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And So She Goes
And So She Goes

Episode 25 · 2 years ago

24. Amanda Pflugrad, Team Reporter and Host, Boston Celtics

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Her dad is a football coach, her brother is a football player. Amanda Pflugrad grew up in a sports family and when she figured out that broadcasting was a career she could chase and be successful in, a whole new world opened up for her. She's covered a multitude of sports-- gymnastics, track and field, football, and basketball. Currently, she lives in Boston working as the Team Reporter and Host for the Boston Celtics. In this episode, we talk about what it's like to cover an NBA team in the bubble, while she's not. We cover the challenges of moving all over the place to make it in this industry and how important it is to make and keep female friends who understand the grind of sports.

Conversations with real women who make sports happen. This is and so she goes. Here's your host, Amanda Borgeous. Hello, how are you? Thanks for tuning in. If this is your first time listening, this is a show all about the top women in sports who are doing amazing things. This episode features an absolute ray of sunshine, Amanda Flu Grad. She is the team reporter and host for the Boston Celtics. She's moved all over the place for her career, covering several different sports, and she's been in Boston for about five years now. We talked about her journey in this industry, what it's been like covering an NBA team while they're in the bubble and she's not, whether or not she should get a puppy, very important, and the sisterhood that exists amongst NBA reporters and beyond. Here is my chat with Amanda Flu Grad. Hello, Amanda, how are you? Hello, thank you so much for having me on. It's great to catch up again. I know it's actually funny too. I think you're my first Amanda, so saying hi to myself sounds kind of funny, but I'm I know, I know, it's so great I'm so glad that you have taken the time to come on. There's a lot to talk about. There's a lot going on, a lot of basketball to get into, but first let's take it back a bit. When did you first fall in love with sports? Do you remember? So? My Dad is a college football coach, so growing up in our household it was always game days, Football Games, we would go to practices. So pretty much since I was born, I remember being around sports, loving sports, seeing the athletes. You know, my brother and I were, we were just always on the field and we we would have races with the players, everything like that, and so I think that that's really what introduced me to sports and just the love and community of it as a whole. So did you know what you wanted to study in college because of that experience as a kid? You know, it's interesting. I had changed my major twice. I started in business. Originally I wanted to open up a hotel in Mexico. That was my whole because I took years of Spanish in high school and I was like, okay, I'm I really want to go into hotel management. So took my first business class. I did not connect to any of the material at all. I was like this is not this is not me. So ended up changing my business major going into psychology, and I absolutely loved that Major. But I had taken about a year and a half of courses and I fell in love with it. I thought it was so interesting, so fascinating, but I met with the career advisor and they were saying, well, you know, if you want to go into this, you're going to have to look at Grad School. It's very hard to get into the business this way and you know, they kind of in a way deterred me from going that direction. So I said, okay, maybe I should change my major. I was talking to my dad actually, and I said I've been looking at a journalism and, more in particular, the broadcasting side, and he was like, I think that that would be amazing. He goes, you love to communicate, you love to write, you know, you love to in a way perform, and so he said, you know, maybe you should look at that, and that's kind of how I got into it. But then I ended up when I was in the classes, I would always gravitate towards the sports. I did not like doing the news packages and flipping those trying to find. My professor actually told me she goes. You need you need to have more of a balance...

