Emptywheel’s Super Bowl XLIX Trash Talk

Welp, here we are for our last regularly scheduled Trash Talk for the football season. It may be the biggest game of the year, but it is always a tad melancholy because it means no more football. On that note, off we go.

Super Bowl XLIX is right here in the Phoenix Valley of the Sun. Except that it has not been that sunny; in fact, the end of the week has been nothing but rain, starting Thursday and through all day Friday, and it is overcast again this morning as I write. The temperature has been quite moderate and comfortable, but the overcast and rain a real downer. Curiously, none of the fans I have run into, and there are a lot of those, seem to mind in the least; but as a local, I sure hoped for better. That said, all the parties and festivities seem to have gone off just fine, and of course the gorgeous VIP crowd, between all the limos and controlled indoor settings, probably never noticed. In short, so far, so good, despite the inclement weather. I have also had great fun seeing all the Squawkers in their vaunted “12th Man” shirts. To a tee, so to speak, I see them and say “Love yer Number 12 Tom Brady Jersey!”. So far, I have not been punched yet, but there is still time.

There are so many different things to do if you are here and a fan, and it is spread out over the valley. There was the NFL Experience set up at the Phoenix Convention Center Downtown, the seemingly continuously running Super Bowl street party in and around downtown central square, and also the simply idiotic looking huge “Bud Light House of Whatever”, that appeared designed for hollow 20 something twits. 10-12 miles northwest, in Glendale, by the actual University of Phoenix Cardinals stadium, were more stages and whatnot sponsored primarily by DirecTV. I know some of the pretty people were bussed out there, and promptly bussed right out of there as soon as they could. Cause no one with any shred of common sense parties in freaking Glendale when you could be doing it in Scottsdale. Come on man. That is just the way it is, and the way it has always been. And it will always be that way, cause Glendale is a bag of Chalie Brown’s rocks on Halloween. People with money and the appropriate je ne sais quoi wouldn’t be caught dead hanging in Glendale, and that won’t be changing anytime soon.

The fact that the game is in Glendale, but all the real playahs and money somewhere else actually has some real implications locally. Yes, it is what it is, but Glendale has a problem as a result. You see, Glendale is its own municipality; it is not Phoenix, and it sure as hell is not Scottsdale or Tempe. It has its own tax and spending obligations, and it has fucked it up royally, as my friend, and the always excellent, Travis Waldron of Think Progress details:

In a world in which American cities have handed over billions of dollars in public money to finance sports arenas and stadiums, there is perhaps one city that stands above the rest as a warning for what can go wrong when they do so. It just so happens that place is Glendale, Ariz., which will host Super Bowl XLIX this Sunday.

Glendale has spent liberally on sports in the past decade and a half, luring professional hockey, football, and spring training baseball with millions of dollars of its own money and plenty of help from the state. Sunday will mark the second time it has hosted the Super Bowl, and the game’s biggest proponents are, in typical fashion, making the argument that helped sell all of this sporting infrastructure that brought teams and events to Glendale in the first place: it will be a boon for the local economy.
The problem is that the Super Bowl almost certainly won’t generate $500 million in economic benefits for Arizona. Economic research has shown that for a variety of reasons — among them: a failure to account for costs, money that leaks out of the local economy, and money that would have been spent anyway or, in the absence of such an event, elsewhere in the city — Super Bowls and other mega-events and the publicly-funded stadiums built to host them virtually never have such an effect. They may provide minimal gains, and sometimes losses, to host cities, but they’re never major shots in the arm. Cities that believe otherwise, about stadiums or the events themselves, run the risk of major trouble.

Travis is right, the “economic stimulus” from major events like Super Bowls, NCAA National Championship games, in both football and basketball (both of which are here in the immediate future), are just never what they are cracked up to be when you factor in the hard costs to host cities. But, it goes a little further than even Travis lets on when the hard costs of the game itself, and ridiculous security therefore, are being paid by a, frankly, minor municipality like Glendale and the real big bucks are being spent in Scottsdale/Paradise Valley and Phoenix. And that, my friends, is exactly what is going on here.

And, then, there is Scottsdale/Paradise Valley. That is where the real players and action are. I live, literally, on the intersection of East Phoenix/Arcadia, Scottsdale and Paradise Valley. Even with an old rotator cuff, I can throw a rock and hit all of them. So, I went to all the glitzy parties and can tell you about them, right? Nope. For one thing, I just don’t care as much anymore, and certainly not enough to work it to get to them. But, secondly, the big money, and exclusivity, is so pervasive now that it is really hard, much more so than it once was, whether for Super Bowl XXX or even XLII.

I didn’t miss the Playboy, Victoria’s Secret or Jerry Jones parties in either of those, but trying to get into the equivalent this year was insane, and I am not going to pay to do so. You think bmaz is gonna pay $350 to go to a Scottsdale bar to hang with lowlife B-level celebs like Drake, Brody Jenner and some idiot, I never in my life heard about, named “William Lifestyle”? Uh, no. I wouldn’t pay a lousy buck to see that trashy shit like that. So, save for a one day pass I got into the ESPN live set gig at Scottsdale Fashion Square, about two miles down the road, I just didn’t partake in the festivities. (Couple pictures from that, here, here and here; featuring mostly my new friend, and totally awesome guy, Tom Jackson) Your Phoenix based Roving Reporter has failed you. Sorry about that. And, no, I won’t be going to the game either. Tickets are, in even the cheapest markets, going for $7,500 – $10,000 for any seat, and WAY more for a reasonable seat, to the game. If I had tickets, I would sell them and buy a new car, or a Cessna, or something.

