“Shame” isn’t a word in the vocabulary of the seek-attention-at-any-cost segment of the Boston sports media.

They don’t care how bad or dumb they look, as long as you look.

Whether it is Dan Shaughnessy or Gary Tanguay or whomever, they’re going to do what it takes to get your attention, no matter how idiotic or stupid it makes them look.

Great way to make a living. I’m pretty sure if these guys had lived in the era before TV, Radio and the Internet, they would’ve been circus clowns. (Hey, doesn’t Shaughnessy….never mind.)

For the latest well documented examples:

The Boston and Indianapolis media are both going certifiably insane – Matt Yoder on Awful Announcing looks at the just…embarrassing antics going on this week.

People around the country hate Boston sports fans, and in many ways it’s because of the quasi-media types in that link.

Others who aren’t embarrassing themselves in that manner, aren’t really too interested in the AFC Championship Game taking place this Sunday at Gillette. Evidence of “meh” attitude manifested itself as I was in the car this morning, and each time I turned to one of the stations, there was talk of other things, notably, the Rt 93 protesters and the Academy Awards nominations. While I’m sure there was plenty of football talk, I didn’t hear it.

Andy Gresh is on the way out at The Sports Hub – Chad Finn confirms my suspicions of yesterday. He also reports that Gary Tanguay will also be out on the Patriots pre and post game broadcasts.

I can hardly wait to see what crew Jonathan Kraft trots out on the shows for next season.


New England Prepares for New Indianapolis – It’s easy to declare that since the Patriots dominated the Colts in recent matchups, not much is going to change, Matt Chatham explains why that is definitely not the case inside Gillette Stadium.

LaFell’s rise crucial to Pats’ success – Jackie MacMullan has a feature on the Patriots receiver, who last spring thought he would be playing in the AFC Championship this week. For Denver. Against the Patriots.

Once a forgotten man, Danny Amendola has risen to occasion for New England Patriots – Kevin Duffy with a piece on the oft-maligned receiver, and looks at his history with Julian Edelman and LaFell, which predates their time with the Patriots by years.

The Belichick-Brady Legacy Is Defined by Wins, Not Tapes or Tucks – Mike Freeman with a great column on the duo, and has some nice Spygate debunking.

Are the Colts 22 points better now? Here’s what the stats say – Alex Speier looks at whether the Colts can beat the Patriots simply by playing at the level that they’ve improved to in recent weeks.

Get everything else at PatriotsLinks.com.


57 thoughts on “Send In The Clowns. Wait, They’re Already Here.

  1. While I’ve found myself increasingly turned off by Merloni’s on-air persona, he’s right about the Deadspin article that painted him as a racist and bigot. Not only absurd but also libelous, and further evidence of how far into the gutter things have gone in terms of the media.


    1. Reminds me of the term “Felger Youth” used around here. Just wait for someone to pen an op-ed, saying Bruce, or whomever uses it, thinks so-and-so is an anti-Semite.. blah blah blah. Do we need a basic lesson on sarcasm and humor?

      It’s also telling when authors won’t go on to defend their work.


    2. This paints him as a racist and bigot?


      It has to be a different Deadspin article, because that one does nothing of the sort. I mean, it’s not even close.

      In fact, the point of the article is quite clear, “Lou carries a baseball bat in his trunk, and Lou does not like his precious commute impeded by civil disobedience.”

      I’m talking about the article, not the comments, which I didn’t bother to read and Lou’s tweets and on-air complaints were directed against the article itself.

      Lou playing that victim card like a truly overpaid, professional whiner.


  2. Both Marc Bertrand and Adam Jones have done the Patriots.com pre/post game shows. I think they’re on the Krafts nice list. I shudder to think.

    What’s Bill Abbate upto these days?


  3. “The Belichick-Brady Legacy Is Defined by Wins, Not Tapes or Tucks – Mike Freeman with a great column on the duo, and has some nice Spygate debunking.”

