Tag Archives: Big Blue

Victor Cruz meets and greets fans in Queens


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

It was a giant day for football fans.

New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz stopped by the Queens Theatre on July 13 for an interactive discussion about his new book and to spread the message that he’s just an ordinary guy from Paterson, New Jersey.

“I was a small town kid just like some of these kids are and I strived and I fought tooth-and-nail to get where I am today,” Cruz said. “It’s not far-fetched, it’s not out of reach, you just have to work hard and understand what you want in life.”

This time last year many fans had no idea the 25-year-old, undrafted player was on the team.

But after a breakout rookie season, where Cruz shattered the Giants record for receiving yards (1,536) and led Big Blue to its fourth Super Bowl championship, he was immediately promoted from the bottom to the top of the NFL caste system.

“There is no better role model to have here today to speak to you than Victor Cruz,” said Assemblymember Francisco Moya, who opened the meet-and-greet. “This man is somebody who really fought adversity.”

Devotees in attendance received a free bag of goodies that included a copy of the new book, “Victor Cruz: Out of the Blue,” written by Peter Schrager.

However, many fans were thrilled to just meet the man who turned the Giants season around and made salsa dancing as trendy as ice cream on a hot summer day.

“It was a crazy experience meeting Victor [Cruz],” Giants fan Obi Wilson said. “I mean I’ve heard about him. I’ve seen him on TV. This is a guy that completely changed our season.”

Hundreds of kids hugging footballs, fans sporting blue and white number 80 jerseys and supporters waving Puerto Rican flags in the auditorium erupted when Cruz took the stage next to NY1’s Budd Mishkin.

Mishkin and Cruz spent an hour talking about the wide receiver’s personal challenges, including dodging negative influences in Patterson, tragic moments of how his friend died and flunking out of college twice. There were also lighter memories such as getting respect from opposing players and how salsa dancing became his signature touchdown celebration.

The fan-favorite dance move was born after a quarterback coach approached Cruz at a practice before his first start and told him to create a move that represents his culture if he scored.

“I was like ‘coach I don’t know if I can go in there and make a pot of rice and beans,’” Cruz recounted to laughter from the audience. “Five yards away from the end zone the first thing I thought of was not ‘this is my first touchdown,’ but ‘man I got to do this dance now.’”

After the one-on-one interview, Cruz fielded questions from fans in the audience and even brought a kid to sit near him on stage, fulfilling the child’s dream to meet the pro footballer.

The meet-and-greet with Cruz is the first of a pair hosted by Time Warner Cable. At the second meet-up on July 20, Cruz will sign copies of his book near the Time Warner Cable store in Queens Center Mall.

Lawrence Taylor 1991 Super Bowl ring up for auction


| brennison@queenscourier.com

While the current Giants team recently received their Super Bowl rings, any fan of the team can sport some Big Blue championship jewelry — for the right price.

Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor’s 1991 Super Bowl ring is up for auction on scpauctions.com.

Bidding has already reached more than $98,000 for the ring that features two football shaped diamonds surrounded by 17 smaller diamonds. Bids will be accepted until Saturday at 10 p.m.

Though the initial belief was that Taylor himself was selling the ring, it is his son, Lawrence Taylor Jr, who put the memorabilia up for sale.

Taylor received the ring after the Giants upset of the heavily favored Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXV and the site said it is “arguably the most significant Super Bowl player ring ever offered publicly.”

Two signed letters will accompany the ring: one by Taylor acknowledging he gave the ring to his son, the second from Taylor Jr. stating the item is the Super Bowl ring given to him.

Bloomberg Bet Pays Off for Giants’ Fans


| brennison@queenscourier.com

Big Blue’s victory is the gift that keeps on giving for Giants’ fans.

Thanks to Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s bet with Boston Mayor Thomas Menino four lucky fans will be getting an all-expense paid trip to Boston. The mayor’s each wagered a weekend excursion in their respective city for four fans of the winning team.  The Patriots loss is Giants’ fans gain.

You can enter to win the trip by visiting www.nyc.gov, calling 311 or texting 311692 beginning on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m and lasting until 10 a.m. Friday.

