Alex Cora is more than happy to share the championship limelight, if necessary.
The Boston Red Sox manager saluted the New England Patriots on Sunday night following their 37-31 overtime win over the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game. The Patriots will take on the Los Angeles Rams on Feb. 3 in Atlanta in Super Bowl LIII, and Cora used Twitter to proclaim that familiar rallying cry.
“Beat LA” is an essential chant in Boston sports lore. The mantra actually came to be in 1982 after the Celtics actually lost to the Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference Finals. In the waning moments of that series, C’s fans serenaded the Sixers ahead of their looming date with the hated Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals. That Boston-LA rivalry continued in the ’80s with multiple NBA Finals matchups and then carried into the new millennium with a pair of postseason matchups in 2008 and 2010, respectively. The Red Sox breathed new life into “Beat LA” last fall when they overran the Los Angeles Dodgers in five games to win the 2018 World Series.
When baseball writer Keith Law challenged Cora on his Patriots allegiance Sunday night, the Red Sox boss cited his bond with Brady as a principle reason.
“Happy for my friend …,” Cora replied succinctly.
Legions of Patriots and Red Sox fans probably couldn’t have put it better.