Lunch with a Legend
“If you love what you do, keep doing it and hope for the best.” — Mike Quade
Ask any Chicagoan to list their favorite things about their hometown, and you can bet the mortgage that the Chicago Cubs would be at the top of their hot list. On Tuesday, April 19 Cubs Manager, Mike Quade (pronounced KWAH-dee) gave fans something to feast on (in addition to big prime steaks and legendary desserts) when he talked the art of baseball during a sold-out ESPN Radio’s ‘‘Lunch With a Legend’’ series at Morton’s The Steakhouse in downtown Chicago. During the live taping of ESPN 1000′s The Waddle & Silvy Show, we found out the Evanston-born legend rides the CTA, lives around the corner from Wrigley Field and a perfect day in June would include (surprise!) … a Cubs game. The following are some of our favorite excerpts from the live broadcast:
Marc “Silvy” Silverman: You managed this team last year on an interim basis but then got the job right after the regular season ended. You went through your first Spring Training as a big league manager and now you’re a bout a month into the job. How would you sum everything up?
Quade: It is a dream come true and something I’ve worked really hard to get an opportunity to do. I was prepared for this and I think things are going well. I had a blast last year and felt comfortable the last six weeks. We’ve put together a great staff and I knew the players coming into camp. We can play better baseball there’s no question, but these guys give me a quality effort every night.
Silvy: We want to know who Starlin Castro is. Is he a lead-off guy or is he more a Number 3 guy, more like a Aramis Ramirez? Who is Starlin Castro?
Quade: I think that’s what we’re all going to find out> Starling will tell us who he is. It’s always like, “What are you going to do with this guy?” Those guys make the lineup; I don’t. Everybody thinks that I do, but normally a player will help do that for you so we toyed around with putting him in the one-hole. The kid’s great. He’s an exciting offensive player but I’m probably more happy that he’s doing such a great job defensively.
Tom Waddle: How good can he be defensively?
Quade: Very good. He’s got great range and a strong arm. He just turned 21 and have to tell myself that when I get frustrated and mistakes are made. More times it’s lack of experience then lack of talent. He likes to work and he really likes to play the game.
Silvy: We hear about the different approach of managers. What is your situation like – do you keep the door open in your office? Are you mingling with players before the game? What’s your approach to dealing with the players and their personalities?
Quade: Door’s open. I like the banter and the back-and-forth with them. I think they know they can have a little fun with me but there’s always got to be a little bit of a line there. I try to get as close to it as I can. I want them to feel comfortable. I’m an open book with these guys and that’s the way I always want it to be.
Silvy: What was it like to coach under Lou Piniella?
Quade: It was an experience that’s for sure! He’s a tough son of a gun and he doesn’t like losing a game of jacks. You’re on your toes constantly, especially being his Third Base Coach. That’s the toughest place to be. Our relationship over the four years got so good. I still call him for advice.
Waddle: Are you enjoying the experience or are you so involved in your job that you don’t even realize that you’re the manager of the Chicago Cubs?
Quade: I love managing and like the daily work involved, whether it’s putting lineups together or talking to players about what you expect from them that night. I am having fun and people always say to take a minute and enjoy it. I’m enjoying every minute.
Click here to learn more about Morton’s ‘Lunch with a Legend’ series throughout the U.S.
WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE MLB MANAGER? MORTON’S WANTS TO KNOW!
There was a lot of activity recently in La La Land! Morton’s in downtown LA hosted Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss on Wednesday as our “Lunch with a Legend“ celebrity host. This event was covered by 710 ESPN during a live broadcast while guests enjoyed a delectable Morton’s lunch. This article recaps the event, Jerry’s humble beginnings and how he got to where he is today…or you can listen to the podcast!
In addition to Jerry, we’ve had other NBA stars at Morton’s recently, including Gerald Wallace of the Charlotte Bobcats, Kenyon Martin of the Denver Nuggets, as well as regular appearances from Cleveland Cavalier players and the entire Toronto Raptors team at our Cleveland location (although not on the same night nor at the same table!).
Bringing it back to LA, they will host the NBA All Star Game this weekend, including the exciting slam dunk competition. So check out the game’s biggest stars…and keep your eye out for them at a Morton’s near you!
Have a great weekend!
