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SBD/October 10, 2013/Media
ESPN Withdrawal, Decision To Show Excerpts Boost "League Of Denial" Ratings
Published October 10, 2013
EYE-OPENER: In Newark, Dave D'Alessandro writes the film was "an epiphany for some of us," as it "carefully traces how the NFL concealed the truth about concussions over two decades, from the appalling deceit of the Paul Tagliabue era to the pathetic damage control of Roger Goodell’s tenure." This is "not just a stain on our national pastime," it is "a public health crisis that extends to every level of the sport" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 10/10). In Buffalo, Jerry Sullivan writes after mentioning the film's title to 10 members of the Bills organization, including coach Doug Marrone, he "got blank stares in return." There will "always be denial in NFL players," and some of the Bills "seemed blithely ignorant" of the film (BUFFALO NEWS, 10/10).
GETTING THE PULSE OF THE LEAGUE: SI's Peter King noted many NFL execs feel "League of Denial" was an "extremely one-sided airing of the issue," which is one reasons why people associated with the league "didn't cooperate much at all with Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru." The execs felt like for a "long time doing the research on this story that the two ESPN reporters were slanted way against the NFL." King: "I read a lot of what they wrote on this story and I thought it was very well done, very well thought out and very well researched stuff. I thought anybody who watched the 'Frontline' show on PBS has to come away thinking that, 'It's incumbent on the NFL right now to do everything that it possibly can to, with independent neurologists at games, to be really looking at the issue of head trauma'" ("PTI," ESPN, 10/9).