Thierry Henry, the most valuable Red Bull (or Metrostar) ever

Forget the Hall of Fame. It’s the myth-making treatment of NFL Films that turns the men of pro football into legends. And tonight is Tom Coughlin’s official bronzing.
Coughlin is the subject of tonight’s installment of “A Football Life,” the NFL Network’s Emmy-winning, hour-long documentary series.
This will be enjoyable to Giants fans because it can’t not be: Seeing your team celebrated on an NFL Films production and seeing your team celebrate on the field are one and the same. Plus, the show puts forth Coughlin as a paragon of an old-school athletic morality, for which virtue isn’t so much found in winning, as in the commitment and self-sacrifice that goes into it. 
This notion of Coughlin as a man of integrity dovetails with the Giants’ brand, which is awash with nostalgia for a bygone era when men were men, and doing the right thing was simple, but not easy. That idea was reinforced two Sundays ago, when Coughlin reacted angrily to Tampa Bay’s attempts to hit Eli Manning, even after the game had been decided. Coughlin, offended on principle, stormed onto the field to find Tampa’s upstart coach, Greg Schiano, and lecture him about football’s unwritten rules. Schiano didn’t do things the right way, and Coughlin couldn’t abide.

Greg Hanlon in his review of NFL Films’ gauzy, legend treatment of Giants coach Tom Coughlin

Forget the Hall of Fame. It’s the myth-making treatment of NFL Films that turns the men of pro football into legends. And tonight is Tom Coughlin’s official bronzing.

Coughlin is the subject of tonight’s installment of “A Football Life,” the NFL Network’s Emmy-winning, hour-long documentary series.

This will be enjoyable to Giants fans because it can’t not be: Seeing your team celebrated on an NFL Films production and seeing your team celebrate on the field are one and the same. Plus, the show puts forth Coughlin as a paragon of an old-school athletic morality, for which virtue isn’t so much found in winning, as in the commitment and self-sacrifice that goes into it. 

This notion of Coughlin as a man of integrity dovetails with the Giants’ brand, which is awash with nostalgia for a bygone era when men were men, and doing the right thing was simple, but not easy. That idea was reinforced two Sundays ago, when Coughlin reacted angrily to Tampa Bay’s attempts to hit Eli Manning, even after the game had been decided. Coughlin, offended on principle, stormed onto the field to find Tampa’s upstart coach, Greg Schiano, and lecture him about football’s unwritten rules. Schiano didn’t do things the right way, and Coughlin couldn’t abide.

Greg Hanlon in his review of NFL Films’ gauzy, legend treatment of Giants coach Tom Coughlin

While you accuse Derek Jeter, why not ask what Ted Williams was on?

While you accuse Derek Jeter, why not ask what Ted Williams was on?

"I can’t resist a basketball analogy: we are in the 4th quarter, we’re up by a few points, but the other side is coming strong and they play a little dirty. We’ve got a few folks on our team in foul trouble. We’ve got a couple of injuries. And I believe that they’ve got one last run in them, and I’d say there’s about seven minutes to go in the game. And Michael’s competitiveness is legendary, and nobody knows better than Michael that if you’ve got a little bit of lead and there’s about seven minutes to go, that’s when you put them away. That’s when you stop any momentum they have. You don’t let them up from the mat. You don’t give them any hope that they might pull this out. You don’t leave it to a lucky shot they might make from half-court at the end. You go ahead and you pour it on. You might press them a little bit. You might put Pippen and Jordan on the front court, trap them a little bit; have Horace come in. You don’t let up. That’s how the Bulls won six. That’s how we’re going to win this election."

— President Obama in New York last night at his “Obama Classic” fund-raiser.

Who should play against Obama during the president’s basketball game fund-raiser?
Let us know what you think. Howard Megdal has his own suggestions…

Who should play against Obama during the president’s basketball game fund-raiser?

Let us know what you think. Howard Megdal has his own suggestions…

How desperate could Dwight Howard possibly be to play in Brooklyn?

Your insomnia’s buzzing. It’s June 30, 1987. 3 a.m. No shot at sleep, no shot at sex. You’re up, awake, obsessing over the sudden dip in Wally Backman’s batting average or what the Yankees are going to do about their third starter. Normal, nightly stuff for a New York sports fan. Then you get pensive. About why the Knicks suck; and why the Rangers suck; and why the Jets and the Giants suck even if it’s the wrong season to think about their suckitude. You want to talk it all out. No, you need to talk it all out. But there’s no one there to listen. You can fix this. HoJo’s stroke, Rasmussen’s slider — well, OK, maybe not the Knicks. You’re alone in the world with all this knowledge until, suddenly, you are not.
On July 1, 1987, WFAN, a 24-hour sports talk radio station, broadcasting out of a sub-basement in Queens, hit the air. It didn’t come out of nowhere, exactly. The format had been evolving. Marty Glickman, long-ago voice of the Knicks and Giants, first took questions on air in the 1940s at New York’s WHN. He listened to calls and relayed them to his audience since the technology didn’t yet exist to patch in a caller. Howard Cosell advanced the genre in the ’50s by openly chastising coaches during broadcasts. In the ’60s, Bill Mazer pioneered the current sports talk template, bantering with callers, letting their voices be heard, and then, in the ’70s, John Sterling crystallized it by lambasting them. Enterprise Radio attempted all-sports programming in 1981. They went out of business after nine months.

