Talk about getting ahead of yourself.
During a press conference before the Super Bowl, Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay said the team was “undecided” on whether to accept an invitation to visit President Trump at the White House.
Now, the team won’t have to bother making the decision: Only winners get invited to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Ever since Trump took office, athletes and teams have been dissing the president. And Trump’s been playing them like the master troll he is. In June 2018, Trump abruptly disinvited the Philadelphia Eagles after some team players said they’d boycott the visit.
“The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow. They disagree with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country,” Trump said in a statement. “The Eagles wanted to send a smaller delegation, but the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better.”
Trump also slapped the Eagles for disrespecting the Star-Spangled Banner.
Trump also spanked the Golden State Warriors the year before after some players, including star Stephen Curry, said they probably would not attend a White House ceremony. “Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team,” Trump tweeted. “Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!”
But the Rams brought it all to a new level: They said they might not go to the White House before they even won their sports’ top trophy. Then they got beat 13-3 by the New England Patriots in one of the most boring Super Bowls ever.
McVay, 33, did say in the press conference that “the first thing is we have to win this game. And that’s going to be a great challenge for us, so that’s really kind of where we’re at. We’re solely focused on trying to win the game against an excellent football team that’s been doing as well as anybody over the last handful of years.”
Regardless, McVay did inject politics into the matter by saying the team was “undecided” on whether to visit the White House if the Rams won.
Well, they weren’t “lucky” enough because they simply weren’t “good” enough.
Here’s the thing: There’s no need for athletes and their coaches (or owners, for that matter) to be political. Think back 50 years, when President Richard Nixon invited sports teams to the White House. Did they all — every player or coach or owner — agree with Nixon, support the Vietnam War? Did they for Ronald Reagan? George Bush? Barack Obama?
Of course not. But they went to the White House because the president invited them. They were civil, adult, mature. And when the president invites you to the White House, you go.
But if you’re going to diss the president, maybe it’s best to do so after you win the big game. Just saying.