1. We had quite a Twitter throwdown between retired New York sports radio legend Mike Francesa and former Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard over the weekend.
The back-and-forth was quick and to the point, but what made it extra special is that Francesa once said it should be “against the law for broadcasters, media people and athletes to tweet.”
He also added, “You’re never gonna catch me tweeting. I promise you. If I do, you gotta scoop. It’ll never happen. Never.”
Well, here we are.
Without his WFAN platform, Francesa took to Twitter to react to the news that Syndergaard left New York to sign a deal with the Angels, and he took a shot at the righthander’s history with serious injuries in the process.
Syndergaard’s reply was pretty generic and tame.
However, that was just a pregame warmup. The real action came a day later when Francesa bragged about his radio success, which led to Syndergaard getting extra aggressive:
Obviously, Francesa’s famous ego was on full display by mentioning his 35 years of winning. Of course, there aren’t many injury possibilities for a radio host compared to a Major League pitcher, so the reference to “competing” isn’t exactly fair.
And major league starting pitchers have to rely on teammates to win and can only help their team once every five days, so that’s not an apples to apples comparison.
However, Francesa clearly got under Syndergaard’s skin as evidenced by the “gas bag Mets hating opportunist” line.
But the highlight by far was excellent use of “sweetie” by Syndergaard.
Things have been quiet between the two for a couple of days, but we can only hope we get treated to more of this amusing repartee.
2. Bill Belichick to his longtime girlfriend, Linda Holliday, on Thanksgiving morning: "We're on to potatoes."
3. I watched the new Janet Jackson/Justin Timberlake Super Bowl doc (simply titled, Janet) about the infamous wardrobe malfunction on Hulu over the weekend.
A few thoughts:
- It's surreal to see the reaction from the media in 2004 over Jackson's breast being exposed for nine-sixteenths of a second. To say it was over-the-top would be an enormous understatement.
- One of the more ironic moments came from then-NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue, who said he had heard from concerned people in the lead-up to the halftime show that year, but not because of Jackson or Timberlake. Also performing at Super Bowl XXXVIII were P. Diddy, Kid Rock and Nelly. It was these three who had people worried.
- The doc strongly implies that Justin Timberlake was able to move forward with his career while Janet Jackson was not because Timberlake publicly apologized for the incident at the Grammys the following week and because Timberlake apologized in person to then CBS president, Les Moonves, while Jackson did not do either of those things.
- Unfortunately, buy the end of the 69-minute doc you still don't know the story of how or why the wardrobe malfunction.
4. Today is the nine-year anniversary of the butt fumble. The embarrassing gaffe has been talked about and mocked ad nauseum, but this clip of Mark Sanchez discussing it last year on the Pat McAfee Show is super interesting. You can tell he doesn't love talking about it, but he's a good sport about it and sheds some light on how it affected him long term.
5. I wrote this last year and I'm bringing it back today because I stand by every single word: The NFL needs to end the tradition of the Lions playing on Thanksgiving. It's not cute anymore. It's enough.
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6. The latest SI Media Podcast features a conversation with Kenny Mayne.
The longtime ESPN personality discussed his May departure from the company after 27 years. How does he feel about what went down? Does he regret revealing that ESPN wanted him to take a 61% pay cut? How weird was it to do some SportsCenter shows after announcing he was leaving ESPN?
Mayne also discusses what he's up to know, how he navigated being political on social media while trying to follow ESPN's guidelines, whether a sports-themed comedy show can work, what he tweeted his friend, Aaron Rodgers, after Rodgers got COVID-19 and much more.
The podcast closes with the weekly Traina Thoughts segment. This week, Jimmy and Sal Licata from WFAN and SNY talk about big news for Sal, Steph Curry getting "MVP" chants on the road, the Tom Brady docuseries, Man In the Arena, the new, in-season edition of Hard Knocks and Episode 4 of Curb Your Enthusiasm.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: Here is that 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, in full, that I referenced in Item No. 3.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.
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