If you thought Milwaukee was going to be loud hosting its first NBA Finals games in almost a half-century, it's about to get even louder: Stephen A. Smith is apparently coming to town.
The "First Take" hot-taker posted a photo to Twitter on Sunday morning with the caption (or threat): "Milwaukee, I am on my way." He looks thrilled.
For those who avoided the recent controversy, I envy you. But here's the deal: Smith and the ESPN morning show "First Take" caused quite the Brew City brouhaha when he – along with co-hosts Max Kellerman and Molly Qerim Rose as well as guest commentator Damien Woody – took a minute from debating MJ versus LeBron for the 7,192nd time to lambast Milwaukee and many of the other remaining NBA cities, going so far as to call them "terrible cities."
In a shocking turn of events, Milwaukeeans did not take kindly to being called terrible for no good reason – the city certainly has its issues, but Smith's rationale was simply "I don't like cold weather," a galaxy brain take when Milwaukee forecasts were 90 and sunny – going so far as to create an online petition to ban Smith and "First Take" from any potential NBA Finals games in Cream City. And unsurprisingly, like most of these online petitions, it didn't do anything. At least we got a tasty Vanguard sausage out of it. (Though there's still plenty of time to set up his hotel room and studio on Jones Island!)
Considering the kerfuffle that erupted after the "First Take" clip, with even national sports reporters and personalities hopping in to defend Milwaukee, this was the most predictable and inevitable result. Sending Smith to cover the Finals in the city he scorned is easy guaranteed buzz (case in point: this very article), and his coverage is sure to include a segment touring him around Milwaukee, checking out various sites, traditions and icons, and hopefully learning the error of his ways – or trolling the locals even harder – for even more content, headlines and clicks. The only thing that would shock me is if there somehow ISN'T a photo of Smith with the Bronze Fonz at the end of this all.
Anyways, stay tuned for that final inevitable "Stephen A. Smith raves/rants about our city" post. (Of course, right on time, our gorgeous summer has turned a little overcast. Because whether on or off court, nothing can ever come easy for Milwaukee.) But most importantly, be sure to cheer on the Bucks as they aim to tie up the NBA Finals here at home and shift the series' momentum. Because really, who cares what Smith and his "First Take" cast call us – especially if, at the end, they also have to call us NBA champions.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.