The news that Ben Roethlisberger lost “multiple” fingers in a firework accident on July 4 sounds like a career-ending injury for a quarterback, but it is not an injury suffered by this Pittsburgh NFL player. This news was reported by the site Lockerdome and the article offers a good indication that it is fake news from the get-go with the author’s name on the piece appearing as “Happy Gilmore.” This is an Adam Sandler character from a movie with the same name.
According to Snopes, this would be “season-altering news” if it were true, but it is not. Even the description of how the injury supposedly happened to Roethlisberger sounds riddled with fantasy. The article claims the fire that sparked the firework incident occurred when Roethlisberger was holding a “tape of some of his Super Bowl highlights and they were so hot, they burst into flames while still in his hand.” Once reading a few sentences down, the reader will pick up on the odd reporting in this story and realize it is as fake as fake can be, but unfortunately, people read the headline and run with it. According to the Steelerswire, “people were freaked out” about the fake news that Roethlisberger lost fingers on his throwing hand, not knowing it was fake news at first.
Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Loses Multiple Fingers in 4th of July Firework Accident? https://t.co/D3vMJ61OLy
— snopes.com (@snopes) July 8, 2017
The original article from Lockerdome, sported this headline, “BREAKING: Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Loses Multiple Fingers In 4th of July Firework Accident.” The lead picture to go along with the article shows an ambulance, police officers, paramedics, and firefighters and their vehicles, all sporting the logo of Pittsburgh.
In the picture, someone is being loaded into an ambulance, making this look very convincing under such a serious headline. The news article offers what appears to be their disclaimer in the second paragraph down. After the article describes the spontaneous combustion of the Super Bowl tape in the quarterback’s hand, the author writes, “In other reports coming from the Steeler’s front office” which leads into the disclaimer-like sentence.
The disclaimer of sorts reports, that this story on Roethlisberger was “mainly written to scare the living sh*t out of a Steelers’ fan you love/hate.” The picture posted within the article is that of Jason Pierre-Paul. He’s the New York Giants defensive end, who actually did lose a finger back in 2015 to an accident with fireworks. According to Snopes, this player lost his index finger in that accident. The x-ray of Jason Pierre-Paul’s hand is pictured in the tweet below that the Broward Sheriff’s Office used as a reminder of firework safety. It is safe to say that Ben Rothlisberger has all his digits intact and that he didn’t have an accident with fireworks.
— Broward Sheriff (@browardsheriff) July 1, 2017
[Featured Image by Keith Srakocic/AP Images]