The Ringer founder Bill Simmons was a guest on the ManningCast on ESPN on Monday night, and both Peyton and Eli made sure Simmons didn’t forget that the New York Giants will always have the New England Patriots number in the Super Bowl.
Simmons is a Patriots super fan, and of course Eli, who helped the Giants beat New England in three Super Bowls, needed to make sure that was a primary topic of discussion.
“I always swore I would never talk to Eli,” Simmons joked. “If you had told me this was gonna happen 15 years ago I would have thought it was a punishment.”
“It’s Super Bowls my team didn’t win,” he added.
Eli said he had a fun stat for Bill that he was being fed in his ear by one of his researchers. Both Peyton and Eli were a combined 5-1 against future hall of fame quarterback Tom Brady in championship games.
“The thing is, we owned Peyton for the first half of the 2000s, and then in 06 you flipped it on us!” Simmons responded.
The helmet catch in Super Bowl XLII is one of the most iconic plays in NFL history, and the play was again one of the primary points of conversation. Simmons asked Eli what his favorite hold on that particular play was, insinuating that in the midst of Manning avoiding being sacked and heaving a deep pass to David Tyree on New York’s game-winning drive there were multiple uncalled penalties on the Giants.
“(Tyree) holding the ball on his helmet was my favorite hold,” Eli responded.
Simmons did say he thought that Brady would not be retiring at the end of this season, and that he believed there was potential Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Brady would reunite for one more season. Simmons wondered what it ultimately was, despite winning six championships together, that drove Brady out of town.
“Did Brady get tired of Belichick?” Simmons asked. “Was it just like, 20 years and he needed a break out of it?”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He’s a multimedia journalist and communicator who works at the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Richmond. Jordan also contributes occasional coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, WRIC-TV 8News and Audacy Richmond. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
Former ESPN South America Host Michelle Troconis Found Guilty of Conspiracy to Commit Murder
She was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, tampering with evidence and hindering the prosecution.
Michelle Troconis, a former host and producer for ESPN South America was convicted of helping her late boyfriend Fotis Dulos kill his estranged wife Jennifer Dulos in 2019, nearly five years after the Connecticut mother of five went missing. She was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, tampering with evidence and hindering the prosecution.
According to the New York Times, Troconis, 49, faces a maximum of 50 years in prison. The jury found Troconis conspired with Fotis Dulos to murder his estranged wife, lied to provide an alibi for him and helped him dispose of the bloody evidence.
A statement released by the family of Jennifer Dulos said, “There can be no victory when five children are growing up without their mother. This verdict represents the meticulous collection, analysis and presentation to illuminate an unconscionable series of crimes. That immense body of evidence also serves to highlight the gaps that remain in this case – most important, that Jennifer Farber Dulos still has not been found. We have lost a mother, daughter, sister, cousin and cherished friend. Jennifer’s loved ones cannot bury her next to her father.”
Troconis, who once had her own TV production company in Argentina, also hosted a snow-sports show for ESPN South America.
The Sports Media Industry Remembers ESPN NFL Insider Chris Mortensen
“Upon learning of Mortensen’s passing, members of the sports media industry flocked to social media to remember the ESPN legend.”
ESPN has lost a legend. Longtime NFL insider Chris Mortensen passed away Sunday morning at the age of 72. Mortensen spent more than three decades working for the worldwide leader in sports. The news of his passing was first made public by ESPN PR.
Affectionally referred to by his colleagues as ‘Mort’, Chris Mortensen contributed to ESPN’s NFL programs, SportsCenter and was the network’s top news breaker for years. He earned the Pro Football Writers of America’s Dick McCann Award in 2016, receiving his honor at the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s enshrinement ceremony in August of that same year. It was also the same year when Mortensen broke the news of Peyton Manning retiring from the NFL.
Unfortunately, 2016 was also the year when it was revealed that Mortensen was diagnosed with Stage 4 throat cancer.
“Mort was widely respected as an industry pioneer and universally beloved as a supportive, hard-working teammate,” ESPN chairman Jimmy Pitaro said in a statement. “He covered the NFL with extraordinary skill and passion, and was at the top of his field for decades. He will truly be missed by colleagues and fans, and our hearts and thoughts are with his loved ones.”
In 2023, Mortensen stepped away from his role at ESPN to focus on his health, family and faith. Prior to joining ESPN he wrote for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution covering the Falcons, Braves and the NFL He was also a columnist for The Sporting News and a consultant with CBS Sports’ ‘NFL Today’.
Chris Mortensen is survived by his wife, Micki, and son, Alex. Upon learning of his passing, members of the sports media industry flocked to social media to remember the ESPN legend.
Struggles Continue for ‘Undisputed’ On FS1
According to Sports Media Watch, the Feb. 27 edition of the program had 50,000 viewers, the lowest in the show’s history.
It’s been raining and pouring for Undisputed over the last few months — and February saw an all-time low for the long-running Skip Bayless vehicle. According to Sports Media Watch, the Feb. 27 edition of the program had 50,000 viewers, the lowest in the show’s history.
Among the shows that defeated Undisputed head-to-head were a re-air of Get Up on ESPN2 and first-round Dubai Open tennis on The Tennis Channel, according to Sports Media Watch.
Undisputed has been in dire straits for months. According to figures provided by USTVDB, the show passed 200,000 viewers just twice since August — the Monday, Sep. 4 edition that featured new co-hosts Michael Irvin, Keyshawn Johnson, and Richard Sherman and took place after the University of Colorado’s win over TCU, and the Monday, Jan. 15 edition following another Dallas Cowboys playoff loss, this time a blowout at the hands of the Green Bay Packers. Its viewers were likely there to revel in Bayless’ misery as a vocal Cowboys fan. For perspective, First Take enjoyed its most-watched episode ever on Jan. 15 with an average of 1.5 million viewers.
The show routinely averaged near or over 200,000 viewers but saw a sudden decline once co-host Shannon Sharpe left the show following last year’s NBA Finals. Sharpe then joined First Take, which saw its most-watched year ever in 2023, averaging almost 500,000 viewers per episode, and hasn’t slowed down at all.
Jeff Kotuby is a nationally-published journalist with bylines on many popular broadcasting and pop culture sites, including The Streamable, eBaum’s World, Twin Galaxies, and more. Jeff grew up in the shadows of New York City and cultivated his love for sports media with the classic broadcasting voices of the area, like Mike & The Mad Dog, Mike “Doc” Emerick, and Michael Kay. You can reach Jeff on Twitter @JeffKotu3y.