You saw it live or you saw Karen Kornacki blathering about it, or maybe you saw it on social media or Jim Rome has already released some sort of “hot take” on it.
But in case you missed it—in case you were “living under a rock” (fucking clichés—we’ll get to that)—here’s what happened:
After Seahawks’ cornerback Richard Sherman deflected an end-zone pass into the hands of a teammate for a 4th quarter, game clinching interception, he met with reporter Erin Andrews on the sideline and he spouted some real crazy, real aggressive shit.
It basically went like this:
Andrews: The final play, take us through it.
Sherman: (channeling one of WWE’s The Road Warriors) WHEN YOU TRY ME WITH A SORRY RECEIVER LIKE CRABTREE? THAT’S THE RESULT YOU GON’ GET! DON’T YOU EVER TALK ABOUT ME! (heavy panting. sexual. weird.)
Andrews: (remarkably nonplussed) Who was talking about you?
Road Warrior Sherman: CRABTREE! (duh) DON’T YOU OPEN YOUR MOUTH ABOUT THE BEST. OR I’MA SETTLE IT FOR YOU RILL QUICK. L.O.B! (which stands for Legion of Boom, which is funny in that the Road Warriors were also known as “Legion of Doom.” Get it?)
So he stomped off, and it was very awkward. And then, the INDIGNITY rained down. And it was great.
On social media, the reaction was mixed. Some people (me) thought it was hilarious. Here’s a dude—RAGING with adrenaline and God-knows what other sort of enhancers (Sherman has failed a drug test for the stimulant Adderall, before), channeling his inner-Hulk Hogan after an emotional ending that saw him being shoved in the face by the aforementioned Michael Crabtree after Sherman patted his butt in a “Hey man, nice effort” manner. (At least, that’s the way I saw it; I have no idea what Sherman may have said, though, or what his real intention may have been.)
Others, however—many, MANY others on Twitter—weren’t so kind. According to the unwashed masses, Sherman needs to “die,” “go back to Africa,” “catch AIDS (if he doesn’t already have it),” or just “kill his mother fuckign (sic) nigger self.”
On Facebook—where your mom’s college roommate is weighing in—the reaction was mostly, “Well THAT was uncalled for. Guess I’ll be rooting for the Broncos, now. Hey, look at this picture of my grandson eating a corn-cob. ADORABLE.”
To all of these people—those who both reverted to 1920’s southern hate-speak AND those who feel the need to switch allegiances based off of one hyped-up dude’s antics, I ask: are you fucking serious?
This did it?
This caused you to spew vitriolic, racist bullshit on Twitter or proclaim your newfound love of the Denver Broncos? All because Richard Sherman couldn’t censor himself?
You just watched 60 minutes of 22 men trying to kill each other. To decimate each other. To rip one another’s fucking heads off. THAT GOAL-LINE FUMBLE/NOT FUMBLE WHERE THE 49ER’S LINEBACKERS LEG BASICALLY CAME OFF MADE THEISMANN WINCE.
And yet here we are, completely APALLED by the professional-wrestling antics of the guy who basically just won the game.
Give me a fucking break.
Richard Sherman—as dumb as it may have been—had every right to shout whatever in the hell he wanted. If he woulda stood there and calmly said, “You know, it was a good game, Erin. They’re a great team. All we could do is give it 100% and play until the end. It ain’t over until the whistle blows. We just wanted to play our game and that’s all we can do. Protect the ball. Words. Cliches. You know what I’m sayin’?” that would have been fine, but it would have been boring as shit.
As sports fans, we CRAVE something new and interesting. So much of what athletes say is prepackaged, watered-down horse piss. It’s boring, and totally not worth sticking around for.
Instead, Sherman blew his stack, and goddamnit, that was so much more compelling. It doesn’t make him stupid, and it doesn’t make him a “nigger,” and it doesn’t mean that I have to root against the Seahawks now.
It means that he’s a real person who was very fucking excited, and I can’t blame him. His team just made it to the pinnacle of his existence. He had a major hand in that. Emotions are a tricky thing. I think he knows that. And he’s a smart guy. (Stanford, as I’m sure you know by now.)
I think he’ll have no serious regrets, no matter how much everyone wants him to.
At least I hope he doesn’t.