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Ernie Johnson Talks NBA Finals + Father’s Day

TRANSCRIPT

EMMY AWARD
WINNER FOR BEST STUDIO HOST
WHO CALLED UP STEWART SCOTT'S
DAUGHTERS AND HANDED THE
TROPHY TO THEM.
ONE OF THE MOST MOVING
MOMENTS I HAVE EVER
PERSONALLY WITNESSED.
HE IS ERNIE JOHNSON.
HOW ARE YOU ERNIE?
>> RICH, IF I WERE DOING ANY
BETTER, I WOULD BE JEALOUS OF
MYSELF.
HOW ARE YOU?
>> I AM DOING GREAT.
BEFORE WE TURN TO THE TOPIC
OF FATHERHOOD, I WOULD LOVE
TO HIT YOU UP ON THE THOUGHTS
OF THE NBA FINALS AND HOW YOU
GOT IT ALL WRAPPED UP.
ERNIE?
>> YOU KNOW, VERY HAPPY FOR
STEVE KERR, HAVING KNOWN
STEVE FOR A LONG TIME, GOING
BACK TO HIS PLAYING DAYS AND
OF COURSE BEING A COLLEAGUE
AT TURNER, THRILLED FOR HIM.
LeBRON DID ALL HE COULD BUT
WHEN YOU'RE MISSING,
ESPECIALLY KYRIE IRVING, THAT
WAS A HUGE LOSS FOR HIM.
IN THE END, THEY DID WHAT
THEY DID ALL YEAR.
VERY HAPPY TO SEE THAT.
IT'S BEEN A LONG TIME.
A LONGER TIME FOR CLEVELAND.
NEVER DONE IT.
LeBRON HAD SAID BE PATIENT.
IT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN
RIGHT AWAY.
WE WILL SEE WHAT DIRECTION
CLEVELAND GOES WITH FROM HERE
ON OUT.
>> WHERE DO YOU STAND ON THE
SUBJECT?
IF IRVING AND OR, LET'S PUT
THEM BOTH IN THERE, TOO, IF
KEVIN LOVE WERE HEALTHY?
>> IT'S ONE OF THOSE
IMPOSSIBLE TO ANSWER THINGS.
IT WOULD HAVE BEEN CERTAINLY
LeBRON WOULD HAVE HAD MORE
HELP OFFENSIVELY.
WOULD HAVE BEEN HAPPY TO
SCORE 40 A NIGHT.
HE WAS JUST GETTING SUCH
INCONSISTENT HELP.
JR SMITH WOULD BE GREAT SOME
NIGHTS AND DISAPPEAR OTHERS.
HE WOULD HAVE HELP EVERY NOW
AND THEN.
THEY WERE JUST OUTMANNED.
AND IT'S IMPOSSIBLE.
I DEFIE ANYBODY TO SAY IF
LOVE AND IRVING WERE THERE
THE SERIES WOULD HAVE PLAYED
OUT THIS WAY.
YOU DON'T KNOW.
THE WARRIORS ARE THE CHAMPS
AND WELL-DESERVED.
I COULD GO EITHER IGUODALA OR
CURRY MVP.
I KNOW YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT
THAT AND WHETHER LeBRON FROM
A LOSING TEAM SHOULD BE ON
IT.
I DIDN'T HAVE A REAL PROBLEM
WITH ANDRE WINNING IT.
I THINK HE CERTAINLY WAS
VALUABLE BUT IT ALL GOES BACK
TO THE DECISION THAT STEVE
KERR MADE.
THAT WAS THE COACHING
DECISION OF THE SERIES TO PUT
ANDRE IGUODALA IN THE
STARTING LINE-UP.
IF THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN HE'S
NOT GOING TO BE THE MVP.
>> AND KERR THOUGHT IT WAS
FITTING THAT IGUODALA WON MVP
BECAUSE HE SACRIFICED BY
TAKING TO THE PINE AT THE
BEGINNING OF THE SEASON,
SOMETHING HE HAD NEVER DONE
IN HIS CAREER AND HERE HE IS
PUT IN THE STARTER'S ROLE
WHEN IT COUNTS THE MOST.
>> THAT WAS A GREAT MOMENT,
RICH, WASN'T IT?
YOU COULD TELL HOW COOL THAT
WAS FOR ANDRE, TOO.
