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  • 07/19/2011, 01:13PM ET

The Best Press Conference Meltdown/Tirade

asamberg (36-12-2) vs Arturs Irbe (4-1-0)
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Argue which great meltdown by a player or coach, on any level, was the best. Factors to think about when choosing are as follows: anger involved, funny lines, and timelessness of the tirade. Please include a video link of the tirade if possible.

I'll go with Mike Gundy's famous commentary on a local newspaper article about his Oklahoma State football team.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoMmbUmKN0E

This rant simply is caked full of lines that can be exploited and mocked. Gundy's odd and often unpredictable changes in volume and tone make this rant truely memorable.

Example: "And has never HAD A CHILD that's had their HEART BROKEN and COME HOME upset."

The more you watch the rant, the more the odd nuances and strange pace of his meandering dialogue start to come out.

The rant reaches it's climax at the now famous "I'M A MAN! I'M FORTY!"

To top it off, he ends with "Makes me wanna puke", followed by an awkward applause by the reporters he was screaming at as he exits the conference. Doesn't get much better than that.


Alright so for mine I'll take a little bit of a different approach. It's probably relatively unknown to most so it should be a little bit refreshing to watch.

Mine is Brian Burke's sarcastic and hilarious rant after a playoff game against Detroit while he was the GM of Vancouver.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmujnpAyhwA - Skip to 24 seconds

Burke was clearly outraged at the way the series was officiated so he decided to take matters into his own hands. As I pointed out it is funny for the fans and the media to listen to his funny remarks but what makes the clip so entertaining, is the stern look he has on his face.

"I want to point out to the officials that Todd Bertuzzi does not play for Detroit. It just looks like that because he's wearing two or three red sweaters all the time. I didn't know tackling was an acceptable tactic, I didn't see it in our rulebook"

"Sedin is not english for punch me or headlock me in a scrum"

"Our goalie has large pads and a cage, he's clearly distinguishable from the rest of our players"

My favorite:
"Detroit has 12 captains and assistants to speak to the officials. We find that unusual, most teams only have 2 or 3"


That one's pretty good, I haven't seen that one before.

The main difference between the two is the delivery. Burke has a very deadpan approach, and while I agree that it works, I think it makes it less memorable. A good classic tirade usually has shouting, rage, and most importantly, incoherent remarks that can be openly mocked by the public, i.e. "Playoffs?!?!?" and "The Bears are who we thought they were." Gundy does a great job conveying anger, and makes perfectly sure everyone understands that he's upset.

Both are very funny, but Burke's humor is more high-brow, and does not resonate with as many people as "That's why I don't read the newspaper. BECAUSE IT'S GARBAGE." The humor dies in print, but just the nature of the whole speech makes even the inane comments funny.

Burke's is a lot like a stand-up routine; it appears he prepared those statements before the conference. While it was still funny, it can't match the raw emotions made by Gundy. After the heat of a game, he comes up with an over 3 minute diatribe (I'm running out of synonyms for "rant") made on the fly. To me, the energy and spontaneity of Gundy's rant makes it the best.


I think we have different opinions on what makes the best "tirade". I know you used the word "meltdown" in the title so I hope it's okay that I took a different approach.

You are correct when saying it looks like Burke prepared what he said before hand, but that's just the kind of guy he is.
Rather than looking like an imbecile, he merely gathered evidence and held a coherent and effective press conference that opened the fans and members of the medias eyes to the disgraceful officiating during the series.

The "deadpan" delivery is what makes Burke's rant unique compared to Gundy's rant. Gundy follows the lines of the more cliche tirade which to me is getting boring. We've seen the yelling and incompetent outbursts a million times as you pointed out over the years from Dennis Green, to Jim Mora and all the memorable ones. But in this case, Gundy didn't have to take this approach.

"Gundy does a great job conveying anger, and makes perfectly sure everyone understands that he's upset."
I'm pretty sure everybody understands that Burke was upset as well. He didn't have to make a fool of himself to prove it though, which again to me is a big difference.


The meaning of meltdown/tirade was somewhat open to interpretation, so I have no problem with the selection you made.

