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Rick Pitino had ‘a lot of fun’ appearing on John Calipari’s podcast

The intense coaching rivalry between Rick Pitino and John Calipari has been well documented over the years. That is what made the news that Pitino made an appearance on the Kentucky Wildcats head coach’s podcast so utterly shocking.

But perhaps most surprising? Pitino said he and Calipari had “a lot of fun” during the recent 40-minute chat. Although the fact that the Louisville Cardinals basketball coach had to ask what a podcast was first makes the whole situation that much more amusing.

“To tell you the truth, prior to that, when (Calipari) texted me and said he was doing a podcast with (Mike Krzyzewski) and Charles Barkley and having some fun with it and he’d like to have me do it, I just texted back, ‘Sure,'” Pitino said Tuesday, via the Courier Journal. “I immediately went to (assistant to the head coach) Jordan Sucher and said, ‘What actually is a podcast? Do you go on TV? Do I have to dress up for this?’ I’d heard it many, many times, but I didn’t know what it was.”

Despite the well-chronicled rivalry that exists between the two big-time coaches, Pitino insists he’s “never had a bad relationship with John,” comparing their relationship to the one between Mike Krzyzewski and Roy Williams.

“It’s very cordial. It’s very professional,” Pitino said of the rivalry between Coach K and Williams. “The most important thing is we have respect for each other as coaches and we have respect for each other’s programs in knowing how good they are.”

Regarding the appearance on the podcast, Pitino says he and Calipari really enjoyed themselves.

“We had a lot of fun doing it,” Pitino said. “We talked about people we’ve crossed paths with that we’re very fond of throughout the years. We laughed a lot about it, going down through history a little bit.”

It certainly will make for a “must-listen” podcast. The fact that these two larger-than-life personalities could set aside their differences and chat makes their embittered professional rivalry that much more compelling.