Matt Rife Recalls His Worst Stand-Up Gig at a Sports Bar During the 2012 NBA Playoffs (Exclusive) 

The comic explained performing for an audience that was watching the game on TV while he ‘ran through 20 minutes of material in, like, four minutes.’ 

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Every comedian has experienced a bad stand-up gig, including Matt Rife. The 28-year-old recalled which of his past performances still haunts him to this day during an exclusive video interview with Hollywood Life. 

“It was game seven of the 2012 NBA Playoffs. It was when LeBron [James] was in Miami,” Matt explained. “I was performing at a sports bar outside of Atlanta, Georgia, and it was packed — filled with everybody watching the game.” 

The Brooklyn Nine-Nine actor pointed out that he was scheduled to perform a 20-minute set, but he “ran through 20 minutes of material in, like, four minutes.” 

“They left the TVs on. Everyone’s just watching [the game],” Matt continued. “I’m in the middle of a joke, and people [are] just diving into nachos, dude. It was the worst time of my entire life. I’ve never felt more invisible.” 

Since then, however, Matt’s success has only continued to grow, as he is gearing up for the November 15 premiere of his Netflix comedy special, Natural Selection. While speaking with Hollywood Life, the Columbus, Ohio, native described the process of creating jokes, which can be the “scariest part” sometimes. 

“You have to show all these new jokes, which you know is usually just notes you wrote down [when] you’re way too high [sic],” Matt said. “You’re like, ‘This is the funniest f**king this ever.’ Then, you read it over the next day, and you’re like, ‘I’m gonna go to jail, for sure.’” 

Nevertheless, Matt insisted that he is “enjoying the process of starting all over again and developing a new show” because “that’s where the work actually comes in.”