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Thread: Boston Herald APOLOGY to the Patriots.

  1. #1
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    Boston Herald APOLOGY to the Patriots.

    Hello all,

    Here's something for all the Hatriots who enjoyed wallowing in the accusations first printed by the now humiliated Boston Herald.

    http://bostonherald.com/sports/footb...ome&position=0

    “Sorry, Pats.”


    On Feb. 2, 2008, the Boston Herald reported that a member of the New England Patriots [team stats]’ video staff taped the St. Louis Rams’ walkthrough on the day before Super Bowl XXXVI. While the Boston Herald based its Feb. 2, 2008, report on sources that it believed to be credible, we now know that this report was false, and that no tape of the walkthrough ever existed.

    New England Patriots [team stats] owner Robert Kraft complimented the Boston Herald today for apologizing for a story that said his team videotaped a St. Louis Rams walkthrough before the 2002 Super Bowl.

    He’s “very disappointed,” though, that the newspaper “wrote a story that was completely false and unsubstantiated,” Kraft said in an interview with The Associated Press.

    He also said he doesn’t know why former New England video assistant Matt Walsh didn’t refute the story soon after it came out on Feb. 2, the day before the Patriots lost the Super Bowl to the New York Giants, 17-14, ruining their quest for an unbeaten season.

    “I must compliment the Boston Herald for doing what is unprecedented in terms of recognizing their error in a major way,” Kraft said. “I’m really delighted with that, but I wish it never happened.”

    The apology came a day after a meeting between NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and Walsh.

    “I think I speak for all Patriot fans,” Kraft said. “We’re relieved that this is over and you see that this is nonsense and we were unfairly accused and we’re moving on.”

    Kraft spoke by telephone before Sen. Arlen Specter said in Washington that he wants an independent investigation of the Patriots’ taping of opposing coaches’ signals similar to the Mitchell Report on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball.

    Patriots spokesman Stacey James said the team had no immediate comment on Specter’s remarks.

    Walsh told Goodell he did not tape the walkthrough and had no knowledge that any other Patriots employees did so, Goodell said. The commissioner also indicated he considered the investigation over after meeting with Walsh on Tuesday.

    Goodell fined coach Bill Belichick $500,000 and the team $250,000 and took away a first-round draft pick this year after an investigation found the Patriots violated league rules by taping New York Jets [team stats] coaches on the sideline during the season opener.

    Kraft said he didn’t think the investigation that began then would leave a lasting stain on the club.

    “I was unhappy with what transpired in the fall, the actions of some of our employees, and we were penalized severely for that,” he said. “We said back in September that we had disclosed all of our actions as an organization to the league. You can see this is true.’

    “The erroneous story really led to a second round of inquisitions after September, and it really was a distraction. The sad part (is) that it took away from an 18-0 Super Bowl season.”

    The Herald’s story cited unidentified sources and was released Feb. 2.

    In the apology, published in the newspaper’s Wednesday edition and posted on its Web site, the Herald said the story was based on sources “it believed to be credible.”

    “We now know that this report was false, and that no tape of the walkthrough ever existed,” the paper wrote.

    “We should not have published the allegation in the absence of firmer verification. The Boston Herald regrets the damage done to the team by publication of the allegation, and sincerely apologizes to its readers and to the New England Patriots [team stats]’ owners, players, employees and fans for our error.”

    The newspaper featured a front-page headline reading: “Sorry, Pats.” It placed the three-paragraph apology on the back inside page of the newspaper.

    Cheers haters,

    Korbel
    Last edited by korbel; 05-15-2008 at 03:23 PM.
    Korbie: of the Boston Red Sox Nation...the NBA Champion Boston Celtics Pride...and...the New England Patriots Dynasty!

  2. #2
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    This too,

    http://bostonherald.com/sports/footb...icleid=1094171

    "Nobody wins this one"

    WASHINGTON - So let’s get this straight: Patriots [team stats] employee Matt Walsh claimed to have passed on information about the St. Louis Rams walkthrough, but he did not videotape them. And after doing his best to sweep this matter under the rug, the esteemed commissioner of the NFL decided to drop in this little nugget like a throwaway line on a postcard.

    Weather’s beautiful. Wish you were here.

    “He does have some important things to say about walkthroughs,” Republican senator Arlen Specter said of Walsh yesterday at The Capitol, where the two met on Tuesday. “For example, he was there and he was questioned by a coach (Brian Daboll, now with New York Jets [team stats]) about what happened in the walkthrough.

    “The coach questioned Walsh about it and made some diagrams about it. It wasn’t a casual thing. It was a matter of some importance.”

