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Zinetula Bilyaletdinov: Russian head coach following loss to Finland: "I won't exist any more, since you will have eaten me."

Stashed in: Olympics!, Russia and Friends

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The Q&A session that best sums things up for Bilyaletdinov, who as a member of the 1980 USSR team has his fair share of experience dealing with tough losses on the international stage, was this one: (via the Wall Street Journal)

Q: What future, if any, do you see for your own work and for your coaching staff? Because, you know, your predecessor was eaten alive after the Olympics—
A: Well then, eat me alive right now—
Q: No, I mean—
A: Eat me, and I won’t be here anymore.
Q: But we have the world championship coming up!
A: Well then, there will be a different coach because I won’t exist any more, since you will have eaten me.
Q: But you’re staying, aren’t you?
A: Yes, I will remain living.

Nice to know that Russia is kinder and gentler 34 years later.

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