Capitals' Barry Trotz once talked himself into a sold out B.B. King show

Friday January 16th, 2015

Washington Capitals coach Barry Trotz coached the Nashville Predators for 15 seasons, but perhaps his best tale of life in Tennessee happened in Memphis as he was preparing to take his U.S. citizenship test in 2001.

The Washington Post published the transcript of a story by Trotz of how, on a trip to Memphis, the coach was able to talk himself into a private B.B. King show ... while wearing shorts and flip flops.

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Apparently, seeing greats like King perform was on Trotz's "bucket list." So when he and a friend stopped by B.B. King's Blues Club to have a beer and were informed it was closed for a special show by the man himself, Trotz the coach became Trotz the salesman.

"'OK, I’m sort of in the entertainment business,'" Trotz recalled telling the security guard. "'Nothing’s ever sold out. What will it take to see ... and now this was a bucket list thing, because I like music. I love the great ones. Doesn’t matter what genre, but the great ones I like... I said, 'What would it take to see B.B. tonight?'"

After being rebuffed a second time, Trotz insisted, "No, no. You’re not quite understanding. What. Will. It. Take?"

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Trotz wound up getting into the show for $40 a person, after being prepared to spend $200 or $300. Right up front, where he could practically reach out and touch King’s famous guitar, Lucille. 

- Phil Watson


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