Jets + Giants = Subway Series?Let’s try to keep our enthusiasm in check here, but right now it looks like the two best teams in the NFL play in the same building. Are you prepared for a Jets-Giants Super Bowl?
The Giants: One Month Later
On the approximate one-month anniversary of their unbelievable victory in Super Bowl XLII (yes, we’re still reveling), we decided to revisit some key New York Giants players and coaches and look at how their lives have changed. The main undercurrent: redemption. Instead of being unknown or disliked, they’re now widely known, widely praised, and, for the most part, a hell of a lot richer. —Dan Amira
in other news
Plaxico Burress to Score a Book DealThe first of the post–Super Bowl book proposals is being shopped around by agents, on behalf of Plaxico Burress. Burress, as if you could forget, is the receiver who caught Eli Manning’s winning touchdown pass in the end zone of this year’s big game, leading the Giants to victory. Though it will be about his whole life, the tome will probably focus on this season and the Super Bowl. Which basically means, he’s selling it based on his big catch. Most sports books have limited appeal, according to the Post’s Keith Kelly, so sources expect Plaxico’s deal to be in the mid–six figures. “To do a Super Bowl book, you have to have it out right away,” one publisher (who said no to it while the price was still $100,000) told Kelly. Agents expect the bidding on the proposal to be done today. We love Plaxico, but we have to say, if there’s going to be a book about a catch from this Super Bowl, we’d rather see one about David Tyree’s amazing swanlike snatch after Eli Manning made that amazing escape from the Patriots’ defensive line. We can just see the dramatic, airborne cover image now. And the title! The Helmet Catch; Or, How I Saved the Giants in the Super Bowl Shortly Before Landing WWF Style on Rodney Harrison’s Knee.
His Story [NYP]
A Brief Conversation With Alex RodriguezNew York ran into Alex Rodriguez at last night’s Gucci event for UNICEF. His trademark boyish skin was looking, as you can see, a little orange even for him. But it may have been because we asked him about the Mets scoring pitcher Johan Santana from underneath the Yankees’ noses, and he was blushing with, um, goodwill. His response:
“Johan Santana. I love him. I think it was a wonderful move for the Mets. I love all this great energy that’s happening in New York, with the Giants winning the championship, with the best pitcher going to the Mets, and the Yankees keeping all their great, young, wonderful players. It’s going to be a great year.”
Young players are wonderful, aren’t they? Man, and you thought good sportsmanship in baseball was dead.—Jada Yuan
the sports section
Confetti and Courage: Video From Today’s Giants ParadeIf you missed some of the footage of the Giants’ victory parade today on television, New York’s Tim Murphy went on location to the Canyon of Heroes (a.k.a. lower Broadway in Manhattan) to gather some of the overwhelming fan joy into one short video. Click above to watch as children admit to playing hooky and streaking in celebration, Tim admits to not knowing who Osi Umenyiora is, and some extremely excited people admitted that, yes, Eli Manning is officially a New Yorker.
Giants’ Victory Parade [NYM Video]
Bloomie and McCain: A Ticket Made in Independent Heaven?John McCain may or may not ask Mike Bloomberg to be his running mate. Harvey Weinstein belted out “New York, New York” at his daughter’s 10th-birthday party at Spotlight Live. Recently married Vogue editor and socialite Lauren Davis wants to find a “gestational carrier” for her baby. First daughter Barbara Bush watched the Giants win at the Village Pourhouse with 40 friends. Josh Hartnett went to Freemans and the Beatrice Inn on Thursday, while Helena Christensen just went to Freemans. Andy Samberg went to BAM to watch harpist girlfriend Joanna Newsome perform.