Alright, let us get to the only thing that matters in a game between the two best teams in football. Deflategate. Roger Goodell was his normal sack of salted dicks self in his press conference here. What a bullshit joke. Goodell is an embarrassment. He and the NFL have ignorantly, stupidly, and against the interests of the league and the Super Bowl, weakly and cravenly not just allowed, but actively encouraged, the ginning up of the non-story of Deflategate into something that has consumed the oxygen of the Super Bowl. The only thing that matters to tight ass billionaire owner driven cracker like Roger Goodell is the money. First he looks at the purse. Players health, and fans’ desires are not even really on the list.

If that is not enough incompetence to get Goodell fired, on the heels of the ignorant and incompetent handling of the Ray Rice situation, I guess there is no such thing as incompetence to the beyond hubristic and arrogant NFL owners. As a fan, fuck that shit. Goodell and the vaunted “NFL Shield” are craven, self serving, pathetic reactionaries worried far more about covering their gravy train asses than being positive, proactive, forces for good in society. Oh, and by the way, their “evidence” and “investigation” is, once, as always, total shit. So far, the NFL has a an equipment manager that had the misfortune of taking a piss in a bathroom and a bunch of physics that even all the best scientists now admit actually could support the Patriots. What a load of sensationalistic crap. Without more (which Goodell and his crying ass stooge Ted Wells may well try to falsely gin up, same as the asinine “Mueller Report”), Bob Kraft, Tom Brady and BillBel are indeed owed an apology. As Bill Simmons said in a couple of tweets on Twitter:

The NFL is searching for a person of interest who dressed like a referee and didn’t write down the measurements of 12 footballs. We spent 3 days talking about a ball boy taking a piss. Meanwhile Walt Anderson was approving footballs with his gut feelings. What a farce.

Alright. As to the game. Yeah, sorry, there are no more cheap ass platitudes on the elusiveness and brains of Russell Wilson, the strength of the Squawks defense, the greatness of Brady and the brilliance of BillBel’s game scheming. It is all out there, but I am done with that tripe, cause at this point it is all bullshit. These are two different and both wonderfully constructed and coached teams. One will win, and one won’t. We’ll see.

Music today, at the top, is INXS. Irrespective of the team you support, sometimes you kick, and sometimes you get kicked (as lifelong Packers fan, trust me). Also, the Brady’s Balls AC/DC thing is really well done. Don’t miss the J. Geils I added late, cause it is everything. Lastly, I especially love the Favre and Carve spot (one of several related Wix spots), though, truth be told, Headmistress, and my boss, Ms. Wheel made me do it! So, thanks to one and all for a great football season. We will see you again when the start of the F1 Circus begins and/or the force moves us. You are, all, truly and always, the greatest.

Let’s rock this joint lug nuts! Gronk on bitchezz!!

153 replies
  1. phred says:

    Oh. Football is still being played??? Who knew???
    I thought the season was over and someone had stored a pile of footballs in an unheated corner of a leaky outdoor storage unit and they lost some air or got damaged or something, fretting those who wanted to use them next season… No? Hmmm, I need to pay closer attention, I guess ; )
    Well, since there is still a game to be played, good luck to both coasts! Team BSL+EW v. Team rosalind+Lois best wishes all around : ) Here’s hoping for a great game!

    • bmaz says:

      I would make an allegiance, but Ms. Wheel has forbidden it given my my record in these playoffs with the Cardinals, Broncos and Packers, in successive weeks.
      Obviously, I have no idea what she is talking about.

  2. Peterr says:

    The NFL also has a couple of referees that actually re-measured the “BilBell-Brady specials” at halftime and found them to be not in compliance with the rules.
    The Pats, as a team, were responsible for providing a dozen legal footballs, and failed to do so. The fact that the NFL can’t prove who the person is who ordered it done or the person who carried it out does not mean that the balls were underinflated in violation of the rules.
    My hero this week is Marshawn Lynch, for showing up the farce that is the Super Bowl Hype. It reminded me of John Stewart’s epic “I’m not going to be your monkey” takedown of Tucker Carlson and Paul Begala on Crossfire. Between the Lynch press conference drama and this post, it is clear that the NFL lives to separate rubes from their money. Kudos to you, bmaz, for sticking it to The Man and keeping your cash to yourself.

    • bmaz says:

      You mean the same twit refs that had no logs pre-game, who have no credible logs at halftime, and who destroyed every ounce of evidentiary credibility, in spite of the NFL apparently setting up a sting on this shit?
      Yeay. Uh huh. What a shit show joke. I have seriously seen FAR worse defamation cases made out on Twitter within the last 24 hours. This is pure crap. Brady has big balls, and they are not deflated.

    • emptywheel says:

      One of the most regretful things about DeflateGate is it put BillBel on his best suited up behavior.

      Otherwise, we could have staged a competition every bit as interesting as the game itself: who could grump at the press more effectively.

  3. ek hornbeck says:

    Not until F1 huh?

    Well, over at DocuDharma and The Stars Hollow Gazette we’ll be doing full coverage of the Men’s and Women’s NCAA Basketball Tournaments as usual as well as our live blogging the MLB and NFL Playoffs. This weekend we will be doing the Puppy AND Super Bowls. Other regular events include World Cup, America’s Cup, Summer and Winter Olympics and yes, we do Formula One too, but just on The Stars Hollow Gazette because it’s too damn hard to get the Timing and Scoring right on more than one site at a time.

