Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Hernandez Overshadows White House Visit

Aaron Hernandez kills himself in prison

It also comes the same day his former team is expected to be feted at the White House by President Donald J. Trump for winning the Super Bowl this year.

Related: Hernandez Jury Drops Ball 

He was already in jail for life.

Also see: Aaron Hernandez friend acquitted of murder in Odin Lloyd case

"For Patriots visit, Trump gets to show off role of fan-in-chief" by Annie Linskey Globe Staff  April 18, 2017

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump — America’s sports fan in chief.

Like many of his predecessors, the president sees himself as an avid sports fan, with several uniquely Trump twists: He’s the best golfer to ever live at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., according to rankings assembled by Golf Digest. He once owned a professional football team. His casinos hosted boxing matches, and Trump even joined in the body-slamming and other antics in the WWE wrestling ring.

Cozying up to Tom Brady and the Patriots Wednesday will give the president a brief reprieve from the turbulent news cycles of his administration.

As president, Trump has passed on the chance to throw out the first pitch for baseball’s Opening Day and did not fill out a March Madness bracket.

That sets him apart from his immediate predecessor, Barack Obama, who obsessed over the details, watched ESPN’s “Sports Center” at night, and once waited on Air Force One after the plane had landed at Joint Base Andrews so he could catch the end of Game Seven in the NBA finals. George W. Bush, too, set a high bar for presidential fandom as a onetime part owner of the Texas Rangers who displayed his collection of about 250 signed baseball cards.

Trump’s interest in athletics offers at least a partial look at how the 45th president unwinds. Even though sports tend to be more about work than pleasure, and nearly always have been connected in some way to the over-arching goal of advancing his brand, watching them is one of Trump’s few public leisure activities.

Trump also mixed politics with his friendships with Patriots owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick, and Brady. Trump’s annual Super Bowl parties at his Palm Beach golf club are legendary, where 300 to 400 people will gather to watch the game on huge screens, according to George Lombardi, a longtime Trump friend who is not related to the esteemed football coach. The vibe is light.

“You know how there is fake news? Trump is a fake sports fan,” said Mike Tollin, whose production company had exclusive rights to the United States Football League games. (Tollin later made a documentary about the downfall of the USFL, which Trump disliked.)

“His short attention span makes it difficult for him to really understand the ins and outs of a sport. And what goes on in between the plays. Or strategy. Or the nuance,” Tollin said.

But that’s not to say he was not paying attention: As the owner of the Generals, he noticed when the team’s television ratings were slipping and when one of his star players, who also happened to be one of his most expensive, was not making the big flashy plays Trump expected.

Herschel Walker, who reportedly scored a three-year, $5 million contract as a running back, complained to Trump that he wasn’t getting the ball enough during games. “I ranted and raved to our coach, Walt Michaels, but it wasn’t until I literally threatened to fire him that he got the point,” Trump wrote in his book “Art of The Deal.”

Trump also made his case in the press, calling the New York and New Jersey papers and sometimes using the pseudonym John Barron, to complain that Walker wasn’t getting the ball enough.

“It was accidental genius,” said Jeff Pearlman, who is writing an upcoming book about the USFL and is generally skeptical about Trump’s tenure as a team owner. But, he said, once Michaels made the change Trump suggested, the running back had “an amazing season.”

The players were at times baffled by their owner.

“I don’t always understand his motives,” former Boston College star Doug Flutie, who was Trump’s quarterback for a time, told the Los Angeles Times in 1985. “I haven’t been able to figure the man out. But I have a lot of respect for him.”

Trump’s interest in boxing was also rooted in business — he hosted celebrity matches at his casinos. But he seems to have a deeper appreciation for that sport, which fits his combative personality.

Trump’s passion for sports like golf and boxing puts him in the company of other presidents who favored individual sports. That passion tended to predict their styles in the White House, according to John Sayle Watterson, the author of “The Games Presidents Play: Sports and the Presidency.”

