Playing the Field: ESPN layoffs and Sergio Garcia racism
You never want to see a peer get laid off. Unless, of course, you can’t stand the sumbitch. In that case, watching a professional nemesis pack their bags can be one of the more joyful days in any person’s life.
It’s highly unlikely, however, that there will be any wry grins in Bristol, Conn. today. Yes, ESPN is picking on the “little people” today. Instead of wiping Chris Berman’s Chris Berman in 1992-sized contract from its sheets, the Worldwide Leader is dumping 300-400 of its “non-talent.”
“We are implementing changes across the company to enhance our continued growth while smartly managing costs,” ESPN said in a statement Tuesday. “While difficult, we are confident that it will make us more competitive, innovative and productive.”
As of noon Tuesday, no “big names” were let go and it’s doubtful that that certain SportsCenter host you despise (ahem, Stan Verett) will be dumped this afternoon. Nope, expect the tech guys, the guys that run the cameras and the guys that talk NHL on SportsCenter (oh, sorry, they were let go four years ago?) to be let go today. All in time to make a big push to bring back Keith Olbermann this summer.
If you’re wondering, last fall Forbes called ESPN the most valuable media property on earth and estimated its worth at $40 billion.
Sergio Garcia wishes he ate the bones, so he would just shutup
Sergio Garcia pulled a Fuzzy Zoeller (boy, that’s fun to say) this week. The Spanish golf star was on stage at the European Tour’s gala players awards dinner when he was asked if he would have Tiger Woods “round” for dinner during the upcoming U.S. Open.
“We will have him round every night,” Garcia said. “We will serve fried chicken.”
For those unfamiliar with that latter phrase, it is, indeed, racist.
Garcia later half-heartedly apologized for the comment.
“I apologize for any offense that may have been caused by my comment on stage during the European Tour players awards dinner. I answered a question that was clearly made towards me as a joke with a silly remark, but in no way was the comment meant in a racist manner.”
Garcia and Woods had a much-discussed public spat just a couple of weeks ago and, shockingly enough, the much-maligned Woods seems to be winning this feud by basically doing nothing. Just another obvious step on the road to recovery for Tiger: “let peer golfer make moronic comments about you in the media while you sit back and act classy.” Check.
By the way, for those unaware of the “Fuzzy Zoeller” reference above, here is all you need to know. This is golfing veteran Fuzzy Zoeller talking about how well a young Tiger Woods is playing at the 1997 Masters. WARNING: It’s blatantly racist:
Follow Metro Boston sports editor and columnist Matt Burke on Twitter @BurkeMetroBOS