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‘Succession’ Season 3 Ending Explained: Who Betrayed Kendall, Roman, and Shiv?

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‘Succession’ Season 3 Ending Explained: Who Betrayed Kendall, Roman, and Shiv?

Succession Season 3 ended on a shocking downer for the Roy kids. The HBO drama has always been about the battle within the Roy family to see who will get a kiss from daddy — er, who will impress Logan Roy (Brian Cox) enough to be anointed his ultimate successor. The end of Succession Season 3 Episode 9 “All the Bells Say” turned that upside down as Logan took a wild deal to essentially sell Waystar Royco to Lukas Matsson (Alexander Skarsgard) and his streamer GoJo. And in a tragic turn of events, there was nothing Kendall (Jeremy Strong), Shiv (Sarah Snook), or Roman (Keiran Culkin) could do to stop him. Not even team up.

The Succession Season 3 finale had been hyped for a while as being “upsetting” and “shocking” (by none other than Gerri herself, J. Smith-Cameron). While most people assumed that meant someone would die, the only thing dead at the end of the episode was trust and dreams. So what exactly happened? Who betrayed Kendall, Shiv, and Roy? And how did Tom Wambsgans (Matthew Macfadyen) somehow come out on top? Here’s the Succession Season 3 finale ending explained…

SUCCESSION SEASON 3 ENDING EXPLAINED: WHO DIED?

No one died! I know, shocking. Kendall didn’t die, just like we predicted! We learn that while Kendall’s live was indeed in danger after his suicidal actions at the end of Succession Season 3 Episode 8, the man made it through! (Mostly thanks to Dasha Nekrasova’s Comfrey arriving in the nick of time to call for help.) This precipitates a rather awkward discussion amongst the Roy siblings upon the eve of their mother’s wedding. Basically Connor (Alan Ruck), Shiv, and Roman attempt to tell Kendall that they love him. It all backfires when Kendall refers to himself as Logan’s firstborn son, which doesn’t sit well with Connor.

Anyway! No one died! But Kendall’s attempt on his own life does spark a truly emotional conversation later in Succession Season 3 Episode 9. He finally confesses to Shiv and Roman about his role in the waiter’s death way back in Season 1. Shiv and Roman are shockingly supportive. That’s when the shit hits the proverbial fan, though, and the trio learn that their father is about to sell Waystar Royco to Lukas Mattson…

Kendall, Shiv, and Roman confront Logan in Succession Season 3 finale
Photo: HBO

SUCCESSION SEASON 3 ENDING EXPLAINED: WHO BETRAYED KENDALL, ROMAN, AND SHIV?

Basically everyone betrayed Kendall, Roman and Shiv this week, from their mom (Harriet Walter) to good old Cousin Greg (Nicholas Braun). But it seems that one person specifically orchestrated the trio’s downfall. But let’s back up and set the scene for why their loss was so devastating…

Succession Season 3 Episode 9 opens with Logan and Roman having a meeting with the mercurial Swede Matsson. Logan explicitly asks Matsson if they have a deal and Matsson turns the pitch around, pointing out that Waystar Royco is on the descent. GoJo is on the rise. The Roys might have legacy content, but they have no future path in the ever-expanding world of streamers, digital, and online entertainment. So Matsson suggests, in front of Roman, that they have a merger of equals. Logan will have a cushy title and say in the board, but essentially Matsson will take over everything. It will give Logan a chance to cash in all his chips and know that his company will have a future… even if that means handing it all over to someone outside the family.

Roman scoffs at this, but it’s clear later that Logan is interested. When Kendall, Shiv, and Roman get a whiff that Logan skipped the wedding to make the deal, they hatch a plan. It’s actually an ironically beautiful moment. The three siblings who have been pecking at each other from day one in the hopes of impressing daddy finally realize the solution to their problem has been there all along: together, with their mother’s shares, they can oust Logan and take the company together.

However when they arrive at Logan’s villa — where the deal is taking place — it’s all for naught. Even Roman’s seismically huge decision to stand up for once to Logan doesn’t matter. Someone has tipped off Logan that the trio were coming. And Logan in turn has negotiated with Caroline to sell her shares back, rendering the kids’ one piece of leverage void. The final scene is an extra gut punch as we learn Tom is in Logan’s corner and not even Gerri will hear Roman out. (“How does it serve my interests?” Cold, Gerri!)