    Not here. Not in New England, now the official home of yahoos, hero worshipers and gutless suck-ups. To this entire group, it was all about whether there was a tape; anything else doesn’t matter so much.

    In the interest of disclosure, let’s again make something clear here: The Herald screwed up, and we screwed up big time. We told you there was a tape of the Rams walkthrough before Super Bowl XXXVI, and there is no tape. We deserve every bit of criticism we get for that one.

    All together now: It is what it is.

    Now let’s get to the stories behind the story, the stuff nobody wants to talk about for fear of being exposed. The media is a sordid business.

    Professional and personal relationships frequently collide. Patriots coach Bill Belichick gives Christmas gifts and holiday cards to some members of the media, cyanide-tipped glares to others. You’re either a Belichicklet or you are not, and there is no base-level membership.

    If you’re going to buy in, you have to sell out.

    Thanks but no thanks.

    As you are a member of the public, we strongly urge you to review all media stories (particularly this continuously developing one) with a cynical and skeptical eye. Try to discern which members of the media show up to work wearing Patriots Super Bowl jackets, and which of your pathetic, repressed middle-aged neighbors wear their Tedy Bruschi [stats] jerseys on Sundays.

    Meanwhile, take time to wonder if those same neighbors are blogging and posting on message boards while spending hours on hold so they might hear their voices on the radio.

    Listen, mom!

    Just like karaoke!

    These are the people who preserve the sports fantasy world that justifies their own sorry existence.

    As for the Pats - and we’re not talking about the players here - do not let them fool you. For an organization so accomplished - and that it is - it never can seem to get enough love. Publicly, the Pats will make it seem as if they regard media coverage as a distraction and obstacle to their on-field success. Privately, the Pats will be upset when they feel the Red Sox [team stats] are getting too much coverage, regardless of which team has won more titles in the past four years.

    Nice strategy there.

    Talk about being insecure.

    Somewhere along the line during this Golden Era of Boston sports, maybe we all went soft. In the past year or so, the Pats have been fined and stripped of a first-round draft pick, had two players arrested for drug possession and another suspended for the use of human growth hormone. Then the Pats went out and lost one of the biggest games in the history of professional sports against a team they were favored to beat by two touchdowns.

    Cheers again boys,

    Korbel




    tmassarotti@bostonerald.com
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    Korbie: of the Boston Red Sox Nation...the NBA Champion Boston Celtics Pride...and...the New England Patriots Dynasty!

  3. #3
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    Hello all,

    http://www.bostonherald.com/sports/f...rts&position=0
    Tomase’s explanation

    Late in the 2006 season, I was having a casual conversation about the Patriots [team stats] when someone I trust threw out the following tidbit.

    “I heard the Patriots filmed the Rams’ final walkthrough before Super Bowl XXXVI,” he said.

    It was just a rumor, and certainly not actionable intelligence, as they say. He had heard it from a friend of a friend. I filed it away, and then forgot about it. Reporters hear stuff like that all the time.

    Little did I know that comment would resurface from a much stronger source in the days after the Patriots had been caught filming the Jets’ defensive signals in September 2007.3

    I still needed more, and I tried to get it. Two days before the Super Bowl, I finally believed I had it nailed that the Pats had indeed taped that walkthrough. I didn’t know what happened to the tape or if it ever found its way to the coaching staff, but I felt I had the basic story, and even though I didn’t feel great about going the anonymous source route, this one was ready for print.

    Turns out I could not have been more wrong. I regret it, and that’s something I’m going to have to live with for the rest of my life.

    There was no tape made of the walkthrough. Former Patriots video assistant Matt Walsh confirmed this in his meetings this week with the league and Sen. Arlen Specter. An internal investigation by the Patriots reached the same conclusion.

    Because I expect accountability of the people I cover, I must demand the same of myself. I owe that to both the readers of my stories and the subjects of my stories.

    While I have no regrets over going to print the day before the Super Bowl, this is a story I simply could not afford to get wrong. And I did.

    So what happened?

    First and foremost, this is about a writer breaking one of the cardinal rules of journalism. I failed to keep challenging what I had been told.

    I had repeatedly heard that this walkthrough had been taped, and from people I trusted. Eventually I accepted it as fact and stopped questioning the assertion.

    The confirmed presence of a member of the team’s video staff at the walkthrough reinforced my belief that it was filmed. Secondhand sourcing took on added weight. When I got word that other reporters had picked up the scent, it only steeled my resolve not to get beat.

    All of that said, I never expected to be running this story during Super Bowl week, but I opened the New York Times [NYT] on Friday, Feb. 1, and saw that not only was Specter complaining about the NFL’s investigation into the Patriots, but that the Times had tracked down Walsh, a former Patriots video assistant living in Hawaii who was suggesting he had more information on the team.