    I was with him until this “The league sent out a memo. Belichick ignored it. He kept taping, especially the Jets’ practices.” Huh?


    1. That ridiculous sentence has been eliminated from the article. Someone must have pointed out its falsity to Freeman.


  4. I normally don’t judge the human beings behind these media personalities because we really don’t know them. But I am pretty confident that Minnihane is a total POS. Gleefully dropping hints all week about changes in the sports radio landscape, which in fact was someone losing his job. I refused to listen today, but would guess he was in full gloating mode. Childish and petty, at best (and I’m not a Gresh fan). I thought former addicts were supposed to nonjudgmental and forgiving. Guess not.


    1. Whereas I agree with you it is poor taste to gloat over someone losing their job…I think if we call for full disclosure…had the announcement gone the other way Gresh would have made a gratuitous Marvin Martian comment and been probably equally unprofessional. My point is as opposed to phony media feuds like the one between Minihane and Dale…these two appear to completely dislike each other.


      1. Perhaps, or maybe Gresh would take the high road and realize that it is a tough business and almost everyone is expendable. We do know for sure how Minihane handled the situation.


  5. Think the logical replacement for Gresh/Tanguay on the Patriots pre & post game shows would be Bertrand and either Paul Perillo or Andy Hart. Bertrand, Perillo & Hart already host the Patriots official pre & post game webcast and do an pretty decent job – way more insightful and enjoyable than Tanguay & Gresh, that’s for sure. Perillo would probably be more likely since he already has a regular weekly appearance on 98.5 anyway, while Hart seems to have an arrangement with WEEI as an occasional fill-in/guest host.

    Only concern from 98.5’s perspective would be that Hart and Perillo, moreso Hart, have a tendency to venture beyond the PG-13 language and topic barrier from time to time, at least on their Pats webcasts. If you’re a regular listener to the “PFW In-progress” podcast–which is great, by the way–you probably know exactly what I’m talking about. Now I have no problem with their style at all, but would be willing to guess that 98.5 & the Krafts prefer more of a “family-friendly” approach, at least when it comes to a terrestrial broadcast with big-time corporate sponsors. Not sure a semi-neutered Hart & Perillo would be quite as entertaining over the course of 6+ hours.

    The ultra-conservative, vanilla pairing would probably be Dan Roche replacing Tanguay, with a “safe” ex-player replacing Gresh – thinking along the lines of a Dan Koppen, Mike Flynn, or Matt Chatham (who I believe no longer has an affiliation w/ WEEI?). Based on the Krafts recent replacement hirings, wouldn’t be surprised if they do decide to play it safe here. I’d be disappointed, for one (sorry, not a big Bob Socci fan. At all.)


  6. I can’t say i am completely a fan of Gresh and Zo. I don’t care for the jock humor but do enjoy Hardy calling them out about it. I can’t imagine how terrible a show Bertrand and Zo would be. The fact the Hub is going to throw, what i assume will be, three trolling shows out one after another might be my final straw with the Hub (with exception to the morning show).
    Nothing in this market compares to Gresh and Zo’s football talk and i would not be able to put up with the afternoon show with a trolling lead in place of actual football talk. The hub is making a big mistake with this one, unless of course Bertrand goes back to the Beetle of 3 years ago….


        1. Yeah very true.

          Bertrand is a lot better with Gasper on Saturdays except when he tunes into his inner felger and reads from the script, which happens occasionally.


  7. wow…5 minutes of two people who know nothing about gambling , that was painful……look for sports gambling to be legal soon after super bowl as well.


  8. Sidebar: Lets say chalk wins out this weekend. I’d donate money to hear Fauria or someone else prank Mike Salk’s show in Seattle.


  9. For the media-interested readers here, some comments via Chad Finn’s chat today:

    Phil Zachary at Entercom Boston told me they are still working on a new deal with Michael and are confident it will get done. Strongly suspect it won’t be as straight forward a negotiation as it was with Dale.Bertrand’s name had come up over there for that slot at one point. A lot of talk about pairing him with Minihane.


