Grant Liffmann (right) filming part of the intro for his former show "Warriors Outsiders" with Steph Curry. (Photo/Courtesy Liffmann)
Grant Liffmann (right) filming part of the intro for his former show "Warriors Outsiders" with Steph Curry. (Photo/Courtesy Liffmann)

Q&A: Warriors sportscaster Grant Liffmann looks good in blue and gold

Grant Liffmann’s job covering the Golden State Warriors for NBC Sports Bay Area lets him wear a variety of hats, but before all that, he once wore a yarmulke.

Liffmann, 34, grew up in Burlingame, attended North Peninsula Jewish Day School (now Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School) and had his bar mitzvah at Peninsula Temple Sholom. After graduating from UC Berkeley and dabbling as an actor and producer in Los Angeles, Liffmann and his best friend started a Facebook Live sports talk show in 2016 that caught the attention of Comcast executives. Comcast loved it so much, the company turned it into an NBC Sports Bay Area brand called “Warriors Outsiders” that streamed on Facebook Live and television.

Liffmann, who lives in San Mateo, now hosts “Dubs Talk,” an NBC Sports Bay Area show in its first year — part podcast, part televised post-game show, and all about the Warriors. He also fills in as a host at Warriors pregame and postgame shows, getting in on the action around the 49ers, A’s and Giants from time to time. He spoke with J. in the middle of the Warriors’ playoff series with the Memphis Grizzlies.

J.: Let’s hear about your career path. Was sports television your goal all along?

Grant Liffmann: When I was in high school, I thought I wanted to be a sports agent. So I shadowed a local sports agent named Matt Sosnick, also Jewish. And I suppose then I kind of realized that wasn’t my path. I was obsessed with sports. [After college] there was a need at the time in the industry for a more youthful refresh. And the idea was to take advantage of the new digital push that was happening. Facebook Live was new. Our pitch was based on the new digital age and for sports and making a more casual peer-to-peer type atmosphere, and fortunately [Comcast] let us get a shot. It was their idea to start putting it on TV, and then it kind of blossomed from there.

What do your parents think?

My parents are very proud, and big fans of all the teams, and they enjoy it. My grandmother watches every show from her home. And she has a whole community of people at her senior home that watch, and are big fans of the Warriors. They love the games.

Grant Liffmann contributing to NBC's 49ers postgame coverage live from Levi’s Stadium. (Photo/Courtesy Liffmann)
Grant Liffmann contributing to NBC’s 49ers postgame coverage live from Levi’s Stadium. (Photo/Courtesy Liffmann)

What’s been a career highlight, or a “pinch-me” moment?

There’s been a few. A pinch-me moment was [in my first year at NBC Sports], myself and my co-host Drew are up there on stage for a Warriors parade where we’re hosting part of it in front of a million fans out there. And just a couple of months earlier, I was in L.A. We looked at each other, like, what is happening right now? Is this real life? And then it was cool the next year winning an Emmy for that work and just getting to know the players. Every now and then I try to remind myself that while I’ve normalized what I’m doing right now, a lot of this is stuff that from an outside perspective, or when I was younger, I would say it’s all a “pinch-me” type situation. It’s exciting.

One of my highlights is that I’m just obsessed with my dog (Nancy.) I’ve brought her on the show when she was a puppy a few times.

Any Jewy stories?

There was a Jewish player that I connected with a couple years ago, [Israeli former NBA forward] Omri Caspi. We got a chance to know each other a little bit and we connected over being Jewish. There is a [Warriors] Jewish heritage night, I have those shirts. It’s fun. Through my show, I’ve formed a really good relationship with the guy that’s the head of retail. I get all the gear that the Warriors have, so I might have to just stay with the Warriors forever. I just have too much stuff I like. If another team calls, I’m gonna say I’m sorry, blue and gold looks pretty good.

What’s your prediction going into game three on Saturday night? Do you think the Warriors are going to advance further?

If this team stays healthy, which is a big “if” because this team has been hurt so many times, and they truly play their A game. I think they’re the best team, at least in the Western Conference. I think they definitely can get through Memphis. They played really badly in game two and still almost won. And that was a must-win for the Grizzlies. If they keep their foot on the pedal and if they really walk in and start shooting the ball a little better, they should win this series.

Emma Goss
Emma Goss

Emma Goss is a J. staff writer. She is a Bay Area native and an alum of Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School and Kehillah Jewish High School. Emma also reports for NBC Bay Area. Follow her on Twitter @EmmaAudreyGoss.