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This golf course chirp from Wayne Gretzky is one of the many reasons they call him 'the Great One'


Harry How

Everything you hear about the behind-the-scenes version of Wayne Gretzky is that he's one of the nicest sporting legends you can be around. It's no easy task to keep that reputation when everyone and their mother wants a piece of you at all times. He truly is "the Great One," and not just on the ice.

That said, hockey players don't lose their edge in retirement. The "chirp gene" never goes away, and Gretz can still chirp with the best of them. Just ask his fellow NHL on TNT crew members, particularly Paul Bissonnette, who No. 99 bodybags on the regular (Biz, not surprisingly, always takes it like a champ). 

Gretzky's smack-talk game is also elite on the golf course, where he and countless other former NHLers love to get the competitive juices flowing. Darren Pang, a former NHL goalie who is also an analyst on TNT now, gets to play often with Gretzky, and he told us an all-time great story about an on-course chirp from the Great One on this week's episode of The Loop podcast. 

"The guy is a line a minute," Pang said of the NHL GOAT. "He loves to play whatever games you want. Close-out games, six-point scotch games. He's all in for everything. 

"When you're on the course [with Gretzky], he loves to grab that cigar and just rip you the whole time. There was one time he made this putt that he had no business making. It went from left field and it broke about three different ways. But it goes in and we're all hooting and hollering, we can't believe that went in. And he goes 'what? you guys didn't have TVs growing up?'" 

About as elite of a mic drop as it gets. Legend. 

In our full chat with Pang, we also discuss the NHL Playoffs, how a chance plane ride with Fred Couples turned Pang into an ambassador for an elite golf-club brand, and much more. Plus, we discuss the Talor Gooch saga and look ahead to this week's Wells Fargo Championship at Quail Hollow. Please, have a listen below, and like and subscribe to The Loop wherever you get your podcasts: