Sports teams that occupy the same market try under normal circumstances to get along, even if they’re essentially competing for the same finite money, time, and loyalties of the local fan base. Indeed, the positive vibes that flow among and between the football, baseball, basketball, and/or hockey teams of a given city often have more to do with placating said local fan base, since said local fan base expects the teams to play nice.
In Boston, that theory has been tested of late by the decision of the Boston Globe, owned by Red Sox owner John W. Henry, to join the civil litigation aimed at forcing the public disclosure of the video secretly generated by law-enforcement authorities in Florida.
While the Red Sox will follow through in their habit of celebrating the Patriots’ Super Bowl victories at the baseball team’s home opener, owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady won’t be there. Although Kraft’s absence could be influenced by a desire to stay out of the public eye while his prosecution is still pending (then again, he won’t find a more welcoming and forgiving crowd than one in Boston), Kraft can’t be happy with the decision of the Red Sox’s owner’s newspaper to take an active role in attempting to compel the release of a video that Kraft clearly wants to keep private.
With other publications pushing for the video to be released, the Globe didn’t have to get involved. But the Globe did, and that could have been enough to persuade Kraft — and possibly Belichick (who attended the event four years ago but not two years ago) and Brady — to pass on the chance to revel in their latest championship in a stadium full of Patriots fans.