NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said he was not aware that Dave Portnoy was banned from the NFL.
He made the claim when he testified at a House of Representatives Oversight Committee in a hearing on toxic workplace allegations which were made against the Washington Commanders.
Goodell was asked questions regarding the inner workings of the NFL, but there was one question that managed to catch him off guard.
Representation Jim Jordan asked Goodell’s opinion about why the NFL banned the Barstool Sports founder Portnoy from attending league events. Goodell said he was not familiar with that particular issue, but Jordan did not seem to believe him.
Jordan began the questioning by asking Goodell if he believed in the First Amendment. He also added that Portnoy interviewed former president Donald Trump at the White House, but for some reason, the NFL just would not allow Portnoy to attend events such as the Super Bowl.
There is no reason for Goddell to be unaware of Portnoy’s ban considering the two have quite a long history. Portnoy was arrested outside of the NFL’s headquarters in 2015 for protesting Tom Brady’s suspension. He also organized Clowngate with 70,000 towels at Gillette, ran Mike Kensil out of Super Bowl media day, and also had been kicked out of Super Bowl media. He won a $250,000 COVID auction to watch a game with Goodell, although he was then denied. Portnoy was handcuffed and dragged out of the Super Bowl in 2019.
Portnoy was reported to be the highest bidder on a charity auction prize, which resulted in him being able to watch an NFL game with Goodell.
Jordan further asked if Goodell agreed with the Commanders’ decision to fine Jack Del Rio $100,000 for his comments about the Capitol riots, which happened last year. The latter deferred the decision made by Commanders coach Ron Rivera, which indicated he did not contribute and did not factor in all decisions the head coach made.
“I’m not sure if it’s my position to say if it was a correct decision or not,” Goodell said.
Due to Goodell’s refusal to admit his acknowledgment of Portnoy’s ban, the latter eventually released a statement in the form of a viral post, which explicitly called the former liar.
“He’s a real bad guy. He’s a liar, a crook. Everything he says is not the truth,” Portnoy said in a recent conversation with TMZ Sports.
Due to Portnoy’s reputation, Jordan found it strange that Portnoy was not allowed to attend events such as the Super Bowl, even more so when Goodell claimed to not know the reason.
“I think we’re all aware of that. I mean he interviewed the President of the United States. He interviewed President Trump in the White House,” Jordan said.
“Seems to me if he can get into the White House, he should be able to get into a football game — frankly as a member of the press, and as a member of the sports press. You don’t know anything about that?”
“I don’t, sir,” Goodell replied.