actually, let me start this a different way:
so my mother is one of these middle-aged ladies who’s getting more into football as she gets older; i’m not EXACTLY sure how this happens, but it happened to my grandmother, so maybe there’s some genetic thing at work there. anyway, there’s always something here or there that she doesn’t quite grasp because this fandom is more recent; this week, as she’s a Washington fan who just watched some Falcons attempt to crush RG3’s skull like an egg and then seem PLEASED about it afterwards, she wanted me to explain if they REALLY wanted to hurt RG3 and if they REALLY meant it when they implied they wanted to. the answer, of course, is a bit of a grey area as i see it, but it did make me realize one thing: i fucking hate Tony Siragusa.
if there is any justice in the universe, he’ll get that finger caught in a garbage disposal
now, this is PROBABLY pretty predictable: i’m a Raiders fan, Tony Siragusa is a terrible human being that knocked Rich Gannon out of the AFC Championship game and thus out of the playoffs/Super Bowl contention during that last magical phase (so many years gone at this point) when the Raiders had a REALLY GOOD TEAM. during that time, however, we got fucked by Bill Callahan being a terrible human being who i would fight on sight, we got fucked by the Tuck Rule, and we got fucked by Tony Siragusa. don’t get me wrong, i don’t want to be one of those fans who’s crying about a good time in our history, as that can be oh so insufferable, but let me just say, if you couldn’t tell, that all of those things make me flip the hell out. especially Tony Siragusa.
so what brought this up again? well, perhaps this Deadspin piece, pleasing titled “Tony Siragusa Says He Never Wanted To Hurt Anyone. Tony Siragusa Is A Liar.” i don’t want to be redundant, because the article makes all the points i would like to (and probably better, go read it), but let me just reiterate the main points:
01. Tony Siragusa was on Howard Stern, promoting his new book
presumably written by someone else, of course, because between his television act of being a stereotypically crude man and what i believe to be his ACTUAL persona of “raging idiot who is exactly like his television persona, only not as bright,” there’s basically no way he wrote the book himself. but hell, what athlete actually does, am i right?
02. Tony Siragusa claimed “”You don’t mess with guys’ livelihoods,” he said. “You don’t go out and say, ‘Listen, we’re going to try to hurt this guy.’ Like, you know. You don’t play the game of football to try and hurt somebody.””
which, let’s be honest, sounds like a contradiction based on the way he played AND the way he acted after incidents like the one where he, say, hit Rich Gannon cheaply and injured him, and then got pissed off when people criticized him for it. now, okay, i grant you that men can change their minds once they stop playing and gain a little perspective. but usually what happens is they realize how shitty their actions were and express it in a way where they recognize what they did WAS wrong, and that they think differently now. claiming you’ve always been about the clean, injury-free play is something else entirely.
also, please note also that his inability to express even strategic false remorse (something like “you hate to see a guy injured like that”) after a circumstance like that injury makes it clear that he’s a raging idiot AND a shitty human being.
yeah, this image really makes me want to cry
03. we watch the video of Rich Gannon getting injured by Tony Siragusa
i could not find a great video of this to link, so again, the Deadspin article has the video embedded, i recommend you check it out.
04. Howard Stern presses Siragusa on this issue, Siragusa contradicts himself shamelessly
“When you go in and take out a quarterback, you’re doing everything you can to slam that motherfucker as hard as you can,” Stern said.
“Oh, yeah, absolute—I mean, you want to go,” Siragusa said. “Do you want to hurt him? Noo.
“Like when I hit Rich Gannon in the AFC championship game against the Raiders, and I, you know, and, I, you know, whatever, hurt his shoulder, dislocated, whatever, whatever it was.”
…”You weren’t happy about it,” Stern said.
“I wasn’t, like, trying to hurt the guy,” Siragusa said. “Yeah, did I want him to know that I was there? Yeah. Did I want to get him out of the game? Yeah. Did I want to hurt him? No.”
so let me see if i understand this: Siragusa DID want Gannon to “know he was there,” something that has to translate to “i wanted to hit Gannon hard and painfully,” because it’s not like you could miss that 342-pound turd on the Ravens defensive line, and Siragusa DID want to “get [Gannon] out of the game,” something that can only be accomplished by a) making him play so badly that he got pulled (unlikely, as Gannon was the fucking man during this era) or b) injuring him, probably with some kind of cheap shot (likely, as this is exactly what happened) … but Siragusa did NOT want to hurt him?
to quote Chris Rock, please cut the fucking shit, okay?
05. Scocca reminds us of Siragusa’s comments at the time
–on media row, pre-Super Bowl: “It’s not like I was trying to hurt him, but I was definitely trying to go after him,” which is simply more of the same bullshit where he’s trying to have it both ways, and which makes me think that if he was at least HONEST about it, it would, sadly, be an improvement;
–during the same media session, regarding his $10000 fine for that hit: “All year long they train us to go in there and hit people, beat people. Half the T-shirts you see say, ‘Sack Master’ or ‘Quarterback Killer,’ but all of a sudden you hit the quarterback and knock him out of the game, they want to fine you,” which is NOT a remorseful or adult statement, but which IS a guy who go himself a Super Bowl ring, and a bonus that surely exceeded $10000, by illegally injuring another player before being a fucking liar about the whole thing.
am i over it? not at all. fuck Tony Siragusa, fuck Tony Siragusa, fuck Tony Siragusa. i’m sure he was an asshole as a kid, an asshole as a college player, an asshole as a professional player, and an asshole now. some people you can simply TELL are that way, and making them giant and pampered star athletes has never, ever done anything positive about that. to put it another way, i am good at first impressions, and Tony Siragusa is a cunt. fuck it, i’ll just use this as an analogy:
in which Francis Wolcott is Tony Siragusa. if you’re not familiar with Deadwood, okay, i admit you’re lacking some context, but that really just means you should watch more Deadwood. and that i am not over that game at all.
next week: maybe less rage? eh, that seems unlikely.