    Walsh’s name set off alarms. He worked for the Pats during the 2001 season and his name had been floated amongst the rumors. Many believed he had filmed the walkthrough.

    My determination to get the story had been re-stoked. I began reaching back out to sources.

    One that I trust said he had been told the walkthrough was taped. A second said he had been told the same thing, but neither had seen a tape.

    I already had been able to verify that a member of the team’s video staff had been setting up a camera at the walkthrough, but on the final, crucial point of whether the camera was actually rolling, I made a devastating leap of logic and assumed that’s what I was being told rather than confirming it explicitly. I considered the fact that it was taped unassailable.

    And this is the exact point at which the story broke down.

    I attended Roger Goodell’s state of the league address and asked him afterward if he had ever investigated allegations that the Patriots [team stats] had filmed the Rams’ walkthrough. He said it was the first he’d heard of it, though a day later he’d release a statement saying the league investigated the rumor months ago and believed it to be unfounded.

    We worked on the story throughout the day on Feb. 1, and by just before 9 p.m. felt we had a version on which we could call the Patriots for comment. The timing was another misstep. The call should have been made much sooner. I felt we had to know exactly what we were intending to print before trying to get a reaction. Patriots PR director Stacey James scrambled to find the right people, and eventually told us the coaches had no knowledge of it. The team was steamed, and I was told, “You’d better be sure.”

    Caught up in the moment, I was excited to break a big story, but I had been so wrapped up in the process that I hadn’t stepped back to consider the ramifications.

    “You’re really putting your neck out there,” one reporter friend said.

    “This isn’t just any story,” another counseled. “There’s no coming back from this.”

    For the first time, a pit settled in my stomach. That pit would become my constant companion for the next three months. I had no doubt the story was accurate when it ran, but now the enormity of what I had done was setting in. Journalism isn’t a popularity contest, but good Lord, this story was not going to be well received.

    And it wasn’t. Patriots fans howled. The team released the denial that it has stood by to this day. But even as the story mushroomed on Super Bowl Sunday, I still had no doubts.

    That feeling of certainty slowly eroded over the next few months as details of the walkthrough emerged. The league’s investigation determined there was no power to the cameras. A March 10 Boston Globe story made a compelling case that the walkthrough could only have been recorded in the unlikely event that Walsh used his own hidden camera.

    We reported many of these details along the way, but I never uncovered enough to convince us we had erred. Fearing you’re wrong and knowing it are two different things.

    By the time Walsh met with the league and revealed that he had no knowledge of the walkthrough being filmed, it was clear what we had to do. The paper issued a front-page apology Wednesday.

    At this point, I have to pause. There has been a clamoring for me to identify the sources used in my story. This I cannot do. When a reporter promises anonymity, he can’t break that promise simply because he comes under fire. I gave my word, and the day I break that word is the day sources stop talking to me.

    Another word on sources: The story mentioned only a single, unnamed source because in the end, while I had multiple sources relating similar allegations, I relied on one more than the others.

    I’ve had a lot of time to think about this story, and here are some conclusions I’ve drawn:

    I should not have written the story without seeing the tape or getting multiple, firsthand confirmations from members of the organization.

    No one forced me to write that story, and it’s important to note I do not believe I was ever lied to. I believe my sources intended to provide accurate information, and it was incumbent on me to vet it more fully.

    The Patriots [team stats] deserved more time to investigate and respond.
    The Point After:

    * + The Point After blog: A few apologies are in order

    jtomase@bostonherald.com
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    The Point After:

    * + The Point After blog: A few apologies are in order

    jtomase@bostonherald.com
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    What happens from here? I intend to continue covering the Patriots to the best of my abilities, and that means pursuing every storyline, good or bad. I have relationships to mend within the organization and with my readers. The process of regaining your trust will not be an easy one.

    At the end of the day, I’m human, and humans make mistakes. Mine happened to be very significant and very public, and it’s something that will always be with me.

    I’m confident it will make me a better reporter. Last year, Patriots safety Rodney Harrison [stats] pulled me aside to discuss a story he believed had unfairly attacked him. He felt it had gotten personal and wanted me to put myself in his shoes.

    I thought I knew where he was coming from, but in reality I didn’t. Now I do. This perspective will only help moving forward.

    I take immense pride in what I do and the paper I work for. I truly believe it’s a privilege to serve as a link between the fans and their team.


    On Feb. 2, I let you all down. Today I hope to begin the long road back.

    END OF ARTICLE.

    So what we have here is a writer getting a lot of hearsay from unnamed "reliable sources", about a potentially big sports story centering on the top NFL team with the huge potential interest and profits that brings, failing to get concrete evidence but publishing largely because he didn't want to be preempted by another publication though he never had more than hearsay.