  10. I know the “usual suspects” in the media are playing their “media games”….but are memories that short?.. it was just 2010 that Patriots were 1 seed, destroyed the Jets 45-3 AT HOME on December the 6th and then lost to them AT HOME in the playoffs a little over a month later. I’m a confident Pats fan..just sayin’ anybody who takes the outcome of a game for granted is a fool…but if you’re in the media these days, playin’ the fool is a good thing I guess.


  11. Couple of things.

    98.5 is in cap jail. That is why they can’t sign Gresh and Tanguay. How ironic is that. 98.5 signs their A-Team, big draw, for too long a contract and the rest of the depth has to go.

    Mazz: why can’t we keep Tanguay
    Felger: We can. It’s just dollars. There is no cap.
    Mazz: then why?
    Felger: Because we aren’t going all in. WFAN did. But we can’t. PLEASE. This is just about the owners getting richer.

    Also, on the Early Edition, Tanguay and Dalen Cuff, said it is Pats/Seattle in the Super Bowl. No question. Don’t play the game. It was the worst staged TV since Mr and Mrs Roper on Three’s Company. Absolutety hideous. Felger said it was the worst segment in history. He should know. He has the rest of the top 9.

    One note, Felger said ALL week Indy has no chance nor Green Bay.


  12. One more thing about the “CAP” casualties.

    Felger is, Manny, Ortiz, Rodney, et al., What do all of these have in common? All of the above, have um, cough, cough, got better as they got richer and got older. I have never seen a talk show host elevate at this stage in his career, uhm, uhm, as Felger has. I’m not going to say that on here because, as Mike says, it is better to lead the listeners on, than tell the truth. But he was seen with that noted talk show host doctor, according to sources, when he was a non-descript reporter for the Herald. According to “what I’ve heard” it was before the Bruins and Jeremy Jacobs noticed acne on him and told him to get lost. My sources in the Domincan Republic won’t go on the record. Wait what. Though if you google it, you might find the most hypothetical coincidence,, Why aren’t people following this half ass story from 1998?

    Can’t believe the beat media writers aren’t saying a word.


  13. Did anyone read about the NBA player Russell Westbrook, who flat-out told a sports media hack, “I just don’t like you” during a post-game interview? Why don’t we ever get players like that, and why can’t we force Danny Shaughnessy to speak to them?


  14. You wrote, “I’m pretty sure if these guys had lived in the era before TV, Radio and the Internet, they would’ve been circus clowns.”

    Well, we KNOW how Dan S. would have acted in that era – because there’s a record of a lot of pretty good columns and great reporting…which we agree has been replaced by top-level trolling.

    It’s sad, but true, that the media culture and fan/reader response is built around anger, disagreement and extreme positions. In order to stay relevant, Dan (and everyone else) has to play THAT game instead of the skills they actually built their career around.

    Look at Bob Ryan, who is for the most part incapable of that – that one time, when he talked about hitting Jason Kidd’s wife, was so unfunny and out of character that he rightfully pilloried…but there’s plenty of bad examples from everyone else – even Merloni’s basball bat joke. Ryan couldn’t play the game. Or Leigh Montville – didn’t he come back, and was immediately put out to pasture again? He couldn’t hack it. Dan, to his credit, CAN hack it in this rotten culture. Good for him, I guess.

    So I don’t blame Dan – I blame everybody here, this site, the culture, the I’m-louder-than-you-are mentality that this site PROVES gets audiences and interest, and of course myself for loving to read the gossip and sniping about all the media figures. I love it – I love the negative gossip and insults, so people like me are the problem the same as anyone.

