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ESPN softens its July 21 report

We opened our most recent lockout item with a good-natured jab at the new report from ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter, which a cynic could regard as an effort to claim eventual credit for first reporting the end to the lockout while also avoiding any criticism for being wrong if a deal isn’t struck and ratified on July 21.

A cynic would now wonder whether Schefter and Mort opted to make their safe harbor a lot safer with the addition of two new paragraphs that remind the world that the process is far from a done deal.

“[O]ne member of the players’ negotiating team who has been a constant presence at the table said that players feel they have made significant concessions and overtures ‘that have not been reciprocated,'” the story now reads.

“He stated that negotiations Wednesday and Thursday will be the most telling days on whether an agreement indeed will be finalized within the July 21 time frame because ‘we’ve basically reached the limits of compromise.'”

Actually, that’s more than a safe harbor.  Mort and Schefty are now fully covered on both sides of the story.  If the deal get done on July 21, you heard it there first.

And if it doesn’t, you heard it there first, too.

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34 Responses to “ESPN softens its July 21 report”
  1. largent80 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:16 AM

    We’re cautiously optimistic!

  2. botter67 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:19 AM

    This has just become comical at this point. What an absolute joke.

  3. rambo08 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:20 AM

    Ahh, the dose of cold water.

  4. goawayeverybody says: Jul 11, 2011 10:22 AM

    There have to be 24 sane owners among the 32 different ones who can make a deal happen. Can’t there?

  5. twitter:Chapman_Jamie says: Jul 11, 2011 10:26 AM

    ESPN is a joke. If you aren’t sure about something then don’t report it.

  6. realdeal12 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:27 AM

    This has become a certified JOKE! one minute its up the next its down. Boylan’s vacation is a good sign, wait no its a bad sign. July 15th no wait it’s the 21st no I mean we were just saying that if uh the 15th doesn’t happen then umm err the 21st sounds great or is it the 18th. why don’t we all agree that no one has a dammed clue what the heck is going on. the only thing I know is it’s damn annoying.

  7. upperdecker19 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:28 AM

    I’ll say it for you Mike…..

    BSPN – The Worldwide leader in speculative garbage

  8. shieldsisland37 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:28 AM

    I remember back in 2006 Mort reported that Kurt Warner would absolutely not play that week. So my friend in fantasy benched Warner. That week Warner played and put up like 400 yards and 4 tds. After that, we would always joke about the “mort report” and how whatever he said would prove to be wrong.

  9. redwinglion says: Jul 11, 2011 10:31 AM

    “This has just become comical at this point.”

    No, it’s become ludicrous. It seems that we have two groups of spoiled individuals hellbent on ruining the most profitable and popular sport in the United States. If these two sides can’t grow up and get a deal done then screw ’em. If we miss any football this year it will be a failure of epic proportions.

  10. silverhornet says: Jul 11, 2011 10:31 AM

    I’ve always wondered what the true definition of the term “indefinite” was.

  11. warmachine2112 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:32 AM

    Both sides are getting me close to using some of the most used words of Bender Bending Rodriguez: Bite my…

    Get a deal done and worry about getting the season under way as opposed to posturing over credibility!

  12. ac0117 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:32 AM

    Great picture

  13. timtheenchanter1 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:33 AM

    This should go without saying, but the WWL is a joke. They’ve done this report one thing and report the opposite crap for so long, I don’t really consider them a news source for most things anymore.

    Just follow @AlbertBreer for the most comprehensive breaking coverage of the lockout and @adbrandt for perspective on the lockout news that is out there.

  14. purpleman527 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:37 AM

    Well, that didn’t last long.

    If the players have done all this compromising and can’t give in any more, how the hell can a deal be reached at all?

  15. stevo8drum says: Jul 11, 2011 10:37 AM

    oh wow- the players are back at the table? i must have been away.

  16. robf2010 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:45 AM

    “Mort and Schefty are now fully covered on both sides of the story.”

    Said the pots to the kettles.

  17. jamaltimore says: Jul 11, 2011 10:45 AM

    Call me when the season starts. It’s all posturing so until there’s an announcement please post more on Hines Ward being arrested and naturally bring up Ben Rapin’s trip to georgia while your at it! That’s fun reading!

  18. hendawg21 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:46 AM

    Whatever…at this stage who really cares if we the fans were already a bit miffed by the greed of both sides and the fact neither really cares about the FAN(S) the more this drags on over stupidity the more likely there will be plenty of empty seats for the owners and players to fill with their homey’s, family and or posse(s). I’ve become less interested with each passing day.

