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 up with 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 by my longtime friend and coach Dave Hagar. We are a RADIOCOM original podcast and you can find us on the new radiocom out or anywhere you listen to your 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 so knowledgeable, just a great guy. Everybody in the NFL loves them. They love 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 back to where you're from. We want to go back to when you grew up 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 town and Connecticut, end field, Connecticut, and we're halfway between New York and and Boston. So you know, my father was a bit he was a big picture in high school and when I was a kid, the only thing I wanted to do was grow up and succeed Carl you Stromsky as the left fielder 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't play it, maybe I can write about it, and that's really where it started. I'm really fortunate because when I got to be in probably fourth or fifth 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 to write about sports if I could, and so that was sort of a driving influence in my life and my father really emphasized education. My mother was a huge reader. She did crossword puzzles, she loved, she got me love of jeopardy. You know, so words and sentences and reading and everything we're really really important in the kinghouse growing up. But you still had to go out and beat Carlio Stremsky when you were a kid. You said, I want to go out and play him. Did you have a group of kids that you went out and played with all the time? Of course, of course. You know, when you were a kid, it's totally unlike it is now. You know, is you know, gus. I'm sure it was 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 in the morning we were out the door and that was it. We were not back. We came back for lunch for a little while and then we were out again a quarter to one and we're out until dinner and we're just playing 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 with kids today, and I'm not one of those. Oh my God, it was so much better when I was a kid. I'm not sure it was better when I was a kid, but I know that we were a lot more physically fit. Yeah, right, I was a kid and the kids are today. So I think that's one of the things that the kids missed today. 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 dad would just say leave the house, don't come back to the nine o'clock whistleblows and 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's a good way to be raised. I grew up in Arizona and so when the Coyote started howling we knew it was probably yeah, come in, I you go home. Yeah, and put down the whiffleball back. So one of the questions we always asked all of our guests, and Dave usually asked this question. I think we're hitting over ninety percent on so I think we might get a good chance here. Well, we already kind of give him a little preview of it. Did you play whiffle walls as a kid? I loved whiffleball, but it was actually the game that we played more and I don't know if you ever played it, but the tiny ball, it was like the golf the Plastic Golf Ball. It was called a peg ball, okay, and we used to play with that and my brother used to used to pitch and he would throw knuckleballs and it was impossible to hit that little ball when it was dancing all around. Right, I loved whiffleball as a kid. I thought it was the best. What kind of that would use a whiffleball bat? Oh, yeah, yeah, the thin yellow yeah, Thin Yellow Bat. That's what we'd use. Dave get mad at me because I love to use the big fat red one because I just like to hit 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 little bit more finesse. Yeah, the bit the red one was ridiculous. Yeah, that was the best one. The Red One was too easy. Wasn't read. Was To yeah, well,...

I always brought that one I played so 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 lot of did you play any sports? Were you? And Oh, yeah, you can all that my yeah, I play Little League Baseball. I played. I played soccer when I grew up. I played football until I got cut from my from my pop warner team in sixth grade and I was so 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 good team in high school, so it was not that big a deal. The soccer team was better than the football team. But my big sport in high school was baseball and you know, I played. We had a really kind of big time American Legion baseball team my senior in high school. We would all over New England. We played in all six states. I had a home 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 was a big Red Sox fan as a kid, but I loved baseball. Get this story. 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 baseball team. It won't try to walk on for the baseball team. Now Mike Schmidt went to Ohio. You Bob Brindley? They had they had really good teams in those days. So I walked on to the baseball team in the day. 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, you know, I'm going to bring out of this try out today, I'm going to 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 how many people walked away at that point? Now, everybody, everybody's everybody stayed. But it was kind of a crappy practice. You got five swings and they asked you to throw three balls from center field, second, third and home, and that was the tryout. And and I thought it was really I don't know, I thought it was just Bush lead. So I ended up writing a note and sticking it on the baseball coaches door at Ohio you and I just said I hey, listen you, it's your team. Blah, Blah. I really think that I could be competitive and I really I want 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 up tomorrow, tomorrow at three o'clock, you know, with the with the other seven, 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 me more 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 made to say hey, I believe I can be here. You got to give me that chance and we hear those stories all the time and that's pretty amazing that you did that and he actually gave you a shot. Most people would, I think. Yeah, but I also like gust when I talked to kids. Now you know our business, the newspaper magazine Journalism Business. For young kids, man, it's not good and and I always tell kids today that if you can't take rejection and you can't take a long row, would you 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 storytelling and for storytellers, but it's just that you've got to be able to have the ability to get slapped around a little bit it's really I bet. I bet it's a lot what you had to put up with and try to make it to the NFL, because there's probably a lot of people who told you know, and that's what the business is in journalism right now. Everybody's telling people know. Well, it's got to be tough because the kids aren't coming out 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 going out in socializing the way we did. I can't imagine trying to write about baseball now where you don't even kids don't even go to the game and score it, like when I was a kid, us to go the pirate games and score the game. Yeah, I'm the way. Hey, listen, I am the Weirdo in the crowd all the time because I get the weird looks because I still keep scoring at the baseball games and I just I love doing it. My Dad taught me when...