On Victory Monday, Bloomberg Keeps His Eyes on the Convention Prize
Eliot Spitzer declared last week that the clock had run out on plans to expand the Javits Center, but Mayor Bloomberg — jazzed by the Giants’ comeback win — today said that the city’s hunt for a bigger convention center is far from over. After rhapsodizing for minutes at a press conference about how “Big Blue came back” in Arizona, Bloomberg took Spitzer’s Javits announcement last Thursday (“that chapter has closed”) as just another stall. Even if Javits doesn’t expand north because construction has gotten too expensive and at-capacity hotels have gotten too stingy to finance expansion with a surtax, the mayor says we need a bigger trade-show space if we want to keep pace with other cities. “The city could use a much-expanded convention center,” the mayor said. “I looked at the stadium in Glendale, Arizona, where one end creates a whole convention center and kept saying we could have had something like this in New York City.” So will he pursue a convention project in another borough — perhaps the oft-invoked Sunnyside rail yards? “If you want to look where else it might be, look at where mass transit goes,” he offered. “Though some cities do have convention centers outside the city.” Given the mayor’s determined tone, the official reason for the press conference — naming the hard-driving Seth Pinsky to head the city’s Economic Development Corporation, which steers big projects — could be the start of a something big. —Alec Appelbaum
the sports section
Happy Giant Monday
Last night, only moments after the Patriots stuttered out their last plays in Super Bowl XLII, the shouts began. From our window facing East 14th Street, we started to hear chants of “Eli! Eli! Eli!” A communal roar echoed out of bars like the Blarney Cove, Otto’s Shrunken Head, and Mona’s. A few minutes later crowds poured out of Stuyvesant Town and Alphabet City, walking down the street towards the First Avenue L stop. They whooped, they chanted — we even saw one guy dive tackle a friend into the (hard-looking) sidewalk, screaming “PLAXICO!”
This morning, when we woke up, we picked up the Daily News. Not being from New York originally, we’ve never really understood the rationale behind the “commemorative covers” that the tabloids put out sometimes. Do people in the city really have walls covered with Daily News and Post covers? But when we unfolded the paper to check out the giant photo of Eli Manning clutching the trophy, with a yell of triumph on his face, we thought to ourselves: “Huh. We’d better save this one.”
Anyway, if tomorrow is Super Tuesday, today has definitely got to be Giant Monday. Leave us some comments! We want to hear where you were last night when Plaxico Burress caught the touchdown pass with 35 seconds to go, and what you did when Manning escaped from the Patriots’ clutches to make that longshot pass to David Tyree. Oh, and which Super Bowl ad was your favorite, because ours was totally that Coke one with the Macy’s parade balloons
Related: Underdog: The Rise of Eli Manning
the sports section
Giants Win!In one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history, the New York Giants just toppled the undefeated New England Patriots, 17-14. The turning point of the low-scoring game was a set of dramatic moves by Giants quarterback Eli Manning in the late fourth quarter, culminating in a comeback touchdown pass to receiver Plaxico Burress with 35 seconds to go. In the closing ceremony, Manning was just named MVP.
If you’re still watching TV to get your post game recap, for the love of Eli, turn it off and go outside right now. That’s where the fun is!
Click here to read all of our in-love-from-afar Manning coverage.
Anderson Cooper and Ryan Seacrest: Messaging Buddies
In the above video, found for us so cleverly by Soup Cans, you can watch a (shakily filmed) segment of Kathy Griffin’s latest comedy routine. In this portion (click above to view), she reveals that while she was co-hosting a New Year’s Eve Times Square special with Cooper, he spent some time sending gossipy texts about her to none other than one of her favorite targets of ridicule, Ryan Seacrest. Apparently they are text buddies. Which means, and we’re just guessing here, that they’re probably IM buddies, too! So, because it’s Friday, we’ve gone and imagined up what we think is probably an extremely accurate imaginary IM conversation between CNN anchor Anderson Cooper and American Idol (and Super Bowl) host Ryan Seacrest:
HanginWithMrAnderson: DOoooooooood whasssup
OhSayCanYouSeacrest: whatchoo up to
HanginWithMrAnderson: nothin man getting psyched for the superbowl
OhSayCanYouSeacrest: hell yeah you watchin me?
HanginWithMrAnderson: don’t tell the old ball and chain but I laid $500 on the g-men
OhSayCanYouSeacrest: word go jints
OhSayCanYouSeacrest: tough to stop brady and moss tho
HanginWithMrAnderson: stopping moss won’t be a problem with that pass rush
new york fugging city
The Fug Girls: But Who Do You Take Home to Mama AFTER the Super Bowl?With Super Bowl Sunday looming, football pundits worldwide are typing their fingers to the bone predicting who will step up, who will choke, and which commercials will be the most buzz-worthy. Sure, football is a group sport and there’s no “I” — or “Eli” — in “team,” but we can’t help boiling down the big game to its most fascinating matchup: the budding legend versus the legacy kid. How do Tom Brady and Eli Manning stack up, and more important, which one looks better in spandex? Let us be your guides.
