Ex-Microsoft CEO and current Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer is nothing short of a fun interview, as he’s proven everywhere from late-night television to the stage at the GeekWire Sports Tech Summit.
On Tuesday, the charismatic NBA boss stopped by Conan O’Brien’s show to talk about everything from Bill Gates to slam dunks to hot dog guns and more. Much of it was delivered with the volume and energy we’ve come to know and love.
Does this add up?
“I hope this stirs up animosity between the two of you,” O’Brien said as he asked Ballmer about beating his ex-Microsoft pal Gates in a math competition.
Ballmer said Gates finished 10th in their dormitory in college, while he placed second — and 57th in the country. “But who’s counting?” Ballmer said.
Pass the ketchup
O’Brien credited Ballmer for being an owner who is “front and center” and “constantly thinking of new things” when it comes to bringing excitement to the Staples Center where the Clippers play.
Ballmer said he wants to take the ubiquitous T-shirt cannon to the next level and have a gun that “blows hot dogs into the stands.”
O’Brien suddenly lost his enthusiasm. “These are hot logs of meat being fired into the crowd.” But he then suggested a “chili hose” might up the ante.
‘You’re an insane person’
Ballmer said that his team’s new mascot, Chuck the Condor, is off to a good start, but he admitted that he’s envious of the energy that the San Antonio Coyote brings to Spurs games.
Perhaps Ballmer should just be the mascot, because further into the conversation, he brought just the type of energy he’s looking for at games as he described how Clippers staffers got him to jump off a trampoline and dunk a basketball.
“I believe I can flyyyyyy,” Ballmer sang. “I believe I can touch the skyyyyyy.”
Take a seat
Ballmer talked a bit about the “modern, new, tech way to do things” when it comes to getting some tickets to a Clippers game, which might involve an auction system in which fans buy and sell tickets for what they think they’re worth, depending on the competition, for instance.
He said he’d be putting up two of his own courtside seats to a game in February to see what happens.