These include Woodrow Wilson, who played endless rounds of golf with his close confidants and had difficulty delegating big tasks to underlings. Another one was Jimmy Carter, he said, who enjoyed fly fishing and said his passion for it grew during his White House years.

Trump excels at golf and is the best of the 16 most recent presidents who played the game, according to rankings compiled by Golf Digest. The magazine awarded Trump the top slot because of his 2.8 Handicap Index and the fact that he has won 19 club championships.

Obama, who is ranked by the magazine as the ninth best presidential golfer, would play in part to get outside and enjoy the fresh air, a side benefit that Trump might now also be enjoying.

“Just the open space,” said Eric Schultz, a former Obama spokesman, explaining why Obama liked the game. “The freedom to move around and not be smothered by staff and the entire entourage that follows you as president of the United States. You can have some time to move and roam around.”

It was his safe haven

Honestly, I'm sick of reading about presidents and their goddamn golf games. Sorry.


Here is a front-page photo and an article to go with it:

"New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was spotted walking into the building Wednesday with banker Steven Mnuchin, according to a pool report. Kraft, who praised Trump before the Massachusetts primary, briefly spoke with Mnuchin before going upstairs around 2 p.m. Kraft did not answer any questions from reporters...."

Where are the protesters?

(Did you see who slipped in the back door?)

Also see:

Kraft attends exclusive Trump soiree in DC

The loyalty goes both ways.

Alan Branch says he’s skipping White House visit because of Trump’s sexist remarks

Are you still a fan (Thanksgiving was tough, too)?


Days after acquittal, Hernandez found hanged in his cell
Rate of inmate suicides remains high in Mass.

He's above the fold with O'Reilly (he's also the business section lead), and when you flip below:

An unprecedented day in Boston sports history

They look like business Partners!

Boycott, Tom Brady’s absence undermine stagecraft of Patriots’ White House visit

Didn't he skip the inauguration, too?

Aaron Hernandez and a sober truth about second chances

How could Aaron Hernandez throw it all away?

Days after acquittal, Hernandez found hanged in his cell

Aaron Hernandez’s suicide: Were there warning signs?

At his most recent trial, Aaron Hernandez rarely appeared down

‘I’m not happy about his death. It’s actually a shame,’ says South End murder victim’s father

Even death is powerless to halt double standard

A look at other notable prison suicides

Aaron Hernandez: A life squandered

In wake of Hernandez’s death, collectors flock to eBay to sell autographed items

To the end, we never quite figured out Aaron Hernandez

That's how most will remember him. 

Also see:

Gronk crashes Sean Spicer’s press briefing

‘Where’s Danny?’ asks Trump. ‘In the GYM!’ replies Amendola

"Worcester woman facing charges linked to murder of Lowell woman" by Andy Rosen and John R. Ellement Globe Staff  November 22, 2016

LOWELL — Family members of Gloribel Orengo packed a courtroom here Tuesday, sobbing and muttering during the arraignment of a Worcester woman accused of taking part in the fatal attack on the mother of four.

SeeWoman dies in Lowell after group fight

Middlesex prosecutors said Amirilies Huertas-Perez, 23, had hit the 44-year-old Orengo twice in the head with a full bottle of Hennessy cognac during a fight Saturday night at a Lowell house party that spilled out into the parking lot near the residence.

The victim may have been run over by a car as it ended, authorities said.

Huertas-Perez was charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon causing serious bodily injury. She was ordered held on $30,000 cash bail.

As Huertas-Perez was led away, Orengo’s family members could no longer contain their anger, raging at the suspect in English and Spanish despite the entreaties of a Lowell District Court officer.

Authorities continued to look for another suspect in the case: a man who was allegedly driving the stolen black Acura MDX that witnesses said hit Orengo as participants in the brawl drove away.

According to a police report, that suspect had escaped State Police after a 130-mile-per-hour chase that began on Interstate 495 in Boxborough hours after the altercation.

The car eventually crashed into a home, but police did not find the man.

Orengo’s family members said they were upset that Huertas-Perez was allowed bail....


Related‘She was the rock of the family’