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Spurs’ Harry Kane beats Scoville scale in ‘Hot Ones’ interview

England captain and Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane isn’t someone you’d think could withstand a series of hot sauces that come in increasingly miserable levels of spiciness. And that makes Kane’s appearance on “Hot Ones” appointment viewing for everyone.

In the least surprising admission of Kane’s “Hot Ones” interview, Kane opened by saying to host Sean Evans that he’s “not great” around spicy food and doesn’t often have it too often, something that is immediately apparent by his choice of a white T-shirt. The white shirt is a high degree of difficulty garment when it comes to keeping things clean with an abundance of sauce involved, and sauce is the only thing that “Hot Ones” promises its viewers.

As Kane sat down to answer questions about his career and upbringing while eating progressively spicier hot wings, ESPN watched on to rate how he got on with the sauces.

(Each sauce is measured in Scoville heat units, which quantifies the pungency or heat of peppers and chilies in each dressing.)

– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)

Sauce One, Scoville Level: 1,600

Despite the shininess of Kane’s forehead in the harsh camera lighting, he seems to take this one pretty well. There’s a bit of bobbing back and forth and joking, before a little bit of dramatic foreshadowing when Kane says that the sauce is “actually quite nice… Maybe I’ve been missing out!”

He quickly follows that statement with the dreaded cough and throat clear while noting how he feels he’s still improving as a player after overtaking Wayne Rooney’s goal-scoring record for England. And then he reaches for the milk! Not a good sign for the sauces to come.

Sauce Two, Scoville Level: 6,000

This one’s a curry-flavored hot sauce, and Kane looks genuinely shocked and surprised that he’s enjoying this as much as he is. He does think that the curry helped him a bit with how popular curry dishes are in England, which turns into a nice segue into his youth career. Consummate professional, that Kane.

Kane takes another sip of milk to cleanse the palate before continuing, and his lack of hubris is probably doing him plenty of favors here by giving his taste buds a little soothing before he tries each sauce.

Sauce Three, Scoville Level: 15,500

They’re dialing up the heat now, and Kane can feel it. “The fact that there’s seven more to go is a little bit worrying,” he says, his brow looking a little more pink than it did before.

It does suggest the question of what’s really worse here: the sauce, or the dread of the sauces to come?

Sauce Four, Scoville Level: 36,500

If we’re being honest, we’re fairly impressed with how Kane has handled the hot sauces so far. Hot sauce number four is “sharp,” Evans and Kane agree, and he needs an extra sip of milk directly after.

That milk level is another element to pay attention to: he’s already drank about half of it, and he hasn’t yet cracked the median wing.

Sauce Five, Scoville Level: 49,000

The sadness that never really leaves Kane grows deeper, staring deep into the void as he bites down into the wing. They quickly move on towards Kane’s technique of playing the ball with both feet, but another cough comes unbidden to his lips. The demons of sauces past have begun to drum on his tum. This could get ugly.

Sauce Six, Scoville Level: 71,000

Aptly named the “Spicy Shark,” sauce number six has Kane getting a bit existential. “I can almost see it in the bottle,” he says in reference to the sauce’s bite, contemplating the level of spice that he has already consumed, and the spice that is to come.

On the plus side, that shirt is looking as clean as ever. Fair play to Kane.

Sauce Seven, Scoville Level: 103,000

They’ve cracked 100,000 Scoville units now, and the struggle is getting Sisyphean. Evans takes a deep breath, trying to transfer his calm onto Kane.

“Yeah,” Kane says.

“Yeah?” Evans replies.

“Yeah,” Kane finishes.

The Shark is still affecting him and the afterburn of the latest sauce engages sauce six in an infernal tango.

Sauce Eight, Scoville Level: 134,600

“That’s not nice,” Kane says, which is about as strong language we can possibly imagine Kane uttering in polite conversation. We’ve got heavy breathing and a serious reliance on the milk at this point, which looks like it’s gotten a refill. The producers are apparently benevolent in their enthusiasm for watching guests suffer.

Crucially, this hot sauce doesn’t seem to taste good at all. “That’s disgusting,” Kane says flatly. The finish line is in sight, but Kane is struggling. There’s visible sweat, the eyes are now bright pink, and he can only haltingly sing “He’s one of our own” in reference to his favorite Tottenham chants.

Kane says this is the spiciest thing he’s ever eaten in his life. There’s still two more left.

Sauce Nine, Scoville Level: 641,000

“I feel like my mouth can’t get anymore burnt,” Kane says as he bites into something called “Watermelon Ghost.” And it does seem to be a rebound for Kane! The numbness the previous sauces have wrought on his tongue and gums has given him a shield, and he maintains enough sense of taste to recognize that the latest sauce is good.

This is as dramatic a twist as we could’ve expected, as there were good odds on Kane collapsing into a pile of saliva by now.

The Last Dab, Scoville Level: TBA

The final sauce, ominously unlabeled when it comes to Scoville units, has arrived. Kane carefully adorns his last wing before tearing into it. He’s damp, he’s red, and he’s back to feeling the heat of the hot sauces, but he’s done it and he’s completed the run of sauces with far more decorum than many others that have come before him.

Looking much like a human milk carton, he slays the final sauce and comfortably answers a final question on soccer slang before advertising his charitable foundation.

“I’ve done it,” he says in disbelief as Evans congratulates him on a job well done. And frankly, we don’t think we could’ve asked for a better showing from Kane.

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