GREEN BAY – At first, David Bakhtiari just wanted to get a reaction. He was eating dinner with teammate Aaron Rodgers and a mutual friend, an employee for the Milwaukee Bucks, before a playoff game against the Boston Celtics when he learned he’d be on the JumboTron that night.
Bakhtiari had no problem with that. He just needed to figure out what to do in his five seconds of fame.
“We were talking with Aaron,” Bakhtiari said, “and I was like, ‘I think I’m going to chug a beer.’ Why not? Get the crowd really amped up. People enjoy a nice beer chug.”
People in Wisconsin, as Bakhtiari would soon learn, especially enjoy a nice beer chug.
His ability to drink beer quickly – one unofficial count had his chug clocked at 2.96 seconds – became a phenomenon overnight. Even Bakthiari couldn’t have anticipated how widespread the reaction would become.
“I think we got the desired effect, exactly how Dave wanted it,” Rodgers said. “Just more attention for him. The big guys, they don’t get a lot of credit from time to time, and there’s some innate abilities that people just have, and he’s got it, and I’m really proud of him.”
After his debut chug during the Celtics game, Bakhtiari upped his game. At Rodgers’ behesting, Bakhtiari said, he executed a flawless double chug in the Bucks’ next playoff round against the Toronto Raptors.
Of course, Bakhtiari’s chug wasn’t the only one that got attention.
Rodgers, too, attempted to chug a beer. It went poorly.
Bakhtiari said he has yet to speak with Rodgers about his chug attempt, which the quarterback did not finish. Thanks to social media, plenty other sports figures have had their say. Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford chugged a beer. So did Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky, with the Chicago White Sox tweeting a video to Rodgers.
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes chugged a beer at a St. Louis Blues game. Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen chugged a beer at a charity softball event.
Even Patriots quarterback Tom Brady chugged a beer on the Stephen Colbert Show.
“At the end of the day,” receiver Davante Adams said Saturday at the Packers’ charity softball game, “you see him on Sunday. I think as much trash talk as you want to talk about chugging beers, I think when it comes to the actual job, I think he can get it done a little bit better than some other guys can. So he’s got bragging rights on that.”
Said Rodgers on Tuesday: “For some of them, there’s finally a talent they can say they’re better than me at.”
Rodgers suggested he’d beat Bakthiari in a scotch-drinking contest anytime, something the Packers left tackle doesn’t deny. Beer, Bakhtiari said, is his “comfort zone” when delving into alcoholic beverages.
He’s got the video evidence to prove it.
“I was always pretty good at chugging beer,” Bakhtiari said. “I wouldn’t say I’m the greatest of all time; well, maybe I am. I think if there’s a Mount Rushmore, my face should be up there. I don’t think it should be the main one, you never know. I’m definitely close.”
Read more at usatoday.com.