Updated news on the Gambino, Genovese, Bonanno, Lucchese, and Colombo Organized Crime Families of New York City.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Sopranos gangster is a big time New York Giants fan


The Patriots will be flatter than a johnny cake once the Giants are done with ’em, this fan predicts.
Joseph Gannascoli is best known as closeted gangster Vito Spatafore on “The Sopranos,” but the Brooklyn-born actor’s true-blue Giants obsession is obvious from every memorabilia-covered inch of his East Rockaway, LI, home.
The actor — whose Soprano character famously romanced short-order cook Jim “Johnny Cakes” Witowski — even hangs Tom Brady in effigy from the roof.
“I’m a degenerate Giants fan,” Gannascoli, 52, told The Post yesterday as he sat in a TV room plastered with Post front pages celebrating the team’s magical run to Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis.
HEAVY HITTER:Joe Gannascoli, who starred in “The Sopranos”, has his house all decked out in Big Blue — with Patriots QB Tom Brady hanging in effigy.
HEAVY HITTER:Joe Gannascoli, who starred in “The Sopranos”, has his house all decked out in Big Blue — with Patriots QB Tom Brady hanging in effigy.
HEAVY HITTER: Joe Gannascoli, who starred in “The Sopranos” (above left, with Tony Sirico), has his house all decked out in Big Blue — with Patriots QB Tom Brady hanging in effigy.
HEAVY HITTER: Joe Gannascoli, who starred in “The Sopranos” (above left, with Tony Sirico), has his house all decked out in Big Blue — with Patriots QB Tom Brady hanging in effigy.
 
“I’m literally obsessed with them. If they lose, I can’t sleep for a couple of days.”
Gannascoli isn’t getting much sleep anyway as he prepares to continue his tradition of hosting huge Big Blue parties that can close down the entire street.
Even Gannascoli’s dog, a Maltese named Lola Teresa — “As in LT [Lawrence Taylor],” he says proudly — is going blue for the Big Game. The superstitious former chef from Bay Ridge is painting her fur blue with food dye after it worked so well during the Giants’ Super Bowl run four years ago.
“He cries when they lose and cries when they win,” said Diana Gannascoli, his wife of six years. “He’s completely obsessed with the Giants and golf, but especially the Giants. I think he cares about the Giants more than he does acting.”
The only part of his wife’s description Gannascoli disputed was the alleged river of tears after a Giants win.
“I don’t cry ‘boo-hoo’ when they win — I just get a tear in the corner of my eye,” he said.
Gannascoli’s love of all things Giants dates to 1970, when he saw his first game in person at Yankee Stadium, and wasn’t deterred by a loss to the hated Cowboys or the franchise’s lean years throughout the rest of that decade.
Gannascoli’s obsession took off with Bill Parcells’ transformation of the Giants in the 1980s, a run that included two Super Bowl wins and the arrival of Lawrence Taylor — still Gannascoli’s favorite player.
In fact, when LT later did a cameo on “The Sopranos,” Gannascoli admitted he was star-struck despite working with some of the biggest names in Hollywood.
“I literally couldn’t speak when I saw LT,” said Gannascoli, who goes by the nickname Joey G. “The guy is still my idol.”
A devout Catholic, Gannascoli even has a crucifix with an LT figurine on one side and a Phil Simms figurine on the other (“LT when we’re on defense, Simms when we’re on offense,” he says) next to his TV.
Gannascoli, whose SUV features a Giants vanity plate with the phrase “19 NO” to commemorate Big Blue ruining the Patriots’ perfect season in 2007, is convinced history will repeat itself next week.
“I’ve got the Giants, 38-24,” he predicted confidently. “The team back in ’07 was a team of destiny, and this team is playing the same way. I can just feel it.”


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