John Hardball: “Good to see everybody. Obviously, [we are] coming off a tough loss on Sunday and [are] disappointed by that. It was a hard-fought game even if the score doesn’t tell that story.
Despite the score, we fought hard. Our guys have character. They are mighty men, men of honor. They are a team and play like Ravens.
26-3! A Raven never quits. He keeps digging. He is a salvage expert. 29-10! If it is lost on the road, he finds it. If it feels sunk, he brings it up. If they are in the way, he moves it. 36-10! If he’s lucky, he will finish without injury, 35,000 feet in the air, he flies home where his fans may be waiting – the closest he’ll ever get to being a hero.
Hell, I don’t know why anybody would want to be a football player. Now you report to this locker room COOKIE!
Bo Tasmania: Coach, what the hell are you talking about?
John Hardball: Sorry guys…I was just caught up in the moment. I love that movie Men of Honor. When the odds are stacked against you, and injuries tempt you to quit, you stare adversity in the face and say, “Not a freakin’ chance!”
Deuce Stunningman: Wow coach! That was amazing! I’m like ready to run through the wall for Fox 43 now. Is it 43? Maybe that was the score? Of course I would feel even more motivated if they had some extra pizza in the media lounge.
John Hardball: Thanks Deuce. We’ll see what we can do about that but listen when we gain 8 yards on first down, please don’t say on the PA system that it was a gain of two, ok? I have a hard enough time as it is getting Cam to run the ball.
Deuce Stunningman: <Yuck-yuck-yuck> Word to your brother coach! I promise to keep it real and between those navigational buoys.
Gary Doleman: Speaking of running the ball coach I read just the other day that the Ravens rushing attempts are down 24% from last season. Now that is a measurably precipitous drop and after the investment Mr. Bisciotti has made in Ray Rice it is utterly preposterous that you allow this to happen. Can we expect more of Ray Rice in the near future?
John Hardball: Cam and I discussed that and he was concerned that the Texans would key on Ray and take him out of the game. Cam thought that by taking Ray out of the game himself, it might confuse the Texans.
Yamon Duffy: You know coach that is an absolutely BRILLIANT strategy but that said, did you consider running traps, counter trays, Milky Ways and gadget plays to disrupt the balance of the Texans’ front seven? I’ve noticed in the past that they are vulnerable when you cave the A gap, kick it out to the B Gap and then double back to the weak side C gap. It’s a tried and true approach that helps you scrape yardage off of the vacated flank of those zone-blocking schemes.
John Hardball: YA-MON! Is that you? Where have you been hiding?
Yamon Duffy: <blushing> I’m over at WNSW now Coach.
John Hardball: Seriously? Get the *$%* outta here! WNSW? Wow, I guess desperation makes for strange bedfellows, eh?
Chappy Chester: Harbs, look. Be cool about WNSW. We are after all, pioneers. Look, I know the strengths and weaknesses of every single one of these clowns in this room who wish they were half the journalist that I am. Hell I’ve forgotten more about sports than they’ll ever know. I get it right the first time and we break more stories than any other outlet here combined.
Have you seen our Twitter followers? We are absolutely CRUSH-ING all local media. We know it. They know it and now you know it.
John Hardball: Gee, I’m sure I’ll sleep better tonight knowing that.
Chappy Chester: Seriously JH. Many of these guys wish they had our reach and they should be embarrassed that they don’t given their deep corporate pockets. They are driven by greed. It’s in my Media Report Card. If you haven’t read it you should. It is MUST READING! Give me your cell number. We’ll be sure to send a text alert to you 24/7. You won’t even need an alarm clock.
Look can you handle the truth? Look around you. I know, I know, not as pretty a site as when you look at me but these people have been on my team, interviewed to be on my team, dreamt about being on my team or they have cross-pollinated in something I’ve touched because I am like the old Bell Companies for crying out loud! Are you with me? I reach out and touch all things that are sports in this town. Just ask the owner of King Beer & Spirits. I am the King of Sports Media. I AM THE KING OF SPORTS MEDIA! Didn’t you see that on TV?
So please don’t be chastising Yamon just because he came crawling all the way from the studios of CBC Radio on his hands and knees to our palatial estate on Hard Road just so he can be heard again. Others here are likely to crawl a similar path.
John Hardball: Thanks Chappy. Are you sure Yamon is being heard? Does anyone even listen to WNSW anymore? Never mind, don’t answer that, I already know the answer. Do you have a question for me Chappy?
Chappy Chester: (touches his hair) Yes, do you think I should go with the spikey, frosted tips again, or maybe let it down like Tony Montana in Scarface?
Will East: John, the defense is coming apart at the seams and there’s really no end in sight that I can see anyway. It’s a good thing that you have the bye this week to do a little self-examination and things like that.
John Hardball: Is that a question?
Will East: Of course, is that your answer?
John Hardball: I think it is, thanks for asking.
Benny Burrito: John I’m concerned about your personnel. How often do you discuss personnel with Ozzie? When I was a peer of Ozzie’s I was handcuffed by my owner down there in DC. Every good move we made was my doing and every bad move, well good ole Danny boy came knocking, managing his team like a bad fantasy owner. Does Ozzie dictate to you or is it more collaborative? I know that Ozzie is the king and that DeCostas guy is a wannabe king. If Ozzie ever decides to step down, I can jump in and do this job. I’ve learned a lot as the highest rated sports talk analyst in town, I’m sure you’ve been listening. Everyone does. <yuck-yuck>…<cackle-cackle> <hee-hee-haw-haw-haw>
John Hardball: You’re going to try and make me say a word again, and I’m not going to be able to think of one, but I think we do a really great job of handling everything in a really challenging environment. There’s a lot that goes into this thing, there’s a lot of moving parts, and we do the best we can. That said we might have an opening to the assistant of the assistant of our Director of Analytics.
Forrest Chump: Please, enough of this “Who struck Joe”, John. But now that you mention it, what is Sandy Weil, the Ravens answer to Moneyball, doing so far for you this season?
John Hardball: Is this another of your “Cheap bleachers after shots” or whatever you call that Forrest? Seriously, who whizzed in your Wheaties over there at WNSW. A little Cymbalta for those boys who never stop talking about everyone else, please.What does WNSW stand for anyway? We Never Stop Whining?
Deuce Stunningman: Hey, did they name this fast approaching hurricane after Sandy Weil?
Yamon Duffy: I could have been that analytics guy Harbs! I put the “A” in analytics. Moneyballs, meatballs, matzo balls…you want balls, I’ve got ‘em. I can’t believe you guys didn’t even call me for that job! Just give me a shot. PLEASE help get me out of this broken down frat house on Hard Road.
Bennie Burrito: Seriously Yamon? I’m the guy John. I could get that Kemoto guy playing better. C’mon man…would you, would you take Pig Latin School and Toeson U over Notre Dame? The San Francisco 49ers? The Washington Redskins?
Deuce Stunningman: (jumping up and down, raising hand) I’m your guy! Did you know I once tackled Lawrence Taylor? I really, really, really, really did. And just remember Harbs, I love you madly!
NOTE: In the sports media business, sometimes things are taken too seriously. In Baltimore County, the dedicated employees of 24×7 Networks, LLC cover the Baltimore Ravens and the press conferences, which are sometimes amusing. These are my observations of personalities. The press conference above never happened and does not depict any actual person or event.