    We do a left perspective on sports and follow the scandals and money in our prepared commentary, in the live blogging you don’t need to be afraid to root for the opposition. I don’t really care that much except for the Mets and the Packers.

  4. Peterr says:

    Does AT&T have a Super Bowl ad that can follow up on their ad during the College Football Championship where four Heisman winners were giving Joe Montana grief for never getting one, and he smacked them down by flashing his four Super Bowl rings and his college national champion ring — bling that none of the trash-takers had even one of?
    A seriously good, football-related ad. Would love to see another like it from AT&T as an encore.

  5. What Constitution? says:

    I’m kind of wondering whether “$10,000+ for one ticket to be stuck in traffic in Glendale, Arizona while a 60″ HDTV makes viewing the game better than being there” might be the tipping point for in-person attendance at major sporting events… Another clue might be the ad campaign for “Get Hyped for Halftime”, the premise of which is that the real reason to have a Super Bowl is to have a fourteen (11?) minute televised music video. As Bread and Circuses go, it kind of loses its luster when not even bmaz can muster the energy or interest to actually talk about the game for more than part of one paragraph — not, of course, that it hasn’t already been said or anything. Me, I just want Richard Sherman to decide the contest with a superhuman defensive act and I will watch every minute of the thing as a “guilty pleasure”, which is really the point. Pass the Costco drum of pistachios!

    • bmaz says:

      Honestly, I guess that is the interesting dynamic for me. I may not be a good barometer though. Super Bowls here, like in Miami and New Orleans, are now old hat. It was more novel before, and I was younger and wilder. Funny what a a fifteen year span will do to you. I went to Super Bowl XXX. Sat in the middle of a bunch of NBC TV stars, notably the Joey Lawrence family, in the lower level in great seats. Could have easily gone to the Giants/Pats SB XLII, but that would have required $500-$600 “favor” to the person that would have “comped” me. And I just didn’t care enough to pay that and drive to fucking Glendale. Seriously, if this stuff was in Phoenix or Tempe, that’s a whole nuther deal. Screw Glendale though. I have a big screen, better food and drink right here.
      That said, the Super Bowl really never was about the regular fan. The only thing is that now all pretense that it is, or was, has been forsaken. The NFL doesn’t even bother policing ticket fraud much any more. It is a joke. They know it is all about the big rollers, and don’t even bother to pretend otherwise.

    • emptywheel says:

      The Super Bowl is now for corporate clients, who aren’t really into the game (or maybe a little) but are really about seeing and be seen.

      Sat next to this guy the morning after the NCAA championship, native Ohian. He told me he had been offered a private jet flight out to watch the game, but had to pass bc of the interview he was headed to. I felt bad for that, but I assume most spectators don’t have a team in this. I remember when my dad was a bit of a playa in SD so tangentially in the Holiday Bowl, we got the good tix while the real fans sat in nosebleed. Not the way it should work.

      • JohnT says:

        Let me tell ya
        Last week as we were going to bed, I told my wife she could make the first move … she got on a plane and went to Florida
        Last week I saw my psychiatrist. I told him, “Doc, I keep thinking I’m a dog.” He told me to get off his couch
        I come from a stupid family. During the Civil War my great uncle fought for the west!
        (stolen Rodney Dangerfield jokes)

  6. emptywheel says:

    Adding, seeing a LOT of military types using the SB as a perfect moment to highlight U of Phoenix’ predation on GI bill recipients.


  7. bmaz says:

    Main post now NEW AND IMPROVED with added J. Geils Band to celebrate Goodell+NFL’s money grubbing above and beyond all else ways!

    • Peterr says:

      I haven’t clicked through yet, but is it “Send in the Clowns”?
      Don’t know if J.Geils covered it (doubtful), but that’d be perfect for the next time Goodell approaches the podium at a press conference.

  8. wallace says:

    quote”And, no, I won’t be going to the game either. Tickets are, in even the cheapest markets, going for $7,500 – $10,000 for any seat, and WAY more for a reasonable seat, to the game. “unquote



    Even Barnum couldn’t have concieved this level of dolt.

  9. A.Belzer says:

    F1 testing starts tomorrow….just saying. Also saying that, WRT to management, though Goodell sets a high bar for derp Mr. E clears it with ease.

    • bmaz says:

      Fair point. That said, while Bernie is far more evil and megalomaniacal, he is also far more competent and shrewd than the blunderbuss Goodell.

      • A.Belzer says:

        That was the case in the past but I think Mr E has lost the plot in recent years. The litany of corruption and boneheaded, tone deaf statements is long and agonizing to contemplate. And then there is Sochi, Bahrain, Korea, the demise of smaller teams. Back in the day he could knock heads and sort the issues but now, not so much. One crisis to the next.

        • bmaz says:

          Yes, I agree with that, sadly. First time I ever saw Bernie, he was a team owner only, but already deviously amassing power, at the very first Long Beach Grand Prix. He had incredibly hot Amazons, all on the order of a foot taller than him, surrounding him even then. Which, honestly, was fairly impressive at the time.

        • A.Belzer says:

          Don’t get me wrong, back in the day Bernie was the man. A world champion ducker and diver, he amassed great power but the deals cut to keep the plates on the sticks, and make him a billionaire, have created an untenable environment for the whole F1 community. In spite of that last year the racing was some of the most exciting in years and I think the new power unit architecture is very cool. Next year should be fun too with the second coming of McClaren/Honda and the ALO/BUT pairing not to mention VET riding the horse and Lotus with Merc power. Many story lines to follow…what do you make of Williams’s prospects, can RB gain on Merc?