I feel making a fool of yourself makes for a better tirade. Typical press conferences follow the same format, questions are answered politically and there usually isn't much controversy. When someone like Gundy explodes, it's both shocking and alluring because it's bucking the trend of normal press conferences.

While there many other instances in which coaches/players/owners lose their cool, I think Gundy's stands above the others. I've watched that video at least eight times, and I still find it funny. The Gundy rant is more timeless in that respect; I couldn't see myself watching the Burke video and still find it as humorous as I did the first time. Gundy's is like a comedy that you watch a bunch of times and still find something new and funny about it each time.

And I wouldn't call Gundy's speech completely foolish because he makes a valid point: college athletes shouldn't be subject to the same judgment and ridicule as professional athletes. It has the duality of being both rediculous and reasonable at the same time.


I don't necessarily agree that "college athletes shouldn't be subject to the same judgment and ridicule as professional athletes", but that's not what we are here to discuss.

Making a fool of yourself, in my opinion at least, doesn't necessarily make a better tirade. You said it yourself that press conferences follow the same format and that they have the occasional idiotic blowup which makes Burke's tirade much more enjoyable to watch since it's different. We as sports fans are always looking for something new and refreshing. Burke's catches your eye, and yes it is still funny to me if I watch it 8 times over.

Gundy's may be one of the best, but his doesn't stand alone. There were many before his, and many after his that were equal to, if not better than his.

I've tried to address your specific arguments already, so I'll just finish with this. I think it all comes down to opinion really. From the comments you can see that many people have selected different press conference rants as their favourites, which just goes to show there is no consensus number one. So what makes Burke's or Gundy's so special to us? Like I've said, Burke's is unique, Gundy's isn't.

July 19, 2011  01:13 PM ET

First TD in like two years; thought I'd give this website another go.

July 19, 2011  02:23 PM ET

Phil Wellman, Mississippi Braves, 6/1/07

July 19, 2011  02:36 PM ET
QUOTE(#2):

Phil Wellman, Mississippi Braves, 6/1/07

I'm pretty sure it had to be in a press conference or I would've picked Jim Schonfield.

Comment #5 has been removed
July 19, 2011  02:41 PM ET

That Manager for KC Royals, what was his name?

Comment #7 has been removed
July 19, 2011  02:49 PM ET
QUOTE(#6):

That Manager for KC Royals, what was his name?

Hal Mcrae? Where he throws the phone?

And I thought about both of those Flambo but I wanted to try and stay away from football

Comment #9 has been removed
Comment #10 has been removed
July 19, 2011  02:55 PM ET

Another personal favorite is Lee Elia's rant. "85% of the #@#$ing world is working, the other 15 come out here (Wrigley Field)"

Comment #12 has been removed
July 19, 2011  03:14 PM ET

Neither of you hurtings could figure out how to embed youtube videos, weak.

July 19, 2011  04:01 PM ET

My favourite is; "They are who we thought they were! And we let them off hook!"

July 19, 2011  04:04 PM ET
QUOTE(#3):

I'm pretty sure it had to be in a press conference or I would've picked Jim Schonfield.

Schonfield's was epic. "eat some more donuts, you fat pig"

July 19, 2011  04:05 PM ET
QUOTE(#14):

My favourite is; "They are who we thought they were! And we let them off hook!"

"If you wanna crown them, then go ahead and crown their ****"

July 19, 2011  04:37 PM ET

not really a tirade but the most memorable line for me from a press conference will always be "PRACTICE?? PRACTICE?? We talkin about practice man, PRACTICE??"

July 19, 2011  04:47 PM ET
QUOTE(#17):

not really a tirade but the most memorable line for me from a press conference will always be "PRACTICE?? PRACTICE?? We talkin about practice man, PRACTICE??"

I considered that but I thought it would be hard to argue

July 19, 2011  05:09 PM ET

I love him but where's Iron Mike?

July 19, 2011  05:25 PM ET
QUOTE(#19):

I love him but where's Iron Mike?

Has he ever had any public meltdowns(ha-ha)?

 
July 19, 2011  06:09 PM ET
QUOTE(#1):

First TD in like two years; thought I'd give this website another go.

Welcome back....

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