    So far Bob Kraft, owner of the new England Patriots seems to just wants this whole episode to end. That's understandable since the Patriots were found guilty of taping in the first Jets game in 2008 and taking action against the author or the paper is a no win situation. But make no mistake. This author has disgraced himself and it would be entirely appropriate for him to face some kind of punitive action up to losing his job...as he probably has.

    Just disgraceful,

    Korbel
    Korbie: of the Boston Red Sox Nation...the NBA Champion Boston Celtics Pride...and...the New England Patriots Dynasty!

  4. #4
    Meanwhile, take time to wonder if those same neighbors are blogging and posting on message boards while spending hours on hold so they might hear their voices on the radio.
    Please note the irony.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustBob
    Please note the irony.
    Hello JB,

    So, you have nothing of any value to add...again.

    Cheerio,

    Korbel
    Last edited by korbel; 05-18-2008 at 08:00 AM.
    Korbie: of the Boston Red Sox Nation...the NBA Champion Boston Celtics Pride...and...the New England Patriots Dynasty!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Korbel
    Hello JB,

    Nothing of any value to add...again.

    Cheerio,

    Korbel
    Good answer Korbel. That just about says it all in reference to Bobby.

  7. #7
    Herald is garbage..at least now. Thomase writes and article against the home team the day before the biggest game in New England area sports history...and then it is false. Surely a distraction and at least a factor in the loss. I don't know how this guy is still allowed to exist in the Boston area. All of his recent articles have many negative comments against him. When they turn off the comments as a result, people begin to post comments pertaining to Thomase on other reporters stories(rightfully IMO).

    Blows my mind that he put out such a false story against the home team the day before the Super Bowl and still has a job in this town.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Montreal Moose
    Herald is garbage..at least now. Thomase writes and article against the home team the day before the biggest game in New England area sports history...and then it is false. Surely a distraction and at least a factor in the loss. I don't know how this guy is still allowed to exist in the Boston area. All of his recent articles have many negative comments against him. When they turn off the comments as a result, people begin to post comments pertaining to Thomase on other reporters stories(rightfully IMO).

    Blows my mind that he put out such a false story against the home team the day before the Super Bowl and still has a job in this town.
    Hello Montreal Moose,

    Well, I don't know if this story affected the Patriots on the "Big Day"...maybe. But the feeling with this fool of a writer is that the Herald is trying to save some face by not just dumping him as if the paper had nothing to do with the bogus story. But Tomase has zero credibility and that will obviously be a huge burden to the Herald. So I think cutting him loose is only a matter of time. The only question is will he sneak out or will the fans have a chance to show what he really means to them?

    Tar and feathers now on sale,

    Korbel
    Korbie: of the Boston Red Sox Nation...the NBA Champion Boston Celtics Pride...and...the New England Patriots Dynasty!

  9. #9
    Probably all lies, I'm sure someone will be apologizing soon.

    EX-PAT: BELICHICK IS PRACTICE CHEAT

    May 23, 2008 -- Bill Belichick and the Patriots violated league rules by using players on the injured reserve list in practices, a former New England lineman said yesterday.

    Ross Tucker, a former offensive lineman who played for five teams in a seven-year NFL career, reiterated his contention that the Patriots used injured players illegally during an interview on ESPN's "NFL Live." Tucker first wrote about it last week on SI.com.

    Former Patriots video assistant Matt Walsh, in a meeting with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell last week, said that a Patriots player on injured reserve practiced when he wasn't allowed to in 2001. The NFL said it would investigate the claim.

    Tucker told "NFL Live" that Belichick will do anything he can "to get an advantage."

    Tucker also added that using a player on injured reserve in practice was of "minimal" benefit.

    Last Friday, in an article published on SI.com, Tucker wrote that: "I had heard the Patriots did this before I signed with them in 2005 and I saw it firsthand during my time there. I asked veteran receiver Troy Brown about it one time and he responded, 'Every team in the league does that.' I quickly let him know none of the three teams I played for previously had done so.

    "Basically, the Patriots would put a player on IR, knowing it meant he couldn't play in a game or practice with the team for the remainder of the season. By skirting the rules and practicing him anyway, it allowed them to develop his skills during the year. A side benefit is that they were also able to give some of the older players less repetitions and, therefore, additional rest."

    Goodell said the NFL would investigate the IR allegations, The Patriot Ledger of Quincy, Mass., reported.

    Tucker played with Washington, Dallas, Buffalo, New England and Cleveland during his career. He currently writes for SI.com and hosts a show on Sirius satellite radio.

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