TABLOID APPEAL: Tom Brady has been all over the rags this year, thanks to his baby-mama drama with Bridget Moynahan and his ensuing photo-friendly relationship with Gisele. Whereas we only know from Wikipedia that Eli Manning is engaged; “Giants QB Really Digs College Sweetheart” probably won’t move any magazines unless he knocks her up with some baby joy. At Tom Brady’s house.
Advantage: Tom. Unless you prefer keeping your private life private, but where’s the fun there?
the sports section
Can Eli Manning Save the Stock Market?It’s another bum Monday on Wall Street, and market watchers are glumly certain that when the Fed meets on Wednesday, they’ll bow to pressure and offer another rate cut, which could have some nasty long-term effects on the economy. So maybe they should hold off until after the Super Bowl? After all, according to Super Bowl Stock Theory by legendary Times sports writer Leonard Koppett, the market is likely to surge if the Giants beat the Patriots. Koppett’s theory holds that if the January Super Bowl winner was in the NFL before it merged with the AFL in 1970, the market will rise. The Giants have been a part of the NFL since 1925; the Patriots joined the AFL in 1960. If the Patriots win, the theory holds, the market will drop. We have no idea why this is, but according to Business Week, the Super Bowl hypothesis has had a 75 percent success rate. Which means that if they win, the Giants will not only be saving New York’s sports record; they might save America, and by extension, the global economy, from a terrible recession! But, you know, no pressure or anything.
The Super Bowl Stock Indicator [Business Week]
What the Fed is considering at its meeting. [Reuters]
Related: Underdog [NYM]
the sports section
So What Have Tom and Eli Been Up to Lately?So the week is drawing to a close, and we’re just beginning the ten-day countdown to the Super Bowl. Sports fans are stocking up on beer and flat-screen TVs. Spouses and roommates of sports fans are watching Rachael Ray to see what they should cook next Sunday. And gay people, well, they’re starting to finally pick up on the fact that there’s something going on. But what have Giants quarterback Eli Manning and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady been doing? It would be a great insight into the interior mental workings of those two pivotal players to see how they are spending their final days before the contest. If only we knew.
Oh, just kidding. As if the press would let either of them out of their sight for a minute this time of year. We know exactly what they’ve been doing, and, indeed, it does tell us something about the two athletes.
• Tom Brady got rid of that scary orthopedic boot he was wearing earlier in the week, just in time to stay out late at downtown hot spot Butter and hang out with Gisele and her ex-boyfriend Leonardo DiCaprio. [Boston Herald]
Giants Player Has ‘Abandonment Issues’New York Giant Osi Umenyiora, who is dating Victoria’s Secret model Selita Ebanks, says he’s a difficult guy to love because he has “abandonment issues.” Andrew Giuliani, son of Rudy, was arrested for doing 39 mph in a 30 mph zone in Florida. An upcoming reality show on the Mojo Channel forces a handful of semi-prominent New Yorkers to survive without their cell phones and computers. Julia Stiles sat down and ordered a bunch of food at Indochine but requested that it all be doggy-bagged so she could take it home. CNN has been getting better daytime ratings than MSNBC over the past two months, though Fox News still does better than both. Georgina Chapman on fashion: “I’m like a magpie. I like anything that sparkles.”
the sports section
Eli Manning Wins One for the GeeksThe main story line going into the Giants-Packers NFC Championship Game at Lambeau Field revolved around Eli Manning: Had he really turned the corner during the final game of the regular season against the Patriots, or was his solid — even superlative — postseason play thus far merely a tease?Lost in all that was the fact that Manning’s opponent under center had also turned his own corner this year. After breaking the all-time interception record last year, Brett Favre led the Packers to their best season in years by finally learning how to not be a hero — that is, play within himself and resist the moon-shot interceptions that have plagued his whole career.
