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Dan Shaughnessy

Super Bowl falls to pieces

Email|Print| Text size + By Dan Shaughnessy
Globe Columnist / February 6, 2008

Picked-up pieces while wondering if anyone at the Super Bowl thought to get a photograph of John Hannah standing next to Joe Montana . . .

Bill Belichick's answer when asked about leaving the field early was vague and unsatisfying. "I wasn't really sure of the time. Everybody started on to the field," he said yesterday during a conference call. "There really wasn't much left at that point." There was one second left, and every photo of the Belichick-Tom Coughlin handshake shows an official standing between the coaches, speaking to Belichick. Belichick haters will use his premature departure as another example of Hoodie boorishness.

Please, no more requests for an autographed copy of the Globe's never-to-be-published "19-0: The Historic Championship Season of New England's Unbeatable Patriots." (Catchy title, no?) It was 75 percent done.

Wes Welker is the Patriots' answer to Bruce Hurst. Hurst was set to be named World Series MVP in 1986 when things fell apart for the Red Sox in the bottom of the 10th inning of Game 6 at Shea. Welker looked like a cinch for Super Bowl MVP before Eli Manning found Plaxico Burress alone in the end zone with 35 seconds left.

The Globe's talented Christopher L. Gasper has to be the only beat reporter in newspaper history to write his first losing game story at the Super Bowl. Gasper did a tremendous job for a guy who never had written about a hometown loss.

At 61, Coughlin becomes the oldest coach to win a Super Bowl.

Pop (culture) quiz: You might remember Three Dog Night's "Eli's Coming." Who wrote the song?

How does Junior Seau travel with all those hats? He said he has 350 lids, and most of them would need a hatbox or a trunk to stay in shape.

Personally, I thought Super Bowl XLII was better television than the last "M*A*S*H" episode.

Senator Arlen Specter worked on the Warren Commission, and before he's through, Mr. Single-Bullet Theory might be asking Belichick about grassy-knoll tapes. Any chance Matt Estrella and Abraham Zapruder are related? "Arlen Specter" is an anagram for "learn respect."

Canyon of Heroes or Canyon of Zeros? Depends on your perspective.

Ernie Accorsi went from Lou Gorman (Jeff Bagwell for Larry Andersen) to Red Auerbach just about overnight. In the middle of the 2007 season, the former Giants GM was being ripped for his costly acquisition of Eli Manning, but today Uncle Ernie is a Gotham genius. Eli had a better game than Joe Namath did in Super Bowl III.

Am I correct in noting that the commissioner neglected to mention the worthy losers when he was presenting the Lombardi Trophy to the Giants?

How'd you like to be Cooper Manning, the only brother without a Super Bowl MVP award?

You should see the Arizona natives when the temperature dips to 45 degrees. I saw a University of Phoenix Stadium employee wearing a ski mask on the morning of Media Day. The guy looked like he was working a playoff game at Lambeau Field.

David Tyree is a New York immortal on a par with Don Larsen.

Yesterday's New York Post headline: "BLUE DYNASTY?" Doubt it.

Since I was wrong about everything else, I might as well tell you that I have doubts about Randy Moss being with the Patriots in 2008.

If I'm a Giants fan, I still take Homer Jones over Plaxico.

Channel-surfing in my hotel room one night, I stumbled across CNBC's interminable feature on Bob Kraft ("Touchdown! The Patriots And the Business of Winning"), and by the time the piece ended, I was pretty sure Kraft was the most wonderful human being since Mother Teresa and possibly a more important world figure than Dr. Jonas Salk. Pretty sure the Patriots owner integrated the South also. Wow. The piece gave new meaning to "fawning."

All kidding aside, Kraft quietly did a beautiful thing last week. He granted a ticket request from Anne-Marie Greenberg, widow of the great Alan Greenberg (Hartford Courant), who died last March. Greenberg was a wonderful father, good company in the press box, and an underrated talent on the sports page. When Alan died, the Patriots said, "Let us know if there's anything we can ever do," and when Alan's son, Alex, wanted to go to the Super Bowl, Kraft did not forget the pledge.

Quiz answer: The late Laura Nyro.

Congratulations to Steve and Zak DeOssie. We should be done dissecting and analyzing the Patriots' loss just about the time Zak's first-born son wins a Super Bowl with the Giants 25 years from now.

Dan Shaughnessy is a Globe columnist. He can be reached at dshaughnessy@globe.com

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