I was getting ready to leave the Convention Center yesterday when they made an announcement that a Pro Bowl press conference was about to take place, involving Ben Roethlisberger, Larry Fitzgerald, and Matt Hasselbeck.
Now, the Pro Bowl itself is as boring as C-SPAN on mute ... so a Pro Bowl press conference, I figured, would put me into a mild coma in about 20 minutes.
But I figured, what the hell, I was there, and I'd never been to a press conference like that before. I don't even know if I was supposed to be in there. My media pass was different than everyone else's, so I thought I'd try the old, "Walk in like it's my job" strategy, and if I get thrown out, I get thrown out.
I didn't, as it turns out. And the press conference wasn't totally boring, mostly because Matt Hasselbeck is awesome (also because they had a couple of TVs in the room playing Pro Bowl highlights from past years, which is like reliving the greatest moments of your life, again and again).
Three notable Hasselbeck lines from the press conference:
Responding to a reporter who asked him if he felt like the Hasselbecks, and not the Mannings, were the "first family of football":
"No, no. You know how there's two days of the draft? On day one, there's rounds one, two, and three, and day two, there's rounds four, five and six? Our family's like day two."
Larry Fitzgerald, after being asked if it was difficult seeing other teams come into his city and play in the Super Bowl while he's not:
"We can't even get into the building right now. I tried to go over there and get treatment, and they're like, "No, you can't get any treatment, the Giants got it on lock right now.' But that's part of it."
Matt Hasselbeck with a follow-up question:
"Is it true Plaxico's sleeping in your bed?"
Ben Roethlisberger, after being asked if he was rooting for Plaxico Burress to win the Super Bowl:
"Yeah, Plaxico's my neighbor and friend, as well as a teammate. I'm rooting for him, and I hope he has a great game. I'm sure he will; he's been playing unbelievable right now."
Matt Hasselbeck, decoding:
"That's code for 'He hates the Patriots'."
I thank you, Matt Hasselbeck, for helping to keep that from being a wasted hour of my life. Lord knows that if I had been relying on Ben Roethlisberger to say something interesting, it would have been.