...with your news and sports packages, because when you're coming in it's all sports packages and I was like, well, that's that's what I want to focus on. So that was kind of my my introduction to sports. I knew that I loved it, but at the same time I it kind of fell into place in college well, and you were a cheerleader at Oregon rate, so I'm sure that that helped in the performance aspect right, and also just like being part of a team in college. I'm sure is really helped you tremendously. Oh for sure that. I would say that that experience really shaped me and kind of brought me out of my shell and we, you know, we were constantly out in the community in game days were amazing and it was really really fun too, because my dad was actually a coach there when I was cheering and my brother came in and he was a wide receiver for two seasons before he transferred to Asu. So I got to cheer for my dad and brother. So that was a amazing family affair, we would say, and just to get that experience all was one of my highlights of my my college career. For sure. That's crazy. I didn't know that. I feel like that's something even when you talk about do you even realize how rare that is? It really is and it's and it's interesting too, because my dad was my brother's coach and we they would say, you know, the Father Son duo, but now they're coaching together at northern Arizona University. So they it's greet me how they've stayed, you know, connected through sports and they you know we're together in college and now they're in their careers to moving forward. So I feel very blessed that I had that opportunity. For sure. That's so cool. That really is okay. So you switch your major a few times. Decide on broadcasting, which is fine. That's what college is for, right there are are a lot of people that even graduate school and they're like, I still don't know what I want to do. So there's no shame in changing that doing school. What was your first job after graduation? So I moved to Arizona for an internship. So right when I graduated, I two weeks later I started an internship in Phoenix at ABC fifteen and I at that time. You know, I have my stuff on my reel from school, but you know, you you think that okay, this is pretty good, but then you get out in the real world and people are like this is this is awful. I it's so true. It's so bad. When you first it's so the world humbles you fast. And so I was setting my reels out. I was actually driving to La to to work as a production assistant for EENTERTAINMENT. I was logging tapes, everything that I could do just to try to get my foot in the door. And my first job opportunity was actually with Fox Sports Arizona. I had met with them previously and they said that they had a production job open, but you needed thirty years experience, so it wasn't going to be a fit. And then they ended up contacting me when Oregon Played Auburn in the National Championship game and they said we're looking for someone that has close connections and ties to the coaching APP that knows some of the players. They said would you be interested in coming on just for the week leading up to it doing media day coverage, and I jumped up the opportunity and after that finish they said, you know, we want to bring you on and do more stuff with us. So I was doing more of like the freelance work, but I was still very busy with them, you know, covering just different events, athletes, charity events, and then I did like Muhammad Ali celebrity fight night. So that was that was kind of my first position in the business was with FSA. So after that, I feel like between then and now you reported on so many different sports. There's gymnastics and football, track and field,...

...volleyball, now basketball. I'm sure that I missed some in between. Do you have a favorite to cover? You know, I I love yeah, that was kind of you. You you pretty much hit them all. That was kind of we're going to get the opportunity to go, you know, do stuff in sports. I made sure that I took it because I said, you know, this is this is what I want to do. I love all sports. I I have just such an attachment to college football, I think just from my backgrounds and there's just such raw emotion with college athletes, I think, and and I love that for interviews and and just their love for the game. I think that that always comes out and so I think I've always had an attachment to college football. And then the one that I honestly I had a blast covering, and I actually pitched it when I was with Fox Sports Arizona, is I was doing playbyplay for women's gymnastics. So I was a gymnast for ten years and my mom was a gymnast at Oregon State. She's very, very good gymnast. was was training for the Olympics and I I've always loved the sport. I never thought that it got enough credit and as much visibility. And so when I was doing the sideline for SEC network and then play byplay for pack twelve, I loved that job. I loved going to practices and learning more about the athletes and and finding about their routines and what they were doing. And in gymnastics is such a mental sport to that I feel like I kind of got to use some of this psychology from, you know, my timing in college to peel kind of back some of the layers on that. And so I think the interviews really showed and I really enjoyed that job for sure. I'm so glad you brought that up actually, because I was thinking that I actually feel like psychology should be part of journalism school because you you really use it to connect with people. I mean the majority of your job now and throughout the years is relating with people, getting getting the best out of them in an intense moment after a crazy game, after a win or a loss, and psychology plays such a huge role in that. Oh, for sure. I agree a hundred percent in just how you connect with people and listening and I think to you with I mean even with the Celtics. You know, you're talking about the mindset heading in or, you know, player coming back from an injury. There's so much in that when they're working their way back and they're, you know, from the mental side for them rehabbing and kind of getting a different approach of not being scared now when they did have that injury, and it's it's really valuable, I think. Oh, absolutely. What would you say has been the most surprising part of Your Sports Broadcasting Career? HMM, that's a good question. Um, like, did you ever think you would end up in the northeast covering a historic franchise like the Celtics? No, I know, you know and I don't know. I have to pinch myself sometimes because, yeah, like my brother, my brother will even say to me, he's like, you know that you're covering the Boston Celtics, like you work for the Boston Celtics, and I was like yes, and it's like, I think you get so much into you know, the daytoday or you're just grinding right that it's sometimes, and I've tried to do this more during the hiatus, has to actually like pick your head up and realize where you are at and and where you've come from and where you did start. I think the biggest thing is I moved so much in my career to make the jobs happen, and I guess I net. I necessarily didn't think that I was going to be doing that. When I was in college, I was hoping that, okay, I'll just land. I you know, at that...

