Fandings profiles longtime super user Matt “Chern” Chernick, a 26-year-old production assistant from Essex County, N.J.
Nickname: @ChernFaceKillah (click here to see his Fandings profile and follow him)
Record: 346-127 (.732)
What is your favorite sport?
Football because it’s an entertaining test of athleticism and power of will. The strongest (and healthiest) teams typically tend to survive the season long battle.
Who are your favorite sports teams?
Bulls, Blackhawks, White Sox and the DALLAS COWBOYS! I lived in Chicago for 10 years as a kid and was a massive Michael Jordan fan. The Hawks and Sox are teams I root for, but I tend to focus more on football and basketball than hockey and baseball. The Cowboys are my favorite team overall. They won the Super Bowl when I was 5 years old, and since I didn’t really know how to think right, they became my team. It’s worth mentioning that my dad is from the Bronx and is a diehard Giants fan, while my mom’s family is from Pittsburgh, and they’re all Steelers fans. You don’t need to tell me I’m the black sheep sports fan in the family.
Who are your least favorite sports teams?
I don’t know that I have favorite teams to root against, but I don’t really like the (Alabama) Crimson Tide or Notre Lame, and as a (Virginia Tech) Hokies, I’ve gotta admit I despise the (Virginia) Cavaliers.
If you could have dinner with three athletes, dead or alive, who would they be?
My dinner would include Dennis Rodman, Ric Flair and Tim Tebow. Rodman and Flair because I would love to hear their stories, and I think the three of us would have quite the party. Tebow is there because after the dinner, Flair, Rodman and I are more likely than not going to need a designated driver.
Who is your favorite athlete?
I strongly root for (Cowboys quarterback) Tony Romo. People love to hate on the dude without realizing he was an undrafted rookie free agent in 2003. He’s a warrior having come back from some pretty serious injuries. Two of my fondest memories of him: Week 2 of the 2011 season when Dallas went into San Francisco, and they hit him so hard they cracked some ribs and punctured his lung. Well, he came back into that game down 24-14 and willed the Cowboys to a 27-24 overtime victory against that ferocious defense. Then, in Week 16 of the 2013 season, the dude led a fourth-quarter comeback on the road in Washington down 23-14 with a herniated disc in his back. Lots of folks can’t even walk with that injury, but he hit some tough passes to win 24-23 before going on season-ending IR.
Did you play sports in high school or college?
I played lacrosse and football in high school. I was very fast, very tough, and pretty damn athletic. I could jump awfully high, and at 5-foot-7, I could touch rim and give the illusion of dunking in pickup basketball. I would jump up, throw the ball in the hoop and touch rim on the way down to make it look like I could dunk. I miss hitting people and recently started boxing classes now that I’m a failed 26-year-old athlete. But what I miss more is getting hit. Used to love taking hard hits and bouncing back up so quickly with a smile on my face that it ruined my opponents fun.
What superstitions do you have before and during a big sports events?
I’m not superstitious, but I’m a little stitious, and I believe I’m a jersey curse. Every jersey I get, that player has something bad happen in the form of a trade, cut, injury, etc. I had a short film in the Cannes Film Festival in 2014. A family member sent me a Sean Lee jersey as a congratulatory gift, and I was ecstatic. Well, when I touched back down in America after going to Cannes, I turned my phone back on, and the very first thing I see is a Bleacher Report alert that Sean Lee tore his ACL and was out for the year. I’ll never buy another jersey again.
You went to Cannes?!? Tell me more about your career.
As for what I do for work: I write, produce, direct and act in short films on my own time as a way to try to get my career off the ground. But right now for a living I’m a freelance production assistant for film and commercial productions. I look at it as a stepping stone and a way for me to get Sallie Mae and Navient off my back. Those student loans man, wow, what a buzzkill!
What is your favorite movie?
The Shawshank Redemption. I find it uplifting every time I watch it. The story itself is just brilliant because it’s about a man who falls more deeply in love with his wife after she’s dead. He goes to prison as an innocent man who feels he deserves to be their because he drove her away. And along the way, he realizes that he needs to “get busy livin, or get busy dyin.” And Andy Dufresne does something about it which is just awesome. I mean how can you not love that film!
What is your favorite TV show?
I’ll go with The Sopranos because A) it takes place and was filmed a lot around the area I live in in North Jersey. B) It’s an awesome story with characters who have a ton of depth. C) Throughout the whole series, HBO maintains a solid soundtrack that, as a filmmaker, I respect in multiple ways, but mainly from taste- and production-value standpoints. And D) Once you watch The Sopranos, you’ll notice how much crap your other favorite shows stole from it. I’ve also gotta give a shout out to Always Sunny and Party Down because those shows have really influenced my writing and personality to be honest.
Who is your favorite band?
I just like music, man. I’m not big on country or music that sounds like robots are getting it on. I think the cool kids call it EDM? But I like to stick to my classics: classic rock (Pink Floyd, Van Halen, Metallica, Zeppelin, etc.) and old-school rap, when rap was still rap (Biggie, Tupac, Wu-Tang Clan, NWA; have to mention Method Man and Redman). Not this Drake and Wiz Khalifa crap I hear these days.
What three things have to be in your refrigerator at all times?
CHEEEEESE! Didn’t we lock you in a dumpster once? Yeah, I got out (line from Old School). Lots of seltzer. And until fairly recently, a bottle of tequila in the freezer, but I’m trying to be better in 2017 and not face fifths of Jose Cuervo anymore.
What three words describe you best?
Goofy, loyal and resilient. You can’t survive eight years in food service like I did without a solid sense of humor. If you’re one of my peoples now, you’ll more than likely always be, and I’m a world champion mistake-maker, but it’s not about making the mistakes, it’s about bouncing back from them better than ever.
Who do you enjoy debating the most on Fandings?
I wouldn’t say I have a favorite opponent on Fandings, but SteveTheGoat is quite the character. He gets very salty when we battle, and he refuses to let me call him chief and sport when I attempt to demean him. He only wants to be known as SteveThe Goat. I can respect it a little, but he’s not the greatest of all-time.
What is your favorite thing about Fandings?
I thoroughly enjoy Fandings. No. 1 is that I feel like it’s the game for anyone version of Around the Horn or PTI on ESPN. I’m pretty sure all of us who use the app have at one time or another watched those shows and said to ourselves: “Wow, I can do this so much better than Tony Kornheiser or Woody Paige.” Or maybe it’s just: “I’ve got a better opinion than Stephen A. Smith on something.” But the app gives you a chance to mini-blog about good sports topics (and Netflix now) in a way that resembles those shows. My other favorite thing is that it’s not mindless entertainment. It’s engaging. It’s interactive. It’s constructive for me. And it’s something I can do when I’m on the bus heading into the city for 30-45 minutes. Which is unlike most apps people use daily in because they’re either playing some mindlessly entertaining game or scrolling through social-media outlets liking anything that makes them feel some type of way.