IT WAS JUST A GREAT SHOT LAST
NIGHT ON ABC OF THE TWO OF
THEM, OF BILL RUSSELL
STANDING THERE WITH THE
TROPHY AND IGUODALA PUTTING
HIS HAND OUT AND SAYING WOW,
THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING.
>> WHAT DID YOU LEARN ABOUT
FATHERHOOD FROM YOUR DAD,
ERNIE JOHNSON SR., ERNIE?
>> OH, MAN, HOW LONG DO WE
HAVE?
YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW WHAT I
FOUND OUT FROM MY DAD, IT WAS
THAT, YOU KNOW, YOU CAN LEARN
A LOT FROM HIM EVEN WHEN HE'S
NOT SITTING THERE PREACHING
IT TO YOU, JUST BY WATCHING.
YOU CAN PICK UP A LOT AND SEE
HOW HE TREATS PEOPLE, HOW HE
RESPECTS PEOPLE.
AND HOW HE GOES ABOUT HIS
JOB, HOW HE GOES ABOUT HIS
FAMILY BUSINESS, BEING AROUND
FOR THE KIDS WHEN HE CAN IN
THE MIDST OF A REALLY BUSY
SCHEDULE.
AND THAT WAS KIND OF, HE JUST
TAUGHT ME A LOT FROM MY BEING
ABLE TO HANG OUT WITH HIM AND
WATCH HIM.
AND I THINK†-- AND I THINK
THAT'S PROBABLY THE THING I
ALWAYS TRY TO REMEMBER IS
THAT MY KIDS ARE WATCHING ME.
HOW DID DAD HANDLE THIS
SITUATION WHEN THIS HAPPENED?
HOW DID HE HANDLE IT WHEN
THIS HAPPENED?
SO I JUST TRY TO BE
CONSISTENT THERE.
AND I THINK†-- I TRY TO PASS
ON THE LESSONS MY DAD TAUGHT
ME TO MY OWN KIDS.
>> WE JUST SAW FOR YOUR
BENEFIT AND FOR EVERYONE
ELSE, THE SHOT OF YOU JUST
GRABBING ON TO YOUR DAD'S
UNIFORM PANT LEG BACK IN THE
DAY.
YOU POSTED THAT ON YOUR
INSTAGRAM
ACCOUNT†@ERNIE.JOHNSON.
AND GROWING UP WITH PEOPLE
LIKE HANK AARON AND HE
SWITCHES TO THE BROADCAST
BOOTH, WHICH IS NAMED AFTER
HIM.
WHAT ARE YOUR RECK LETKEMANNS
OF THAT JOURNEY JOHNSON SR
BEING AT THE SIDE OF YOUR
DAD?
>> HE WOULD HAVE BEEN 91
YESTERDAY, THAT'S WHEN I
POSTED THAT PICTURE.
THAT'S ONE OF MY FAVORITES OF
ALL TIME.
IT WAS A DREAM CHILDHOOD.
EVERY ONE OF MY FRIENDS WOULD
GIVE MY LEFT ARM IF THEY'RE A
SPORTS FAN TO TRADE PLACES
WITH ME TO BE TAGGING ALONG.
YOU KNOW, JUST HANGING OUT IN
THE CLUBHOUSE BEFORE GAMES,
HANGING OUT IN THE PRESS BOX
THREE HOURS BEFORE THE FIRST
PITCH.
GETTING TO MEET ALL THOSE
GREATS WHO WOULD COME IN TO
CALL JAMES AGAINST THE PRAIFS
AS I SAT IN THE BACK AND
WATCHED MY DAD WORK.
IT WAS A DREAM.
AND SO AND THE GREATEST THING
ABOUT THAT AND ONE OF THE
LESSONS I LEARNED FROM THAT
IS MY DAD SAID LOOK, JUST
BECAUSE I DO THIS DOESN'T
MAKE ME SPECIAL.
I JUST HAD THE OPPORTUNITY
AND THE BRAVES HIRED ME TO DO
THIS.
DON'T ALL THE SUDDEN
BECOME†-- AND WE HAVE ALL
SEEN THEM, RICH.
JUST BECAUSE YOU HAVE A HIGH
PROFILE JOB YOU THINK THE
WORLD OWES YOU SOMETHING.
MY DAD JUST HAD AN ATTITUDE
OF GRATITUDE EVERY DAY THAT
HE GOT TO DO THIS.
