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Operation ClownFace

Added • Updated about a year ago

Added by Matt • Updated about a year ago by Matt
Added by Matt • Updated about a year ago by Matt

Operation ClownFace
Category: Event Status: Submission Year: 2017 Origin: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts Region:
Type: Controversy,
Tags: football, patriots, deflategate, tom brady, roger goodell, barstool sports, dan portnoy, sports, towels, pranks,
Operation ClownFace


Operation ClownFace refers to a prank executed by the sports commentary website Barstool Sports. On September 7th, 2017, representatives from the site handed out 70,000 towels with an illustration of NFL-commissioner Roger Goodell in clown make up to fans at the New England Patriots opening game.


On May 12th, 2015, Barstool Sport-owner Dave Portnoy and three other Barstool Sports employees were arrested during a sit-in at NFL Headquarters in New York City.[1] Hoping to speak to Godell, the group was protesting the NFL's punishment of Tom Brady during the deflategate scandal.

Two years later, on August 1st, 2017, Portnoy tweeted that he had ordered 30,000 towels with a picture of Goodell in clown make-up imprinted on them. He said, "I'll take 30k of these towels please. I'll see you in Foxboro @nflcommish (Yes I'm serious)" The post (shown below) received more than 2,100 retweets and 8,600 likes in one month.

The next day, he posted about his plan on Barstool Sports,[3] explaining that he planned on handing the towels out to fans at the Patriots season opener, which Goodell would be attending. He wrote:

So we know Roger Goodell is going to be at Foxboro for the NFL Season opener. We also know our Clown shirt drives him bananas. Just sends him into a blind rage. Hmm, what oh what should I do? Hey I got an idea! I think I’ll order 30 thousand of these towels to give out to all my closest friends and family on Thursday September 7th.

Dave Portnoy @stoolpresidente l'll take 30k of these towels please. l'll see you in Foxboro @nflcommish (Yes l'm serious) BARSTOOLSPORTS


Two weeks after the initial announcement, on August 15th, Portnoy posted[5] a video on his website stating that he was more than doubling the order to 70,000 towels. In less than a month, the video (shown below) received more than 73,000 views.

On September 7th, representatives for Barstool Sports handed out more 70,000 towels to people in the crowd. According to Sports Illustrated,[6] Barstool Sports spent $140,000 on the towels.

During the game, flashes of the crowd showed people holding the towels. Tweets from the night (examples below) show the success of the stunt. Using the hashtag #OperationClownFace, people shared pictures of the crowd holding in the light blue towel. When Goodell walked on to the field that night, Sports Illustrated reported a series of boos and chants of "Roger Sucks."

#OperationClownFace off to a strong start ET Another great shot of #OperationClownFace from last night; like @barstoolsports or not, they have built a vocal, loyal audience #sportsbiz ND PATRIOTS Now youse can't leave Roger #OperationClown Face

Following the game, Portnoy tweeted[4] a video of himself, apparently, crying about the Patriots suffering a loss, as he said, "on towel day." The post (shown below) received more than 1,200 retweets and 5,000 likes in less than 24 hours.

The stunt gained the attention of several media outlets, including Sports Illustrated, The Boston Herald,[7] ESPN[8] and more.

Search Interest

External References

Tags: football, patriots, deflategate, tom brady, roger goodell, barstool sports, dan portnoy, sports, towels, pranks,

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