...time I want to get in the Phoenix market and that's good for me, like that's where I want to be. My brother was going to school at Asu then and I was going to be close to family. And then, you know, jobs just kept coming up on the East Coast and yeah, I moved, like I moved to Chicago and then I moved back to Arizona. I moved to I lived in Morristown, New Jersey, to work for the jets, and then I move back to Arizona once that position was over. It was just a season position, and then I moved, yeah, to to Boston, and I think that that was probably the biggest thing, is how much I did sacrifice to go for the career and and really push myself out of my comfort zone. For sure, it is a sacrifice. I mean in this industry specifically, and there are other industries like it, you you just take the job, like you said, a jog. A job POPs up in La so you move across the country. You moved to Chicago, you move to Boston, you move, you just move all over the place and I think you're almost trained to just take the Bob and then do a good job. And it is you have to actively sit down and be like, okay, here's where I am, I'm so thankful for this. Look at what I've accomplished and what I'm doing, what I'm doing daily. But it's it doesn't come naturally sometimes because you've been trained to just like do it, you know what I mean, instead of realizing how amazing it is. Yeah, no, for sure, and I you know, I think it's I thought about this too during the hiatus because I've had a lot of time to think. We all. But you know, my in my upbringing, my family and I, we moved around a ton for my dad's job. So he was at I mean I was born in Missoula, Montana. We moved to eight he got a job at Asu so we moved to Arizona. I lived in Washington, Oregon, my parents moved back to Montana, then Arizona, and I think maybe part of it was my childhood of of going through that, and maybe that helped me a little bit to be like, okay, I'm going to move, I'm going to move again. But it's it's those times where you're just like wow, I have lived so many places. But now, I mean you've been in Boston for like what five years now? Is this the longest you've been in one place? That's pretty much. Well, I really seven years when I was growing up, but that was the longest that my family and I were ever somewhere with seven years. But yeah, no, for this job, it's been it's been amazing. But yeah, I've been I've been five years now in Boston. Does it feel like it's been that long. It's flown by. Honestly, it's crazy that, you know, I just look to like when I first got here and you know what we were doing and now it's everything's just evolving and the new stuff that we're doing and it's definitely I feel like it was ages ago that I first got the job, but it hasn't been, obviously, but it has flown by. So after covering a team for this long, which, you know, in the grand scheme of things, five years isn't that long, but to be with a one team, especially at this point in your career, it's a pretty long time and there are some challenges in coming up with new content to keep fans engaged. Of course there are changes on the team from year to year, but what has that been like for you? It's it's constantly been I would say I pitch a lot of different ideas, you know, and sometimes they get picked up, sometimes they don't. It's a lot to do with when I am approaching things. It's what can be sold right, what can it what can a sponsor attached their name to, and I think that it is a challenge to try to keep fans engaged, but I would say that, because we're digital, pretty much everything that we're doing is is on the digital side. We're are doing different...

...videos for twitter, instagram and trying to get that quick, hitting stuff out that draws people in but also keeps their attention, because now you look at how people will click on something and what do they say? It's like you have three seconds to keep them engaged, and so I think constantly pitching new ideas, fresh ideas, and sometimes they don't work. You know, maybe you try it and it didn't perform well or, you know, just you weren't getting the engagement that you wanted. So then it's kind of back to the drawing board to figure out different things. But I do think in this business it's important to stay uptodate and fresh with the content and kind of push the boundaries a little bit too of what you think people are going to enjoy. And then if it doesn't work, then you know what, you just keep moving and go to plan B and and try to figure out a new way to keep people engaged. But it's definitely a challenge and I think right now, to you know the Celtics, we've had to be very, very creative because we don't have any reporters inside the bubble. So a lot of it is the remote interviews. But how are we able to still get stuff that fans feel engaged to the players for not being inside the bubble? And so, you know, we're doing a bunch of our pregame interview still, we're doing our live hits, first quarter updates, halftime interviews and then Postgamer worts. So it's just trying to kind of figure out the best way to to keep it all together. Yeah, for sure. I mean the covid coverage is a beast in and of itself and I do want to dive into that. But I want to touch on something you said. I think the the cool thing about your job, and I experienced this being a team reporter at some point in my career, you have such an in with the players. You know their personalities, you know what makes them tick, you know what questions to ask them and it makes it fun for you to then pitch certain ideas because you know you know that two of the guys are best friends and they share a love for, I don't know, shoes or dogs or whate like. You have such a unique advantage that other people don't have. HMM. No, a hundred percent, and I think that's I love what I do because of that. I think you get so much inside access and you know you're with the team constantly. Before the hiatus happens, you know you're on the team plane, you're traveling with the guys, you know you catch up with them on the bus and it's it is like a family. You know you're traveling, you're constantly seeing them all the time. I make the joke like the Celtics, I feel like the guys have seen me so much in without my hair and makeup, done all the travel that we do or, you know, just in mornings when there's no round or something, you're you coming downstairs and it's like hey, it really is like a family press but um, yeah, and it's I think that you know the personalities right. So and is cancer. He has such a great personality, a big personality, and so that's something that when you're pitching ideas, that's something that I always factor in of like, okay, who's a guy that would do this? You Know Grant Williams. He loves to talk. So that's an idea too, of that. He they would probably be on board for doing, you know, new content or new interviews and just keeping things light and then also, you know, having our standard coverage to so, like you said, you're used to traveling around the team during the season. Obviously that's not happening right now. You are reporting from outside the NBA bubble, as you mentioned. What do game days look like for you now? I start on my couch. No, our office is still closed, so pretty...

