Can you picture Rocky Balboa in a New England Patriots jersey?
Though the iconic fictional boxer was a Philly native, the statue in his hometown may have to sport Pats gear if New England wins yet another Super Bowl.
The New England-Philadelphia football rivalry is heating up, prompting all sorts of bets ahead of the big game. And now, Brockton, Massachusetts Mayor Bill Carpenter and Philly Mayor Jim Kenney have their own wager involving their city’s respective Rocky statues.
"The ‘Rocky v. Rocky’ Super Bowl wager is on,” Carpenter wrote Thursday on his Facebook. “The losing Rocky will wear the team garb of the #SuperBowlLIIChamps! Mayor Kenney will also put up a keg of ‘Yards’ beer against our Rocky Marciano wine."
Philly’s Rocky statue is a famous attraction, depicting the fictional character standing arms raised at the bottom of the stairs leading to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The boxer iconically climbs those 72 stone steps in multiple movies.
In Brockton, a statue commemorates a real-life Rocky — Rocky Marciano, a professional boxer born in Brockton who reportedly served as some inspiration for the film character’s first name, Italian ethnicity and fighting style. That statue sits in Champion Park on Brockton High School’s grounds.
The two mayors formalized their bet — if New England wins, Philly’s Rocky dons Patriots gear, and if Philly wins, Brockton’s Rocky has to wear Eagles attire — while down in Washington together for the United States Conference of Mayors.
If the Eagles lose, Kenney admitted that he doesn’t know exactly how long the Pats jersey will actually stay on.
“We’re going to have to Crisco the Rocky statue so no one climbs up it,” he said while talking with NBC Washington, a joke referring to the “Crisco cops” that slicked up Philly street poles ahead of the NFC Championship game to deter drunk fans from getting a bit too rambunctious.
“It’s going to have to be a quick photo for either city,” Carpenter added.
There’s also alcohol added to the mix. Kenney will provide Carpenter some Yards Brewing Co. beer if the Eagles lose and if they win, Carpenter would send over some Rocky Marciano brand wine.
Yards is already involved in another “Battle of the Beers” bet with Boston-based brewery Harpoon. If the Eagles do defeat the Pats, who are five-time Super Bowl champs, there will be a lot of New Englanders literally tasting that defeat.