“If you don’t invest very much, then defeat doesn’t hurt very much and winning is not very exciting.” — Dick Vermeil
As far as lunch goes at Morton’s, one could easily describe the lunch special on Thursday, January 13 as “invincible”. The very first “Lunch with a Legend” event at Morton’s The Steakhouse in Philadelphia was a sold-out and memorable affair… and who better to be the starting honoree than legendary coach Dick Vermeil. Over 95 guests dug into their Super Bowl-sized USDA prime-aged steaks while listening to ESPN97.5′s The Fanatic’s Sal Paolantonio and Dick Vermeil go head-to-head on the great game of football. Vermeil reminisced about how the game has transformed since the 1970’s (“the game is much better today and much more entertaining,” observed Vermeil) and talked about how he still stays in touch with many of his players (“they’re all like family to me”). The former head coach of the St. Louis Rams and Kansas City Chiefs, Vermeil was named the NFL’s Coach of the Year in 1980, and led the Eagles into Super Bowl XV after defeating the Dallas Cowboys for the NFC championship. Famous for his emotional breakdowns during press conferences, it was great to see Vermeil gamely holding it together with Sal Pal. Or perhaps he was just distracted by our NFL-sized steaks.
Still hungry? Click here to learn more about Morton’s ‘Lunch with a Legend’ series throughout the U.S.
Juicy prime steaks and sports legends were in abundance on Thursday, January 6 at Morton’s The Steakhouse in downtown Chicago. Over 140 hockey fans, along Blackhawks President John McDonough, sat down to enjoy great steaks and listen to Pat Foley and Eddie ” Edzo” Olczyk, the announcers of the 2010 Stanley Cup Champions, the Chicago Blackhawks, answer questions during a live taping of ESPN 1000′s The Waddle & Silvy Show for “Morton’s Lunch with a Legend”.
On December 30, 2010, it was announced that Foley and Olczyk signed a three-year extension to stay with the Blackhawks and if anyone knows hockey in this town, it’s Pat Foley and Eddie Olczyk. Olczyk, who was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft, became a game analyst for the Chicago Blackhawks television broadcasts beginning with the 2006-07 NHL season. Foley, popularly known as the “Voice of the Blackhawks,” joined the team’s broadcasting crew at the age of 26 and won an Emmy Award for “Outstanding Achievement in a Live Sports Program” in 1991. He was inducted into the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame in 2001, joining such local legends as Jack Brickhouse and Harry Caray. The following are some of our favorite excerpts from last Thursday’s live broadcast:
Marc “Silvy” Silverman: How you been? We haven’t talked to you in a long time.
Eddie Olczyk: Doing very well. Really busy time of year and it’s been a lot of fun. It’s been an obviously amazing 2010 and being a small part of the great run the Blackhawks had last year.
Silvy: The one question I always like to ask a member of the Blackhawks is ‘your one snapshot of when you think of 2010, you go to where…?”
Olczyk: I have to go to the parade. I have to go to the celebration of the Stanley Cup Championship. The way the city handled it and the way the Blackhawks organization set up the parade route from the United Center to downtown in the greatest city in the world. The reaction on the people’s faces, not only people within the organization but the players, the coaches and of course the greatest fans in the world.
Silvy: Pat, does last season and the celebration still stick with you as much as ever?
Pat Foley: No question about it; it will never leave. That’s a career highlight and a life moment that will never go away. The word I always come back to summing up that day is “surreal”. One thing about that championship I need to throw out there, and I never had a chance to say this is in Philadelphia the night we won… everyone’s phone is blowing up and there’s a huge celebration there and it took us hours to get home, but everything you heard that was happening in Chicago was that the streets were being taken over by the people in Chicago in a joyous celebration. Nobody is turning over any cars, nobody is breaking any windows, nobody is looting, and nobody is burning anything. I couldn’t have been more proud to be a Chicagoan at that moment.
Silvy: When did you know that the streak could be broken?
Olczyk: In talking to the front office about the importance of getting the right people who will go to the end to be the best. Not just once, but every single year. It’s very demanding and challenging, there is a lot of peer pressure in the organization, but I think it starts with the people at the top and filters it’s way down. But once you saw the emergence of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane, you really felt you had the core. Then it’s just about piecing the puzzle together, getting the belief and you need a little luck both on and off the ice. I think the transformation has been phenomenal. I couldn’t be more proud.