  10. P J Evans says:

    Most pro sports events, and the college bowl games, are more for the big spenders than the regular fans. The Super Bowl is just the extreme version.

    • bmaz says:

      Yes. And always has been. But the level of extreme I have seen here this year is beyond bonkers. I am fortunate enough to have a gradient scale to grade this stuff on for prior national championship Fiesta Bowls to prior Super Bowls.
      What you say is the gospel. But, still, the heightened level this year here is indescribable. It is not quite yet F1 elitist yet, but it is seriously close. And I wonder if most Americans realize how much that is so?

      • bloopie2 says:

        The thing about F1 is, no one ever dies on the course. Well, once in a while. And no one ever gets into a coma. Well, once in a while. And when they do, the elites have paid them so much money before that, that they can spend years recuperating under the care of the best doctors in the world. Yes, the rich are different from you and me.

  11. bloopie2 says:

    It’s ‘bad haiku’ time. Here’s my offering. Ripostes?
    Belichick is smart.
    Hair is thinning from brain heat.
    Mine thins too; I’m smart?

  12. Peterr says:

    Meanwhile, there’s this from Raw Story:

    Christian radio host: Katy Perry’s Super Bowl halftime show will be ‘complete maximum evil’
    Decrying the collapse of popular culture, and saying it is being taken over by “the occult,” a Christian radio broadcaster warned that pop singer Katy Perry’s upcoming Super Bowl halftime show “will be complete maximum evil,” according to The Column.
    Speaking by phone with Jan Markel — host of Understanding the Times, Twin Cities radio host Paul Ridgeway brought up Markel’s Christian newsletter where she claimed that Perry is influenced by writers who claim to “channel demonic forces,” teaching us “we can realize our own inner divinity through occult knowledge.”
    Markel warned about this weekend’s performance — expected to be seen by over 112 million viewers in the U.S. — saying Perry will be bringing “complete maximum evil” to the midfield stage.

    It will be worse than Beyonce, he says.
    Not in the Raw Story story: When reached for comment, Roger Goodell was upset on two counts: (1) he saw Katy Perry do her “I’m just here so I don’t get fined” bit at the press conference, and (2) bringing “complete maximum evil” to the Super Bowl is the exclusive job of the Commissioner’s Office.

    • bmaz says:

      Which is fucking hilarious. Because by my measure, Katy Perry and whatever craptastic guest “artists” she brings, like “Missy Elliott” whoever the heck that is, just ratifies what a complete piece of shit sell out this gig is. Worthless pumped cheesy pop stars to bring in the idiot audience while the Jamie Dimons of the world take a leak and change their Depends at halftime.

    • Bitter Angry Drunk says:

      That particular — I’ll call it religious con — has existed at least since Elvis, I imagine. The year after I graduated my high school the pants-wetters who ran the place hosted a couple of nitwits who insisted the most popular rock acts of that era, like Journey, were in cohorts with Satan. And yes, this was more than 30 years ago. Whatever music the kids like, it must be evil (rather than just stupid). Just another ploy to stir up the true believers. Same as it ever was.

      On the other hand, all NFL music performances, where they station “fans” in front of the stage to jump constantly for 10 minutes, are just creepy as hell. So maybe the devil is influencing Katy Perry tomorrow, in the sense that the NFL is the damn devil.

      • bmaz says:

        Wait, somebody cared about Journey at some point? BREAKING NEWS!

        Also, Phred at 4:02 the Vikings? I mean, JohnT is great; but the only reason ever to root for the Vikings occurred in the two years Favre and Carve was there!

        • Bitter Angry Drunk says:

          I’ll admit I had a suburban-enough upbringing to find Journey awesome during my formative years. But I was just making a point — wherever there’s pop music, there will always be a few grifter/charlatans equating it with devil worship.

  13. What Constitution? says:

    Yes, the “live audience” for Superbowls is and has long been priced out of the realm of normal humanity. Yet the pretense continues to be the presumption. Interesting factoid: my son has a college classmate from a very “connected” family. As it happens, that kid was “invited” to “enter” a “win a free trip to the Super Bowl” contest, and then got a call from the woman running the “contest”. He was told he was a winner, but was also told that “they were also looking for twenty-ish women reflecting ethnic variety” (this is not an exact quote) and, when he suggested the name of a classmate fitting the bill (subtext “cute”), she too was invited as a “winner”. Makes you wonder what percentage of the people shuttled in to occupy the “GE Trashmasher Mosh Pit” for the halftime show are folks who bought their own tickets and were pleased and surprised to be invited onto the field during the second quarter, let alone “randomly won” a “free contest” toward that end…….

  14. bloopie2 says:

    If you were running the Super Bowl, and your job was to please the most masses, who would you put up at halftime? Or would you quit your job? Those are the only two choices, mind.

    • bmaz says:

      I’d go back to the classics. Stones, McCartney, Petty, U2, Springsteen, type of stuff. Nobody hates that stuff, but there are a lot that think the pop bubble gum rap stuff is a total turn off. the money audience for the event, and, more importantly, is not in the tweener idiot crowd that thinks Katy Perry is simply the bestest.