...much will have it'll depend on what time eat the Games at, because we will have shoot around coverage. But then what we've been doing to is I will either get a player for our pregame interview the day before or during the shoot around coverage. So I'm up prepping for the game and prepping for who I'm going to get. I'll do that the night before as well, and then I'll do the interview and I we do it all over zoom, so I just record that, save it on my computer, drop it to dropbox and then I, you know, do the all the titles and descriptions and stuff for it. So I'll send those off and then I'm kind of in the afternoon just prepping for the matchup. I'll try to get outside a little bit and then when the game starts, I'm just on my couch, would to the TV, watching the game, taking notes and knowing what you know, my angle is going to be for postgame. And then once the game wraps up, I mean during during the game, I'll do a first quarter hit, so something will will tune in and listen to Brad pregame and then I'll record a first quarter hit and then we do a live interview at Halftime with Austin Age or Mike's Aaron and then once that's done, I have my setup right in my living room and then once the game wraps, all log back on and I'll do the audio and everything from the whatever player and coach that it's available and record that and then shoot my stand ups on zoom in my living room again. So it's a lot of moving back from the couch to my desk. That's the crazy thing. Like, as as nice as it sounds to do everything from your couch, I mean part of the what's the word I'm looking for? Experience? I don't know. Yeah, part of the experience of your roll is like the rush of Game Day, the rush of being on the court, the rush of being in an arena, like it's just so sad that we don't have that. I know and you know it's it is crazy because, I mean, td garden is electric and and you look forward to playoffs even more because it is. You wouldn't think that it could get any louder, but at this the fan support everything. It's just such a different energy within the city and it is crazy not having that, you know, or or a close game and getting ready for the walk off interview and everybody's, you know, nerves are going everywhere and you just have this adrenaline rush. It's this high of like this was an amazing game and you're getting to talk to a player right as he's coming off the court. Yeah, it is. It is very different because you don't have the fans or the that environment anymore and even, you know, the players in the bubble like they have the noise and everything, but it is different. Definitely. I think the really sweet thing that I've seen come out of this, because you're right, I mean, amongst other things, I think the lack of fans, and the NBA has done a really good job with the virtual fans and things like that, but the videos that you see of the families calling the players and the beginning of the game is just it's so fun for primising them. That one with the sons was just so heartfelt and, you know, I think that that means a lot. I know the guys are missing their families. You know, how could you not? With the the amount like your route, you would during the season. You're traveling a ton, but you're still kind of going home to your home base after at least a week. So it's yeah, it's definitely the videos, I think have been wonderful with how they've done it. I will say a lot of teams, and I'm sure you can speak to this, I feel like they've they've had to get creative with content because of what's going on, which is actually kind of I don't want to say fun, because COVID's not.