I was six or seven years old and I've kept score. I wouldn't say every game, you know, sometimes you go to a game for business or something, but virtually every game I've been to since I was seven years old. I've kept score. I think it's just fun. It just adds the enjoyment of the game. It's a lost art, for sure. Well, yeah, but if you just go to 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 keep track and you kind of understand the game a little bit better when you do that. And I think probably in journalism the same thing with kids nowadays were they're losing that art form. I mean, look, there's still are a lot of 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 also some who, what's the right word to say they? I mean there's still are 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, you better be able to be varied, you better be able to be versatile and to do a lot of different things in this business because, like when I was a kid and Ohio, the only thing that we did. This is a 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 Ohio right, and because the TV part of the curriculum in the College of communications was totally different from the curriculum in the journalism school. So basically I never even 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 school for we are crossed each other for three years. I never knew him, right, because you just didn't know the people were doing TV, because all I was doing was, you know, print journalism and right. So that's how much it's changed. Now, if you go you're going to try to experience everything in in a journalism and communication school. Well, how important is 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 know part of what I do after I write something. You know there's social media team at NBC and they'll figure out, they'll read my column and they'll say this 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's get him. You know, everybody's interested in Kyla Marie. Oh, you got Patrick Mahomes in the column this week. Let's highlight that, and so they'll send out social posts about that. And so I do some of that too. But and I'm not saying you can't teach an old dog tricks at all, because I'm into social media because you have to, you have to be. 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 longtime girlfriend Yvana Lopez. So, yeah, all kind of down. Hey, listen, is that a trivia question I can actually use? That's probably something you could use. Yeah, you can. We we went to high school together too. 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 now that you've been broadcast last night. I'm they're not flattering, Peter, and I'm glad you've missed those. So fear, when you were in Ohio and you're looking to go work, did you understand that you wanted to be in sports, specifically football? Are you just were going any job you want it? No, I never. You know, it's funny, Guss. When I was at o you, I never I didn't write sports, I wrote news. In fact, my senior year I was pretty convinced I'd probably be covering the State House and living in Columbus or I don't know, it just trying to get a job somewhere writing about politics. Maybe you're writing some news thing, because we were. We were always taught that even if you wanted to be a sports writer, you should really learn all aspects of the of the business. You should write about everything. So I really got into report the news. I was the managing editor at the school paper my senior year and 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 and I had to get up every morning and do the farm report at forty five am, you know, and call and find out how much the hogs costs that 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 fulltime job in journalism. So, you know, I just think that was one of the things that that really taught me. That taught me, you know, even more of a love for journalism because I knew that I just wanted to do the job. I really truly didn't care if I were if I was going to do something in news or if I was ever going to get a job in sports. And when the sports editor the Cincinnati in quirer called and 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 never called, I was still going to be really good at some aspect of journalism and I would have been very happy about it too. So I and everything ended up working out right. So we've inter I think that's very interesting how you put that, because we've also interviewed Sally Jenks and Christine Brennan and and Leslie Visser, and they're just talking about, you know, a little bit about equality, but just more about we just love doing our job and we wanted to get the best. We didn't care what we were reporting on right ever job we were given. We just wanted to go out and give it all and give a great product back. And one of the things they said was because we did that and we gave such a great product, then that let us make the next step. And I think that's what you're kind of saying, is that I you just wanted to work hard. You don't care what 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. When I was fifty six, sports illustrator gave me this, the ability to do this website called the mmqb. I ran it for five years and what was really interesting about it is that, you know, I got to hire people and I got to work with people