      • P J Evans says:

        I think they go for the acts that appeal to the under-20s because they want that audience share – they seem to think that it will create an audience for future SB/NFL viewers.
        We know it doesn’t work that way in reality: the fans of regular NFL games don’t start by watching Super Bowl halftime extravaganzas.

  15. Minnesota Chuck says:

    Why is the NFL calling this Superbowl ILIX instead of Superbowl IL, which is a more streamlined Roman numeral expression? Is it that the latter, by missing only an “L”, comes too close to describing the true state of the league?

  16. pdaly says:

    I kind of got sucked in to the physics of Deflate gate. The experimenter Healy, referenced in the NY Times link, is on the right track, but his paper contains at least one glaring error that has not been pounced on:
    “After letting the footballs cool in the “cold room” for 2 hours and 26 minutes (to simulate the time period between when the referees inspected the footballs and kickoff), the Lab found that the 12 footballs had experienced a drop in pressure.”
    This is INACCURATE. The game balls remain in the officials’ locker room until 10 minutes before kickoff (and bathroom time ;-) ), so Healy should NOT be subjecting the balls to 50F temperature for that duration. Instead it should be something like 1 hour and 50 minutes or whatever span of time was ’10 minutes before kickoff and halftime’.
    Also, Healy ignores Belichick’s news conference declaration (convoluted though it was) about the pre-game “rubbing” procedure the Patriots use. The rubbing causes a 1 psi INCREASE in the game balls. Pressure gauge readings of 12.5 psi in the locker room right after that friction event may later become a pressure gauge reading (at room temperature, I assume) of 11.5 psi once the balls reach equilibrium (i.e., after they cool off from the friction-induced ‘heating’–a word Belichick avoids like the plague). Remember the balls sit in the officials’ locker room for 2 hours and 15 minutes before kickoff.
    Plugging Belichick’s number of 11.5 psi ball pressure (at lockerroom temperature) into the noble gas equations achieves the reported half-time ball pressure of 10.5 psi in 50F outdoor ambient temperature better than Healy’s experiment.
    But Healy assumes the balls in the officials’ locker room are already at room temperature and that the 12.5 psi ball pressures are stable until the balls are moved into the 50F temperature. Belichick has told us otherwise.

    • bmaz says:

      Pretty sure that you, perfesser, are confirming the TOTAL INNOCENCE of all true Patriots, including Kraft, Belichick, Brady, Wheeler, Russ Francis, Gino Cappeletti,Buoniconti et. al. Also, you know, GRONK.

  17. pdaly says:

    I am saying Belichick’s story holds together, mathematically, so in this scenario, no rules were bent. The ref signed off on the ball pressure pre game as required. Temperature of the air in the balls is not specified in the NFL rule book. No air had to be removed after the balls left the officials’ locker room to achieve the half time pressure of 10.5 psi.
    That said, however, does anyone really think that Belichick just this month figured out the temperature/pressure connection?
    Has anyone actually seen the “rubbing” procedure the Patriots use?
    Has anyone tried to reproduce the 1 psi rise by rubbing?
    Does anyone wonder whether the Patriots wait to “rub the balls” until just before the balls are due to be turned over to officials?

  18. scribe says:

    A friend in the Boston area passed on to me their sighting: “a message board out front of a Hooters, reading ‘Richard Sherman is a dick.'” And also all the highway message boards have been hacked to read something along the lines of “Go Pats. Finish the job”
    NFL football is great so long as you spend no money on it. Start buying overpriced jerseys, team gear, tickets, all the other official-licensed crap and all you’re doing is feeding the monster. Of course, I have a Steelers hat or two and a Terrible Towel, but I got them for the proverbial song. There’s a couple shops in Pittsburgh’s Strip District where black-and-gold is sold inexpensively.
    And, for that matter, King Roger the Clown is the Chris Christie of sports commissioners. He lurches from one debacle to another, any one of which should be enough to end the career of any mere mortal. But yet, he survives and comes back for the next and the one after that. The only explanation for his continued survival is that he’s making so much money for his patrons (the Rethuglican Establishement for the Lard Lad, NFL Owners for King Roger) that they keep him on. It’s great Entertainment, but lousy governance and worse for the polity/audience as a whole.

    • P J Evans says:

      I was in a supermarket with my sister, in the Bay Area, a couple of weeks ago, and they had 49er and Raider merchandise marked way down. Really good deals, if you wanted red-and-gold or black-and-silver.

  19. Peterr says:

    Meanwhile, while the partying goes on in Bmazville, there’s a bit of weeping in the land of cheese:

    Less than two weeks after a pair of botched special-teams plays cost the Green Bay Packers in their NFC Championship Game loss to the Seattle Seahawks, coach Mike McCarthy fired special-teams coordinator Shawn Slocum on Friday.

    • phred says:

      Please please tell me that Capers was fired, too. Special teams did not give up THREE TDs IN A ROW. If McCarthy fires Slocum for one play and Capers remains, I will lose all respect for McCarthy.

  20. 4jkb4ia says:

    Sorry bmaz, Drake is not a B-level celebrity. This paragraph was borrowed from wikipedia in the space of less than 60 seconds:

    Drake has sold over 5 million albums worldwide.[7] His work has earned him a Grammy Award, three Juno Awards, six BET Awards, and set several significant Billboard records. With twelve number-one singles, Drake has more than any other artist on Billboard’s Hot Rap Songs chart. With ten number-one singles, he also has more than any other rapper on Billboard ’​s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, passing Jay-Z in August 2012.[8] He is one of two artists (the other being 50 Cent) that has simultaneously occupied the chart’s top three positions.