    But – bottom line – the quote “I’m pretty sure if these guys had lived in the era before TV, Radio and the Internet, they would’ve been circus clowns” is uninformed and inaccurate, because these guys DID have careers before the internet and they made the Boston sports market the best in the country. Now, they and us are just “Bradyz the bestz!” homers or hot-takez contrarians like the rest.


    1. The CHB was a DB long before this era began. Yes, there was a time that he was pretty good back when he was a beat writer, but even then he had his agendas. Ask John McNamara what he thinks of the CHB–and trust me, I thought Mac was a terrible, terrible manager, and I believe he cost the Sox the ’86 World Series with his incompetence. With that said, once Mac was gone, I never even thought about him–except those times when Shank would drop a Mac criticism into a totally unrelated article, something he would do routinely for YEARS after the Sox fired Mac in ’88. Also, the 1983 Celtics, perhaps the biggest underachievers of the Bird Era, got so fed up with Shank’s crap-stirring that they tried to get him banned from the locker room. And then, of course, there were the Parcells/Kraft and Boston Stadium affairs, where Shank clearly staked out his anti-Kraft positions(even siding with that corrupt maggot Finneran over the stadium issue), and then punished (and has continued to punish) Kraft in print and over the airwaves for Kraft’s mild “pushback” (not inviting Shank to a free Super Bowl breakfast some 17 or 18 years ago). That all took place in the pre-Twitter era. The Internet was around back then, but it wasn’t the all-encompassing force that it is today. Shank has always been a hack IMO; a decent beat writer at times, yes, but his hack tendencies would come out quite often in those days as well. He was a product of those early post-Watergate J-school classes in the mid/late 1970s, when “stirring the pot, pushing a narrative, making yourself part of the story and getting rich and famous along the way” began overtaking the teaching of actual journalism.


      1. You left out the most obvious of CHB’s trolling: The Curse of the Bambino. Why analyze the reason(s) for a team failing when you can milk a silly legend for years and years, rile up the fan base (no such thing as bad publicity), and make money off selling books about it?


  15. Mike Reiss with the mic drop for all of the #hotsportztakez with item #1 in today’s quick hits post.

    “1. With the Broncos sputtering at home against the Colts last Sunday, Peyton Manning looking like a shell of himself, and then the club parting ways with head coach John Fox, it’s timely to revisit one dominant storyline from the New England-based offseason: Should the Patriots, who host the AFC Championship Game tonight, be taking the same approach as Denver and loading up around their star quarterback? Hey, at least it was a good discussion at the time.”



  16. Although it’s not Boston sports media related:

    I’m not familiar with Mike Florio beyond SNF appearances, but came across this (http://www.csnne.com/new-england-patriots/florio-pressure-belichick-sunday) on CSNNE today. According to Mr. Florio, Belichick’s legacy as one of the greatest coaches of all time would come into question if the Patriots were to lose today.

    What an absurd notion. Proof positive of the Patriots and BB bias in the media. Don’t know what Florio’s problem is, but look at who is picking the Colts to win and you’ll see that most are ex-players who lost to the Patriots/BB in big games.


    1. Florio’s a known BB and Pats hater, so this doesn’t surprise me at all. Again, I’m wondering where’s the media outrage over Pete Carroll’s “deceptive” fake field goal call in the NFC title game Sunday? Where’s Clark Booth when you need him?


    2. Florio isn’t popular among Patriots fans.

      I stopped reading his site a long time ago, but I’ve seen similar complaints from other teams. He seems to take shots and drop the #HOTSPORTZTAKEZ all the time.

      So, par for the course with national media guys now.


    3. When Florio is on with Dan Patrick I find him to be reasonable & rational. His website Pro Football Talk is an absolute sewer though. One minute in the comments section will cost you about 20 IQ points.


    1. Do you remember when the Boston sports media blowhards and their sycophant readers/listeners/callers complained that Belichick drafted Jimmy Football, rather than another weapon(zzz) WR or TE for Brady and that Brady surely must, by that point in time, resent his coach/GM for treating him like a second rate scrub and surrounding him with third rate scrubs, for all of these years? Yeah that was fun.