and that was really that was a fun thing to do. But the one thing I learned about that is that you know 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 ads and things like that. So I got to know kind of the every other part of the business right the thing I learned, thing I learned about it is that I really love this one thing, which was gathering information and trying to disseminate it in a manner that people would love to read. And and again, 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 be on TV here in a couple of weeks. I sat down, I went to Kansas City in August and I got far to come up and I got far mahomes and Andy read and you know, as you know, obviously read coached far as his quarterback coach when he won an mvp in Green Bay and then twenty one years later he coaches Patrick Mahomes when he wins the MVP in Kansas City. So it was really it was really what was fun about it is we went and and I brought tape of five far plays and five mahomes plays and we watched it and all three of them just talked like they were sitting 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 a couple of weeks and those are the kind of things. Look, if I did that just writing it, it wouldn't be as good, right, because you wouldn't really see far OFFN mahomes interact. But we're actually doing a half hour TV 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 you know how TV stories all right, three and a half minutes and it'll be fun that story, but it won't be everything it could be. And so though, but anyway, I just love the story, right, you know, I love I got such a kick out of being in the same room for forty five minutes with far mahomes and Andy Reid, just trying to get into 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 his demeanor and way he was around people in the jokester and just had a lot of 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 like he 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 I did this, they said, wow, what do you I know what you've known far forever, but what do you think mahomes? And I said he's like a mature far, because I'm just telling you, far is they're telling fart stories and stuff and all of that, and he just far was the ultimate good time Charlie Guy. He righte. He just he had so much fun, you know, doing this and Mahomes that's fun too. But he's a little bit of a business. Got A business streak in them. But, but, but the one thing I really, really like about Mahomes is that he just loves he loves football. He loves talking about football, he loves thinking about football. He he has this thing that you just know when you're sitting there talking to him, you just say, this guy can't wait to get out of here so that he can go do something footballish. And and I'll tell you this, I'll tell you this quick story. So you know we're walking out of it. We're walking out of the field house at the chiefs thing where we went out and I had this little field of dreams thought 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 played catch, and and Mahome said Yeah, sure, that'd be great. So anyway, 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 chiefs and Mahomes looks at me and he goes, man, that was really fun. So he just, you know, he just he he loves football and I think when he was standing there playing catch with far, he goes this, he looks at me and he goes, this is surreal. Yeah, and it was just you just I appreciate guys. I don't care what walk of life you're in. I really appreciate guys who really love it and who are not afraid to show that love of it. Yeah, I know that's so familiar to me because when I was playing for the Redskins and Terry Bradshaw came and interviewed me one time. Well, I grew up in Pittsburgh and that was mine. I don't know. That's why I had number twelve and I was just sitting there. I wanted to ask him like a thousand questions and he's interviewing me. You know, what was it like on this play, and what did you do that you know, and all that, and I never got to but it was just great to sit there with them and he actually signed a football with me. It was it was a very surreal moment. You know, when you watch somebody that you idolize and then you're doing the same thing that they did and then they're coming back and talk to you. 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 of fun is that this was Mahomes is day off, okay, and I had told the PR guy, look, forty five minutes Max, forty five minutes Max. 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 of the things when I see people like that, that I love stories like that because you know this, you've been around the game. You know if the PR 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 you or or whoever wants to talk to you. Okay, yeah, all right, you know, let's see how fast we can get this done. And both far and Mahomes, I could just tell you know when they're totally into it, 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, side arm. Yeah, just, yes, gun slingers, as that's the old turnstre 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're gonna 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 has been 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 to Cincinnati, choirer, you're moving on. So how does that transition for you to go to sports illustrated? Well,...

...my last year in Cincinnati covered the bangles 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 his first year. He was crazy in a good way for a writer. Collins worth was on that team. That was boomers first year there. He was a rookie. I mean, you know, it was so it was like the wild west in those days in this business, because boomer gets drafted in the second round out of Maryland and I just said, you know, the bengals 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 drove them. Yeah, I drove them back to the Bangles Riverfront Stadium at the time, but you could do different things in those days. I went to newsday after that covered the giants, or four years covered parcels and Lawrence Taylor and Sims and then in eighty nine sports illustrate, he called and I took the job. I never even asked them how much I was going to make because I didn't care. I said this is absurd. I never in my life dreamed I would work there and then I ended up there for twenty nine years. So it was a as a it was a heck of a life in this business. So at sports illustrated you've written about every player. You've written everything that we could ever imagine about the game that I love, that I played forever, that a lot of fans love. What was your favorite interview you've ever done? I think there were two things that were really I mean, look, I did a did a lot of things there that were really fun, but I I this would have been in like my second year there, I got on the bus with John Madden in Pleasanton, California and I took the bus to the Dakota apartment building in New York City and I was 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. But he also was a big sleeper on the bus and he had he had what I when I went back and toured the bus, it was like a highest suite on wheels, the whole thing. The his room was luxurious. It was like the back forty percent of the bus was his room and so but anyway, that was really fun because you know you're on this thing with him for three days and he's got nowhere to go. He's a total, absolute captive audience and in those days there's not all the ways to communicate. He did have a phone on the bus but he didn't use it hardly at all and and basically he was there just talking for we talked for six or seven hours every day, three days in a row. It was fantastic. So that 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 to farm at that time and written a bottom a lot for si and he asked me. He said, Hey, listen, I'm having my first golf tournament this, you know, this spring, and I'm trying to raise a hundred thousand dollars for boys and girls clubs down here in Mississippi. Would you come? And I said, Oh, yeah, I'd come. So he wanted me to play golf and I'm terrible at golf. And the night before I was going to go, the phone rings. It's far, but he goes, Hey, listen, you're gonna read tomorrow I'm entering Rehab for for Viking and addiction, and so I got to go tomorrow. I'm basically being forced to go and but we still want to have the golf tournament. Would you would you still come? And I said, of course I'll come and he 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 you just 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 this for a second. This was like a Tuesday night and sports illustrated in those days, first of all, there was no Internet and sports illustrated in those days was already put to bed for the week. It wasn't going to come out basically until the following Wednesday. So...

I'm thinking to myself, well, I still want to interviewing for it, you know, and I said you talked to anybody else? He goes no, and so we talked for about forty minutes and he was unbelievably good. He was totally forthcoming and went to the 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 everything about what happened. And so at the end of it there's a long pause and he goes, he goes. You know, everybody always comes up to me and they say, man, what a great life. Man, I wish 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't think so, but he said that's what it you know, to get to go 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 the story. Just imagine these days, when it the MVP of the NFL gives you this tremendous expose a and he's going into Rehab the next day. Just think about this for a second. I had to sit on that for seven days. That didn't appeal year anywhere for seven days and when it came out, it blew up. It was the biggest story, you know, the week, obviously, but but anyway, that's how the business has changed. You know, I said, on the biggest story in sports for seven days because there was no other outlet for it. Right, and now you can't see it'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 as he'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 been on NBC nightly news, might have gone on Sports Center, and did it get a few guest gigs? Who knows, but it would have. It would I that? I mean I probably talked to him seven or eight o'clock at night that night, by eleven o'clock I would have been the most media accessed person in the world. Right. I would have told the story a hundred 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 think the greatest game is the Brett ever played? Was it when his father passed against the raiders? Well, when you consider everything that he had to go through when he played in that game, yeah, you throw four touchdowns three hundred ninety nine yards, you're on the road, you're playing in the black hole, I would say that is it. But my feeling is he had a game in ninety five against the Vikings where I think they won thre thousand eight hundred and thirty five for the division lead, and my recollection, that was really his coming out party and I remember covering that game and thinking this guy'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 played the 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 a row. It's it really is that he never missed, never missed and Y was was just an immense presence and leader and led his team like no one's ever 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 rank the quarterbacks, but he I mean, what do you think that that? Well, can you know what was interesting? What was interesting, Guss, is that this past summer, springing summer, I was on a panel of thirty people who picked the NFL's all time top one hundred players, and that was really an interesting task. That had becred. The reason it was so hard is that all the people you had to leave off Yay and and and I 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 clear that they weren't going to include far on the list of their top ten quarterbacks, and I just I just thought that was insane and I still do and 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 like that, but I think any list of the top ten quarterbacks of all time without far off, even though he did not have a lot of great moments in the postseason. I think any list that didn't that far am on it would be a faulty