Dealing with Covid is not fun, but I mean, speaking to what we were just saying, you know, you've been covering this team for five years and you're still covering the team, but this is so different than anything that you've ever had to do, and same for everyone on your team. So it's almost like a reset of like, okay, we still the same guys. We still you know, we have the we have game days like we usually do in practices and whatever, but but everything's changed, so you have to rethink your entire coverage plan. HMM, Oh, a hundred percent. We have and one of my co workers, he's inside the bubble right now that he's done an amazing job, because what he's doing is he's not only getting all the video coverage, but he's getting stuffed out we could potentially use for social, you know, the inside access, because he's there, he has it and he's able to get it, and so I think that that's been away for the social team to really kind of be creative and still have a huge presence while they're inside the bubble and get the fun. Then the players goofing off. You know, the Celtics team has done a great job of really being together. You know they've gone on bike rides, so go golfing and we're able to show that and I think that that is really, really cool. Okay, I don't want to put you on the spot, but are there a specific interviews that stick out to you throughout the years, whether it's a good or a bad reason that they stick out? I would say more so for good reasons, ones that that that where I was able to interview a player after a huge game. You know, one that always sticks out is Isaiah Thomas. It was probably one of the when I look back on my career, it was. It was just such a great moment and he was so raw and emotional in that and gave so much about his performance, but then, obviously with his his sister passing, and I think that those are moments where you feel, where you know that they trust you, and I think that that, as a journalist, is the biggest reward, is when you know that you have made a strong relationship with an athlete, that they trust you and they're going to trust you with the information that they say and they're going to sometimes, when they trust you, they give you maybe something that they wouldn't give anybody else, and it's not like you're doing it to get more information, but it's more of that they open up and I think that that to me, when I look back at interviews that I've loved, it's when I felt that the athlete trusted me and and really connected and wanted to share their story. Definitely, relationships are such a big part of this business and they can either make or break you as a as a journalist, and that's I think that's it's with not only the the athletes that you cover and the coaches that you cover, but also the people around you, your co workers on your team, but also your colleagues in the industry, in the NBA and even outside the NBA. And that's actually a perfect segue to my next question. One of the things that I loved about traveling with an NHL team was getting to meet and become friends with other reporters in the league around the country, and you are so lucky because there are so many amazing sports reporters in the Boston area that you've become friends with. Yes, I know, it's like my girl group. I love them so much like that. No, it's it's really, really cool to have, you know, like you said, being close with the other girls from other teams and connecting, and I think that it's awesome because when you are on the owed, everybody is supporting one another, you know, and you'll say, Oh, do you need information on this team or, you know, did you need the sound from this this player? He spoke at shoot around, kind of what can I do to help you? And so I think it's it is so wonderful to have the support of women and strong women and...

...women that are pushing the boundaries and making a name for themselves, and I feel very fortunate that I have great friends with all the NBA teams, you know, other other franchises to and then the Boston market. You know, the girls are great. I Love Them. I don't get to see them as much now because of everything, but yeah, I know it's I feel very blessed to be able to have a good group like that, because everybody knows, you know, when you're in the sports business, you know how crazy it can be, and it's nice to just have a community of people that you can talk with about it, you know, and just say what you know, just bounce ideas off of each other or get advice on and I think that that's so valuable to have that, because you're kind of all going through the same thing at times, you know, with your jobs or, you know, certain challenges that maybe come up as a female in sports, and so I think it's it's so nice to have that. It is it's extremely valuable. Like you said, I feel like they're the ones who actually know what you're going through. Like it is so helpful to have friends on the outside and your family support. That's crucial, but they don't really know you know what you're going through on a day to day basis. Not that you know it's a terrible thing to go through. I'm just saying, like it's such a grind and it's hard. You've made all these sacrifices and you pour everything into your job and to have female support around you who get it, that's it's huge. Yes, exactly. The you hit it right on the head. You you really do poor everything that you have into your work. You know, and I would say that you you work so hard at your craft and perfecting everything and you just want to do such an amazing job, and it's hard to explain that to maybe somebody that isn't in the business, because you know, all the time my thing is, oh, I can't before the hiatus, I can't go because I have a game, you know, and my girlfriend's in Boston. I'll be on a group text. Sorry, guys, I have a game for every time we had to miss something because of the game. They get here like okay, no worries, you know, we'll try to do it around, you know, the next week or or something but, yeah, you don't have to explain things and I think that that's they get it and and that's so valuable in and of itself, of just the demands of being in sports and the amount of time and effort that you put into really perfect your craft and want to do a great job and study and just you do put in poor in so much of your life to be good at your work. Yeah, and I think it's also helpful to not to really get deep on this, but we all go through a hard time, if not multiple, trying to make it in this industry, and so to have that solid core group of women that are like look, I've been there before, I know what you're going through. I promise you'll make it through like that is so helpful because, like I said before, when your friends on the outside say it, yes, of course it is so meaningful, but it's different when it's coming from someone who gets it. So I'm so glad that you've found that, because that's that's vital, especially now, especially with social media, when there are so many like ugly trolls and annoying, I know bull that. I don't know. It's just now more than ever, I think it's really important to have a good core group of girls that back you up. I totally agree for sure. So we mentioned this a little bit before, talking about Boston and you brought up the fans. What is it about Boston sports that are just different than other sports and other fan bases around the country? What is it? You know, it's I I didn't when I moved here. You know,...

