Former NFL star receiver Chad Johnson, previously known as Ochocinco, is willing to talk about almost anything — as any of his 3.7 million Twitter followers will tell you.
During a 20-minute break from serving ice cream to fans near Times Square as part of promotional appearance with New Era, Johnson dished on the handful of topics he hasn’t yet touched — or expounded upon — on his wildly popular social media accounts.
3. 1. Why he loves Twitter.
“It gave me a voice. I don’t need ESPN. I cut the middleman out. I’m not going to hide or bite my tongue. I’m not trying to hide who I am or what I do. This is me.”
4. 2. Whether he’s part of Black Twitter.
“The problem is that I’m a part of everything. I’m a part of White Twitter. I’m a part of Black Twitter. I’m a part of New York … I’m the leader of Black Twitter, how about that? I’m a black guy and I enjoy tweeting.”
5. 3. The lesser-known benefits of social networking.
“I don’t drink. I don’t dance — I got an iPod at home … I don’t have to go out. I have Twitter. If I want to meet someone, I can holler at the Twitter and send a (direct message).”
6. 4. Why he doesn’t want men sending him pictures of their butts.
Johnson previously discussed his feelings on this issue after several men privately shared naked photos with him on Instagram. He elaborated on Thursday. “I am the only straight athlete that associates himself with gays and goes back and forth [on Twitter]. I’m showing people that it’s okay to be open … But my feeling is, I’m nipping it in the bud. People think, ‘He’s friendly and talks to all of us and maybe let’s go there.’ No. I embrace you, I accept you and your preferences. I respected you and supported you the best I can but don’t try me. Now you’re being disrespectful. I was being respectful and now you’re disrespecting me in turn. I don’t get down like that.”
7. 5. Why the NFL isn’t quite ready for an openly gay player.
“The locker room would be in shambles. Why? Because no one would even function in that environment. Me? I don’t give a fuck. What have you got for me on Sunday? If you can ball, I don’t care.”
8. 6. How he’d fare against media sensation and All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman.
“I love that dude. But ain’t no way in hell he’d be talking to me like that. If I talked to him, he wouldn’t talk back. When I played, I did all of the talking and no one said a word. Like, I would tell guys what I was going to do.”
9. 7. His thoughts on Sherman vs. 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree.
“I understand that Sherman was reacting. But is Crabtree mediocre? No. Both of them are among the best in the game when they’re healthy. When I think of Crabtree and Richard Sherman, it reminds me of those Deion Sanders and Andre Rison matchups. That’s all I can think of. Or maybe Deion and Michael Irvin.”
10. 8. Whether he could still play in the NFL.
“I’m ready right now. There’s nothing wrong with me. Black don’t crack. Listen, I can fly.”