Ray Lewis and Michael Phelps formed an everlasting bond when the former helped the latter get through ‘hard times’ the last few years. Phelps’ story is an interesting one, battling a lack of motivation and exhaustion just before the Sydney Olympics — 12 years later he’s known as the greatest swimmer of all time .
I’ve read Barry Svrluga’s profile on Baltimore’s most perfect friendship a few times now. There are some things we need to go over.
To the side, looking for an entry, a way to make his presence known to the Baltimore Ravens retiring middle linebacker, stood a mustachioed 20-something, Ravens hat on backward, purple checked shirt hanging out of his jeans. At one point in the mayhem, Lewis looked up, and caught the hipster’s eye.
“My baby!” Lewis yelled. And Michael Phelps just started laughing.
Are we supposed to hate Michael Phelps? Because the above makes me want to hate him. ‘Lewis looked up, and caught the hipster’s eye’ is slated for MTV’s Fall 2014 lineup.
“We’ve talked about so much the last couple years of my career,” Phelps said. “He just helped me get through a lot of hard times, and I wouldn’t have been able to do it without him. He’s been telling me, ‘One more shot. We’re gonna have one more shot.’ And he did it.”
The lives of pro athletes are ridiculous. Intense dedication, a rigid lifestyle and the inability do the crap us normies do are just three of the issues they deal with on a day to day basis. It makes sense that these cross-sport relationships exist, why your Roger Federers and Tiger Woods of the world talk shop. According to Phelps, Lewis helped him dominate in London. Ray Lewis is THE greatest American of all time.
When Lewis looked up and saw Phelps and started joking about “My baby,” Phelps jumped into a story about him and his mother Debbie.
“Mama Phelps,” Michael said. “Mama Phelps?!” Lewis smiled.
Unfortunately Svrluga doesn’t say what the story was. ‘Mama Phelps’, uttered by two different people in succession, is the only clue in this mystery.
Lewis smiled. They join Cal Ripken as, arguably, Baltimore’s most celebrated and revered athletes of the last generation. Sunday night, one — his medals out of sight, his jeans sagging, his smile broad — stood in the shadow of the other and spoke about how much he meant to him.
I rewrote the final paragraph in homage to Baltimore finest. “Michael Phelps was so chill. Jeans sagging, medals out of sight — do Olympians troll with their medals at random non-Olympic events? — as Mike and Ray reminisced. T.R.O.Y came on in the locker room and Ray smiled. They smiled for hours.