Drew Magary's Balls Deep column runs every Thursday afternoon. Drew's new book, "Men With Balls," released October 27th and featuring 100% new material, is available for pre-order here. You can email Drew here. Read him during the week at KSK. NFL insider and handy whipping post Peter King drew the ire of Jets fans this week when he took them to task for not showing up in droves for the team's preseason opener, which was Brett "This Darn Playbook's Makin' My Brain Hurt!" Favre's debut in a Jets uniform. (Warning: Pleasantly NSFW image after the jump)
I think I don't want to hear what great fans the Jets have. Not for a long time. That crowd Saturday night was a disgrace. At least half the stadium was empty for Favre's debut in a Jets' uniform. I expressed my amazement to a few fellow scribes Saturday night (Ed note: likely met with groans) - emphasizing that N.Y. traded for an all-time-great quarterback, not a broken-down one - and they gave varying reasons for the poor turnout. Like it's the middle of vacation month for New Yorkers, and it's a preseason game. Horsefeathers. If you really love your team, and you have season tickets, you should have been at that game unless you were in Tibet. Ridiculous.
Now we at KSK have already gleefully taken King to task for his aggressive idiocy on this matter. We tackled it as we always do, from the gay sex angle. You can practically hear King dropping trou and bending over to "present" himself for Favre as he's writing this shit. But, when you think about this quote from a journalistic standpoint (and I know me my journoportage!), it's kind of sad, because it was not but a year ago that King had this to say about preseason games:
Goodell is not the first commissioner who knew there was something wrong with asking the customers to pay regular-season prices for these stupid games. Paul Tagliabue also found it increasingly hard to take, trying to get fans fired up for the regular season by making them watch backup players in half-empty stadiums when season-ticket-holders couldn't even give the seats away. Football Fever! Catch it!
So King openly derided preseason games, only to completely reverse that attitude once his Douche Valiant entered the equation. And then he offered this lame defense on Tuesday: "We're talking about 45,000 season-ticket-holders who chose not to come to the game. They chose to say, ‘We'll stay home rather than experience one of the great moments in the recent history of our franchise.' Sorry. I've got a problem with that… I take nothing back." Okay, this is getting out of hand. I think it's well-established now that, gay jokes aside, King and Favre are good friends away from their jobs. King has eaten dinner at Favre's house, and I'm sure they've shared milkshakes at the local drive-in together on many an occasion. That's why King, in all seriousness, should never, EVER be allowed to write about Favre, or cover Favre in any way, shape or form. If the higher-ups at Time Warner had any sack, they'd tell King that covering Favre is a clear conflict of interest. Favre is his buddy. He can't write about him without turning into a knob-slobbing moron. He'll twist any argument to make Favre look better. It's not journalism, it's goddamn cronyism. They should man up and ban the fucker from all things Brettcentric. And confiscate the Favre poster taped to his bedroom ceiling. Sports are positively littered with illicit relationships like King/Favre. We've all made our jokes about them, but it's time to lay down the fucking gauntlet. I want real action taken. I want moratoriums. I want restraining orders to be issued. It's one thing to have a cordial relationship with the subject you cover. That's practically a necessity. It's another thing to be open, flagrant butt-buddies with the guy. Below are some journalist-subject relationships that desperately need an intervention. Some of these are obvious, others a bit more insidious. But, in all cases, I have prescribed a heady dose of tough love and assholish ridicule. So let's start with the worstest one of all: Dick Vitale-Mike Krzyzewski Vitale's adoration of all things Shoosesskee is now a more or less accepted cliché of college basketball. But seriously, it's gotten ridiculous now. People who defend Vitale love to point out his enthusiasm. "He loves the game! He's a great ambassador for the sport!" No, he's an ambassador for one school and one coach. Besides, what sport worth its salt needs a goddamn ambassador? This man is a stooge for Coach K. I bet he scripted his AmEx commercial. Time to throw some hot water on this pair. Vitale needs to be banned from Cameron Indoor Stadium. FOREVER. I suggest strapping him to a chair, prying open his eyelids, and forcing him to watch footage of white Duke players interspliced with both footage of SS storm troopers marching and Snow's "Girl I've Been Hurt" video.