Silvy: The salary cap has changed the landscape of professional sports. You can’t keep everyone, but can you guys remember in recent history where a defending champion had so much turnover based on the financial limitations they were up against?
Foley: I don’t think it’s ever happened in any sport. One of the things that made last year so special was that everyone knew that some dramatic things had to happen. All the new contracts for the young guys kicked in this year. Everybody knew that the group last year was not going to be able to stay together. That really enhances how special last year was to me.
Silvy: What about you two? We see the chemistry and it’s not easy to get chemistry. You guys have it. Do you like each other off the air?
Foley: We spend a lot of time together on the road. We are friends. It’s not mandatory to have a partnership but it helps. I have been very lucky to work with some very good broadcasters who turned into great friends of mine. The chemistry we have started the first moment I sat down next to [Olczyk]. I knew he was a great broadcaster; I knew he was a great guy; I was really looking forward to come back to the Blackhawks and sitting next to Eddie Olczyk. I watched him play the beginning and end of his career here in Chicago. He has always been a high-quality individual, and I’m going to say right here and now that I think he’s the best analyst in pro sports. He’s taught me a lot about the game over the years sitting next to him. He has a great sense of humor, and that’s what it’s all about. Heck. We work in the toy department.
Silvy: Olczyk, you came on once, and you were trying to convince me to go to a Hawks game. But you probably don’t have to do that anymore. Does it seem the casual Hawks fan has bought in now?
Olczyk: There’s no doubt. The in-game experience at the United Center is second to none. At the end of the day, it’s our job to tell a story. We have die hard fans. Hey, it’s not the real world. I think we all know what the real world is, but for us it’s a privilege. This guy here [motions to Foley] is the best. I grew up listening to him. I used to shoot pucks in my garage because the Hawks games weren’t on TV and I would listen to Pat. I love Pat. He’s the greatest partner anybody could ever have, and we have a lot of fun together.
Foley: At 25 years with the Blackhawks, the last decade wasn’t that enjoyable for me or anyone else. The team had fallen into disarray. When I left I didn’t think there was going to be any chance of a return. But I can’t tell you how much it meant to me when my phone rang midway through the 2007 season and [Blackhawks President] John McDonough was on the other end. My heart just leapt, because when you get cast aside after 25 years and you thought you did a reasonably good job, maybe even a great job, how do you react? That hurt. So I moved on and Don Levine, owner of the Chicago Wolves, proved to be an incredible opportunity. If you’re not in the NHL, the Chicago Wolves is where you need to be. But to get that call and to be told that they wanted to talk to me, I just can’t describe how thrilled and excited I was. It was an absolutely uplifting moment in my life, and one that I will never forget. To be welcomed back by the Hawks was so special.
Silvy: You mentioned growing up here and listening to Pat. What was it like for you to realize the dream of becoming a Blackhawk and skating for the very first time on Chicago ice and hearing the roar?
Olczyk: Growing up in Niles, learning to play hockey and to skate for the first time was kind of an oddity for kids at that time to play hockey. Everyone wanted to be a Bear, Bull, Cub or Sock. For me, I wanted to be a Blackhawk. I had a lot of people telling me that I would never make it, because I was from Chicago and not many Chicago kids make it to the NHL. They said I would make it because I was American. I was just very fortunate to get the opportunity to leave home at 15, because I had to go and prove myself . The first time I ever walked into the dressing room, at 18, I was in awe. It was great to get that chance to play in my first season then score a goal in my very first game, it was amazing. For so many years I was sitting at the old Chicago stadium looking through the glass onto the ice, and then here I was skating around and looking out to see my parents sitting in the stands. That was something I will never forget. Oh, and that goal was against the Detroit Red Wings.
Silvy: Pat, as far as your calls go…whatever bar you walk into there’s probably a guy who yells, “Do the Bannerman call!” Do you still get that a lot?
Foley: It does happen. It’s become a signature and that is the power of the media. It was a big call in a big game, but it getting replayed time and time again is pretty funny. The fact that it has worked out, to be an announcer in hockey, I couldn’t tell you how fortunate I feel. Ask anyone in media who works in sports, and they will all tell you hockey guys are the best. This is the greatest sport in the world.