The trip to Boston will include: four roundtrip tickets on JetBlue, a two-night stay at the Ritz Carlton, dinner for four at Legal Seafoods Harborside and the Top of the Hub restaurant, four tickets to a performance at the Citi Performing Arts Center, four box seats at a Bruins or Celtics game at the TD Garden, a behind-the-scenes-tour of the newly expanded Isabella Stewart Gardner museum, a Duck Tour ride, a VIP tour of the personal diaries of John Adams at the Boston Public Library, a VIP tour of the Samuel Adams Brewery and a photo with Menino.

Giants celebrate Super Bowl victory at ticker-tape parade


| brennison@queenscourier.com

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Almost one million New York Giants fans lined the Canyon of Heroes to party like it’s 2008.

After defeating the New England Patriots 21-17 in a rematch of Super Bowl 42, the Giants paraded down the Canyon of Heroes to celebrate the team’s second championship in four years.

The parade began at Battery Place and Washington Street at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, February 7 and continued northbound up the Canyon of Heroes to Worth Street. The parade was followed by a ceremony at City Hall Plaza, at which Mayor Michael Bloomberg presented the champion Giants with keys to the city.

As hundreds of thousands of supporters converged on downtown Manhattan, fellow followers of the team were stuck at work and class.

“I wish I was at the parade, unfortunately I couldn’t get out of work,” said Queens resident Jake Hendrickson. “I celebrated on Sunday.”

“I went in 2008, and it was a lot of fun. I skipped class that day, but today I had a test,” said Darren Adler. “It’s a great day for a parade.”

Those that were able to successfully play hookie from work and school were rewarded with a clear, sunny 47-degree day.

[Click here for all the photos from the parade]

The mayor who called Big Blue’s victory an “incredible win for our city,” said the parade would bring in between $19 to 38 million while costing the city nothing thanks to the parade’s sponsors.

The Giants super-win capped a run that featured the team going from 7-7 to Super Bowl champs, a feat that impressed Governor Andrew Cuomo.
“I congratulate the New York Giants on beating the odds and winning Super Bowl XLVI,” the governor said. “After nearly missing the playoffs, the Giants have made history by becoming the first NFL team to win the Super Bowl after going 9-7 in the regular season. I look forward to celebrating this victory with all New Yorkers.”

The game — a rare sequel that was just as good as the original — was still in the balance in the last minute.

“The game was amazing; how they won, beating New England, Eli [Manning] beating [Tom] Brady, everything,” said Giants fan Mario Guzman.

The Giants weren’t the only winners on Sunday — local politicians also cashed in on the win. Congressmember Gary Ackerman won New England clam chowder and clam rolls from Congressemember Mike Capuano. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will also be chowing on some chowder courtesy of Massachusetts Senator John Kerry.

Big Blue’s victory also scored four lucky New Yorkers an all-expense paid trip to Boston compliments of Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.

Ticker-tape parade planned for Tuesday to celebrate Giants Super Bowl win


| brennison@queenscourier.com

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New York Giants fans are getting ready to party like it’s 2008.

After defeating the New England Patriots 21-17 in a rematch of Super Bowl 42, the Giants will parade up the Canyon of Heroes to celebrate their Super Bowl championship for the second time in four years.

“Big Blue gave us a game to remember, and on Tuesday we’re going to give them a parade to remember,” said Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The parade will begin at Battery Place and Washington Street at 11:00 a.m. and continue northbound up the Canyon of Heroes to Worth Street. The parade will be followed by a ceremony at City Hall Plaza, at which the mayor will present the champion Giants with keys to the city.

The win capped a run that featured the Giants going from 7-7 to Super Bowl champs, a feat that impressed Governor Andrew Cuomo.

“I congratulate the New York Giants on beating the odds and winning Super Bowl XLVI,” the governor said.  “After nearly missing the playoffs, the Giants have made history by becoming the first NFL team to win the Super Bowl after going 9-7 in the regular season. I look forward to celebrating this victory with all New Yorkers.”

Following the game, which was the rare sequel that was just as good as the original, many local politicians took to social media to congratulate the team.

Councilmember Dan Halloran tweeted, “Giants Win!!!!! Go New York – Big Blue!!!!!!”

The Giants two-time Super Bowl MVP inspired Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer to tweet, “Eli Manning does it again. Amazing win. Congrats @Giants#goblue #SuperBowl #manning #manningham.”