Professional athletes are notorious for their pre-game rituals.
Retired NBA champion Jason Terry used to sleep in the game-worn shorts of opposing teams the night before games; Kansas coach Les Miles literally feasts on the field when games get too intense. NFL great Marshawn Lynch had his own peculiar tradition when it came time to crack heads open on the gridiron.
In the season premiere of the ESPN+ series Peyton’s Places, the former Seattle Seahawk revealed that his infamous Beast Mode persona that allowed him to tear through defensive linemen like a bag of hot fries might’ve come from an unexpected source: Hennessy.
“My superstition was that I needed to have a shot, maybe a shot and a half before every game,” he tells host Peyton Manning while doing his best Birdman hand rub.
“Of?” Manning asks.
“Hennessy! What you mean of?”
Manning hilariously suggests that it could’ve been Gatorade, but nope. Lynch was clearly living his best Black-ass life before he hit the field without a bartender in sight.
“The bar’s in my backpack,” Lynch admits.
This is the type of barbershop talk that I’m sure Lynch’s former coach, Pete Carroll, hates to hear, but you can’t argue with the results. In 12 NFL seasons, Beast Mode made the Pro Bowl five times, led the league in rushing touchdowns twice, had six seasons with at least 1,000 rushing yards and willed the Seahawks to a Super Bowl championship in 2014.
Lynch retired last season and has spent the time since filming commercials and handing out Thanksgiving turkeys, but Hennessy might want to slide him some extra dollars to become an official pitchman because his resume speaks for itself.
I fucking love Black folks. Do yourself a favor and check out the episode in full here.