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A few post-Super Bowl thoughts

Posted by Matt Pepin, Boston.com Staff  February 8, 2012 10:26 AM

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Today, we make up for time lost during the blur that was the Patriots' latest journey to the Super Bowl, though we should emphasize that any run to a championship is really not time lost at all.

Truth be told, it is really time gained.

"I’d rather come to this game and lose than not get here," said Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in the aftermath of Sunday's 21-17 loss to the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLVI.

He's right, you know, because it takes months of work to get to position yourself for a championship, but only a few hours to actually win it.

-- With all due respect to Josh Beckett, he's not doing himself any favors when he glosses over the behavior of Red Sox players late last season by reminding us that the clubhouse should be sacrosanct.

If I were Beckett, I wouldn't be focusing so much on who ratted me out.

I'd be more focused on why.

But we'll get to that on Friday.

-- Tim Thomas is a terrific goaltender and an even better story, and he is entitled to believe whatever he wants to believe, say whatever he wants to say, support whomever he wants to support.

Our country, after all, is built on those kinds of freedoms and on that type of individuality.

But still, have we reached the point where absolutely everything must be politicized, including a cookie-cutter visit to the White House that is now considered part of virtually every notable American sports achievement?

I mean, if we start doing that kind of stuff, shouldn't fans start asking whether their quarterbacks, goaltenders and shortstops are Democrats or Republicans?

And yes, that all goes for anyone else - including Theo Epstein - who blows off the White House so as to (allegedly) make some kind of political statement.

-- Rob Gronkowski can dance all he wants and Gisele Bundchen can say whatever she pleases, though most of us certainly would have preferred that the Patriots had done more dancing in the end zone at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Still, if you're going to use your smartphone to take pictures and video, can you just keep it as a personal memento instead of trying to become the next Abraham Zapruder?

At some point, people need to be people, and not newborn puppies in the pet store window.

-- Paul Pierce is a terrific scorer and tremendous competitor who forever who won many of us over with his performance during the 2008 NBA playoffs, particularly when he went nose-to-nose with both LeBron James and Kobe Bryant - and beat them both.

But with or without the points, Pierce is not quite Larry Bird.

That reminds me: no matter how much Bird couched it in his ESPN interview with Bill Simmons, he absolutely, positively was taking a dig at James' shortcomings as a competitor.

And he's right to.

-- So let me get this straight: after trading away their starting shortstop, Marco Scutaro, the Red Sox are not going to use the money on a starting pitcher?

I didn't feel good about that in the first place.

So please tell me how I'm supposed to feel good about it now.

-- Bruins president Cam Neely didn't tip his hand during his weekly radio appearance yesterday on 98.5 The Sports Hub, but one has to believe that the Bruins are at least a little worried about Nathan Horton - and that finding some way to account for his absence is among their primary objectives before the Feb. 27 trade deadline.

Or am I missing something?

-- I don't care what the Celtics' record is in the last 10 games.

If I'm Danny Ainge and I have a chance to trade Kevin Garnett or Ray Allen for something remotely substantive before the All-Star break, I still do it.

And if Pierce is willing, I'd trade him, too.

-- The national bashing of Bill Belichick obviously gets old, but when Belichick blows off NBC following the Super Bowl, it only supports the notion that Belichick is a positively terrible loser who possesses no tact when things fail to go his way.

Belichick is one of the truly great coaches, to be sure.

But he has never, ever been a model of sportsmanship.

-- When Bob Kraft goes out of his way to remind everyone that the Patriots possess "two 1s and two 2s" in the upcoming NFL draft, is it foolish for people like me to think that the Patriots might actually use all of those selections rather than trade them out?

Or that they may even - dare we say - trade up?

-- Maybe it's just me, but the more I hear from people who covered Bobby Valentine in New York, the more I believe that Valentine might not be as polarizing as everyone makes him out to be.

And that those who dislike Valentine just tend to be quite vocal about it.

-- Finally, even in the wake of a Super Bowl defeat, let's remember that no American city ever has had a run quite like this one, which has produced 14 trips to the league semifinals or better and seven championships, including one in each of the four major team sports, since the start of the 2002 calendar year.

While there is no way of knowing how much longer this will all last, we continue to live in the true Golden Age of Boston sports.

Tony's Top 5

Favorite blog entries

5
The final chapter on Teixeira and How Red Sox pitchers work the strike zone Jan. 7, 2009 and July 17, 2009. Some actual reporting – an obsession with Mark Teixeira and the art of pitching.
4
For 2011 Red Sox, there was plenty of blame to go around Oct. 1, 2011. The disgraceful collapse of the Red Sox stoked the fire in all of us.
3
Behind Garnett and James, Celtics and Heat are digging in June 4, 2012. Improbably, the Celtics pushed the Heat to the limit.
2
Thrill is back for Patriots Jan. 30, 2012. Another Super Bowl has even Bill Belichick musing.
1
You’ve got to believe June 15, 2011. On the morning of Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, we all had reason to believe.
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Updated: Mar 1, 07:24 AM

About Mazz

Tony Massarotti is a Globe sportswriter and has been writing about sports in Boston for the last 19 years. A lifelong Bostonian, Massarotti graduated from Waltham High School and Tufts University. He was voted the Massachusetts Sportswriter of the Year by his peers in 2000 and 2008 and has been a finalist for the award on several other occasions. This blog won a 2008 EPpy award for "Best Sports Blog".

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