Andrew Unterberger is a famous writer who invented the nickname 'Sauce Castillo' and is now writing for The Rights To Ricky Sanchez, as part of the 'If Not, Pick Will Convey As Two Second-Rounders' section of the site. You can follow Andrew on Twitter @AUGetoffmygold and can also read him at Billboard.
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“I saw on twitter that the Retweet Armageddon congress passed legislation that if we get the 1st pick via Pick Swapalypse then it will trigger the Armageddon. Was hoping we could start a thread with some of the worst takes in the process era as to properly get enough ammo for such an event.”
This quote comes from Reddit user thesummit696, and while it’s not quite as catchy as “The British are coming! The British are coming!,” it’s worth reading a second time for its Paul Revere-like trumpeting of the impending Retweet Armageddon. So much about it should read as coded, if not outright incomprehensible -- congress, Pick Swapalypse, Armageddon. But if you were a Process Truster seeing this, you’d already be reaching for your musket and tricorn hat.
Truth told, I didn’t understand what Retweet Armageddon was for a very long time. Like all great RTRS bits, it popped up in discussions without context or elaboration, invoked by Mike or Spike as a combination of religious prophecy and old wives’ tale, like its existence was obvious and self-explanatory. Presumably its creation myth occurred on-air, but likely no one except Evil Hinkie still knows when, where or why. If you missed what Retweet Armageddon was the first time around, chances are government was already forming around it before you figured out what the hell it actually meant.
But that was fine. You didn’t need to know the particulars about Retweet Armageddon to understand the true meaning behind it. You knew it was coming, and you knew that when it did, the Process Faithful would ascend to a higher plane -- while below, those who doubted, mocked and scorned would be exposed as they and their cowardice were centered briefly in the spotlight, before being banished to the darkness forever. You knew that divine justice would be served. All that was left to be decided was when.
The Reddit forewarning turned out to have gotten most of the way there. The pick swapalypse didn’t quite happen, as the Sixers only got up to No. 3 on draft night. But once the Sixers worked out a seemingly inspired trade up for the No. 1 pick (and presumed top pick Markelle Fultz), it was on. The RTA congress was assembled, and though previous attempts to drum up the necessary majority had failed, this time the ayes had it. The trade was announced on June 17, 2017, and two days later -- when the NBA had deemed it as official -- we were scheduled for Retweet Armageddon.
Of course, pride comes before the fall, and in the case of the Process, it also comes during and after it. Once Retweet Armageddon came and old takes were exposed, no one was righteous enough to truly be spared. You could be as mighty and as pure as a hundred Ben Detricks, and it was still guaranteed that you had some take lusting after Dante Exum in the 2014 draft, or claiming Hollis Thompson would one day be the fourth-best player on a championship team. For me, it was a tweet hoping that the Sixers immediately inked K.J. McDaniels to a five-year, $50 million extension -- which Spike still pulls out on occasion, and which I stand by to this day. (Still $130 mil less than Tobias Harris, who basically has the same skill set with lesser athleticism!) Point is, no one was spared.
But naturally, some were more unspared than others. Those who had really made a point of separating themselves as Enemies of the Process over the years had their takes filed, organized, and then endlessly recirculated over the course of one day of the loudest single-fanbase cackling Twitter had ever heard. You can view some of the highlights in the VICE recap of the event -- yes, VICE covered it, as did USA Today and uh, the Georgetown Voice for some reason. (Most remarkably, all of them said the name.) “Surely there’s no chance this will come back to bite these fans,” the USA Today analysis sarcastically concluded.
Needless to say, the bite came, and it came in such surreal, act-of-God-type fashion -- Markelle Fultz inexplicably deciding to emulate me playing darts with his jumper form -- that it almost had to come via karmic retribution for our act of unprecedented hubris. Whatever. To think that there would be no price to pay for our peacocking victory lap around the Internet would have been naive, and to think that it even mattered would be woefully misguided. Retweet Armageddon was never about being correct, it was about being Right -- and if after six years, you still need the difference between the two explained to you, then maybe you need to stop listening to podcasts at 5x or whatever.
But if you needed any kind of validation that Retweet Armageddon was the right move, regardless of consequences, all you needed to know was that it was graced by one of the two guys whose opinion actually matters: Joel Embiid, who RT’d none other than anti-Process paterfamilias Howard Eskin to mock his take about Dario not coming over. (He misspelled his RTA hashtag of course, though to be fair, Armageddon is definitely one of Those Words.) It was a good reminder that the Process is unlike any other fan movement in sports history, one whose us vs. them mentality actually includes the star player we’re rooting for in the “Us” category. What else could you possibly ask for?
Well, a sign of Hinkie’s blessing, I guess. Maybe let’s save that for the Retweet Rapture.