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Connecticut Sun point guard Renee Montgomery is a big Baltimore Ravens fan while Tulsa Shock center Courtney Paris, daughter of former San Francisco 49ers tackle, Bubba Paris, is obviously a big 49ers fan. Both players shared their thoughts on the big game via a spirited question and answer session. Check out the major league trash talk below.
How long have you been a fan of the Ravens/49ers and what prompted you to be such a fan?
Montgomery: I’ve been a Ravens fan since 2009. I became a fan then because they drafted one of my good friends, Ray Rice. I am a die-hard Ravens fan but I will also be rooting for San Francisco’s Randy Moss to do well in the Super Bowl because he, too, is from West Virginia and he supports me so I definitely will be supporting him.... I just don't want him to do so well that he beats us.
Paris: I was sort of born to be a 49ers fan. My dad played most of his NFL career there and I grew up in the Bay Area so it’s just my nature to cheer for them; especially with the dynasty they had back in the 80’s and 90’s. How could I –- or anyone for that matter -- not be a Niners fan?!
What is your fondest Ravens/49ers memory?
Montgomery: My fondest memory would have to be any time the Ravens beat the Steelers because their fans are THE worst...I’m not going to name any names because SWIN CASH would be mad if I did.
Paris: My dad was already retired by the time I was old enough to truly follow the sport, so my greatest memory had to be in the 90’s when Jerry Rice and Steve Young were running things and winning Super Bowls.
What is your favorite article of Ravens/49ers swag?
Montgomery: I’ve got a custom fitted Ravens jersey; I treat it like a super exclusive pair of shoes, I don't wear it often, only on special occasions. The Super Bowl will be one of those occasions.
Paris: My favorite had to be back in the day I had this 49ers letterman’s jacket that I loved. Wish I still had that thing!
Do you have any particular superstitions you adhere to when rooting for the Ravens/49ers?
When you’re playing overseas in the winter, how do you follow the Ravens/49ers? Do you stay in touch with fellow fans by phone/email/Skype, etc.?
Montgomery: I usually tweet about the games and interact with other Ravens fans that way. I have a Slingbox so I can watch the games live if I’m not traveling.
Paris: Of course there is espn.com and other Internet sites I can check. But also here in Turkey they show American football games on cable TV. Sometimes they’re live; but most times they’re not. I will know the outcome but still enjoy watching the game – especially that NFC Championship Game win against the Falcons!!!
Where will you be when the Super Bowl is played on Feb. 3? Will you be able to watch it and are you making any special plans to do so?
Montgomery: On February 3rd I have a big game (in Russia) vs. Spartak. A couple of the players on their team are fellow WNBA players Seimone Augustus, Candice Dupree, and Becky Hammon. So hopefully I can have 2 big wins that day.
Paris: I will be in Adana, Turkey, either attending or hosting a Super Bowl party.
One key theme for this Super Bowl is that brothers John and Jim Harbaugh serve as head coach of the Ravens and 49ers. Which one is more handsome and why?
Montgomery: Hmm... Well first I had to go back and Google them because I really never paid that much attention to their looks. But after doing that, of course I’m going with the Ravens’ coach, John.
Paris: Jim of course! Aside from looking dashing in 49ers’ gear, you have to go with the younger brother!
Why will YOUR TEAM win?
Montgomery: My team – got that Courtney, my team – will win because of their passion, led by Ray Lewis. They aren't going to let his retirement party end the wrong way.
Paris: Because the 49ers are the best team in the NFL! With our off-season additions our roster is loaded with talent. Colin Kaepernick stepping in has given the team an even more confident mindset. In the NFC Championship we came back from 17 points down to beat Atlanta. Plus San Francisco in general has got something going in sports…the Giants won the World Series, so now It’s the 49ers time to shine!
What is your prediction for the Super Bowl in terms of score?
Montgomery: I’m terrible at predicting the score, but both teams are defensively oriented so I would predict a low scoring game.
Paris: Low scoring but with the 49ers on top.
Renee, what does the 49ers’ defense most have to fear about the Ravens’ offense led by Ray Rice, Joe Flacco, and Anquan Boldin particular?
Montgomery: Hey Diddle Diddle.... Ray Rice up the middle!!!!!
Question for Courtney: From your point of view, what will be the key for the 49ers’ defense?
Paris: Stopping the Ravens’ run. They have great running backs that we have to stop.
Courtney, as a tackle for the 49ers, your father blocked for Hall of Fame quarterbacks Joe Montana and Steve Young…what makes young 49ers’ QB Colin Kaepernick so special and why should the Ravens fear him?
Paris: He’s a threat on all levels and from anywhere on the field…he can throw any range and with the right touch; not to mention he can turn designed running plays into huge gains or even make a defense pay when things break down. The Ravens won’t know what to expect every snap and he could make them look bad…real bad.
Renee, what is it about Ravens’ LB Ray Lewis that makes him so inspirational to his teammates? Also, who in your basketball career might be compared to Ray Lewis as a leader, and why?
Montgomery: He speaks from the heart and backs up every word he says. He doesn't just talk a good game; he has proven himself over a large number of years and earned the respect of not only his teammates but of his opponents.
If you were to engage in some fun trash-talking to Courtney about the Super Bowl, what would you want to say?
Montgomery: Maybe next year...
Paris: Although it would be a story book ending for Ray Lewis, it’s just not going to happen. Sorry, Ray….Oh, and sorry, Renee!
Renee, if the Ravens win what should Courtney have to do to honor your victory?
Montgomery: Well if she is on Twitter I would love her to send me a congratulations tweet and also post a pic holding up a sign that says, "Ravens are the 2013 Super Bowl Champs."
Courtney, if the 49ers win what should Renee have to do to honor your victory?
Paris: I would love for Renee to make a sign that says “49ers are the World Champions” with some lovely red and gold decor - take a picture and tweet tweet.