The ‘Post’ Has a Giant, Crazy CrushOkay. We love the Post. We really do. And not even just the ironic way we “loved” it yesterday when a homeless person in a wheelchair was masturbating on the subway while we were on our way to work, and his shoe fell off and nobody on the train even noticed. Like, we actually look forward to the Post every day. But we have to say, there’s something a little demented about its Giants coverage. At the beginning of the week, the tabloid devoted its entire cover to a Jessica Simpson look-alike, who they claim distracted Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo into losing Sunday’s game (Romo, for those of you lucky enough not to know, is dating the real Simpson and she’s been credited with giving him bad luck when she attends games). This one stunt wasn’t enough, though. They took the poor girl to New York this week on a victory tour, with an online video on Tuesday and another article on Wednesday.
And now today, the paper has another superstitious trick up its sleeve. After reports that the manager of a TV station in Green Bay, Wisconsin, will yank Eli Manning’s favorite show, Seinfeld, from the airwaves while the Giants are in town to play the Packers, the Post talked Jerry Seinfeld himself into sending the Giants quarterback a complete DVD set. Seinfeld said he’d also be “dispatching George Costanza to be the new traveling secretary for the Packers.” (Those of you who are fans of the show will get the reference.) It’s funny coverage, sure, but it’s just kind of getting lazy at this point. In fact, one of the “Giants fans” they quoted at the end of the article works for the Post. Come on, guys. Isn’t there a brilliant pun headline you could have come up with instead of all of this? Or maybe a Photoshopped picture of Tom Brady’s head on McLovin’s body?
YADDA YADDA YADDA [NYP]
Related Which Episode of ‘Seinfeld’ Should Eli Watch Before He Loses to the Packers? [Vulture]
Diane Sawyer Forgets to Ask Katie Holmes About the HubbaspermDiane Sawyer interviewed Katie Holmes on Good Morning America yet neglected to ask her about the rumor that she was impregnated with L. Ron Hubbard’s sperm. New York Giants Plaxico Burress, Antonio Pierce, and Ruben Droughns went to Home nightclub in Manhattan after flying back from Dallas and ordered $1,000 of Bacardi, vodka, and Champagne, but forgot to tip their waitress. Waiters at Brasserie 44 in the Royalton Hotel thought they discovered Frank Bruni’s notebook, but it turned out to belong to someone else (and they slipped in some Bruni ass-kissing to boot!). Jil Scott picked up a male model at an Allure fashion shoot and took him to Nobu. Keith Olbermann’s quote to Playboy that “Fox News is worse than Al-Qaeda” did not go over well with many of the magazine’s readers.
The Seth Tobias Case Gets (A Little Bit) HairierA gay porn star named Angel is now claiming that he used to shave deceased gay hedge-fund manager Scott Tobias’s genitals. New York Giant Michael Strahan said that he wouldn’t mind dating Tony Romo’s girlfriend, Jessica Simpson. Oprah Winfrey showed up to watch Chaka Khan’s Broadway debut in The Color Purple. Robert Kennedy wants Hillary Clinton to remain in the public life even if she loses her presidential bid. Donna Karan failed a bunch of her classes at Parsons, including typing and draping. Jim Neal is coming to New York to raise money for his Senate run in North Carolina (he’s gay!).
Chris Rock Has a Good Question About Giuliani“Everyone says Giuliani was great on 9/11,” said Chris Rock during his show at MSG on New Year’s Eve. “What about on 9/10?” Joshua Jackson refused to let anyone sit with him and girlfriend Diane Kruger at the Soho Grand’s New Year’s Eve party. ABC anchor Bob Woodruff has made a full recovery from his Iraq injuries and recently went skiing. Eddie Murphy’s ex-wife Nicole Murphy hung out at the Plumm with New York Giant Michael Strahan while Murphy was getting ready to marry Tracey Edmonds on an island in the South Pacific. Britney Spears’s latest team of lawyers dumped her after a “breakdown in communication.”