...people would always were telling me, you know, the fans, the fans, it's they are diehard fans, and I and I didn't really under D stand it. I was like, okay, you know. And I grew up in Eugene or again, where I will say game days are insane, that Eugene shuts down. Autson stadium is filled, it's loud, it's amazing, and I guess coming in, I that would be what I would compare Boston to in a way, on obviously a bigger scale, was the intensity of the fans. People love their sports here. People consume it, and I think that that's where this job has been amazing for me, because I feel like I really people are watching, like they tune in for everything. They know what's happening with every single player, they know what what's happening with every single team and I think it's the passion behind it too. You know, you're at a game that TV garden and it was a few times that I noticed this and I think that it just says a lot well the Celtics. They were losing and they weren't going to win the game. People stayed in their seats, fans weren't getting up and leaving and I think that that just shows how much they believe in the teams here, how much they love the teams here, and it's they really rally around all the athletes and I think it's it's cool to the relationships that the different teams have with each other and how they come and support each other. You know there's red SOx players at the Celtics Games, there's pats players at the Celtics Games and the Celtics, you know, they'll go to the bruins games. It's it's really, really cool to see that opportunity, you know, and just experience it because it is such a it's such a community here and people are so passionate about Boston and they love this city and it really shows in the sport it's that are here too. So you've been there for five years and you still don't have a Boston accent. What's up with that? I could I could say mocks mot. I'm sure you can say that to you all the time and don't give up on where you came from. Well, it's funny, like it'll say get the car or get water. I've said, you know, do like jokes and stuff, because some of my neighbors are very, very Boston, and it's like she's like how I do great, you know. And it's funny, though, because people, and I don't know what it is, but people have said that I have an accent and I don't know, I don't know like where they think that it would be coming from, but now like Arizona, maybe, I don't know. Sometimes, like I they've said, like you sound like something, words that you say you're like Minnesota or something, but I yeah, but I never lived there. That's one of the places I didn't live. So one place. And I believe it's funny you say that because when I worked in hockey I would pick up on certain Canadian words and it's so easy because when you're around it, people are saying sorry and wow it out and you know, just like random things and and you find yourself talking to your mom on the phone and you're like, oh, sorry, I'm late. She's like what what are you saying? No, I like making it better of that way for you. I mean I love Canadians, so if I adopted the Canadian accent forever and ever, I wouldn't even be upset about it. I love it. I love it too. So, being from Arizona, the weather is warm and there are mountains and lots of fun things to do outside. What do you do in your free time in Boston? I mean not in the winter, obviously. So when the hiatus happened, I actually flew home to Arizona and I was there. I I was there for three, four months. Yeah, yeah, the the office had shut down and it was when it was really bad in Boston. And so it was. The night was insane because we got back from Milwaukee and they were like, okay, you need to quarantine for two weeks. So I was quarantining and I didn't even see my boyfriend...

