Bill Belichick Calls Jets Resignation ‘One of the Great Moments of My Career’

In Wednesday’s Hot Clicks: Bill Belichick has no regrets about ditching the Jets, Jon Rahm’s ridiculous hole-in-one and more.
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It’s one of the great moments in NFL history, to be honest

The greatest trick play Bill Belichick ever called came on Jan. 4, 2000. One day after being named head coach of the Jets, Belichick walked into a meeting with his bosses, handed them a resignation letter written on a napkin and then went to what was supposed to be his introductory press conference, where he instead told a room full of shocked reporters that he wasn’t taking the job. Three weeks later, he was hired by the Patriots. 

This year is the 20th anniversary of that debacle, so of course ESPN was going to mention it during the Patriots-Jets game on Monday night. During an interview on Tuesday on Boston’s WEEI, Belichick was informed that a clip from that infamous presser aired during the game, and he responded with one of his classic understated dogs. 

“Well, [that is] not only one of the most defining, but you know, one of the great moments of my career,” Belichick said. “That combined with Robert [Kraft] giving me the opportunity to come here, I couldn’t have asked for anything more. That wasn’t a good situation for me and I didn’t want to be part of it, so I wasn’t. The other half of that was Robert giving me the opportunity to come here and trading, and he gave up quite a bit to get me to come here, that was a big trade.

“I am very thankful that it worked out. I appreciate all the support from Robert, the Kraft family, the Patriots organization and all the New England fans, and I’ll keep trying to do my best for this team and this organization—give them the very best that can and I very thankful for the opportunity to come here. I just wasn’t going to stay there in that situation.”

It was a dark day for the Jets, who haven’t made the playoffs in 10 years, but Belichick must wake up every day thankful that he left them at the altar like that. It’s unquestionably the greatest decision he’s made in his career, and it’s an all-time great moment for football fans who get to hold it over the Jets for the rest of time. 

Who wants free stuff? 

Promotional image for Last Dance box set

Let’s be honest: if you’re reading this, you’ve probably already seen ESPN’s hit Bulls documentary The Last Dance. Even if you didn’t catch it when ESPN debuted the 10-part series in April, it’s been up on Netflix for a while now. It’s great, and maybe you want to be able to watch it whenever you want, plus enjoy some bonus features. 

The film is now available as part of a Blu-ray box set that includes not only the eight-hour doc, but also some tantalizing bonus content such as interviews that were left on the cutting room floor and a never-before-seen uncut version of a Stuart Scott interview with Michael Jordan from 1998. There’s also a 28-page book with photography tied to the film. 

We’ve got two box sets to give away today. Here’s how to win: 

  • Go back to Tuesday’s Hot Clicks
  • Find the name of the Patriots player who was heard clear as day complaining about a hold on Monday Night Football
  • Send me an email (dan.gartland@si.com) with the subject line Last Dance giveaway and the player’s name in the body
  • The 50th and 100th persons to follow those instructions will win

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Around the sports world

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You gotta be kidding me

(It was Rahm’s birthday, too.)

Jordan Spieth wasn’t bad, either

Khalil Mack is a freak

Celtics announcer Mike Gorman pays tribute to his former broadcast partner, Tommy Heinsohn

He’s so rich he doesn’t care about money, but he’s fortunate that making money hand over fist is a side effect of owning a team

Tony La Russa really pulled the “Do you know who I am?” Will he last the rest of the week as White Sox manager?

Todd Haley sounds like a real jerk

The SEC is in trouble

Not sports

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They made this building walk

You’re gonna be rich by the time you get that $1 kidney

Good eye for photography, better hops

A good song

Email dan.gartland@si.com with any feedback or follow me on Twitter for approximately one half-decent baseball joke per week. Bookmark this page to see previous editions of Hot Clicks and find the newest edition every day. By popular request I’ve made a Spotify playlist of the music featured here. Visit our Extra Mustard page throughout each day for more offbeat sports stories.