By Theodore N. Beitchman
It doesn’t surprise me that the national media have demonized Sixers forward Mike Scott for wearing a Redskins jersey to the Eagles-Skins last Sunday and getting into a fight with Eagles fans.
Deadspin.com, which is the leader in the clubhouse for Philly-bashing, actually ran a piece with a headline:
THE FALLOUT FROM THE MIKE SCOTT FIGHT HAS SHAKEN PHILLY TO ITS CORE
This is a story that is intended to stoke phony outrage, which is the coin of the realm on talk radio and in the national media.
The writer used virtually every cliché about Philly fans’ reputation to gin up clicks in a lame fashion with deathless prose:
Sixers forward Mike Scott had a typical Philadelphia sports Sunday this week: He went to an Eagles tailgate, got into a fistfight, then brushed himself off and attended the game—a plot so hacky it’s straight out of the movie they made about Philly sports degenerates, Silver Linings Playbook. Mike Scott got the full Eagles experience.
The parking lot fight came after Scott, wearing a jersey of the late Washington safety Sean Taylor, came across a group of fans who’d rolled a casket into the parking lot. That casket actually showed up on social media earlier in the day, with a caption identifying it as someone’s grandfather getting in one last Eagles tailgate.
It also doesn’t surprise me that over-the-hill radio hack Angelo Cataldi rode this baby like it was Gabe Kapler using 13 relievers in a game.
Cataldi is one of the last remaining barnacles on the carcass of talk radio that depends on faux outrage to gin up listeners.
Unfortunately for Cataldi and WIP, he made the foul mistake of trashing 21-year-old photo Alex McIntyre in such a sexist and demeaning way that she has become the poster child for refinement and good behavior.
And Scott, who was born in Virginia and played at UVA, is a Redskins fan by birth. Should he have worn a Skins jersey to the game? Probably not. But he is a popular player, and Cataldi and Deadspin are making him out to be Ricky Watters, of “For Who, For What?” fame.
Philly’s sports fans are a lot smarter than Deadspin and Cataldi, and when they hear “a violation” intoned or some radio hack complaining that you can’t have an allegiance to another team they roll their eyes and think, “whatever.”
I guarantee you that Scott will be welcomed favorably by Sixers fans at the Wells this fall.
Which is more than I can say about Angelo Cataldi.