>> NOW WHEN YOU SEE HANK
AARON BREAK BABE RUTH'S
RECORD AND HE'S COMING AROUND
TO TOUCH HOME PLATE.
>> HAVE YOU KNOWN CRAIG YOUR
WHOLE LIFE ESSENTIALLY?
>> BACK THEN, WE'RE TALKING
1972 CORRECT?
IT WASN'T UNTIL AFTER I GOT
TO KNOW HIM THAT HE BROUGHT
THAT UP AND WE LOOKED AT THE
VID JOE AND I SAID YEAH.
THERE IT IS.
THERE'S THE HAIRCUT.
THERE'S THE TRENCH COAT.
THERE'S THE LITTLE MICROPHONE
THAT YOU USE BACK THERE.
AND IT WAS†-- IT'S AMAZING.
BUT THAT SPEAKS VOLUMES TO
THE KIND OF WORK ETHIC.
HE ALWAYS WANTED TO BE RIGHT
IN THE MIDDLE OF EVERYTHING.
>> HOW IS HE DOING RIGHT NOW?
>> EXCUSE ME?
>> HE'S CONTINUING THE LAST
TIME I TALKED.
HE WAS CONTINUING WITH THE
TREATMENTS.
THEY WERE DOING ANOTHER WORK
WITH THE BONE MARROW AND HE
WAS IN HOUSTON AND WAS GOING
TO BE SPENDING THE SUMMER
THERE.
JUST BY, YOU KNOW, JUST
FIGHTING.
AND IT'S BEEN SURREAL TO
WATCH OVER THE LAST YEAR AND
A HALF OR SO.
BUT, YOU KNOW, I HAD TO KEEP
UP EVERY NOW AND THEN WITH
HIS SON, CRAIG JR., WHO HAS
BEEN THERE EVERY STEP OF THE
WAY HELPING HIS DAD.
>> SO MANY DIFFERENT FATHER'S
DAY STORIES TO THINK ABOUT
COMING UP THIS WEEKEND.
I'M ON THE PHONE WITH ERNIE
JOHNSON.
THE E-60 PIECE THAT ESPN DID
ON YOU AND YOUR LIFE AND YOUR
FATHERHOOD ON DISPLAY WAS
MOVING TO SAY THE LEAST.
I DON'T KNOW HOW YOU DO IT.
ESPECIALLY IF YOU HAVE GOT A
SON MICHAEL AT HOME.
>> HERE'S THE THING.
HOW WE DO IT, MY WIFE CHERYL
OF 32 YEARS, WE'VE GOT A
GREAT TEAM.
AND WE HAVE HELP FROM THE
OTHER KIDS.
WE HAVE HELP FROM, WE HAVE AN
OVERNIGHT NURSE FROM 10:00
P.M. TO 10:00 A.M. TO
MICHAEL.
HE'S ON A VENTILATOR.
BECAUSE HE HAD A BAD EPISODE
OF PNEUMONIA A LITTLE OVER
THREE YEARS AGO AND WE ALMOST
LOST HIM.
AND THEY HAD TO PUT HIM ON A
TRACH.
SO HE'S GOT A VENTILATOR THAT
DOES THE WORK OF HIS LUNGS
AND HE'S ON THAT 24 HOURS A
DAY.
WE CAN PUT IT ON THE BACK OF
HIS WHEELCHAIR AND WE CAN
TAKE HIM AROUND.
WE KEEP HIM AS ACTIVE AS WE
CAN.
HE JUST CAN'T DO ANYTHING ON
HIS OWN.
AND YOU KNOW, THAT'S THE
THING ABOUT MUSCULAR DIS
DYSTROPHY IS IT DOESN'T GET
BETTER, IT GETS WORTH.
HE CAN'T EVEN DRIVE HIS CHAIR
ANY MORE BECAUSE HE DOESN'T
HAVE THE STRENGTH.
BUT YOU KNOW WHAT?
IT'S JUST WHAT WE DO.
RICH, YOU GET UP IN THE
MORNING AND YOU KNOW, YOU'RE,
IN A WAY, IT PUTS YOU IN A
SERVANT ROLE AND THAT'S GOOD
FOR YOU.