    IIRC August 2012 was before Billboard decided that an R&B/hip-hop song was whatever the hell they decided it was, aka Macklemore.

    • bmaz says:

      Listen, Sugar Sugar by “The Archies” sold millions of albums too. And back in a day when that number meant far more than today. Pretending “Drake” is some kind of star to care about is like pretending that Kim Kardashian is the same as Liz Taylor. In short, it is a joke of the highest proportion.
      Also, “Macklemore” is here too. What does he even do?

  21. 4jkb4ia says:

    Also too, I had the privilege of seeing “Drake Night” being hyped by ESPN in Toronto when the Nets played the Raptors.

  22. 4jkb4ia says:

    We return to wikipedia to find that “Sugar, Sugar”, the single, sold 945,000 copies when originally released. The album peaked at #88. Also read the rest of the paragraph. 10 #1 singles however measured is consistent success.

    The relevance of Macklemore to the post is that Macklemore is white, and from Seattle, and R&B radio did not particularly want to play him, but once Billboard decided that he was a hip-hop artist digital sales got him to be #1 on R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the whole year. It used to be that you needed to be played on R&B radio and sold in the core group of R&B stores to make that chart, but core R&B stores in the digital era are essentially meaningless.

    • bmaz says:

      I am a prickly cactus. This is my town, and that rap ass tripe means less than nothing here. It may be fine for all the faux candy ass “celebrities” that are in town for a short while, cause this is their temporary party scene, but it means about nothing otherwise. Hopefully next week the Kardashian Klan and the similar freak show will all be back in California or wherever.

  23. Peterr says:

    Watching the NFL Honors, I can’t help but notice the bubble within which these folks live. The presenters for the first two nominees for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for the one who does the most in their off-field volunteer and charity work got all worked up about how much their candidates did for charity, with one raising a million dollars in scholarships and the other raising $1.6 million in funds for medical research.
    For players at this level, that’s chump change.
    I’m all for giving props for work in the community, but a million dollars is nothing for these folks. If this truly is special, that says less about the generosity of the winner and more about the stinginess of the rest of the league.
    I’d love to see the charity giving of the owners highlighted, not only to honor those who give the most but to shame those who don’t give a damn.

    • bmaz says:

      Aaargh. I cannot believe I am going to say this…..BUT, of all people, Bill Bidwell has always given shitloads of money to a few different charities. And done it in a way that few know. Pretty much silently and quite benevolently. I have lots of gripes about Bidwell, as I am sure older St. Louis types do, but that is one regard I have always admired the guy. And he doesn’t just front the money, he personally went (think he is mostly infirm now) himself to see the people. He gets real credit for that.

      • Peterr says:

        picking myself up off the floor
        Bill Bidwell?
        Maybe he started doing that in Arizona, but it sure as hell wasn’t the way was known to connect with the community in St. Louis. Not. At. All.
        Are you sure you mean Bill Bidwell and not his son Mike?

        • bmaz says:

          Nope. Bill. Yeah, I know. While he was scrooging stupidly the fans here early on and pissing them off, he was off doing this stuff. Not sure whether admirable or ignorant, but he never publicized it. Weird.

  24. bloopie2 says:

    “I have also had great fun seeing all the Squawkers in their vaunted “12th Man” shirts.” Too bad the baby Seahawks won’t be able to cheat today by playing in a stadium designed to funnel noise down to the field and provide a home field advantage.

  25. emptywheel says:

    Btw, did I tell you all my dog, McCaffrey the MilleniaLab, got a package in the mail yesterday? Two bags of beef jerky. He’s not sharing either, and thus far we’re down 2 fingers in the household.

    I’m not sure whether McC’s friend was trying to make him feel better for having had a bad trip to the vet this week or just prepping him to have the best munchie treats for the game.

  26. scribe says:

    So, lemme get this straight: in the middle of the frickin’ desert this football game will turn into Iggles at Bears Fog Bowl II? This, complete with billows of fog pouring in through the hole in the roof, as opposed to blowing in off Lake Michigan like in Fog Bowl I.
    And, just like the time the Iggles’ QB (Cunningham, IIRC) could not see his receivers, we’ll have Biebs and Gronk trying to see each other above the fogbanks?
    Leave it to King Roger the Clown to fuck up the game. First he wanted to eliminate kickoffs – and take the “foot” out of “football”. Now, this.
    I’m gonna stick to hockey and baseball after this, though a good season by my Stillers might move me a little.

    • bmaz says:

      Meh, it’ll be fine by game time. It is pretty thick now though, I just drove downtown to meet someone, and it was a way surreal drive.

      • scribe says:

        Riiiiight, BMAz. Fog in the desert. Next thing, you’ll be telling me that the sharknado blowing through Glendale is just CGI and nothing to worry about.
        I’m concluding that the rumor you were part of the organizing committee for this debacle was, in fact, true. Part of the bullshit boosterism subcommittee telling everyone “Remain Calm. All is well”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDT_IBk7hAA All the while, reaching for their wallets.

  27. sluggahjells says:

    Okay, let’s the party, I’m here….

    Well, after weeks of speculation and ball deflation cheating by one team, and injuries amounting for the other, here is the first of several “wallthroughs” for the day.

