Tonight, while the Detroit Lions were taking a fifteen-minute break from their otherwise uninterrupted assault upon a thoroughly unprepared New York Giants, Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh strutted out in front of a camera to undertake the unenviable task of announcing the team had fired Ray Rice after reviewing a video in which the star running back can be seen knocking his then-girlfriend completely the fuck out in a Las Vegas elevator. The announcement was sadly — and predictably — tepid:
“After seeing something this morning, seeing the video this morning, we had a chance to get together with Steve, Dick, Ozzie and myself and we had a meeting. It was not a long meeting. We came to the decision we came to to release Ray and that’s what we did,” Harbaugh said. “So you know that. I had a chance to talk with Ray along with Ozzie this afternoon after we did it.”
Asked whether the Ravens saw the video prior to Monday morning, Harbaugh claimed the team saw it for the first time Monday and “it changed things.”
“It’s something we saw for the first time today,” Harbaugh said. “It changed things of course. It made things a little bit different.”
Harbaugh was also asked if his feelings toward Rice — he stood up in front of a podium and defended his (now) former player just months ago — had changed. He said no.
“Everything I said in terms of what I believe I stand by. I believe that still. I’ll always believe those things,” Harbaugh said. “And we’ll always stand in support of them as a couple. That’s not going to change.”
The Ravens coach even went so far as to say he and his wife would offer Rice and his wife support as they move forward, even though Rice is no longer on the team.
“When someone that you care about does wrong and is faced with the consequences it is tough and it is hurtful. My pain is for both of them as a couple,” Harbaugh said. “From everything talking to Ray, up until his suspension, talking with him a lot, was they were working hard and doing well. If I can help them in any way and if my wife and I can help them in any way, we’ll do that.”
Harbaugh also said the video “wasn’t made available” to the Ravens until Monday morning when it went public.
“It wasn’t made available to us. It wasn’t there for us,” Harbaugh said. “As far as I know yeah, it wasn’t something we ever saw or had access to.”
Why not? Harbaugh had “no answer for that” though he does “absolutely” believe the Ravens did their due diligence to find all necessary video available.
Yeah, that’s bullshit. Every stinking fucking line of it. (more…)