"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice
Tag: scott cacciola

Vat Are You Hollerin’?


Nice piece by Scott Cacciola in today’s Wall Street Journal on Mario Chalmers: The Most-Yelled-At-Man in the NBA:

Ronnie Chalmers, Mario’s father, spent 22 years in the Air Force and coached Mario’s high-school basketball team in Anchorage, Alaska. “I wouldn’t say I was strict, but I had boundaries,” he said. When Self hired Ronnie to be his director of basketball operations, Mario got it even worse. “I was tough on him,” Self said. “I didn’t want guys to think he was the teacher’s pet.”

It turned out to be good preparation. Ever since James signed with Miami before the start of last season, Chalmers has been getting the full treatment. In the Heat’s Game 7 victory over the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals, Chalmers appeared to miss a couple of open teammates on one possession. James leaned into him during a timeout and breathed fire. Chalmers turned his back to him, inserted his mouth guard and walked toward the court.

James and Wade both say they wouldn’t be so hard on Chalmers if they didn’t think he could handle it—and none of it is personal, James said—but Chalmers has defended himself more this season. “If I feel I’m doing something to the best of my abilities and they don’t feel that way, I have to voice my opinion,” he said.

For what it’s worth, Wade said he likes it when Chalmers fights back. “He actually thinks he’s the best player on this team,” Wade said. “That’s a gift and a curse.”

Dundee for Dandy: Suckiest Sucker Award

Two years ago, Emma wrote about Dandy, the Yankees’ short-lived mascot. Today in the Wall Street Journal, Scott Cacciola has a piece on the biggest bust in team history:

In 1979, the Yankees appeared eager to replicate the success of the Phillie Phanatic, the green, pot-bellied mascot that Mr. Harrison and Ms. Erickson created in 1978. In his first two years of existence, according to Mr. Harrison, Phanatic-related products generated $2 million in revenue—and his popularity has not waned.

He made more than 550 public appearances last year, has his own merchandise store in Philadelphia and is on display at the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Dandy, on the other hand, got thrown in a dumpster.

He was designed by Ms. Erickson, who had worked on “The Muppet Show” and created Miss Piggy, among other characters. Dandy was marketed as a “dyed-in-the-wool” Yankees fan.

He was blessed with a pear-shaped physique that was almost Ruth-ian. He had a hat that spun, a cartoon-size baseball bat and a big, bushy mustache that evoked Thurman Munson, the team’s star catcher—which was no coincidence.

Above all, Dandy was a New Yorker.

“He was supposed to be sassy,” Mr. Harrison said. “He was supposed to have that Yankee swagger.”

Nah, no mascots. No cheerleaders, no mascots. We’ve got enough nuts and clowns in the Bronx as it is.

[Photo Credit: Wayde Harrison]

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver