Carson Wentz is back at quarterback for the first-place Eagles. Villanova's the defending national champion. The Phillies suffered a monumental collapse and even worse, the bar in their stadium is going out of business. The Sixers celebrated the start of training camp by finishing up the longest GM search in history.
But no one in Philadelphia cares about any of that. We've all somehow fallen under the spell of a giant, orange, prickly monster.
No, not you, Angelo.
I'm talking of course about Gritty, the ghastly, googly-eyed, bearded, dancing monstrosity who was introduced earlier this week as the Flyers's new mascot. Even though Gritty resembles an unwashed Muppet, he's drawn national media attention, while taking up so much oxygen locally that none of even had time to argue over Wentz vs. Foles.
I don't like it. Silly mascots that got talked about on Good Morning America are not what the Philadelphia Flyers are about. They represent actual grit, and toughness, and missing teeth. It's bad enough that we have a coach who's from North Dakota. But now a fluffy mascot? How can Gritty represent the Flyers, when he wasn't even on the 1975 team?
But don't take my word for it. Listen to Ed Snider's grandson, who wrote for the Inquirer op-ed page that Gritty misrepresents what the Flyers are about. I know whenever the Eagles are facing a big decision, the first question I ask is, "what do Leonard Tose's grandchildren think?"
I will, though, give Gritty a chance to prove himself to me, the way all new Flyers players do: By getting into a fight on the ice, and winning it. None of this T-shirt gun stuff.
Other Philly sports takes:
- For the last ten years, injured big men have been such an important part of the Sixers as a franchise that it was only a matter of time before they put one of them in charge. I'm okay with Elton Brand, though, as long as he doesn't have a Twitter account, a father, or a wife.
- How can the Phillies come back from this year's collapse? Once they've signed Bryce Harper, Manny Machado and Clayton Kershaw, it's simple: 1) Fire everyone, 2) bring back Larry Bowa as manager, and 3) Name Lenny Dykstra general manager.
- There is one thing I like about this Phillies team, though. Unlike the post-championship Eagles, there's no need for a wrenching, existential debate over whether it's okay to boo them this year.
- It's nice to have Jordan Matthews back on the Eagles, but as long as we're bringing back Chip Kelly-era wide receivers, why not Paul Turner? And of course, where's Riley Cooper? So sick of the double standards.
- Mychal Kendricks may be headed to jail, but I'll always appreciate that he used "cheesesteaks" as a code word for "kickbacks." He'll always be a True Eagle to me.
- Ava Graham tweeted recently that while "Angelo’s tweets are his own," he types some himself while while he dictates others. This makes one thing clear: Angelo could be president of the United States.
Angelo’s tweets are his own. Whether dictated to me or he writes his own (shocking I know) they are his tweets. He has been encouraged by me and many others to not read notifications bc it gets nasty. I will help him when he needs it but I would never do it without permission.— Ava Graham (@_avagraham) September 19, 2018
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