What if I told you TMZ deleted what turned out to be a false story about an athlete?  Well, you’d probably say it was a Friday.

TMZ, that beacon of journalistic integrity and the unofficial gossip outlet of Fox Sports, is stuck in another controversy with errant reporting about a sports figure – this time it’s Brady Quinn.

On Friday morning, TMZ published a story entitled “Brady Quinn: I Would Have Made More Money Playing Baseball.”  (Hey, at least it carries more news value than TMZ’s other big sports story of the day, “Sylvester Stallone: Taken To Selfie School By Knockout Daughters.”)  The story is a relatively innocuous exclusive with TMZ purporting to have talked to Quinn about the big money deal former Notre Dame football teammate Jeff Samardzija just signed and even had a quote from Quinn:

“It was a blessing and a dream of mine to be able to play professional football, but I would have had a much longer career and made a lot more money if I had gone the baseball route.”

As you may be expecting, there was one slight problem: Quinn tweeted that he never spoke to TMZ.

As you may also be expecting, TMZ deleted their tweet and their “exclusive” story from internet existence.  Poof.  Just like that it was gone.  You can view it here at the Google Cache link or in the screengrab below.

Screen Shot 2015-12-18 at 1.46.49 PM

Here’s what makes this story all the more ludicrous – both TMZ and Brady Quinn are under the FS1 umbrella.  TMZ has entered into a pretty robust relationship with FS1 with the creation of the new TMZ Sports nightly show.  Quinn is a football analyst for FS1.  Couldn’t have somebody at TMZ called over to FS1 to make sure they didn’t screw this up and they were talking to the real Brady Quinn?  Couldn’t they have gotten his phone number from their own television partner???  How does any outlet, even TMZ, publish quotes from an athlete that turn out to be fabricated???

Once again, it’s worth reminding sports fans that this… whatever this is is now FS1’s plan to compete with ESPN.

Trying to discern how exactly this happened is sure to make your brain try to escape your skull for making it endure such misery.  What a farce.

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