Sandy • Chad Barrett was bored.
The Real Salt Lake forward was looking at six-month recovery following knee surgery in April and needed a way to connect to the team he couldn’t play for. Thus, a Facebook live show was born.
“We were both injured and just got started talking about post-career stuff,” said RSL center back David Horst, who co-hosts The Horse, the Bear & the Lion with Barrett. “That’s when Chad brought up the whole podcast or radio show or something.”
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Barrett and Horst sit down in front of microphones every Wednesday at 5 p.m. and go from being interview subjects to media members. Barrett and Horst use the show, which Real Salt Lake streams live from its Facebook page, to reach out to the fan base.
“Chad and I are cracking jokes and one-liners from movies and stuff,” Horst said, “so we’re able to have more fun with this than we would on a normal broadcast or radio show because its kind of very, I don’t want to say unprofessional, but very casual.”
They recorded their first episode on June 28, soon after Horst returned from the knee surgery (a tibial plateau chondral scope) he underwent the first week of April. Barrett’s operation to repair a left knee femoral chondral defect and a trochlear defect was the same week, but he has yet to return to play.
In the inaugural episode of the Horse the Bear & the Lion, (a play on words with the the hosts’ last names and RSL’s mascot) Barrett cracked open a Uinta beer as Horst sipped Gatorade.
“I have one of these before every game,” Barrett said, putting on a mock-advertisement tone, “that I don‘t play in.”
Like Horst said, very casual.
It is not Barrett’s first experience doing a show. He was given a camera on road trips to conduct interviews with teammates as a member of the Seattle Sounders in 2014-15.
“It was just kind of a fun thing and it wasn’t supposed to be anything, but the fans took to it,” he said. “They liked seeing the lighter side of professional soccer, kind of the way the guys really are, not just in these regular interviews.”
When Barrett told Horst about his idea to do a show this season, the defender offered his help. Horst had broadcasting experience as well; in 2013 after sustaining a broken leg with the Portland Timbers, he chipped in at the local Fox affiliate as a pregame and postgame analyst.
The Horse, the Bear & the Lion took on a different tone than Horst was used to, and he said he enjoys sharing a more laid-back side of him.
“People always see me on the field and think I’m a really serious, mean person off of it was well, when I’m really the opposite of that,” he said.
Last week, during the fan question segment of the show, Horst said his most useless skill was vacuuming.
“I have it down perfect: where I need to start, how I need to finish, and just the angles of the vacuum, perfect,” he said. “Give me a vacuum, I’ll get the house done in like 10 minutes.”
Before he could finish his thought, his wife Sarah Horst commented, “Was actually about to say … no … not his best talent. His crossword and trivia skills outweigh vacuuming.”
Horst and Barrett busted out laughing.
The podcast set Barrett up for a few analyst appearances on ESPN 700 for RSL games and on Real Monarchs live streams. As Barrett, 32, and Horst, 31, continue to age, the podcast also serves as practice for possible post-playing careers.
“At the end of my career, eventually there’s going to be nobody that wants to pay me to play soccer anymore,” Barrett said. “But you never know, they might want to pay me to talk about it.”