    1. Heard Kirk say this morning he already thinks the Pats will lose. Can’t bask in the glory of an AFC title for even 10 hours..gotta go right to the hot take.


      1. Kirk also definitively said that the Ravens would beat the Patriots. So I’m feeling good about the SB.


  17. I’m sure the media was just appalled at Pete Carroll’s “pushing the rules envelope” and “violating the spirit of the rulebook” by pulling that “unsportsmanlike” fake field goal during the NFC championship game today. Oh wait…..it wasn’t done by Belichick or the Pats, so it’s time for the media to call in Lt. Frank Drebin of Police Squad: Move along people; nothing to see here.


  18. And, so the horrid 2 weeks of pre-game begins:


    (Didn’t we learn from Lane Kiffin @ USC that this is a bad idea?)

    Same question I have on this:

    @McCannSportsLaw How could the Patriots “illegally deflate” footballs when the referees–not Patriots–test and ceritify those footballs? Sounds farfetched.

    Over/under — More words to the media: Lynch vs. Belichick.


    1. In the annals of dumb stories this one comes pretty close to the top. Both teams used the same balls, after the Pats supply 36 of them to the refs to test. On a night when there is low air pressure (rain storm) and the temp falls from 53 to 38 during the time of the game maybe something happened to the pressure in the balls. I am sure if it was an issue during the game a ref could have had one of those new fangled contraptions (a pump) brought in to top off the ball. This better be a non story and the people trumping this as another cheating scandal (Fox News of all people) really need to get their heads examined.


      1. Doesn’t matter what the outcome of this “investigation” is, you know that. The Patriots are always guilty until proven innocent, and then they’re STILL guilty even if proven innocent (they are still, to this day, accused of “taping opponent’s practices” years ago, even though that story has been completely debunked). Mission accomplished: This Super Bowl experience is already ruined for me. I’m so sick of this crap. They can’t win anything without being accused of cheating–even four years ago when the Ravens kicker choked on the game-tying FG in the AFC title game, their “kicking consultant” tried to blame it on the scoreboard operators at Gillette and, thus, blame it on the Patriots “cheating.” Goodell should burn in hell for what he did to this franchise 7 years ago, over a misdemeanor nothing of an offense that had been committed by several other teams for years and years. They won the game by 38 freakin’ points and they still “cheated” to win it somehow? God, I hate the media, and I hate Goodell even more.


          1. I saw this posted on a Pats forum this morning, and I think it sums it up perfectly: “We live in a world where the Jets owner can tamper with a player on live TV and no one cares yet this idiotic story blows up like the worst thing to ever happen. These are the times where you wish Belichick was at least cordial with the media because make no mistake, they do this because of the way he treats them.” By the way, there’s a good conspiracy theory out there among some Pats fans that this investigation about the allegedly deflated footballs was launched what seemed like just a few hours after the extremely underreported story of the Pats filing tampering charges against the Jets over the Revis comments, perhaps to ‘bury” the story that paints New England as a victim? Not my theory, but I thought it was fun and interesting all the same.


          2. Didn’t a Jets punter once punch a Foxboro ball boy for not keeping his balls warm enough?


      2. I think it’s ridiculous for many reasons, but both teams do NOT use the same balls.

        Each offense has its own balls. They provide them to the refs pre-game, who check them, and then they are kept separate from each other (under the custody of NFL-provided attendants).

        So for this to be true, there either had to be some Oceans 11 work going on pre-game or swapping balls on the sideline during the game (which I can’t believe no one would see).

        My guess is that NE inflated its balls to the bottom end of the spec (which is 12.5 PSI) and then PV=nRT on a cold, rainy day did the rest.


    2. It is the lead headline on espn . com and I would wager will be a top story on Sportscenter all day long.

      How can this be?