This form of extreme persuasion clearly violates the Geneva Convention, but I have no problem with that. I do like me some snow bikinis. Tony Kornheiser-Larry Brown The most annoying thing about Kornheiser talking about Larry Brown is that he prefaces any statement about Brown by saying, "You know I love Larry Brown." Yeah, I gathered that, fucktaster. But perhaps, instead of constantly "disclosing" your baffling affinity for the world's biggest flake, you should try to suppress it instead, yes? No more of this trying to have your cake and eat it too crap. From now on, TK and Larry Brown are NEVER allowed to attend summer camp together. He also can't be a guest on PTI. Nor will any group mensching be permitted. Also, Tony is no longer allowed within 500 yards of any TV showing "American Idol". Lee Corso-Bobby Bowden Free shoes? Players arrested for assault? Well, ol' Bobby couldn't have POSSIBLY known about any of that! He's just a kindly old grandfather figure who wants to help these daggum kids! I call bullshit. Bobby Bowden is fucking Shelley Marcone. "Why, she was one of the sweetest whores I ever tasted!" And Corso coddles him like a newborn fawn. Throw in the fact that Corso played college ball at Florida State, and you have a good explanation for how Chris Weinke ended up winning a Heisman Trophy. No more College GameDay road trips to Tallahassee for you, Lee. Then again, since Mark Richt went to Georgia and took all the brains with him, there hasn't been much call for it. Keyshawn Johnson-Any misunderstood wide receiver It's become a tradition now for ESPN to hire a former wideout mouthtard (Irvin, Sharpe, Johnson) to come in, talk really loud, say nothing of value, and grab "exclusive" one-on-one interviews with former peers who are just as self-serving. "Terrell, do you feel like you're misunderstood? Omigod, I felt the same way!" These aren't interviews. They're fucking PR videos. From now on, no former player can ever interview an active player. EVER EVER EVER. Unless drunken Joe Namath is asking the questions. Stu Scott-Tiger Woods Stu Scott and any athlete, really. If you've played even a minute in the pros, Stu will be there to personally like the sweat out of your asscrack. But be warned, athletes. While that flattery sure is tantalizing, the truth is that Scott is simply trying to lure you into a private room so that he can steal your license, take your identity, and harvest your eyes. And let's not forget him saying this… You're going to make friendships with the people that you cover. Yes, it's inevitable. You interview someone for ten minutes, BONDS WILL BE FORMED. Can't be avoided. No more tagging along for you, Stu. You are no longer allowed to go golfing with Tiger. Nor are you allowed to be his personal ballwasher. Jason Whitlock-Jeff George Not as big a concern anymore since George has been out of the league for some time now. But holy Jesus, is Whitlock a George apologist. Let's do this: whenever a QB job opens up during the year, or whenever the subject of "underrated QB's" comes up, time to distract Whitlock with a milk crate full of Goobers. Otherwise, it's hours and hours of "Jeff never got a fair shake! Coaches didn't know how to utilize him! You can't handle my truth!" Michael Wilbon-Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley Don't hear the leadership of the Bobcats questioned much on PTI, do you? That's because, when Jordan isn't in the office his usual 12 minutes a week, he's on the course with Wilbon. Does this surprise me? Not in the least. Wilbon knows Jordan a little bit. And admires him. Oh, how he admires him. Wilbon, no more playing poker, smoking cigars, and hanging out with your best buddy. Get back to what you do best: ogling the tits of porn stars and then defending your right to ogle the tits of porn stars. No one will question you on that one. Bill Simmons-Larry Bird And really, all Boston athletes/friends/coaches/buddies named Hench. It's one thing to have the voice of a fan. It's another to be a constant, grating shill for your favorite teams. I have it on high authority that Simmons' new book has the working title "YOU FACKIN' PRICKS DON'T APPRECIATE LARRY FACKIN' BIRD OR-AH MELROSE PLACE LIKE I FACKIN' DO!" There's only one way to end this: move Simmons to LA, make him a Clipper fan, and get him to start writing jokes that Jimmy Kimmel can throw into his discard pile. Wait… Chris Berman-San Francisco 49ers Berman happily accepted a Super Bowl ring from Eddie DeBartolo in 1995, only to be forced to give it back by ESPN management. Hey, that's objective! Berman, you take that ring and tuck it under your chinflap. Mike Lupica-Mike Lupica If only there were a way to keep little Mikey from being doubled over inside his own asshole. Jim Nantz-Any golfer Will Leitch-Rick Ankiel Easy, Leitch. I know how lonely you Illinois farmboys get. Jack Kogod-Gilbert Arenas You should see the emails I get. "Look, guys! Gilbert just wrote about buying a new Fendi knapsack! He's so cool!" Guhhhhhhh. No more birthday parties for you, Maj. Drew Magary-Drew Magary's Penis When in doubt, talk about masturbation! Find a new angle, you big fat dipshit. John Madden-Any quarterback/running back/offensive lineman The guy thought Nate Newton was a gamer, for shit's sake. "Look at that guy! He's got mud on him! I like that! That's big Nate Newton for ya!" Stop treating every player you see like a warm piece of cherry pie, you senile gravy-slurper. AJ Daulerio-Norby Williamson I saw something that unnerved me this week, and it came from this very website. So, I'm standing there face to face with Norby(!), smiling, listening to him praise Deadspin and how it's practically "mainstream" right now and "a lot less salacious"… Oh, really? Mainstream, you say? A lot less salacious? Well, I say FUCK THAT SHIT. You listen to me, Norby, you ballsless goatbanger. That shit ain't happening ON MY WATCH. You abhor salaciousness? Well, let me tell you something: NORBY WILLIAMSON LIKES TO TROLL THE STREETS AT NIGHT FOR YOUNG THAI BOYS TO HELP HIM FILM AMATEUR LIZARD COSTUME PORN AND PULL YO-YOS OUT OF HIS ASS. Now, is that true? No. But it IS salacious. So that's good enough for me. Know what else is salacious? This:
Try putting THAT on your Disney-castrated site, you pleated-khaki wearing douche sipper. Daulerio, you are hereby forbidden from fraternizing with this smooth-talking empty suit. MY WORD IS THE FUCKING LAW. CROSS ME AND I'LL SLAP YOU IN THE MOUTH WITH MY LOVE HAMMER. And those are your mandatory journo-subject restraining orders, to be instituted immediately, under penalty of anal clubbing. Yours in the comments. Thanks to 289 for the photoshop.