New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman has been roasted for some of the team’s recent high-profile personnel decisions.
Between passing on a quarterback in last year’s draft, reaching for Daniel Jones with the No. 6 pick in this year’s draft and trading All-Pro wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. after insisting that wasn’t the plan, Gettleman has been a popular source of angst among Giants fans and media.
Much of the derision has emanated from Mike Francesa, the longtime New York sports-talk radio personality who has a daily talk show on WFAN, the flagship partner of the Giants. Now it’s evolved into a public spat between the two parties playing out on Twitter.
Francesa steps up feud
Francesa escalated the situation Tuesday night when he put the Giants on blast for not making Gettleman available, vowing to cancel a broadcast from the team’s training camp.
For the first time in my WFAN career I will not be doing a training camp program from Giants camp. Was invited but told there would be no access to GM. Dave Gettleman should have enough confidence and conviction to explain his decisions. If he is hiding, I’ll pass.— Mike Francesa (@MikeFrancesa) August 7, 2019
Blunt response from Giants PR head
Pat Hanlon, the longtime vice president of communications for the Giants, fired back at Francesa from his personal Twitter account, citing the radio host repeatedly referring to Gettleman and the Giants as “losers.”
Refresher: “The Giants now act like losers, they have no plan like losers, and the people running the team, in my estimation, are losers. I don’t believe a word Gettleman says. Not a word. He lied to everyone about what he was doing. ... the Giants are an utter embarrassment." https://t.co/IVE8jGmF0F— pat hanlon (@giantspathanlon) August 7, 2019
In case the message wasn’t clear, Hanlon spelled it out for Francesa while delivering a not-so-subtle message that Francesa’s access to the team is tied strictly to his employer.
That is a long way of saying: why should he? Why would he? The owner was willing to go on. The head coach and players, too. Always welcome, Mike, as long as you’re working for our flagship partner... https://t.co/IVE8jGmF0F— pat hanlon (@giantspathanlon) August 7, 2019
Francesa did not respond to Hanlon’s tweets.
Gettleman’s not been shy
While Gettleman is laying in a bed of his own making in terms of becoming a punching bag, he’s anything if not up front with media.
Gettleman cannot reasonably be criticized for not owning his decisions in public. He’s faced questions multiple times in news conferences regarding the Beckham and Jones decisions and sat down for interviews with media members.
While his answers may not be satisfactory, he can’t be faulted for not facing the fire.
Direct message for Francesa
So that the Giants are denying Francesa direct access is a clear message to the outspoken radio host. His personal attacks on Gettleman — calling him a loser, saying that he lied and calling the Giants an embarrassment — crossed a line.
He disrespected Gettleman and the Giants. And now he’s been cut off.
At least in terms of access to Gettleman.
As Hanlon noted, Francesa appears to still be welcome to interview coaches and players.
That is as long as he’s still working for WFAN.
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