When I first read the story of this University of Texas sophomore who snaked his way into Game 7 of the NBA Finals using a fake press pass, I became irrationally angry he succeeded. Then I remembered I got my first job out of college by claiming I was ‘highly proficient in Excel’ without knowledge of the SUM function and I’ve told countless bouncers “I’ve only had one or two drinks” in order to gain access into the bar. I was likely seeing triple.
The dude’s name is Micah Poag, and he was able to bypass security and the $2,800 reported secondary market price for a ticket to watch an instant classic. And he didn’t need to move mountains to do it. All it took was a little proficiency in Photoshop and a little chutzpah.
Speaking with Vocativ, Micah said:
“I’m pretty good with Photoshop, so Friday night I went ahead and bought a plane ticket with the idea that I’d go to this game and make a press pass and see if it would work,” Poag said. “Saturday morning I woke up and made this press pass and spent so much time on it I almost missed my flight.”
In order to get the template down for the press pass, Micah simply Googled what a press pass is supposed to look like for a professional sporting event and added Golden State’s colors, a picture of him in a suit, and barcode with random numbers.
He then threw on khakis and an Oxford button down and showed up to the stadium five hours early, when he thought security would be most lax. After only two laps around the stadium, Micah found an open door where a window washer had exited the stadium. He walked up and started talking to the man, when a security guard walked over.
“I kind of stepped up and showed the guard my press pass real quick and she didn’t really say anything and sort of gave me a nod in, and I proceeded to walk past her. When I was about 15 yards past, I heard her say ‘Hey,’ but then I didn’t look back.”
He then found the closest bathroom, opened the stall and stayed there for two hours. Why? “Because no one is going to bother a guy taking a shit, and then I sat there for two hours.” Valid.
As fans began entering the stadium, he took off his Oxford, threw on a Warriors jersey, and exited the bathroom stall. He went up to the nosebleed where he “watched the game pretty casually, pretty easily.”
After the game, Micah gave Vocativ his cheat code:
“Looking the part is a huge part of it. I think it’s pretty easy when you’re a white kid dressed in khakis with a suit on,” Poag said. “I think if you’re confident it helps.”
Simple as that. Just be confident. And be white.