Charles Barkley Gets It. Why Doesn’t The Media?

To avoid the commentary and just get the coverage, go to PatriotsLinks.com.

The Patriots advanced to their third straight AFC Championship Game with a 43-22 win over the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday night.

LeGarrette Blount once again steamrolled his way around the field for 166 yards and four touchdowns, Stevan Ridley added two more rushing touchdowns. Tom Brady didn’t throw a touchdown pass, Mike!!!!!! He BLOWS in the postseason!!

A guest in the Patriots locker room following the game was Charles Barkley who was asked about the job done by Robert Kraft and Bill Belichick. His answers appeared to make some media uncomfortable. Mike Petraglia has the details.

Every year, they have a chance to win. That’s pretty cool,” Barkley began.

Is he a Patriots fan?

“No, no. Bill is my friend. Mr. Kraft is my friend,” Barkley continued. “But I was just making a point. In sports, if I’m a fan, I want my team to have a chance to win. That’s all I want. In 99 percent of the cities in every other sport, not just football, your team sucks. You have no chance of winning. The Patriots have a legitimate shot of winning every year. That’s pretty cool.

“It bothers me, it bothers me that y’all don’t appreciate them having a chance to win every year.”

ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan, a hall of fame basketball columnist who knows Barkley very well, challenged Barkley, “How do you know we don’t appreciate it?”

Barkley didn’t hesitate.

“Y’all don’t. Y’all don’t. Unfortunately, because of the Internet and [crap] like that, you all win the championship or you don’t.

“In New England, y’all have a chance to win every year. I’m impressed with the Patriots organization because they’ve lost so many people and y’all take winning for granted. Y’all do.

While some outlets are acting like this was aimed at the fans (and perhaps it was partially directed to the FANZ out there) he was speaking directly to the media here.

Of course, it was Barkley’s next line which has been taken and run with by outlets across the country.

“Let me tell you guys something: When Bill Belichick leaves and Tom Brady leaves, y’all team is going to [expletive] suck.”

That has been taken and created into headlines like Barkley crashes Pats party, predicts they’ll ‘(bleeping) suck’ without Belichick, Brady

MacMullan left after Barkley’s answer, looking for a better story.

The element in the media which is determined to make following the Patriots a miserable experience can’t see what is in front of them. To them, it’s just that the team has been lucky, or only plays tomato cans or gets gift PI calls each week, or they cheated.

Some quick hits:

If you stayed up late enough to see the CSNNE postgame (they had to wait for the West coast Celtics game to finish) you saw, following a game in which the Patriots interecepted The Second Coming four times and held the Colts to 20 points, the trio of Mike Felger, Ty Law and Troy Brown lead off by saying that the defense needs to be a lot better.

WBZ’s Fifth Quarter was the beneficiary of both the Celtics (CSNNE) and the Bruins (NESN) playing late night games  on Saturday. They had the local TV postgame to themselves. The other options, NFL Network and ESPN were available, but WBZ had the most material.

The CBS interview of Bill Belichick by Bill Cowher was an interesting one, as the respect and admiration was evident on both sides. Deadspin says Bill Belichick Sat Down With Bill Cowher And Was Actually A Human Being but the real gem from that link is the highlighted comment from “A Pimp Named DaveR”. Well done.

I enjoyed the NFL Network interview of Tom Brady following the game by Willie McGinest. Once again, there was a lot of affection on display there, with the pair hugging at the end and Brady telling Big Willie he loves him.

The departure of Dan Dierdorf was handled very well by CBS. The Patriots cooperated by getting a big enough lead that the Greg Gumbel was able to send his colleague off with some very nice words. I’ve never been a fan of Dierdorf, but he’s still better than most out there, and his career deserved the recognition.

While it would’ve been nice for CBS to mention Sam Berns, who passed away Friday night and was scheduled to be an honorary captain for the Patriots Saturday night, the story was more of a local one, and probably why they didn’t. Yes, they’ve could’ve played the video tribute, but it likely would’ve been lost on a lot of the national audience. The moaning by Dennis and Callahan this morning about this topic is more self-serving than it is about the young man’s life.

Going to the other games, I really find Joe Buck annoying when he does too much commentary on the game and officiating. Stick to the call of the action, and leave the analysis to others.

I’m running out of ways to defend Phil Simms. For whatever reason, he’s not as good as he once was, and it’s more and more obvious to me. Richard Deitsch thinks that CBS’ third team of Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts is actually their best, and should be moved to second with the retirement of Dierdorf, but that the network is too heavily invest in Nantz and Simms to make Eagle and Fouts the top team.

  • JonB

    Agree with the point about Dennis & Callahan’s handling of CBS “snubbing” the Sam Berns tribute. It was not a national story and was unrealistic to have expected CBS to dedicate time to explaining the whole back story just before kickoff, assuming they even knew of the tribute or who Sam Berns was ahead of time. I’m sure there’s tributes to local residents before any number of NFL games on a weekly basis that never make it on the air either.

    Not surprisingly, D&C decided to blow this completely out of proportion–“CBS has no regard for people with Progeria! Someone needs to be fired! Shame on them!”–in an effort to stir up outrage in yet another sad attempt to boost ratings. Fine to raise an issue with CBS’ not airing the tribute, but to beat it into the ground for the first 2 hours of the show after a big Pats win in the playoffs was more than unnecessary. Reminded me of their god-awful marathon bombings coverage last year.

