Most football stars probably wouldn’t choose a ballroom of chattering socialites as the place to deliver their valedictory address. But then Clinton Portis was never your typical football star.
And for the past five or six years, he’s also been a happy outlier at Knock Out Abuse — one of the few men in regular attendance at the raucous girls-night-out gala. At the end of Thursday’s party, the running back — who was released by the Redskins in February — asked for a moment to speak.
“I love D.C.,” Portis said, “and I never really had a proper goodbye.”(Shhhussshh, ladies! We want to hear this!) He said he knew it was a business decision for the Redskins, no hard feelings. “Still my favorite team.” Portis said he hopes to play football somewhere else eventually, but “even if I do, a part of my heart is in this city.”
Aww, Clinton! That’s so sweet! Minutes earlier, of course, a naughtier Portis had been on display, as he took his clothes off (well, most of them) to encourage live-auction bidding on a dinner with CP himself at Café Milano. (Readers, it went for $6,000; part of the $541K raised overall for domestic violence prevention. Across town, at the men-only Fight Night, founder Joe Robert donated $5 million to children’s charities.) Later, we fought our way through a crowd of evening-gowned hotties swarming the gridiron hero to ask (dumb question?) what drew him to this party. “It’s a great event, and a good cause,” he said. “I’d come back every year.”
Read earlier: Fight Night, Knock Out Abuse 2010: His-and-her fundraising, 11/15/10 (“. . . Clinton Portis, casting bedroom eyes around the room as he cuddled a puppy that soon got auctioned off for $6,000. The Redskins player then auctioned a dinner with himself for $6,700, seductive patter doled out free of charge. To the woman who won him: “I don’t have a ride home, by the way.”)