    The Injury report, with the Patriots the healthiest they have been in a while despite Mayo’s long term absence. Meanwhile, Seattle with many key injuries or ailments:


  28. bmaz says:

    Well, well, well, turns out that Deflategate is, indeed, a bunch of totally ginned up shit. Goodell and the NFL don’t have squat for competent evidence, and only one ball was particularly “deflated”. They owe Kraft, Belichick and Brady that apology now. From Ian Rappaport, of the NFL’s own network:

    Eleven of the 12 footballs used in the first half were judged by the officials to be under the minimum of 12.5 PSI, but just one was two pounds under. Many of them were just a few ticks under the minimum.

    • Peterr says:

      So how often does the “but I only broke the rules by a little bit” defense work when you’re at your day job, bmaz?
      11 of twelve Patriot-provided footballs were found to be illegal, by varying amounts — including one by more than 15% of the legal limit. Meanwhile, across the field, the twelve provided by the opposition were all found to be legal. This doesn’t strike you as concerning or disturbing or problematic?
      When the ref throws a flag for offsides and the player protests “But ref, I was only offsides by a little bit,” the ref will rightly laugh in the player’s face before marching off the distance of the penalty. Why should the Patriots get a pass for using illegal equipment?

      • bmaz says:

        Actually it works quite well in my day job. Proving that tyne evidence is total shit, contaminated and destroyed is a clearcut winner where fundamental fairness prevails. As it should here. Kraft and Patriots ought to sue Goodell for fucking defamation. I am serious, this is total bullshit.

  29. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Gotta race off with my Skittles and pick up pizza. But it’s just not football without reading the EW thread. I’ll catch up on the last 40 comments later.

    Seahawks 26, Pats 21
    Fingers crossed!

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Totally agree with bmaz’s views of Goodell and NFL.
      But right now in Seattle, Pete Carroll is at the right hand of God, and the city is in some kind of Seahawks mania.

  30. bmaz says:

    For all you mopes on the east coast cackling about the weather in Phoenix, with game time at hand, it is absolutely gorgeous. 68º and clear blue perfect sky.

  31. sluggahjells says:

    No excuses for New England. They are the healthier team and better not lose against a Seahawks team that is not as good as it was last year. AT all.

    These are the two teams I picked at the start of the season. My prediction in the next post.

  32. sluggahjells says:

    Let’s just hope shady teams don’t use cheating tactics to win vs a Seattle team with so many injuries all over the place, especially the secondary.

    New England needs to win this game, and they should in fact win by 10 points. They are the fresher, healthier team……………..And yet, amazingly enough, somehow I’m sticking with the Seattle Seahawks just on them relishing now being the underdogs here again, knowing they aren’t as good as they are last year. And despite the Patriots being motivated to show their Deflategate silliness means nothing and that they want to prove how mad they are and take it out on Seattle, Pete Carroll and his staff is just as cagey as Belicheat, I meant Belichick, and somehow will muster a miracle victory.

  33. sluggahjells says:

    Unbelievable, now Tharold Simon is holding his shoulder. This is insane. Seattle may have to get Katy Perry to play corner.

  34. Petrocelli says:

    Bmaz, this post needs to be shared far and wide. Goodell must go!

    I’ve got Canuck Beer, Afghani Kabobs …and Falafels for the vegans.

    Lamb Vindaloo will be ready by halftime, which is when you’ll really appreciate the Beer. Go Bieber!

    • phred says:

      Don’t you mean… Lambeau Vindaloo ; )
      Nice to see you Petro!
      Congrats to Team BSL and EW!
      That was a great game. Always such a pleasant surprise to have a Super Bowl be so closely contested right to the end. Great game Seattle, well played!

      • bmaz says:

        Yeah, congratulations Seattle on the game Green Bay should have been in.
        One thing is for sure, you’d never see the Packers cheap shot punching the other team like Seattle did at the end. What classless trailer trash.

        • phred says:

          Rodgers is hurt. The Pack should have beat Seattle, but the coaches blew it, the offense blew it, the defense blew it, and special teams muffed a key play. Seattle won that game fair and square, even if the Packers were a better team for all but about 4 minutes at the end. I don’t think with the shape Rodgers is in that they could have beaten the Pats tonight. But just wait until next year… ; )
          Until then, congrats to the Pats and their fans!
          And ros and rOTL, I am sorry. That was a tough one to lose…

        • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

          That was a painful loss, alright. Ouch!
          But FC Sounders season will start soon, baseball after that, and there’s always next August for football.

        • Peterr says:

          That stuff was going on all game long, with one-on-one cheap shots (in both directions) that were rarely flagged, but it wasn’t until the end was a foregone conclusion that it boiled over in a bigger team-on-team way. The refs either didn’t see it (lots was away from the ball) or (more likely) they sat on their flags to “let the players play”. The result of the latter approach to refereeing — regardless of the sport — is to practically guarantee an end-of-game fight. I wasn’t surprised by it at all.

        • bmaz says:

          Agree as to some chippiness during the game. Disagree that there was any need for that junk Seattle started at the end.

      • Petrocelli says:


        I’m cheezed that the CheatHawks got away with so many flagrant fouls and beat the Packers.

        Lambeau Vindaloo it shall be, henceforth…as per Dr’s orders! *g*

  35. bmaz says:

    Patriots apparently were running the Ha Ha Clinton-Dix 2 point conversion coverage scheme on that play. #Puke

  36. bmaz says:

    Katy Perry surprisingly great halftime show. Except that craptastic Missy Elliott interlude. Other than that, really spectacular.