Underwear Model Hits the FloorA publicist for model Annabel Vartanian claims that the model fainted at a La Perla party because “she wore herself out,” not because she has an eating disorder. Kim Cattrall is donating all the furs she wore in the Sex and the City movie to PETA, which in turn will give them to charity. Cindy Adams is taking credit for breaking Enquirer’s John Edwards–is–having–an–affair story. East Village landmark dive bars Sophie’s and Mona’s are both going up for sale after the holidays. Police commish Ray Kelly says he won’t make a decision about running for mayor until after the presidential scrum plays out. Donald Trump will be David Letterman’s first guest back when he goes live on January 2. Model Selita Ebanks, who may have been dating James Blake, was at a Knicks game with Giants lineman Osi Umenyira.
Britney, Lindsay, Paris, You’re Fired!Donald Trump is trying to get Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan, and Paris Hilton to appear on his upcoming Celebrity Apprentice. Justin Timberlake hung out with a brunette at the Tribeca Grand. (Others say he hung out with six girls.) NBC co-chairman Ben Silverman is catching flack for not returning agents’ phone calls and for passing out fake NBC tattoos at a company retreat, but he doesn’t care about either. New York Giants co-owner Jonathan Tisch put up his Fifth Avenue bachelor pad for sale and will be renting a $75,000-a-month condo at Trump Park Avenue. Authorities are cracking down on the St. Tropez party scene and have recently broken up a cocaine and prostitution ring.
Tinz and Olivia Hate Each Other More Than They Hate GenocideTinsley Mortimer and Olivia Palermo hate each other so much they couldn’t jointly host a benefit for Darfur. John Mayer took Mandy Moore to lunch (at La Esquina) and Cameron Diaz to dinner (at Indochine) on the same day. New School president Bob Kerrey, a former governor and senator from Nebraska, might move back to run Chuck Hagel’s senate seat. Ivanka Trump instituted a “no midriff, no bikini bottom” rule for her October Stuff magazine cover. Former Jets QB Joe Namath is now a grandfather, though his daughter is only 16. Billy Joel thinks his Hamptons benefit concert was overpriced — and not that good. A Mr. Chow is opening in Vegas. Giants safety Will Demps is done with groupies. A Maxim writer thinks Sanjaya and Adrian Grenier are doppelgängers.
A Money-er Honey?CNBC “Money Honey” Maria Bartiromo is jealous of co-worker Erin Burnett because Burnett is becoming more popular than she is. An upcoming book about Katie Couric claims she planned to leave NBC a year before she actually did and that the staff of 60 Minutes thinks she’s a “lightweight.” State Senator Carl Kruger is not a fan of fellow Democrat Eliot Spitzer. Jeremy Shockey took a bunch of Giants teammates to Scores. The woman who blogged about Keith Olbermann’s bedside manners is no longer maintaining her blog. Naomi Watts finally gave birth. Nora Ephron has spent a lot of time giving her breasts a workout. Christie Brinkley is spending $10.9 million to buy the house in North Haven next door to the one where Peter Cook had an affair.
it just happened
Grown-Up Tiki Barber Signs With NBC
And now it’s official: Tiki Barber will become a television broadcaster. The Times is reporting that Barber, the Giants running back who retired from football at the top of his game, will join NBC, serving as a news correspondent for the Today show and a commentator for football broadcasts. Last month, David Amsden profiled Barber for New York, looking at why he wanted to leave football and why he wanted to go to TV. The answer? Because he realized it was time to grow up.
Tiki Barber to Join NBC’s ‘Today’ Show [NYT]
Tiki Barber: The Exit Interview [NYM]
the sports section
The Manning Connection: Giants in 2017!
After returning the opening kickoff of Super Bowl XLI for a touchdown last night, the Bears were on pace to score 1,800 — that’s MDCCC — points. This would almost certainly have been some kind of record. Unfortunately they weren’t able to sustain it, and — after the teams engaged in a fun impromptu fumbling contest — the game quickly settled into traditional S.B. fare: slow-ish, mediocre, almost enough to make you lose your Taco Bell Carne Asada Steak Grilled Taquitos. During the annual Janet Jackson “Scandalize the Heartland” Halftime Challenge, a giant shadow of Prince fingered his phallic guitar while the NFL embarked on its most ambitious attempt yet to answer the age-old question: How many fireworks do you have to shoot off before anyone starts to care that you’re shooting off fireworks? (Answer: Way more than they were shooting.) In the end, the Colts walked away with a handy XXIX-XVII victory. But the real storyline, and the one that most conveniently lends itself to our frankly rampant Giants-centrism, was quarterback Peyton Manning’s long-delayed holy ascension into eternal glory.
