There was a moment, Monday afternoon, when the media collectively shrugged.
“I don’t know what to believe anymore,” conceded Michael Felger, host of the popular afternoon sports radio program “Felger & Mazz.” Ben Volin, who has penned stories with screeching headlines like “Bill Belichick throws Tom Brady under the bus” for the Boston Globe, sat alongside Felger, with co-host Tony Massarotti and update guy Marc Bertrand, and admitted that he didn’t even trust his own previous stories/sources.
(Glad he’s here!)
Never has the take “No One Knows Anything” seemed so genius.
This was all after the Jay Glazer story changed the Deflategate narrative, yet again, with news that the NFL had identified a “person of interest” and that it had obtained some sort of corresponding video evidence. By now, you know how the rest of this debacle unfolds: Robert Kraft, the suddenly embattled Patriots owner who the collective media demanded speak – that guy? – yeah, he spoke.
Kraft lit the NFL and the media who covers it on fire. 700 foot flames of glory. It was the HAWT SPORTS TAKE that the likes of whom he lectured wish they could concoct themselves. And we, the fans, the onlookers, the ones who DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW THIS ALL WORKS!, gathered around and enjoyed delicious smores.
“…In direct contrast to the public discourse which has been driven by media leaks, as opposed to actual data and facts. Because of this, many jump to conclusions and made strong accusations against our coach, quarterback and staff, questioning the integrity of all involved.
If the Wells investigation is not able to definitively determine that our organization tampered with the air pressure in the footballs, I would expect and hope that the league would apologize to our entire team, and in particular Coach Belichick and Tom Brady for what they’ve had to endure this past week.
I’m disappointed in the way this entire matter has been handled, and reported upon. We expect hard facts, as opposed to circumstantial leaked evidence to draw the conclusion of this investigation.”
Shortly after, more reports leaked; this time, revealing that the aforementioned video evidence was of an equipment manager taking the game balls into a bathroom … for all of 90 seconds.
That’s where we are. But, of course, Kraft’s lecture only prompted more awful hawt sport takes.
Let’s start where this whole mess began, with Bob Kravitz:
“He wants an apology. That’s right, Patriots owner Robert Kraft wants an apology if the NFL’s investigation turns up nothing untoward in what has become to be known internationally as Deflategate. That’s precious. Truly, it is.”
I love when sports scribes write like they’re talking to infants. WHO’S A SILLY LITTLE OWNER, YOU ARE. YESSS, YOU ARE.
Let me say this: Whatever happens at the end of this investigation, nobody owes the Patriots or Kraft or the ball boys an apology. The league simply is doing what it’s supposed to do, investigating claims that the Patriots doctored their footballs in a way that circumvented league rules.
Yes, the league completely handled this the right way, protecting the INTEGRITY of the GAME. So what if they leaked reports that helped shape a pre-disposed outcome on the eve of the Super Bowl? No matter! No crying over spilled integrity.
Personally, I have no skin in the game.
Except for a few more TV and radio appearances; maybe a book.
When you get into journalism, you give up your fan card.
How tone-deaf are you, Bob? Really, we’re going over the pillars of sports journalism right now? Because this has been a banner week for modern-day journalism, ethics, and due process. Tool.
Speaking of aimless conjecture, drivel, and nonsense, we already discussed Dan Shaughnessy’s beautiful disaster yesterday, in which he claimed the Patriots “already lost the game that matters,” But Dan doubled down in today’s edition of the Globe.
If the Patriots are champions and did everything by the book, they have been unfairly targeted and characterized.
Characterized by whom? The lack of self-accountability here is astonishing. But go on ….
Sorry, Patriots fans, but what was true Thursday is true today. Locally, this could wind up being the favorite Patriot team of all time, but nationally their legacy is tarnished
So, the Belichick press conference on Saturday and Robert Kraft diatribe changed nothing? Really? OK. While we’re here, since the media loves to play the “IF-THEN” game, let’s play too: Presuming Kraft wouldn’t double down last night without some certainty that the NFL doesn’t have enough to overcome the burden of proof, then the media’s legacy is forever tarnished.
(To reiterate from yesterday: Shank telling us what the Patriots future legacy will hold is incredible. How will we remember Deflategate tomorrow is uncertain, never mind in 2022.)
But there’s more! Tony Massarotti, writing for CBS Sports, TAKE IT AWAY:
Let’s be honest, folks: a year from now, maybe two, maybe four … there will be another accusation. With Belichick, there always is.
Is there? Or is this the “The Scarlet Letter” and some twisted, hybrid version of Sports McCarthyism?
Let me pose the question to you guys, the readers: When it’s all said and done, do you think that Deflategate will have a lasting impact on the Patriots legacy or in the way in which the contemporary media covers sports?
More to come. @Hadfield__.