Oakland Tribune: Word play for A’s Henderson


Speech students at Laney Junior College received a rare experience the past two weeks. Not only have they been listening to the Hall of Fame induction speech Rickey Henderson will make on Sunday, but they also have been critiquing it.

Henderson essentially has gone back to school for much of this month to craft and polish the address he will give at Cooperstown, N.Y., when he is inducted.

This speech is much-anticipated by those who have become familiar with Henderson’s use of the language, which has affectionately come to be known as “Rickey-speak.” Henderson acknowledged this past week that formal public speaking frightens him.

“Speech and me don’t get along sometimes,” he said. “I’m not a doctor or professor, so for me to go and write a speech or read a speech, it’s kind of like putting a tie too tight around my neck.”

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