There’s Plenty of Bill to Go Around, BoysFormer DNC chair Terry McAuliffe says he once had a fight with Harvey Weinstein over Bill Clinton; Weinstein denies it. Madonna didn’t fire back at Angelina Jolie over her adoption comments, but she did defend Rosie O’Donnell. Speaking of which: Rosie and Howard Stern used to be enemies but are now friends. Macy Gray was almost arrested in Barbados for cursing on stage. Lindsay Lohan’s mom is not exactly the best role model for Lindsay. New York Giant LaVar Arrington, on the other hand, is a good role model. An aide of City Council Speaker Christine Quinn senses some vulnerability in Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi’s hold on his seat, and may run for it. Dolce and Gabanna have a pictorial spread in W that some say is a cheap knockoff of a spread Tom Ford had in the same magazine. Disgraced former Miss Nevada might bare all (or, at least, more than you’ve seen) for Playboy. Stephen Dorff uses text messaging to try to pick up Australian model Miranda Kerr. The son of John Phillips and brother of Bijou Phillips wants to be famous. Sharon Stone’s Basic Instinct 2 was proclaimed the “Worst-Reviewed Movie of the Year” by Rotten Tomatoes. George Takei is too old to run marathons anymore. Rev. Ted Haggard’s former male prostitute, Mike Jones, is writing a book. Liz Smith enjoyed Rupert Everett’s autobiography.
it just happened
Coughlin to Stay With GiantsGiants head coach Tom Coughlin will return to the Big Blue sidelines next season, the team announced today, despite speculation that Sunday’s playoff loss to Philadelphia would be his last game. If you’re keeping score, this marks the second time in recent months a local team has been forced to publicly declare that it wouldn’t be firing its coach. (You may remember similar drama in October with Joe Torre.) So will the next head coach to be retained against the odds please step forward? Not so fast, Isiah. —Joe DeLessio
Coughlin Gets One-Year Extension From Giants [ESPN]
in other news
Both New York football teams courteously did the right thing yesterday — for themselves, the city, the game of football, the moral order of the universe, and children around the world — and promptly got themselves knocked out of the playoffs. Neither game was particularly dramatic (surely anyone who suffered through the Eagles’ last-second victory over the Giants will agree that it was the least-exciting last-second victory of all time). But both were loaded with fascinating soap-opera subplots, and the teams lost in very different ways and taught us opposite lessons.
the morning line
Say It Ain’t So, Joe
• Because not enough Albany politicians are under indictment — only seven indictments among the city’s delegation in the last three years, for example — the Feds are now investigating State Senate leader and Republican top dog Joseph Bruno, along with his “private consulting business” and his love of the horseys. [AP, NYDN]
• As if Sheldon Silver would let Bruno have the spotlight alone. The Assembly speaker grabs some attention, too, thanks to the vote he controls on an obscure but powerful state board that’s scheduled to vote today and can make or break (or substantially delay) Atlantic Yards. To maximize the excitement, aides claim the speaker hasn’t even made up his mind yet. [amNY]
• We’re all for brawls on the NYSE trading floor, but choking a trader may be too much. Choking a trader because he’s a gloating Eagles fan and you’re the son of a legendary Giants owner, well, the jury is split on this one. [NYP]
• Police are helpless to identify the Asian man they found two weeks ago, clad only in pajamas, roaming the streets of the Bronx: John Doe has not been reported missing and doesn’t speak English. The police thoughtfully release the information that “the pajamas had the letters G-A-R-F-I” on them. Dare we guess the name might be “Garfield”? Cops. [WNBC]
• Meet Michael Ennes, who runs the “Four-Star Soup Kitchen” and feeds the needy with stuff like endives in basil vinaigrette, wine-simmered bison, and turkey with mango-ginger glaze. He also gives nutrition lectures, at which, the Times reports with uncharacteristic cruelty, “people dozed or babbled.” [NYT]