Five days after Judge Richard Berman overturned Tom Brady’s Deflategate suspension on the grounds that the commissioner simply couldn’t make up new reasons to punish players, ESPN released a report claiming that the 2007 “Spygate” scandal was actually way worse than anyone could have possibly imagined. (RELATED: NFL Owners Pressured Goodell To Treat ‘Deflategate’ As ‘Spygate’ Makeup Call)
Instead of letting a story based on hearsay, leaks and anti-Patriots bias finally run its course and fade from headlines, the sports media giant decided to revisit “unbelievable allegations… none which have ever been substantiated,” which in turn raises only one question.
WHY THE FUCK SHOULD BOSTON SPORTS FANS EVER WATCH ESPN AGAIN?
No matter their true motive, it simply cannot be ignored that ESPN has been the primary vehicle for bashing the most successful American sports franchise of the 21st century and even goes so far as to propagate rumors about the team, proven to be false. Let’s go over the facts.
It took ESPN seven years to apologize for promoting rumors that the Pats illegally filmed the St. Louis Rams’ practices during the lead-up to Super Bowl XLII.
The rumors, originally reported by the Boston Herald the day before the Super Bowl in 2008, “created a media firestorm that extended globally and was discussed incessantly for months. It took four months before that newspaper retracted its story and offered the team a front-and back-page apology for the damage done.”
When did ESPN apologize for continually reporting on a story, that in its own words, “was found to be false and should not have been part of [ESPN’s] reporting?”
In 2008, ESPN reporter Chris Mortensen BLASTED the Boston Herald for reporting the aforementioned Super Bowl XLII story as “it just didn’t meet the standard in terms of what you needed to report it.” Only thing is, whoops, that’s exactly what Mort did in breaking the Deflategate story back in January.
Mortensen is responsible for first reporting that, based off of measurements taken by NFL officials, “11 of the 12 Patriots footballs [used in the 2015 AFC Championship game] were found to be two pounds under the league minimum.” However, the release of the Wells Report in February, showed that not only was Mortensen’s story not grounded in science or reality — league officials somehow misplaced PSI readings allegedly taken before the game — but also that New England begged the NFL and ESPN to correct the falsely reported rumors, to no avail.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, Mortensen hasn’t tweeted since Judge Sherman threw this ridiculous case out of court, which seems like an unusually long break for someone whose 19,000 tweets posted over the past 6.5 years comes out to a rough average of 8.26 per day. You do the math.
Look, we could sit here and play this game all day long, but I think you’re starting to sense a pattern.
Despite your views on what Brady & Co. may or may not have done to gain a competitive advantage on the football field, it’s clear that ESPN’s coverage has done far more damage to both the league and Patriots’ reputations than either could have done on their own. By habitually demonizing a surefire first-ballot hall of famer, ESPN had the entirety of the sporting world ready to forgo due process and proclaim Tom Brady one of the most heinous villains in recent memory, sandwiched firmly between police brutality and Dylann Roof.
At best, it’s defamation. At worst, it’s corporate fraud responsible for driving a large part of ESPN’s $40 billion in yearly revenue.
In either case, that should be more than enough for the Foxborough Faithful to stop handing over their hard-earned paychecks to the hacks in Bristol.
Come to think of it, when you throw the station’s recent penchant for politically correct censorship into the mix, why would ANYONE want to watch ESPN these days? (RELATED: ESPN Has No Balls)