decided, or somebody decided, that he wasn't going to overturn alot of calls and I think that's dumb and I think now look,I think what the NFL has to do is I think they got to dothat sky judge thing. I don't think officiating is ever going to be perfectand but the technology is so good. I'm getting to the point, Guss, honestly, where I would really like to not have replay anymore. We'vebeen I just like to let the chips fall where they may, because you'renever going to it's never going to be perfect. So let's just accept thefact that there's going to be some human error and accept the fact that we'renot going to be able to change some calls. That's all right. Justwe talked about this. Like in base days. One of his big petpeeves is in baseball when the runner slides over the base but he can't hangon and in the guy just holds his glove on them and then he tagsthem and and they go to replay and said, oh, your hand cameoff a half an inch, so you're out. Yeah, we kind offeel the same way, like replay should not. We're like it shouldn't.Just I agree, like just get rid of it. There's going to behuman are just get rid of replay. I think so too. But well, I I doubt you're going to be able to put the genie back inthe bottle, but you know, we'll see. We'll see what happens,as long as the National League doesn't do to the DH. But no,I do not want the DH. I wish the American League, which Ilike better. I wish they were dageless to I love the strategy. Thepictures me too. I don't I still don't know why they've never changed thatrole. I mean it just should be the same across the people of offense. I think that's what they say anyway. But it makes the manager really managewhen you have to deal with this...

...nine spot, you know. Imean it's you have to you have to work around that. Yeah, hemight only hit oddy, but that's we have to deal with. Right.He's got to do. You got to teach him out a bunt, Yeknow. It's help at help. Yeah, like if they hate unt there wouldn'tbe as much discussion. What do you what are you going to sayif I tell you that three minutes I got to do a TV hit forNBC? Oh, and you gotta go. You got to do that, man. I might I might have to get I might have to go.All right, shots only been flush five minutes. Well, I mean,can't we dick? Can't we do next time? Can we do like anhour fifty five? Yeah, definitely. I mean that's how we love.We love the game, so we usually send us with our no huddle.It's like quick questions. We asked You, so I'm sure you could be quick. All right, good, okay. If you could tell a young PeterKing one thing, go back in time for ten seconds, what wouldyou tell him? Be Versatile, read a lot and write every day,even when you're not going to be published. Nice. Biggest pet peeve walking downthe street and someone is texting and is walking really slow, and especiallyin New York, where there's a lot of sidewalk traffic where I live,I sometimes want to kick him right in the rear in but I don't that. You hold back two more days. Okay, if you could go backin time for one day, where would you go and when would it be? I probably would want to go. I probably want to do one oftwo things. I would want to go see a New York Yankees baseball gamein one thousand nine hundred and twenty seven, when Babe Ruth and Lou Gary werein their primes. or I would like to go to a baseball gameof the Boston Red Sox and September, one thousand nine hundred forty one andsee Ted Williams in his drive to hit four hundred. Yeah, because myfather's favorite player was Ted Williams. Absolutely loved them and I obviously never gota chance to see him. I never got a chance to see those incrediblyyankey teams. But those things really or. You know, honestly, if youtold me that I could, I could have a scene at the onethousand nine hundred and fifty eight NFL championship game in Yankee Stadium with the colts, any and the giants, I would take that day to yeah. Sogreat sports movie. Ever, I'm partial to field of dreams. Love it. Thank you, man. We'll sell. We appreciate. We loved hearing yourstories and you were it was just an honor to Inter finally get tointerview you for once. Hey, thanks a lot, guys. It wasreally a lot of fun. I appreciate any thanks. Peter. We wantto thank you for listening to huddle up with gusts, a RADIOCOM original.You can find our show on RADIOCOM, the new RADIOCOM APP or anywhere youlisten to your favorite podcast. Please leave us a review or comment if youenjoyed the show. We are on facebook, twitter, instagram and Youtube at huddleup with Gus. You can also visit us on our website, huddleup with gusscom. Huddle up with GUS is produced by Cam Holdeman and ourmedia relations director is Terry Shulman. Our show is recorded at the energy innovationcenter and Pittsburgh Pa. Thank you for listening and you can hear a newepisode every Monday right here on RADIOCOM.

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