New York firmly in grip of Tebowmania

The New York Rangers have a Game 7 in Madison Square Garden on Saturday, Andy Pettitte’s pitching his first game in pinstripes since 2010 on Sunday, and J.P. Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon reported that his bank had $2 billion in trading losses.

And what was everyone talking about in New York City on Thursday?

Tim Tebow’s dog’s name.


In an interview session that lasted just a few minutes after the New York Jets’ voluntary workout in Florham Park, NJ, Tebow said “great” 23 times and revealed that his dog, once named Bronco, has been renamed Bronx, after one of the Big Apple’s five boroughs.

Tebow, traded from Denver to the Jets in March, has been all the rage in New York since landing in town. Everything from his throwing motion to his facial hair to his sartorial choices has been dissected by the New York press. And though he was booed by the Yankee Stadium crowd two weeks ago, Tebow has renamed his Rhodesian Ridgeback after the borough in which the Bombers play.

Does this actually qualify as news? Hell, I don’t know. But it sure is fun.

The jokes on Twitter came trickling in, almost immediately.

Sportswriter Sterling Eby, or @TeamSterlo on Twitter, wrote, “It doesn’t matter what it’s named, it’ll only respond 30% of the time.”

The Wall Street Journal’s sports columnist, Jason Gay, or @JasonWSJ, quipped, “You’re Mark Sanchez. You’re starting QB for the Jets. You’re training hard. But you just got upstaged by Tim Tebow’s dog, changing its name.”

The hashtag #rejectedTebowDogNames was trending within the hour of the “news” breaking. Some suggestions from a variety of tweets found online? Oh, there was “Completed Pass,” “Elway,” “Rudy” and "Spiral."

Sanchez, not to be outdone, uttered “great” 19 times in his interview session. (Someone needs to create a “great” drinking game for Jets pressers this year). The two quarterbacks’ relationship has been analyzed to death already, and we’re only in May. In Thursday’s New York Post, news that Sanchez and Tebow had dinner together made the gossip mecca Page Six.

Neither quarterback has taken a snap, attempted a pass or said anything out of line since Tebow joined Gang Green, and already they’re the biggest sports story in town. As two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning joked with FOX News anchor Shepard Smith last month, “The New York Giants just won a championship, yet I’m still the third-most talked about quarterback in my own city.”

He’s right. No one cares about the Giants.

Manning hosted “Saturday Night Live,” Victor Cruz was strutting his stuff at the star-studded Met Gala on Monday night and Justin Tuck was in the front row at Madison Square Garden, up against the glass, for the Rangers’ Game 5 victory over the Washington Capitals.

But all that takes a back seat (not to be confused with the back page) to Tebow’s pup.

This is going to be a football season like no other in New York. We’re just getting started.

Ruff, ruff.