      We’ve been scolded, on this message board, and told countless times that espn only runs positive or neutral stories. I can’t remember the user name of the guy/gal that scolded us about this last week.


  19. I don’t know which of 98.5 or 93.7 he was listening to, but a friend that I watched the game with told me he tuned in to sports radio for the first time in years on Saturday and one of big Hottakez was how the Pats would surely get burnt if they won the toss (do they ever lose?) and BB chose to defer…uh-huh.


  20. How do teams feel about the daily slander on their flagship stations? The routine Celtics slamming and then today “Of course Belichick would do this” on the ball issue.


    1. When the story broke this morning about balls…. I knew what the db and his ho would talk about all the to the sb game.


      1. Felger was hinting that the Colts might have some kind of “evidence” that the Patriots were doing this. He has no evidence that the Colts have any evidence, of course; but, he’ll say anything that lends credence to these anti-Pats smears in order to stir the pot, piss off Pats fans and generate more ratings. And by the way, Florio has gone full-blown pious over this, and it’s totally nauseating. What about the tampering charges against the Jets? Is anyone talking about that? Un-freakin-real.


        1. The NFL will take its time like it’s investigating.

          They’ll have something leak Wednesday that it’ll be wrapped up Thursday or Friday.

          Friday at 5pm they’ll announce that nothing suspicious is going on because that’s the best time to bury bad news and they don’t want this lingering anymore during next week during SB media time.

          Usual suspects will howl. Every “I think I’m Woodward and Bernstein” will get a media credential and try to bring this up next week with BB and every other player. Nothing will happen be said because the Patriots aren’t dumb here. By kickoff in two weeks, it’ll be a line that Collinsworth/Michaels are forced to bring up but largely be done with outside the people who hate the team.

          The people who hated the team before will hate it more/just as much.

          The world continues to turn.


          1. Kravitz, the Indy writer who was the original pusher of this story, apparently has now come out and said that he basically was going to ignore the whole thing, but then he thought: Bill Belichick…he doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt.
            So there you go. In one sentence, that just about sums up the entire media. Certain people get things covered up for them; other people get EVERYTHING about them “exposed,” for lack of a better term, and over-scrutinized. And it all depends on the writer’s personal feelings about the individual in question. Period.
            Now, if this turns out to be true, people will say that Kravitz just did his job. But what if the roles were reversed and the Pats were accusing the Colts of doctoring footballs, but the media, believing as they do that the Colts are a pristine, pure organization (they never really looked into the very-credible fake crowd noise allegations during the Polian days), simply ignored the allegations? If they then turned out to be true, no one would know about it because the media chose not to pursue the story in the first place, because, you know, the Colts “get the benefit of the doubt” about stuff like that.
            That’s not journalism. That’s picking sides.


  21. The more deflate gate gets discussed the more I agree that Goodell needs to go. Here we are in the two weeks of hype that lead up to the NFL’s signature game and what are people discussing…whether the ball was properly inflated in a 38 point drubbing. Furthermore, this all could have been avoided by the NFL releasing a statement an hour after the Indy Star report that said ” We have checked with the referees and confirmed that the balls were properly inflated. There is no story here. Move along”

    Instead they have people again focusing on the wrong issues. This is gross incompetence and I do not understand why the owners are standing by and letting this yahoo continue. I am looking directly at Robert Kraft, why is he supporting this bozo. I don’t get it.

    As Tony C mentioned below, the Jets openly tamper with one of the Pats players and media members are wondering if that is something that should be taken seriously especially considering the owner of the Jets and his penchant for being a moron. On the other hand Indy loses by 38 points on a rain soaked night where their offensive plan was equalled in its mediocrity by its defensive effort and the NFL thinks discussing the pressure of the footballs is worthy of hype week time and resources? Goodall should be fired.




  23. “They have Pete Carroll; we HAD Pete Carroll.”

    Hilarious! Unless someone at the Globe is reading BSMW that is exactly what he will say.


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