Very few of us get to meet our heroes. A lucky few will get a snapshot with them; a moment in time. Yet this cannot let you closer to who they are, or what they stand for.
The London Warriors amateur football team was luckier, even than that.
Preparing for a crunch Britball game against the London Blitz, a much more revered and recognizable team, the English side decided to try and enlist some help. They sent an impassioned plea to someone they thought could motivate and coach their side to victory on Sunday.
They did not have money to spend or a long, storied background, but the urban London side did not hold back when they sought a great of the game.
Telling of how he felt a connection with teams and players like these, Lewis made a point of giving the London side as much time as possible, giving up on his own, undoubtedly, busy schedule. In a trademark motivational blast, he claimed he wanted to help every single one of them. He wanted to power them forward.
Today is the Warriors’ last of a three day mini-camp with Lewis. He is trying to pump the team up whilst not holding back –as if Lewis ever would. According to the players this is working.
BBC Radio 1 DJ, television presenter and Warriors defensive back Vernon Kay told NFLUK.com, “I’m pinching myself!
“I cannot believe Ray Lewis is training with the London Warriors on our terrible (artificial turf) pitch in south London. This is a massive thing for our club, and it is not an exaggeration to say this visit from Ray is going to change lives. … I have never practiced so hard in my life, and the same goes for a lot of the guys on our team.”
Sunday will show if the Lewis effect has smashed the team through to victory, or if Kay has been inspired to deliver Lewis-like, thundering hits. What is certain is that the London Blitz training will have been low key by comparison…