Michael Phelps, the Olympic gold-medal-winning swimmer, was thrilled to see his hometown team win the Super Bowl.
“It was unbelievable,” Phelps said in a Comcast SportsNet interview in the Superdome. “My mom and I were literally up in the stands crying our eyes out the whole entire time. It’s amazing to bring it back to Baltimore. It’s destiny. They worked so hard together as a team and it’s good to see Ray [Lewis] go out on top like this.”
Phelps and Lewis have forged the kind of friendship unique to elite athletes, one helped when Lewis encouraged Phelps to go for Olympic gold a last time. The Super Bowl victory, Phelps told ESPN’s Adam Schefter, meant a great deal to him.
“Because of Ray Lewis and what he’s meant to me and my career. Being able to help me come back. I know how bad he wanted this. To be able to watch him come back [from the torn triceps] and overcome the struggle that he has, to bring it back to Baltimore, there’s nothing better.”
Lewis got Phelps back into the pool and kept him there, Phelps said.
“He was probably the single reason I came back for four more years,’ Phelps said. “A lot of people don’t know that, but things that he has said to me, I can never thank him enough.”
Phelps returned the favor by joining the Ravens for their playoff run.
“I just know how much he wanted it,” Phelps said. “I know how bad he really wanted to go out on top like this. Him and I had talked about it multiple times this year. To be able to bring it back to the city where it belongs is the coolest thing in the world. My mom and I were crying. I think my knee hurts from her grabbing it so hard. It’s a great day.”
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