list. Do you so? When you made that list of 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 were ten 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't know it, but but it was. It was very you had every position group in as since you would debate each one and then you would vote on it and then whatever happened happen. You know, we don't know and I won'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're going to release it. Did you go through it and you're like, interviewed this guy. He was kind of a jerk. I don't really want to put 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 Haley in because for a long time, because he was a jerk to everybody. And I laugh and I said, you know, can you give us just some tiny bit of credit for for being professional? You know, it's like you 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're not going to throw to him. I mean that you give give yourself a little bit of credit for being professional. So if guys a jerk, so what? I don't care. I mean, you know, and so that's one of the things that I think is always funny. Like there was a bunch of that, because I didn't vote for art monk for the hall of fame for a long time. I remember and and I'm I don't, I don't. I tell people who I vote for. I never I don't hide that. I mean I feel almost like you owe it to somebody. You know, 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 and the monk faction would. I remember a conductor on the Amtrak train, because I lived in New York, when I got off the train, he looked at 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 for because 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 days and they were always much more worried about Gary Clark and Ricky Sanders. But but be that as it may, I just you know, you try to do the job the right way. And you just let the chips fall where they may. Right, I'm putting a little bug in your ear for my Buddy Henry Ellard. So I'm just hoping we every alert is is a deceivingly good candidate, in part because of his returnability. That's that's the thing about his life that he doesn't really get credit for. I think he's a very good candidate. Guss, I really do. Dave, tell him what a tender's doing now. Well, I was going to say he's something I didn't know, and maybe this is universally known the football world, but how good a route runner he was. Oh yeah, he was you. I think he said he's maybe the best rout ever change speeds and one of the Best I've ever seen her played with because, you know, he would run a corner round dig or anything, and it just was I learned so much from just playing with him. You know the great coaches, I mean I was with no where for a long time, Cam Cameron, Mike Marts and learned a lot of how to throw routes. But when you have a receiver like that that teaches you like that you can throw it early and the timing of it, it was just amazing to learn from Henry, and I'll tell you one thing. We interviewed him the other day and he came on with us and he is still triple jumping at fifty. How does he fifty nine? Fifty nine and he still jumps fifty three, forty three, forty three feet. 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 just this is kind of athlete he was. Well, he dismissed. He missed the national record by a quarter of an end when he was in call, when he was in college. Yeah, so Henry and I, one of our fit my favorite stabs with Henry is I never threw a pass to Henry that wasn't a first down. No, yeah, it's exactly right. It's pretty interesting. I never knew that and somebody came up and I looked it up and is like wow, that's pretty interesting. Henry was just yeah, he was just a great guy, you know, he was just a wonderful person. So you're at sports. I mean you're just iconic and sports illustrated and I think you've done such a great job. I mean I have other friends who are writers and you know Mike Really well. Silver it might be like a totally different writer than you and but that's what people like to and it's it was great, you know.

And I I never got to know you as well as I knew Mike, just because my wife's crazy and her name'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. But I always have appreciated your writing on how you just told the story of the player or of the game or of the NFL and what's going on. Yeah, I appreciate that. Look, we all have our own strengths, you know. Look, Mike was incredibly valuable in the way he wrote, in the way he reported, because he was the best at getting people to tell him stuff away from the field. I mean he just he was great at it 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 always thought that one of the reasons why, I mean I'm guessing Sid and ninety seven. Why we had such a good team at Si is that, you know, we had Paul Zimmerman, who was just a total football nut job, you know, who knew everything about it. You know, you had me, who was sort of the work or be at silver who was going to 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 so you said Paul was like the most knowledgeable probably that you've said writer. He knows the most. He was the most knowledgeable guy about football who I've ever who I've ever covered the game with. There's a bunch of new guys now who are coming in who really are great at it. Andy Benoit, who I hired it the MMQB, is really incredibly good and I think in time he's going to be every bit as good as Paul Zimmerman was. But Paul Zimmerman, the reason he was great is that he could watch every game and tell you exactly why something happened in the game. Wow, I used to see him. I remember seeing him in a locker room one time with Matt Mellon and they must have been Twenty Min, I mean Zim, needed to go talk to Montana or whatever it is, when they were when melon was with the niners, and he he didn't care. He was more interested in just breaking down the exes and o'es of Matt Melon and that was his cup of tea. He loved that. So what player do you think that you've ever been around is the most knowledgeable about the game manning? I agree with that. 