The Sound and the Fury: The fall and rise of the first all-sports talk station, WFAN
By Alex French and Howie Kahn on Grantland

Your insomnia’s buzzing. It’s June 30, 1987. 3 a.m. No shot at sleep, no shot at sex. You’re up, awake, obsessing over the sudden dip in Wally Backman’s batting average or what the Yankees are going to do about their third starter. Normal, nightly stuff for a New York sports fan. Then you get pensive. About why the Knicks suck; and why the Rangers suck; and why the Jets and the Giants suck even if it’s the wrong season to think about their suckitude. You want to talk it all out. No, you need to talk it all out. But there’s no one there to listen. You can fix this. HoJo’s stroke, Rasmussen’s slider — well, OK, maybe not the Knicks. You’re alone in the world with all this knowledge until, suddenly, you are not.

On July 1, 1987, WFAN, a 24-hour sports talk radio station, broadcasting out of a sub-basement in Queens, hit the air. It didn’t come out of nowhere, exactly. The format had been evolving. Marty Glickman, long-ago voice of the Knicks and Giants, first took questions on air in the 1940s at New York’s WHN. He listened to calls and relayed them to his audience since the technology didn’t yet exist to patch in a caller. Howard Cosell advanced the genre in the ’50s by openly chastising coaches during broadcasts. In the ’60s, Bill Mazer pioneered the current sports talk template, bantering with callers, letting their voices be heard, and then, in the ’70s, John Sterling crystallized it by lambasting them. Enterprise Radio attempted all-sports programming in 1981. They went out of business after nine months.

The Sound and the Fury: The fall and rise of the first all-sports talk station, WFAN

By Alex French and Howie Kahn on Grantland

sportsnetny:

ANOTHER ‘1’ IS R.A. MARKABLE

"Over his past seven starts, here’s his line: 54 2/3 innings, 0.66 E.R.A., six walks, 71 strikeouts. That line is comparable to the most monumental pitching seasons of all time." (via Howard Megdal at Capital New York)

sportsnetny:

ANOTHER ‘1’ IS R.A. MARKABLE

"Over his past seven starts, here’s his line: 54 2/3 innings, 0.66 E.R.A., six walks, 71 strikeouts. That line is comparable to the most monumental pitching seasons of all time." (via Howard Megdal at Capital New York)

Mike Pelfrey hurts his elbow, putting the Mets rotation and his future in doubt

Tags: Mets sports

"Brooklyn is back to where it was in the middle of the 20th Century: the capturer of imagination. Back then, the awesome was equivalent but in different flavors. The Dodgers played in Flatbush, the longshoremen looked like Marlon Brando and that burly Brooklyn squonk of an accent was not just uniform in the borough but popular among the entertainers of the day. Back then, Brooklyn served the purpose that Canada does today."

Brent Cox | Brooklyn’s Return | The Awl

Our sports writer Howard Megdal just released a must-read Kindle book for any Mets fan: Wilpon’s Folly: The Story of a Man, His Fortune, and the New York Times. It’s an edited compilation of the articles he has been writing for us about Fred Wilpon’s involvement with Bernie  Madoff. You can read more of Howard’s articles on his Capital New York writer page.

Our sports writer Howard Megdal just released a must-read Kindle book for any Mets fan: Wilpon’s Folly: The Story of a Man, His Fortune, and the New York Times. It’s an edited compilation of the articles he has been writing for us about Fred Wilpon’s involvement with Bernie Madoff. You can read more of Howard’s articles on his Capital New York writer page.

Tags: sports Mets

sportsnetny:

Jose Reyes ALL Smiles by Michael G. Baron on Flickr.

Howard Megdal on Jose Reyes:

As hard as it may be to believe of any team that plays in a market as  big as New York, the Mets are no longer in the Marlins’ league when it  comes to being able to afford players like Reyes. Their ownership group,  led by Fred Wilpon, is too busy just trying to hang on the team, as it  grapples with the after-effects of its deep financial involvement with  Bernie Madoff.
The fact that Reyes left this way—rather than, say,  after having been made an insanely lucrative offer he couldn’t refuse  from the Yankees or the Red Sox—is particularly sad.

sportsnetny:

Jose Reyes ALL Smiles by Michael G. Baron on Flickr.

Howard Megdal on Jose Reyes:

As hard as it may be to believe of any team that plays in a market as big as New York, the Mets are no longer in the Marlins’ league when it comes to being able to afford players like Reyes. Their ownership group, led by Fred Wilpon, is too busy just trying to hang on the team, as it grapples with the after-effects of its deep financial involvement with Bernie Madoff.

The fact that Reyes left this way—rather than, say, after having been made an insanely lucrative offer he couldn’t refuse from the Yankees or the Red Sox—is particularly sad.

Even David Harris, star Jets linebacker, misses sometimes, but he’ll be back, and it will probably hurt

“With all the work he put in rehabbing, I saw a different David  Harris after that,” said his childhood friend and teammate at Michigan.  “He came out with an explosiveness I’d  never seen from him.  We started calling him ‘The Black Hammer’—it was  an old ‘70s Blaxploitation vibe I wanted to give him.  He wasn’t just  tackling people.  He was hitting people violently.”
With the Jets, his nickname is more politically correct: “The Hit Man.”

Even David Harris, star Jets linebacker, misses sometimes, but he’ll be back, and it will probably hurt

“With all the work he put in rehabbing, I saw a different David Harris after that,” said his childhood friend and teammate at Michigan. “He came out with an explosiveness I’d never seen from him. We started calling him ‘The Black Hammer’—it was an old ‘70s Blaxploitation vibe I wanted to give him. He wasn’t just tackling people. He was hitting people violently.”

With the Jets, his nickname is more politically correct: “The Hit Man.”