...in Boston because I was worried, you know, about it. We didn't know as much at that time, and so I was home for two weeks and I said, you know what, like I remember it was snowing one day and I was like, I think I just need to go home and not put an end date. I'm not going to book a flight back, I'm just I need to I need to be with my family right now, and so I booked a one way ticket. I did get tested first, just to make sure to be safe for my parents, and then when the results came back, I booked a one way ticket to Phoenix and yeah, I was there and just was by the pool, like you said, hiking, biking, going out and running and stuff. But now it's really, really hot there. So Boston is is the summers here are amazing. So I've just been trying to get out as much as I can. You know, like I'll go to Boston common and read or just kind of walk around, and I'm in the city, so it's there's not a lot of like hiking or anything that I can do. But on the weekends I've been going to like Narragansett with my boyfriend and his family, so we've been on the beach. But that's kind of what what I've been doing with the with the downtime that I have. And then I was watching a precious bulldog named Wheezy, like we talked about. So he was getting me out and about and meeting all new friends because he's just perfect and everybody loved them. Well, now you have to get yourself a new dog that's actually yours. For sure, for sure, believe me, I've been I've been looking at some different breeders, so we'll see. Well, speaking from experience, Amanda, once you start looking, there's no going back. I know. I just got to pull the trigger. Really, I just yeah, I think it's more of the uncertainty of what next season is going to bring, but in the same time it's like why, why am I waiting? You know what I mean? If I have the I'm in and animals are just amazing. Honestly, yeah, are. Our dog has saved US during this time. I mean going on a few walks a day and we've met amazing neighbors through our dogs, because you're just so much we're more social with your dog because people you know your dog. Most dogs, at least ours, remy, wants to say hi to every one. It doesn't matter if you hate dogs, are love dogs, he's going to come right up to you and say hi. So you meet all these people, which is amazing. So we have a social life during covid because of our dog, which I'm mad about. wheasy was the same way. He had to go up and at least say hide to someone and then they he had to smell the other person's dog and then he was good and it was like a hey bye, all right, we're good. But like you meet. You're right, and I feel like that dog people are just there's not mean. Dog People Right, and nobody is so open and friendly. They're honestly. Dogs are the best. I fully support you. You can send me pictures of puppies that you're considering any time and I will help you choose. All Right, okay, I want to let you go, but before we talked about this a little bit with all the women that that support you and the ones that you're friends with. But can you leave us with it? Could be a woman or multiple women who inspire you in sports. Yeah, I think that there is. There's so many, but I would say the ones that I've always looked up to you, and I do have you know her, met or have personal relationships with. I think that Doris Burke is phenomenal. She does an amazing job and I think just what she's done for women in sports and paving the way is truly amazing. And then my friend Kristin Ledlow at NBA TV. She's such a sweetheart, but I think that what I love about her is she's just herself. She's organic and kind of what you see is what you get on air, and I feel like that I've always tried to be working towards that of just be yourself, and I know it's way easier said than done,...

...but trying to be I because I think when you're when you do that, it's even more vulnerable because then people can come after you and you're like really, Oh wow, like that's but that's me, that's my personality, that's who I am, and it's like they're in a way like insulting who you are as a person. But I've always felt that she just has done such a wonderful job of being able to balance that. And then with the Celtics, the two women, Kara Lawson, who's now at Duke and the head women's basketball coach there. You know her coming in and just the relationships that she had with the players, her professionalism. It was truly amazing to watch and I loved getting to know her on the road and you know, she was there during Summer League. And then Alison feaster has been truly wonderful and I think that they're just both those women. They're they're so well respected, they're so smart and they just do things the right way. And there's the way that they go about their relationships and how they treat people is amazing, and so I think that those are there's there's so many women that that are amazing, but I think that those are ones that I've I've really attached myself to you or seen things in that I've I've enjoyed and maybe tried to be more like. It's a good problem to have when you have so many women that inspire you, that you can name, and I agree that those women are amazing. Doris has been mentioned a gazillion times on my podcast for obvious reasons, Kristen. It's she's so amazing. I actually knew her from Tallahassee because I went to Florida state and from Tallahassee, and so I've known her since her ABC twenty seven days when she worked in Tallahassee. And you're right, she is incredible from the core out. She is. She is amazing, so thank you for highlighting her and the other women as well, and thank you so much for taking the time. Amanda, I know that things are a little bit bizarre these days and you're running around from your couch to your desk, from your couch to your desk. I know that you're so busy. If I had video, Oh my God, I'm about this, girl is insane. When Mike hoddled over in my bathrobe, like, okay, we're by coffee, like I guess this, and you set up a camera so we can walk. You gave it. You can the time laps of the Game Day. It's seriously a gonna thank you. This has been a treat talking with you. I'm so excited to watch yourself discoverage the rest of the postseason. Fingers Cross and everything goes well. I'm so excited for you. Thank you so much, and it was so great to catch up with you, Amanda. I love seeing what you're doing and you just always spend so so wonderful and so professional in the business and I'm I'm very happy that I was able to connect with you again. I will never not take an opportunity to convince someone to get a puppy or a dog. Our Golden Retriever, Remy, is simply the best thing to ever happen to my boyfriend and I. But aside from puppies, I hope you understand more of Amanda's world now and I hope she inspired you in some way. If you want to follow along on her journey, you can find her on instagram and twitter at Amanda Underscore Flu Grad, and her last name is spelled Pflu Grad, and you can follow along with this show at and so she goes pod. Also, don't forget to reach out to let me know your thoughts on the show and who you want to hear from next. Thanks for listening.

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