  37. sluggahjells says:

    If ever there was an example of white priviledge on display, you had it there for Missy & Lenny Kravitz compared to Katy Perry #superbowl

  38. sluggahjells says:

    Katy still can’t hit a high note, still has songs that not even that originally written, and it was just apparent compared to both Missy and Lenny.

    America, loving mediocrity of a certain kind for so many years.

    • bmaz says:

      The Katy Perry halftime show, with the exception of that awkward Missy Elliott crap in the middle, was fantastic. Far bester staged than recent SB halftime bullshit. Put Beyonce and Bruno Mars tripe to shame.

  39. Peterr says:

    The product placement is getting pretty bad, even by Super Bowl standards. I’m waiting to see the graphics start to pop up after every play . . . “This reception brought to you by Velcro” or “Gorilla Glue” or whatever.
    The name of the game is “monetize”.

  40. scribe says:

    Biebs showing (a) age, (b) needs soft balls, (c) bad decision-making.
    Revis Island sinking below the surface.

  41. sluggahjells says:

    Bmaz, stop …Music is definitely not your forte, like you being a Pats supporter. #StayInYourLane

  42. sluggahjells says:

    Simon was like, “You aren’t going to target me all the way”, as Avril is now hurt, another damn Seattle injury.

  43. sluggahjells says:

    Carroll has made such a great adjustment, having Wagner and a few others stay underneath. McDaniels is so confused right now. #superbowl

  44. sluggahjells says:

    It’s easy to be exact when Seattle is missing its best pass rusher and its nickel corner. #superbowl

  45. sluggahjells says:

    Moral of the story: Cheating does proper ‪#‎ButOnTheRealTho‬ ‪#‎MalcomButlerIsTheRealest‬

  46. sluggahjells says:

    Cliff Avril leaving the game was so huge, even more so than Jeremy Lane. Has to be fairly acknowledged how big his loss was.

    Seattle really did as great as they could with so many key injuries before this game and after this game, and still somehow almost won a game they should have never lead in the first place.

    • bmaz says:

      Whiiiiiiinnnneee. Actually, the Patriots just flat made more plays when it counted. Don’t make excuses for Seattle, it there was anything just in the world, they would have been watching Green Bay in the Super Bowl. The right team won this game.

    • Petrocelli says:

      Niners were 1st and goal to score the winning TD and Jim Harbaugh ran 4 pass plays. That was worse than this, cuz I’m a Niners Fan.

  47. bmaz says:

    Seriously, hat’s off to Phoenix, the Cardinals, and UofP Stadium. Unbelievably great day; arguably the best Super Bowl show ever.

  48. sluggahjells says:

    When asked why if he was shocked he didn’t get the ball, Marshawn Lynch said “No, because football is a team sport.” ‪#‎superbowl‬ ‪#‎ClassInDefeat‬

  49. sluggahjells says:

    Bmaz is still mad his Cardinals didn’t make it because it wasn’t meant to be for them, and that Seattle is better, lol

  50. sluggahjells says:

    Well it’s the end to a great playoffs in an otherwise awful year for a still corrupt leader.

    The Patriots, despite any weird taint from the past, showed their immense skill of dealing with adversity in coming from behind against both Baltimore and now tonight against a depleted but valiant Seattle defending champion side.

    Well on to all those Pats fans defending their team, even in its shady moments, and being fans thick and then. It’s a great moment again for the franchise to finally win a title over a decade of waiting for the 4th in the Belichick/Brady era.

    Take care all, and see you all during bmaz’s favorite “Lewis Hamilton FI season.”

  51. CTuttle says:

    What a game…! I was rooting for the Squawks and could not believe that Wilson threw it, when he should’ve handed it off to the Beast Lynch, they still had time and the downs if Lynch couldn’t punch it in…!

  52. What Constitution? says:

    That was a fun game. Almost allowed one to forget about Goodell for three hours. And there’s these two things to take away from the result: (1) With the Pats winning and Brady MVP, there will be more pictures of Giselle to cover the NFL during its search for a Goodell replacement, and (2) Mike Trout has not been injured or arrested in baseball’s off-season, so there’s still something for America to look forward to.

  53. P J Evans says:

    In other NFL news, Johnny Football is going in to rehab.

    Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel checks into rehab: report

    By Joshua Fechter
    Updated 8:40 am, Monday, February 2, 2015

    Johnny Manziel of the Cleveland Browns celebrates a touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half on Nov. 30. Photo: Tom Szczerbowski, Stringer / Getty Images / 2014 Getty Images

    Photo: Tom Szczerbowski, Stringer / Getty Images
    Image 1 of 18

    Johnny Manziel of the Cleveland Browns celebrates a touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half on Nov. 30.
    Image 16 of 18

    August 2014 – Manziel, while playing for the Cleveland Browns, appeared to give the middle finger to Washington’s bench during a preseason game. He was fined $12,000 and lost the race for starting quarterback later that week.

    Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel entered treatment at a rehabilitation center on Wednesday to “improve in order to be a better family member, friend and teammate,” a Manziel spokesman told ESPN.com.

    “Johnny knows there are areas in which he needs to improve in order to be a better family member, friend and teammate and he thought the offseason was the right time to take this step,” adviser Brad Beckworth said through a Manziel spokesman.

    “On behalf of Johnny and his family, we’re asking for privacy until he rejoins the team in Cleveland,” Beckworth said.

    My guess is alcohol, and possibly drugs as well.

    • sluggahjells says:

      PJ , he has had a history of drinking a good bit and has been advised by his family stronger to curtail it before it is too late. Glad he is taking the necessary steps.

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