THAT YOU'RE GOING TO WAKE UP
AND YOU KNOW, WHETHER IT'S ME
WHEN I'M IN TOWN OR CHERYL IF
I'M OUT OF TOWN DEPENDING ON
OUR SCHEDULES OR WHETHER IT'S
ERIC OR MAGGIE OR ONE OF OUR
THREE OTHER KIDS THAT HELP US
WITH MICHAEL, IT'S NOT ABOUT
YOU.
IT'S ABOUT WHAT YOU DO FOR
SOMEONE ELSE.
WE TRY TO MAKE EACH DAY
SPECIAL FOR MICHAEL.
AND THAT'S HOW YOU GET
THROUGH IT.
>> LAST QUESTION.
>> GO AHEAD.
>> NO, NO, SORRY.
MY LAST QUESTION FOR YOU
QUITE SIMPLY, WHAT DOES
FATHERHOOD MEAN TO YOU?
WHAT DO YOU THINK BEING A DAD
MEANS?
>> YOU KNOW WHAT?
YOU KNOW WHAT I LOVE ABOUT
IT?
IS THE CHALLENGE.
ANY DADS OUT THERE KNOW WHAT
I'M TALKING ABOUT AND IT'S
NOT EASY.
THERE ARE DAYS WHEN YOU THINK
YOU KNOW I'M DOING OKAY AND
THE NEXT DAY YOU THINK I MUST
BE THE WORST PARENT OF ALL
TIME.
THEN YOU SEE SOMETHING AND
YOU GET A GOD WINK THAT SAYS
YOU KNOW WHAT?
YOU DID OKAY ON THAT ONE NOW
KEEP GOING.
SO THAT'S WHAT WE DO.
WE HAVE GOT THESE SIX KIDS.
WE ADOPTED ASHLEY AND ALLISON
OUT OF FOSTER CARE IN
CLEVELAND.
THEY'RE THE NEWEST MEMBERS OF
THE FAMILY AND WE JUST ADORE
THEM.
AND WE'RE JUST TRYING TO GIVE
THEM AN OPPORTUNITY IN A
PERMANENT HOME.
YOU KNOW TO SAY THIS IS YOUR
FOREVER HOME.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO BOUNCE
ARNOLD TO HOUSING ANY MORE.
THE GREAT THING ABOUT
FATHERHOOD AND PARENTHOOD IS
JUST WATCHING THEM GROW.
WATCHING THEM MAKE MISTAKES.
WATCHING THEM SUCCEED.
WATCHING THEM ADD VALUE TO
WHATEVER THEY DO.
I LOVE THAT.
I LOVE THAT FATHER'S DAY.
I LOVE THAT 24 HOURS WHERE
YOU CAN SIT BACK AND REFLECT
AND SAY IT'S A COOL THING TO
KEEP GOING.
>> REMEMBER THAT.
>> WE HAVE ABOUT TWO SECONDS,
YOU KNOW?
>> ERNIE YOU ARE TRULY A
PRINCE AND CONGRATS ON THE
EMMY AWARD AND WHAT YOU DID
TO GIVE IT TO STEWART'S
DAUGHTERS IS ABOVE AND
BEYOND.
THERE ARE NO OTHER WORDS FOR
IT.
>> MY HEART GOES OUT TO THEM
ON THIS FATHER'S DAY.
THAT'S HARD.
THAT'S HARD.
IF YOU HAVE LOST A PARENT,
AND FOR THEM TO LOSE STEWART
AT THAT STAGE WHEN THEY'RE
TEENAGERS, PRAYERS GOING UP
FOR THOSE GIRLS TAYLOR AND
SYDNEY.
THEY'RE THE BEST.
>> WHEN YOU HIT YOUR KNEES,
SEND UP A PRAYER TO THE BIG
MAN.
THAT'S WHAT STEWART WOULD
ALWAYS SAY.
>> RICH, MY PLEASURE.
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING
ME ON.
HAVE A GREAT ONE.
>> SAME TO YOU.
THAT'S ERNIE JOHNSON AT
TURNER SPORTS.
E.J. AL ON
INSTAGRAM†@ERNIE.JOHNSON.
EVERYONE SHOULD TAKE SOME
TIME AND GO TO THE WEBSITE
MDA.ORG AND LEARN MORE ABOUT
MUSCULAR DYSTROPHY.
AND IF YOU CARE TO LEND A
HAND OR LEND ANY MONEY, IT IS
A DISEASE THAT NEEDS THAT
HELP.