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 when you hear a golfer interviewed after a game, he will say right away, he said, okay, on the fourth hole, you know, I hit the I hit the three would off the tea and and I hit it to a hundred eighty yards from me from the green, and on the way down I'm telling the Caddie, listen, I want to hit the nine iron right now in the caddie say no, hit the eight, and so we're going back and forth and then I hit the eight and I did. And the memories of this and even years later you can say, well, I came up 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 w you know, it's just absolutely nuts how much guys know and Peyton manning is exactly that way about I bet I could ask him about his comeback in Tampa when they had to score twenty one points in like the last six minutes to send it to overtime to win. When he was with the colts, and I'm telling you I because I've asked him about this before, he knew every play of every of each of the three drives. Well, that's a new and he dissected everyone and he's I've had it so that he'll be on his way home from a game and I'd be and I'd call him and and we have a conversation about the game and he'd be sitting in his driveway and I knew that I was taken personal time, but he wanted to get it exactly right. He just he was a total, absolute nut job about about details and that's why he was so great. So that intelligence. How long do you think that extended his career? You know, if he didn't have if he had the same talent but his intelligence was as good, do you think that he wouldn't have played as long? I don't think he would have played as long. He just you know, I say sometimes when people talk to me 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 he was one of those guys. I slightly worried about him when he left football because I said he'll never find anything he likes as much. But he's one of these guys when he gets into this media stuff a little bit, he is really, really good at it. Yeah, he's excellent at it in fact, and this series he's doing about the history of football, if you watch it year in off of how good he is at doing something totally different and doing it really well. He's just he just a really, really bright guy who's going to be good at whatever he tries. I think we definitely going 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's one of the great all that was one of the great one where he's where he'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, like because you know he's a great person, he didn't want to go out and drill these kids with a football and the parents were like no, just hit him and he's like are you sure? There? I guess, and so he said, all of a sudden I'm like at these kids that are like eight years old, I'm drone him in the face on the football. It was 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 from sports 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, more recognizable now than he was even as a sports ulst writer. Well, his picture 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 TV on and off since one thousand nine hundred and ninety five. But once you get on NBC and you're doing a bunch of stuff for NBC. It just you're just a lot more recognizable. But again, I never really you know, I was in the studio, I think, for nine years and football night in America and Hey, look, it was great. The opportunity was wonderful, but at the end of the day I just I kind of like writing about the games and I like going to the Games and I like doing features, TV features. They're fun because NBC spares no expense and they do it the right way. But at the end of the day, if you give me a column to write, that's what I'm happiest and Luckily I've been able to do that now at NBC. That's probably what I'll do for the next couple of years and then we'll see what happens. Yeah, I can't imagine 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 lot about officiating on Monday because I think that, you know, the NFL passed a by law to change their rules for pass interference and to make them replay reviewable, and for some reason our river on is brought it out himself and adopted this policy himself, that that he was not going to overturn any rules 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 a lot 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 do that sky judge thing. I don't think officiating is ever going to be perfect and 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've been I just like to let the chips fall where they may, because you're never going to it's never going to be perfect. So let's just accept the fact that there's going to be some human error and accept the fact that we're not going to be able to change some calls. That's all right. Just we talked about this. Like in base days. One of his big pet peeves is in baseball when the runner slides over the base but he can't hang on and in the guy just holds his glove on them and then he tags them and and they go to replay and said, oh, your hand came off a half an inch, so you're out. Yeah, we kind of feel 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 be human 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 in the 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 I like better. I wish they were dageless to I love the strategy. The pictures me too. I don't I still don't know why they've never changed that role. 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 manage when you have to deal with this...

...nine spot, you know. I mean it's you have to you have to work around that. Yeah, he might 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, Ye know. It's help at help. Yeah, like if they hate unt there wouldn't be as much discussion. What do you what are you going to say if I tell you that three minutes I got to do a TV hit for NBC? 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 an hour 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 Peter King one thing, go back in time for ten seconds, what would you 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 down the street and someone is texting and is walking really slow, and especially in 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 back in 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 of two things. I would want to go see a New York Yankees baseball game in one thousand nine hundred and twenty seven, when Babe Ruth and Lou Gary were in their primes. or I would like to go to a baseball game of the Boston Red Sox and September, one thousand nine hundred forty one and see Ted Williams in his drive to hit four hundred. Yeah, because my father's favorite player was Ted Williams. Absolutely loved them and I obviously never got a chance to see him. I never got a chance to see those incredibly yankey teams. But those things really or. You know, honestly, if you told me that I could, I could have a scene at the one thousand 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. So great sports movie. Ever, I'm partial to field of dreams. Love it. Thank you, man. We'll sell. We appreciate. We loved hearing your stories and you were it was just an honor to Inter finally get to interview you for once. Hey, thanks a lot, guys. It was really a lot of fun. I appreciate any thanks. Peter. We want to 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 you listen to your favorite podcast. Please leave us a review or comment if you enjoyed the show. We are on facebook, twitter, instagram and Youtube at huddle up with Gus. You can also visit us on our website, huddle up with gusscom. Huddle up with GUS is produced by Cam Holdeman and our media relations director is Terry Shulman. Our show is recorded at the energy innovation center and Pittsburgh Pa. Thank you for listening and you can hear a new episode every Monday right here on RADIOCOM.

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