A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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“Onion rings in the car cushions do not improve with time” (5/25)
“A gig is worth ten rehearsals” (music adage) (5/24)
“Victory is a thousand times sweeter when you’re the underdog” (5/24)
“Progress is what happens when impossibility yields to necessity” (5/24)
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Entry from April 24, 2019
“Sometimes it’s not about how good you are, but how bad you want it”

"It’s not how good you are. It’s how bad you want it” (or “Sometimes it’s not about how good you are, but how bad you want it” is a motivational saying that has been printed on many images. Authorship is unknown. The saying has been popular in sports, but it also applies to business.

“It’s not how good you are. It’s not how bad you are. It’s how bad you want to win” was attributed to Minnesota Vikings football player Carl Eller in 1975. “It’s not how good you are, but how bad you want (it—ed.)” was printed in the Daily Leader (Pontiac, IL) on November 30, 1976. “It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Bad You Want It” was printed on baseball shirts in 1995.

“‘Sometimes it’s not how good you are but how bad you want it,’ read the T-shirt” was printed in The Village Voice (New York, NY) on August 2, 2006. “Sometimes its not about how good you are but how bad you want it. #words2liveby” was posted on Twitter by Khrystian B. on August 5, 2010.


18 September 1975, The Journal Herald (Dayton, OH), “Hartley chooses quotation to motivate Tecumseh Team” by Leal Beattie, pg. 17, col. 4:
“We saw him (Carl Eller of the Minnesota Vikings—ed.) say it on TV,” Arrow quarterback Ted White says, “and we can’t agree on his exact words.

“But it was something like: ‘It’s not how good you are. It’s not how bad you are. It’s how bad you want to win.’”

30 November 1976, Daily Leader (Pontiac, IL), “Bears’ Gary Hvrinak speaks” by Jim Caviezal, pg. 10, cols. 6-7:
We have a saying in our locker room, ‘It’s not how good you are, but how bad you want (it—ed.)’ and I think that is a definite factor in athletic success.”

15 November 1988, Courier-Post (Camden, NJ), “Bulldogs’ second half turns tide” by Ovetta Wiggins, pg. 5C, col. 6:
The team needed to be reminded of our team motto, ‘It’s not how good you are, but how bad you want to win it.’”

Google Groups: rec.sport.triathlon
inspirational
zena...@unixg.ubc.ca
2/27/95
How about this one. “It’s not how good you are, but how bad you want it.”
Chuck Norris

1 June 1995, Washington (DC) Post, “Victory Provides Relief; O’s Defeat of Angels Deemed a `Good Win’” by Mark Maske, pg. D1, col. 6:
A few hours before the Baltimore Orioles played the California Angels here Tuesday night, Rafael Palmeiro carried a box of T-shirts into the visitor’s clubhouse at Anaheim Stadium. The Orioles’ first baseman placed shirts in all his teammates’ lockers. The message on the shirts read: “It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Bad You Want It.”

Google Books
Field of Hope:
An Inspiring Autobiography of a Lifetime of Overcoming Odds

By Brett Butler with Jerry B. Jenkins
Nashville, TN: T. Nelson Publishers
1997
Pg. 203:
Under my street clothes, I wore a sleeveless shirt that read: “It’s not how good you are, it’s how bad you want it.”

Google Groups: rec.sport.baseball
Sports Funding Ideas
James A. Danner
4/10/97
(...)
Remember, it is not how GOOD you are, but how BAD you want it.

Google Books
Why Your Life Sucks:
And What You Can Do About It

By Alan Cohen
New York, NY: bantam Dell
2005
Pg. 89:
It has been said, “It’s not how good you are—-it’s how bad you want it.”

Google Books
Relax Into Wealth:
How to Get More by Doing Less

By Alan Cohen
New York, NY: jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin
2006
Pg. 27:
I saw a T-shirt slogan that sums up this principle: It’s not how good you are; it’s how bad you want it.

2 August 2006, The Village Voice (New York, NY), “Free Will Astrology” by Rob Brezny, pg. 166:
LEO [July 23-Aug. 22] “Sometimes it’s not how good you are but how bad you want it,” read the T-shirt of a guy buying a lottery ticket at the convenience store.

Twitter
Khairul Nizam Lamin
@khairulnz
Its not about how good you are, it’s how much you want it. Be hungry. Stay hungry.
5:49 AM - 22 Feb 2010

Twitter
Khrystian B.
@KhrystianB
Sometimes its not about how good you are but how bad you want it. #words2liveby
2:32 PM - 5 Aug 2010

Twitter
Joy Bishop
@SistaBigBones_
IT’S NOT ABOUT HOW GOOD YOU ARE BUT HOW BAD YOU WANT IT!!
12:12 PM - 1 Oct 2010

Twitter
Simara Torres
@simaralynn
☆☆iͦtͦ’sͦ nͦoͦtͦ aͦbͦoͦuͦtͦ hͦoͦwͦ gͦoͦoͦdͦ yͦoͦuͦ aͦrͦeͦ bͦuͦtͦ hͦoͦwͦ bͦaͦdͦ yͦoͦuͦ wͦaͦnͦtͦ iͦtͦ!!☆☆
9:03 PM - 6 Oct 2010

Twitter
Reza Pahalwan
@DonKondo
It’s not about how GOOD you are, it’s about how BAD you want it! Good morning people.. smile
8:58 PM - 24 Oct 2010

Twitter
kyky
@jellyohfish
sometimes, it’s not about how good you are but how bad you want it.
10:57 AM - 15 Jun 2011

Women.com
Best Instagram Captions for Softball
Ashley Ferraro
Jun 15, 2018
(...)
“Sometimes it’s not how good you are, but how bad you want it.”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Wednesday, April 24, 2019 • Permalink