Click here to learn more about Morton’s ‘Lunch with a Legend’ series throughout the U.S.
WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE NHL ANNOUNCER? MORTON’S WANTS TO KNOW!
The ESPN 1000 ”Lunch With a Legend” series included two exciting sold-out attractions at our
Northbrook and downtown Los Angeles locations on November 10! Over 140 guests and fans enjoyed a great late lunch/early dinner in Northbrook where Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls hung out on stage with ESPN Radio’s Tom Waddle and Marc Silverman during a live radio broadcast of the ”Waddle & Silvy” show. Everyone had a good laugh when a prompt Derrick Rose, turned to face Joakim Noah (who had arrived a few minutes late) and barked “Where were you?!” Both Bulls players had fun upstaging each other with whimsical stories, chatting with fans and encouraging younger audience members to come up for autographs. After the broadcast ended, Joakim stayed to sign more autographs and posed for pictures with adoring fans. He even flattered us when he proclaimed Morton’s The Steakhouse to be his FAVORITE restaurant!
Over on Figueroa Street, 110 Angelenos packed into Morton’s private boardroom dining rooms to catch USC’s Athletic Director, Pat Haden who kept everyone entertained with stories about his glory days as the former star QB of the USC Trojans and Los Angeles Rams. The MVP of the 1975 Rose Bowl and former CBS and NBC commentator, Haden frequently upstaged ESPN’s Andrew Siciliano and Mychal Thompson during the interview with colorful commentary and plenty of good-natured joking which kept guests applauding. We want to thank all our Legends for making this a truly memorable event!
Morton’s received fantastic media coverage of both “Lunch with a Legend” events, including ESPN Chicago (Take 1) and ESPN Chicago (Take 2). Also checkout some great photos by Bill Lennert/KSPN AM Los Angeles for ESPN Los Angeles and visit our “Lunch with a Legend” webpage that highlights all our previous events and legendary hosts!
Morton’s The Steakhouse in Santa Ana hosted a special Lunch With A Legend event this past Friday honoring Pete Carroll, former USC head coach and current NFL Seattle Seahawks head coach. Over 180 guests attending, making it Morton’s largest “Lunch with a Legend” to date. Mychal Thompson and Andrew Siciliano conducted compelling on-air interviews, and Pete Carroll worked the crowd like a motivational speaker during the commercial breaks on-site. Since the major NCAA sanctions against USC were announced, Pete Carroll has been a much debated “legend” in the USC football community. Back in Southern California to promote his new book, “Win Forever: Live, Work, and Play Like a Champion,” Pete Carroll also used this event as an opportunity to continue to support and defend his winning USC football program, in lieu of the impending NCAA sanctions. (The USC Bookstore sold 90 copies of the book on-site in addition to the 50 free copies for clients provided by the publisher.) To view photos from this special “Lunch with a Legend” event, check out a photo slideshow from Orange County Register Photographer Paul Rodriguez at: www.ocregister.com/articles/carroll-258205-usc-bush.html?pic=1. Click here to listen to the full interview.
Morton’s The Steakhouse in downtown Los Angeles hosted a special Lunch With A Legend event last week honoring Ronnie Lott (NFL Hall of Famer and four-time Super Bowl Champion for the San Francisco 49ers) and Paul McDonald (Former All-American USC Quarterback). Given that major NCAA sanctions against USC were announced on Thursday morning, this event held special meaning for USC fans in attendance. ESPN Radio host Andrew Siciliano acknowledged the sanctions during his interview, but didn’t allow this news to dominate the conversation. Instead, the interview was a celebration of Lott and McDonald’s impressive careers. To view photos from this special event, check out a great story written by Devon Pollard for the popular USC fan website TrojanWire.com.
Photo: KSPN AM Los Angeles
Other recent Lunch with a Legend events at Morton’s during the month of May have included new Cubs’ owner Tom Ricketts in Chicago, Lakers legend James Worthy in Los Angeles and Franco Harris and Jack Ham of the great Pittsburgh Steelers’ teams of the 1970′s, at Morton’s in Pittsburgh.
For more upcoming Lunch with a Legend events at Morton’s, visit your local Morton’s home page on mortons.com.