If you can’t stand the Heat …

July 30, 2010


Matthew Bellamy’s Facebook page looked like pretty much anyone else’s before Thursday morning. A bunch of friends sent him gifts, won him money in Family Feud, or sent him pets in FarmVille. His most recent status update of more than a week ago was essentially a love poem to his girlfriend.

Then the Sandusky factory worker who turns 30 in December went to an Indians/Yankees game at Progressive Field Wednesday night. Wearing a Lebon James Miami Heat jersey.

Overnight Bellamy became the most notorious man in the world of sports.

The skinny: Bellamy and his girlfriend Wendy Sedlacek made their way around Progressive Field Wednesday night. The couple made arrived late, taking their seats in the bleachers in the second inning. Then they walked around the stadium for a few innings, taking pictures and talking to people, including the guys at ClevelandFrowns.com. In the sixth inning they made their way back to the bleachers. That was when, according to Bellamy, he was shown on the Progressive Field scoreboard. The crowd began booing.

From there, YouTube videos show the couple surrounded by empty seats at the well-attended game as fans pelted them with some empty and some filled beer cups and obscene chants. An usher came to check their tickets. Soon after Bellamy and Sedlacek had a police escort right out of Progressive Field and into infamy.

Then Bellamy’s Facebook profile exploded, as some of his 1,500-plus friends chimed in. The first message regarding the incident came around noon on Thursday, when a friend wrote, “Where (sic) you at the Indians game last night?”

Oh, yes, he was.

Even Bellamy’s online friends were divided over whether he should have worn the LeBron Miami Heat jersey. A long discussion on Bellamy’s most recent status update, confirming it was indeed him in the jersey, found people both angry at LeBron but saying Bellamy had guts for doing what he did.

Most everyone who isn’t his Facebook friend doesn’t like him one bit.

Bellamy is unrepentant. In interviews with local news stations Bellamy talks about the incident. He appears a bit unnerved despite his defiance. His newest Facebook update from late Thursday night tells people to say what they need to his face.

Well, they did at Progressive Field Wednesday night. And here’s what Bellamy had to say to some questions God Hates Cleveland Sports asked him through Facebook:

1) Where did you get the jersey? Gift, you get it yourself, or what?

“I bought all three jerseys. A guy I work with has them for sale!!”

2) Did you burn your LeBron Cavs jersey before you got the LeBron Heat jersey?

“Nope, have all his Cleveland jerseys still, as well as some high school jersey. I’m just a fan of his, love him, and I won’t turn my back on him!!!”

3) Did your girlfriend dump you yet, or is she standing by her man? (I am assuming she is your girlfriend.)

“Nope we will always be together, she’s always got my back, thanks.”

4) You were wearing an Ohio State hat, so at least you don’t completely hate Ohio. What would you do if you were at an OSU football game and some guy showed up in a Michigan jersey?

“Yes that was an OSU hat, it matched, and I always will love all Ohio sport teams. Its painful but i love them, actually last year I was in Michigan at the game all decked out in OSU gear, face painted and all!!!”

5) How many Steeler jerseys do you own?

“Not a Steelers fan at all, hate them with a passion!!”

6) Did you think you would get the reaction that you got? Was it scary?

“Was expecting some boos but wasn’t expecting the level it was taken to, scary at times but over all hilarious, I mean, really, get over it he’s gone. Does Cleveland ever hold talent!!”

7) Who was worse to you, the Indians fans or the Yankees fans?

“Indians fans by far were worse. We need and deserve a winning team. Maybe we wouldn’t be so bitter.”

8 ) Did the police offer to let you stay if you took off the jersey or moved to another spot, or were you gone the moment they got involved?

“They moment the officers came, I was gone, and totally disrespected by everyone, including the cops.”

9) I just told two people who didn’t know what happened about what you did. One said, “That takes guts.” The other said, “People from Sandusky are mentally ill anyway.” Which is true?

“I will wear what I want, nobody else’s opinions matter to me. If I let what other people said get to me, I would get nowhere in life.”

10) Why did it take til the 5th inning for the fans to get on your case? Were they slacking off?

“It took that long for people to get some beers in them, and muscle up.”

11) Will you be taking your jersey to South Beach, or anywhere else? Will you wear it to any more Cleveland events, like, say, the Heat/Cavs game or lunch with Dan Gilbert?

“I’ve already contacted a buddy that works and the Gund (note: It is now The Q.) I will be at the game and will continue to support LeBron. If Cleveland would have made the right moves or sacrifices like the Heat did, he would still be here.”

12) Do you even like the Cavs?

“Love the Cavs, love the Indians, love the Browns, it’s just painful to watch at times. We will get so close but yet we’re so far away, they will mess up a wet dream.”

13) Is there anything else to do in Sandusky besides come up with plans to piss off an entire city’s sports fans?

“Cedar Point and the lake that’s about it. You don’t have to like me but don’t hate me cuz I’ve done nothing to hurt the people.”

Bellamy seems a little shaken by his night at the opera. When I spoke with him through Facebook chat, one of the first things he said to me was, “I apologize.” But he is also clearly unrepentant. I believe he’s more upset over things that his girlfriend went through at the game than anything he went through. He appears to be the kind of guy who has his convictions and stands by them, come what may. Whether he was actually trying to provoke a stadium filled with nearly 30,000 people or just trying to show his support for his favorite player is up for debate. Clearly not everyone shares Bellamy’s opinion of LeBron.

In the Cleveland Frowns post, Bellamy was quick to point out a scar on the back of his head that he says came about from being mugged and pistol-whipped in Sandusky. His own bio on his Facebook page says, “I just love having a good time, I’m not right in the 4 head so i’m good for a laugh.” Perhaps the two are related. After Wednesday night, everyone can agree on that middle part. The laughs? That’s for you to decide.