If Michael Phelps again wins multiple gold medals at the Summer Olympics, Ray Lewis will deserve some of the credit.
Phelps told the Baltimore Sun that he experienced some burnout after winning eight gold medals in Beijing four years ago, and it was tough to get as motivated to compete in London this year. But getting to know Lewis, hearing his pep talks and seeing the passion the Ravens’ linebacker still has for his sport after 16 seasons in the league helped Phelps to rediscover his own passion for his sport.
“I love to watch him play. It sends chills up my spine,” Phelps said. “And his words are so powerful. It’s what friends are for.”
Phelps is a big Ravens fan, and he and Lewis have developed a bond over the last few years. Lewis has a reputation for being as good a motivator off the field as he is a linebacker on the field (he recently gave a rousing speech to Stanford’s basketball team), and Phelps says his relationship with Lewis has meant a lot to him.
“Ray is a good friend of mine,” Phelps said. “Baltimore is my hometown, and it’s where I grew up. I’m always going to have a place there. I love Baltimore, I love being close to [where] the Ravens play.”