  19. goawayeverybody says: Jul 11, 2011 10:48 AM

    So basically, what the owners are trying to do is create a new rookie wage scale (which is fine), and extend said scale over five years so they can shortchange players in the prime of their career. Great.

  20. andrewfbrowne says: Jul 11, 2011 10:48 AM

    If players think the owners are not willing to give up all the preseason or even regular season games for what is reported to be a 10 ten year deal they are being shortsighted. In ten years 90% of the owners will still be in place, but less than 1% of the players will be and since there is already pressure being applied to the union by potential free agents to get a deal done, owners are not going to budge.

    This may not get done in time. I know this gets thumbs down and if I was reading I would do the same, but I do not think owners are going to budge anymore either.

  21. mkwelchsportsradio says: Jul 11, 2011 10:48 AM

    The worst thing about this whole situation is the way that it is killing local sports media. Not only are people bored to freaking tears when hearing about the lockout, Mort and Schefter have a monopoly on any real information regarding it. It’s sad how many people’s jobs in the media rely on the lockout ending.

  22. tomsd1 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:53 AM

    Speaking of jokers – who was it that said the talks were at the 5 yard line? 🙂

  23. tomsd1 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:54 AM

    And the fans will be back as soon as the whistles blow.

  24. djteknision1200 says: Jul 11, 2011 10:58 AM

    Dear Media
    My momma always told me “If you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything at all”

    Please stop yanking the fans chains!!

  25. Kaz says: Jul 11, 2011 11:11 AM

    I wish the advertisers would step in and pull out already. That should be a wakeup call to the owners/players concerning how disasterous this has really become.

  26. hendawg21 says: Jul 11, 2011 11:11 AM

    There seems to be on the owners/players side of thinking that no matter what they do or say or when and if they will get a deal done the fans will be starving for football and just fall back into line as if none of this ever happened. I for one would love to see for several weeks half empty stadiums and low sales on NFL gear and see what they’d think then.

  27. vetdana says: Jul 11, 2011 11:40 AM

    A cynic……That is what this reporting is making out of ALL of us !! You people are in grave danger of losing ALL, of your credibility with this poor excuse for journalistic reporting. The worst “tabloids” have nothing on you !!

    One thing that you can report, that is a fact….We fans have…”Had a Belly Full of All of This” and when and if we have NFL football again in the near future….it just wont be the same !!!

  28. rolandsloan says: Jul 11, 2011 11:47 AM

    I’m confident the season will start on schedule…..
    in 2012…..Maybe.

  29. bronconation7 says: Jul 11, 2011 12:16 PM

    Only in America could 32 guys look at such a great money-making venture that everyone loves and try to screw it up b/c they feel they deserve to get more out of it b/c they can. Considering the economy and what the average American is going through it’s just a disgusting level of greed. It’s not like ANY of this new agreement is going to benefit the fans (I mean these are the same greedy men who came up with seat licenses). They’re not going to lower ticket prices, concessions or parking. They’re just going to pocket it, and when their stadium gets a little rusty or doesn’t have enough suites ask us to fund a new, shinier, and roomier one. If they don’t get their way they’ll stomp their feet, take their football and go somewhere else. Meanwhile, the media sits on the sideline and won’t call out these 32 men. Probably b/c those 32 men have powerful friends who own certain media companies. Who knows though, maybe I’m totally out of line and have gone too far with this theory. I need a cold shower. I just love football and America!

  30. t16rich says: Jul 11, 2011 12:28 PM

    I would rather preview this weeks CFL games than continue to read about the lies and get my hopes up. Go owners!!! Sick of football players getting it there way from highschool to college. Than when they do get to the millions$$$ it isn’t enough for them. Players go put your degrees to use if you want to become billionaires. Until than, you’re just a football player. Get out there and prove it.

  31. crefan says: Jul 11, 2011 12:35 PM

    Let me know when it’s really done until then I’ll be watching baseball.

  32. gregwestlake says: Jul 11, 2011 12:47 PM

    “He stated that negotiations Wednesday and Thursday will be the most telling days”

    Why? Why is it always have to be like 3 days after today? Why can’t the most telling day be today? Are they leaving early today?

  33. allheat says: Jul 11, 2011 1:00 PM

    tomsd1 says:
    Jul 11, 2011 10:53 AM
    Speaking of jokers – who was it that said the talks were at the 5 yard line?

    Might be the other 5 yard line.

  34. bennyg420 says: Jul 11, 2011 1:15 PM

    I didn’t even know ESPN covered the NFL? I thought they just covered the NBA and the Yankees?

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