Sportscenter is on to you, Owens and Moss!
Yesterday's 6:00 Sportscenter opened with a rundown of NFL Training Camps, and the lead story, of course, was Terrell Owens returning to the field after missing most of two weeks with a tweaked hamstring (note the asinine headline, "Owens Finally Returns to Practice). In response to a question that was likely somewhere along the lines of "So, how's that feud between you and Owens that we're praying occurs soon so we have shit to write about?" Bill Parcells responded,
"Can you get a little frustrated from time to time? Yeah, but that's all. We'll see. Things will work out. ... I don't want to jeopardize the early part of the season by making a mistake here. I really don't."
Hmm...if I didn't know any better, it's like he's saying missing training camp isn't catastrophic and that, while it's upsetting that Owens is hurt, he doesn't want the receiver to risk injuring himself further before the regular season starts.
Turns out, what the Sportscenter reporter took out of it was,
"Having played in a West-Coast offense his entire career, Owens will need as much time as possible to adjust to the Cowboys' new scheme, and not having him on the field is frustrating Bill Parcells."
What an awesome idea - ESPN can still lead with the nonexistent Owens / Parcells feud if it just pretends like stuff is a big deal! How come they're not covering the Belicheck / Teddi Bruschi feud in New England, or the Gibbs / Portis meltdown in Washington? Those are also players missing training camp due to injury, and therefore, their coaches' frustration equals a feud with the player to a degree worthy of being the lead story on Sportscenter.
Next up came a short piece on the newly-signed Matt Leinart in Arizona, followed by another volcanic eruption of a feud! Apparently, Randy Moss "expressed frustration" after being taken out of the Raiders' first preseason game in the middle of a first quarter offensive possession. ESPN jumped to a passive-aggressive conclusion that this meant that Moss is feuding with Coach Art Shell, and in response to a question likely similar to the one asked of Parcells, Shell answered:
"I made a decision to take him out. There was a time frame I had for him to play and that time frame had come. It was time to get him out of there."
Translation: "We'd prefer to be careful with a notoriously injury-prone receiver who is the most important player on our team and in whom we have a significant financial investment, so I took him out early in our first of four meaningless preseason games."
ESPN, however, saw it another way; while they didn't directly come out and say anything about a Moss / Shell feud, they innocently hinted at it with "it is unclear"s and "we'll wait and see"s, plus the mere fact that an occurrence that a coach directly deemed a nonissue found itself in the opening five minutes of Sportscenter suggests that ESPN disagreed and felt that it was noteworthy.
Long story short, Owens and Moss are both cancers whose constant negative influences on their teams are so severe, sometimes even the coaches cannot perceive it, nor does any evidence exist that anything is occurring in any way. Fortunately, Sportscenter is there for us to see through the ruse.