About Gian Paul Gonzalez
Date: August 19, 2019
Time: 1:00 – 1:45 p.m.
Where: PHS Auditeria
During the New York Giants’ 2011 Super Bowl run, much of their inspiration is attributed to Gian Paul Gonzalez (pronounced John-Paul). Prior to the Giant’s Christmas Eve game with the NY Jets, Gonzalez delivered the now famous “ALL IN” rally cry message during the Giants’ chapel service and is now widely recognized as having inspired the New York Giants to their Super Bowl victory and was featured on ESPN on Super Bowl Sunday, and has had notable appearances on Fox News, ABC and CNN. He has traveled across the nation as a motivational speaker for the NBA’s Portland Trailblazers, to the Army Cadets at West Point, United States Air Force, Anheuser-Busch, Sam’s Club, Patch.com, PNC Bank, DSW Shoes as well as many other corporate, athletic, government agencies, and educational institutions.
Gonzalez, a high school teacher in Union City, N.J., was asked to lead a chapel service for members of the New York Giants team the night before the team’s Christmas Eve 2011 game against the New York Jets. There was little hope then that the team would make it to the playoffs.
To illustrate the concept of commitment Gonzalez handed each football player a poker chip, instructing them to write their number on one side of the chip and write what they wanted to be committed to on the other side. He then shared with the team the meaning behind the poker phrase “All In”. He inspired them to be committed and put all their “chips” on the table.
“We are faced with decisions every day at which time we can decide to be fully committed, or all in,” says Gonzalez, a former All-American forward, who passed up a professional basketball contract to continue his work with at-risk youth. “I said to the players, ‘I want you to fully commit to being all in on something.’”
Gonzalez went on to urge players to fully commit to anything they take on, whether as a father, husband, son or even, a football player.
Next day after Gian Paul’s chapel message the Giants beat the Jets 29-14. In a post-game interview, Giant’s Defensive End, Justin Tuck credited the chapel speaker’s (Gian Paul) message of being “All In” as the reason the Giants won that day. The team went on to win every game, up to and including Super Bowl XLVI, where they beat the New England Patriots 21-17.
Gian Paul Gonzalez is himself an inspiration. He was a former NCAA First Team All-American forward from Montclair State University scoring nearly 1,400 points in his 3 year career. Played in the NBA Summer League in 2007 and was offered a few professional basketball contracts, yet he turned them down in order to continue his work with at-risk youth. He is a gifted motivational speaker and is the founder of Hope + Future, an organization dedicated to using athletics & physical fitness to share a message of hope and striving for excellence in inner-city public schools and juvenile jails.