    • HighWireNickEsasky

      Progeria is clearly a horrible disease and Sam Bern was taken way too early. But, according to the Progeria Research Foundation, there are only 105 identified cases worldwide. 105! There are hundreds of diseases that affect more people than that. There’s a reason why WEEI (admirably) holds an annual Jimmy Fund telethon to support cancer research: cancer impacts millions of people. The Patriots did the right thing by honoring Sam but this was clearly a local story.

      http://www.progeriaresearch.org/assets/files/pdf/PRFQUICKFACTS-Sept30-2013.pdf

  • bsmfan

    “The moaning by Dennis and Callahan this morning about this topic is more self-serving than it is about the young man’s life.”

    Yeah, this was pretty shameful. Basically straw man the “oh CBS cares more about Dierdorf than a kid with an incurable disease”. Please.. If this were a regular season game? I would have thought they had a better case. This was an EXCLUSIVE NATIONAL WINDOW. They have an entire country to broadcast to. It’s that simple. The decision was made because of what you said, it not pertaining to fans outside the area, not as some snub.

    If you want a laugh track, someone actually spends the time “quoting” all the dumb things Simms says:

    https://twitter.com/philsimmsquotes

    I’m glad that, finally, a lot more people are picking up on just how bad he is. Thankfully, with RedZone, I don’t get much of him during the year.

  • Homer Greenz

    Welker loves Pats, hates the media:

    http://sportsmedianews.com/espns-sunday-nfl-countdown-notes-and-quotes-week-12-4/

    On whether he has any hard feelings towards the Patriots organization about leaving the team …

    Welker: “No, not at all. It’s part of it. It’s the way the business model is set up, and the way things go in pro sports these days. There’s no hard feelings.”

    On a difference he noticed going from the Patriots to the Broncos …

    Welker: “It’s just different as far as the media in general. You have 15 reporters trying to get you to slip up just a little bit, where in Denver it’s a little bit of a different feel.”

    Belichick destroy a narrative:

    http://www.patriots.com/news/article-1/Bill-Belichick-Postgame-Press-Conference-Transcript/788897c3-4d36-40b1-9f1e-a1c35be10835

    Q: A lot of times momentum is meaningful going into the playoffs. Do you feel like your team has momentum right now?

    BB: I don’t think that has anything to do with it. I think whoever plays good in the playoffs wins. I don’t think momentum has anything to do with it.

    Belichick destroys another narrative:

    http://www.patriots.com/news/article-2/Bill-Belichick-Conference-Call-Transcript/01ee763f-dc0e-42ae-ab0b-c51b349a2658

    Q: Is there an advantage or disadvantage at this stage to facing a Denver team you have already played or planning for the unknown in San Diego?

    “…I think we’ve all seen in the playoffs that it’s really about that
    game, that matchup, that day. Whatever happened during the regular season or some other year or some other time, or whatever reference point you want to take, is really not that significant. What it’s about is how things go on that particular day, just being at our best on the biggest game of the year. All of us players, coaches, making good decisions, good execution, good communication, playing good situational football, playing good down-after-down consistent football – that will be the challenge this week for whoever it us we play.”

    • Homer Greenz

      “What it’s about is how things go on that particular day, just being at our best on the biggest game of the year.”

      In terms of predicting future outcomes, this simple point expressed by BB tells us what separates the NFL from the NBA, the NHL and MLB.

      Anything can happen in one game. Anything is much less likely to happen over the course of a seven game series.

  • AT

    Agree on the Eagle/Fours take. They are super.

  • DryHeave

    I stopped over at Felger’s post game show knowing full well something stupid would be going on…they didn’t disappoint. Felger was on a rant. “WHY DIDN’T MALLET HOLD FOR THE EXTRA POINT!!!??…WHAT ELSE DOES HE HAVE TO DO!!??….yeah, that’s what I want to hear after a big victory… CLICK

    As far as Dierdorf, unless I’m missing something, Ryan Allen should have knocked the ball out of the end zone there. Take the safety and move on.(of course that was result anyway)…I thought Dierdorf sounded foolish saying Ryan should have fallen on the ball to ,”give the defense a chance”…a chance at what? a goal line stand? The odds just aren’t with you. Then he says they might be able to “hold them to a FG”.. a FG is worth 3 points Dan, a safety 2…yes, I know after a safety you have to kick the ball right back to them but still ….Enjoy retirement, Mr.Dierdorf

  • bsmfan

    With the damage she did at WEEI, seeing as they were first-hand to it having known the company, and they still wanted to hire her?

    • Media Watchdog

      Actually she did a fine job for most of her tenure and was a good enough seller to stay there for a couple of years after her run as a manager despite the obvious awkwardness of the situation. While she may have led a management team that was slow to react to TSH, on balance she did a good job for Entercom. It is easy to spot mistakes in hindsight, but it takes a lot of courage to change the course of a business while it is succeeding, even though they should have moved faster. I know my statement doesn’t fit well with the internet narrative, but financially and factually, it’s accurate.

      • bsmfan

        Agree on those points but doesn’t an exec in any industry really show their worth with how they respond to adversity (competition)?

  • beatfarmer

    Sam Berns would have been a better announcer than Dan Dierdorf. Good riddance.

  • daver

    That was me, Bruce….

    (and thank you!)

  • Media Watchdog

    No doubt it makes it easier. But they were selling against ratings competitors on radio, sports sponsorships on TV, in-stadium advertising and plenty of other places for marketers to put their money and they ran up the score big-time when the going was good. In fact, their aggressive negotiating then could be biting them now as former customers are happy to find an alternative. Still, the process of selling isn’t easy and they did pretty well for quite a while.