Today in Philly Athletes on Tinder: Michael Del Zotto

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Michael Del Zotto is new to town, so how’s he getting on? He’s at least trying his hand at the Tinder game, according to one fellow Tinderer out there, who sent these along. And he knows what he’s doing too, as you can see in the screengrab above, dropping his Instagram and Twitter handles so you know he’s a pro hockey player. As you can see below, he also wants you to know that he goes to cool events:

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And if you still haven’t looked him up, he might as well just lay it all out for you with a picture that screams “I’m a pro hockey player”:

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And in this new landscape of having to compete with professional athletes on hookup apps, how is the random dude supposed to compete? By piggybacking on Jeff Carter:

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Let it be known that the O.D. hoodie is a lot lamer than the O.D. t-shirt.


The Flyers Ice Girls Have a Long Way to Go Before They’re the LA Kings Ice Crew

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Not unlike the respective teams’ actual rosters and on-ice success, the Flyers’ Ice Girls may be fan favorites… but they still have a long, lean, bronzed, and supple way to go before they’re the LA Kings Ice Crew, which recently put this calendar on-sale in the name of charity or something. I don’t know. I don’t read the articles.

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Do we think Comcast has the balls to put out a Flyers Ice Girls calendar? What’s that? We do not? Aw, shit.

Ice Girls, along with cord-cutting and media stuff, may totally be a niche we start (un?)covering around here.


G. Cobb Awkwardly Ambushed George Norcross’s Brother at a Neighborhood Block Party

Right across the bridge in New Jersey, in the state’s first congressional district, a very interesting race is going on. After democrat Congressman Rob Andrews vacated his seat to take a job at a law firm, Republicans threw their weight behind former Eagle Garry Cobb and Democrats chose Donald Norcross, brother of George, who recently lost his ownership stake in the Inquirer and Daily News in a fight “over pussy and bullshit.” Considering it’s New Jersey and I can’t vote there and I don’t really care, I have no dog in this fight. What I do care about, however, is just how painfully awkward it is in the video above when Cobb tries to ambush Norcross at a block party and ends up mostly confusing him and smiling at the cameraman he brought with him, saying “See? He won’t debate me.” Yes, G. Cobb was decked out in an Eagles t-shirt and expected to be debated on camera at the block party. Instead, Cobb got about as much response as he did from callers on WIP. Or from his car cam.


Here’s a Pickup Truck Decked out in Custom Ron Hextall Airbrushing

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There are subtle clues here – the giant illustrated head of Ron Hextall with the 90s era Itech mask and the “1HEXY” license plate, for example – which indicate the owner of this super chill truck is a Ron Hextall fan. Upon deeper inspection, you notice Hexy’s airbrushed-dome is backgrounded by two crossed goalie sticks. The dates on the crossed sticks? 12-8-87 and 4-11-89, which, of course, are the two dates on which Hextall parted the heavens and achieved hockey immortality… by scoring goals on empty nets, accomplishments that are very deserving of being celebrated in airbrush form. The tagline “Lightning Strikes Once, Hextall Strikes Twice” also honors those two goals, while bumper memorials — the best kind of memorials — to Pelle Lindbergh and Barry Ashbee remind drivers to remember those who came before us. Mongrel.


Derek Jeter Is Launching a Sports Blog

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Welcome to the game, Jeets.

Today, Derek Jeter announced the (horribly named) The Players Tribune, an online destination for athletes to connect directly to fans in a way that’s different than social media ostensibly because there will be non-idiot editors editing the moronic thoughts that idiot athletes would otherwise idiotically post on Twitter, for idiots to read.

Here’s how “Jeter” explained it:

So I’m in the process of building a place where athletes have the tools they need to share what they really think and feel. We want to have a way to connect directly with our fans, with no filter.

I am working with other athletes, with editors and with producers to create a platform that gives us a chance to say what’s on our minds. It’s called The Players’ Tribune. Over the next few months, we’ll be introducing a strong core of athlete editors and contributors who will shape the site into an online community filled with first-person stories and behind-the-scenes content.

There are, precisely, two ways this can and will go down:

1) This is a pseudo brilliant outlet for athletes to take you INSIDE, to talk about their thoughts during the moment you just watched them perform. Don’t underestimate how interesting it could be to hear, say, Darren Sproles describe the feeling of EXSPROLDING all over the field. It’s why athlete interviews on podcasts are so much better than in press conferences– because they’re not carefully choosing their words in fear of creating a story they didn’t want. Most quotes and player interviews are just a grab-bag of coached clichés designed to get the mic out-of-face quickly.

Similar ideas to this one have been tried before but have never really caught on. Jeter carries enough clout – with athletes and readers – to make it work. If his site is what he says it is and uses editors and actual media people to help athletes connect more directly and professionally with fans, then this could be a thing. The player diary concept used on team websites – which can sometimes produce interesting reads – comes to mind.

2) The much more likely scenario: It’s a bullshit PR apparatus that will allow athletes to spew even more-rehearsed lines, take part in even more-elaborate publicity stunts, and promote even more-disingenious charity efforts. If you think listening to athletes speak extemporaneously is boring, wait until you read their words after they’re filtered through a lame corporate suit with the help of a man whose existence is defined by his ability to choose the right lame corporate suit to do his bidding.

Craig Calcaterra of Hardball Talk, who took a moment off from trolling the Phillies, thinks it’s the latter:

But what it will not do is provide fans with any candid insight into these players’ lives. At least not insight that the player doesn’t specifically want to provide. Yes, the media can and often does distort what an athlete has to say and that’s crappy. But good reporters who are straight-up with their subjects have often been nonetheless able to give us a look behind the stage-managing and the spin of publicists and P.R. people and tell us something important or interesting about the subjects they cover. To reveal the human side of athletes, their fears, their foibles and what makes them tick, often in ways the athletes themselves are either unable or unwilling to articulate or, often, may not even know.

Jeter obviously has some post-baseball goals, and this is probably the first one that was pitched to him that he liked. It’s interesting to me because it’s a new take on new media. The problem, however, is that it’s newsmakers writing the news, which is the worst kind of news. I also hate the name. If you’re starting a project that has anything to do with media, the last thing you want to do is reference something as dated as a newspaper. Tribune evokes terrible, terrible thoughts for what is presumably the target reader here.


The Eagles Are Borrowing a Brain Damaged Bald Eagle for Their Home Games

Photo Credit: Jeffrey G. Pittenger-USA TODAY Sports

Photo Credit: Jeffrey G. Pittenger-USA TODAY Sports

Before this season, a real-life bald eagle would occasionally make appearances at Eagles home games by flying over the field during the National Anthem. That eagle is named Challenger (above), which is an awesome name for an eagle. But this season, the Eagles have partnered with the Elmwood Park Zoo to bring their bald eagle, Noah, to all home games for pictures, meet and greets, and some beautiful, terrifying, American nobility.

But Noah, whose name is not as cool as Challenger, has had a rough go of things, because in the NFL, even the live-animal mascots have a history of brain injuries. According to the Norristown Times Herald:

Noah is a 13-year-old bald eagle that is in the possession of the Elmwood Park Zoo by the authority of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. At just 8 weeks old he suffered an 80 ft fall that left him with permanent brain and eye injuries. He spent several years in a rehabilitation facility before arriving at the Elmwood Park Zoo in 2008.

Yikes. We can only assume that Noah will be a better and less risky addition to the Eagles family than the brain damaged horse was to the Griffin family. In fact, he has already been at home games this season, and he will continue to hang out in HeadHouse Plaza for pictures before kickoff and his on-field appearance.

No word on if Noah is subject to ImPACT tests before taking to the sky above the Linc, but just look at how excited and/or horrified he is:

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So excited… so scared.


Here’s Brandon Moss, Whom Ruben Amaro Said Couldn’t Hit a Fastball, Burying a Fastball over the Center Field Wall in the AL Wild Card Game

You may recall our posts about A’s All-Star Brandon Moss, who, in 2011, was in the Phillies’ farm system but was passed over in favor of hard-hittin’ John Bowker. The Phillies let Moss walk partly because he would’ve been an unknown entity on a contending team and partly because Ruben Amaro is an idiot. Amaro didn’t think Moss could hit Major League fastballs. But as it turns out, that’s exactly where Moss excels. His team lost last night, but he was hardly to blame. He had two home runs and five RBIs, including this BLAST to dead-center.

Good news? The A’s are going home (again) and we won’t have to be reminded of that boner. Instead, we can just tune in to watch Jayson Werth.


Sponsored: Win Weekly Prizes Playing Fantasy Football at SugarHouse Casino


We mentioned it before, but SugarHouse’s $50,000 Fantasy Football Challenge is now rolling into Week 5, and they have already handed out thousands in prize money. Each week the top ten winners take home cash prizes, and the next time you’re at SugarHouse, it’ll be super easy to enter:

  • Insert Rush Rewards Card into a Fantasy Football kiosk machine located by The Player’s Place.
  • Select your picks by using the QUICK PICK or MANUAL OPTION.
  • If manual option is selected, pick (1) Quarterback, (2) Running Backs, (2) Wide Receivers, (1) Tight End, (1) Kicker and (1) Defensive Team.
  • You will receive your picks via a kiosk printed ticket to track your weekly progress.

That’s it. And each week the top team brings home $750 cash, second place gets $500 cash, and more down to 10th place. Additionally, the best year-end teams get some pretty great prizes as well:

  • 1st Best Overall SEASON Score: Trip to the 2015 Championship Game or $5,000 CASH
  • 2nd Best Overall SEASON Score: 1 winner to receive $1,000 CASH
  • 3rd Best Overall SEASON Score: 1 winner to receive $1,000 CASH
  • Highest Overall QB Score: 1 winner to receive $1,000 CASH
  • Highest Overall RB Score: 1 winner to receive $1,000 CASH
  • Highest Overall WR Score: 1 winner to receive $1,000 CASH

Throughout the season you can pick up to eight teams to widen your odds at winning. More information is available over here.

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