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Mike Ditka returns to the radio three days after minor stroke

Doug Farrar
Shutdown Corner

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The final score, as we suspected: Ditka 173, Stroke 0. He is a merciful Ditka. (AP)

Great news from our favorite former Chicago Bears player and coach -- Mike Ditka, who suffered what was diagnosed as a "minor stroke" on Friday, was released from the hospital on Sunday and made a triumphant return to the airwaves when he appeared on ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike" show early Monday morning. The 73-year-old Ditka sounded exactly like he always did before -- and that's a very good thing.

"I was kinda driving down the highway of life really fast, and I had a flat tire," Ditka told Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic. "That's what happened. So, you know, I'm OK. You won't expect those things to happen, and they come up on you ... it really opens your eyes. I knew everything that was happening, but I couldn't do anything about what was happening. I feel pretty good right now -- I really do -- so I think everything's going to be OK.

"I feel good now, but I don't know what that means, because I felt good before I had this thing. But I feel pretty darned good. I'm Iron Mike ... c'mon!"

Ditka suffered the stroke at a suburban Chicago country club on Friday -- he said later that he knew something was wrong when he had trouble using his hands correctly and couldn't speak the way he wanted to. He was hospitalized, and told Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune on Friday evening that the event was "no big deal." He suffered a heart attack in 1988, but had no known recent heath issues before Friday.

Ditka was actually out of the hospital in time to see some of Sunday's NFL action, and he broke down the games with his usual unique style. We're pretty sure that the man has never finished one sentence before starting another, and it was great to know that Da Coach was his old self again, so soon after what must have been a very frightening event.

As the man himself said on Monday, "To the victor goes the spoils ... what the heck!"

Mike Ditka is still winning at life.

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