So the kids finally got it together, but were too late to move…

Tom in the Succession Season 3 finale
Photo: HBO

SUCCESSION SEASON 3 ENDING EXPLAINED: SO IS TOM WAMBSGAMS THE WINNER?

Tom Wambsgams might have just become the favorite Roy child, y’all! So the question of who tipped Logan off is fairly obvious. Not only is there a chilling scene where Tom asks Greg if he’s ready to make a deal with the devil, but Shiv sees Logan pat Tom on the back. While she tells her upbeat hubby that “Mom fucked us,” it’s clear she knows Tom is the one who stabbed her in the back. Tom took years of abuse, a potential jail sentence, and the knowledge that Shiv didn’t love him and turned it into a Machiavellian opportunity to seize power from under the Roy siblings. Sure, GoJo and Waystar Royco are merging, but some Roy favorites are going to benefit from that. Namely, Tom and Greg.

If you’re wondering why Tom would do this, the better question might be why did Tom wait so long? It’s been obvious from day one that Shiv treats the man like a doormat. Last week’s episode might have been the moment that Tom realized she truly doesn’t love him. So what’s a guy like Tom Wambsgams to do? Fall back on the other main motivator in his life: the deep desire to be a Roy.

Tom finally acted like Logan Roy, though, instead of one of his kids. And in doing so made a cold, calculating move that iced Shiv (and Kendall and Roman) out.

WILL THERE BE A SUCCESSION SEASON 4?

Yup! HBO has already ordered a Succession Season 4 and it will be interesting to see what that season looks like. Now the battle amongst the Roy kids won’t be to impress Logan, but to find a way to build their own power? At least that’s what Logan suggests?

Expect the whole power dynamic of the Roys to shift in Season 4, with Tom and Greg holding more sway than Kendall, Shiv, or Roman. Furthermore, keep an eye out on Connor’s presidential subplot. Will Willa (Justine Lupe) agreeing to marry him, he might have the reverse Tom Wambsgams in his corner. That is, a politically savvy person with no desire to be a Roy fighting in his corner. (Guys, I think Willa is going to ironically end up a huge power player. Just saying!)

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Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death

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Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death

Legendary NFL coach and broadcaster John Madden died Tuesday morning at 85, the NFL announced. News of the football icon’s passing hit Twitter on Tuesday evening, and athletes, coaches and broadcasters from across the sports world reacted.

Fellow broadcasting legend Dick Vitale, who is currently battling cancer, called Madden “the greatest analyst of all time of any sport” in his Twitter tribute.

Former Yankees pitcher and notable Raiders fan CC Sabathia said “your legacy will live forever.” Madden coached the then-Oakland Raiders from 1969-78, a couple of years before Sabathia, a Vallejo, California native, was born. Lakers star LeBron James had similar words about Madden’s lasting legacy, adding an infinity emoji.

Former tennis star and social justice activist Billie Jean King recalled meeting Madden as a “privilege.”

Radio voice of the Rangers Kenny Albert, a five-sport broadcaster who’s been with FOX Sports since its inception in 1994, shared a photo circa 26 years ago to remember Madden.

ESPN’s Bomani Jones took a bit of a shot at current color commentators, noting that Madden “set an unreachable standard.”

Frank Caliendo, who’s made a career out of impersonations, including one for Madden, said he was surprised how emotional he felt.

Several football players, and others, including Saints running back Mark Ingram II and former Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant, credited Madden with being part of the reason why they love football.

Rams wide receiver and NFL MVP contender Cooper Kupp quote the late coach in his tribute: “The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer.”

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Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence

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Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence

MINNEAPOLIS — The Knicks got back another body in rookie point guard Miles McBride, who was cleared from protocols Tuesday and rejoined the team in Minnesota.

But there is no longer any hype for the rookie’s return. Kemba Walker is back as the starting point guard and coming off winning Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors with four standout games, including his Christmas Day spectacular. The Knicks have gone 2-2 since Walker regained the starting job.

“It’s great,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He had a great week. He’s playing great basketball. The team winning helps him get recognized and he was a big part of driving that winning. It’s great for the team.’’

McBride was also spectacular in his last outing before getting COVID-19, when he played the entire second half Dec. 16 in Houston and seemingly earned a spot in the rotation. In fact, McBride had strung together two decent outings before he was ruled out. But things have changed since his emergence and McBride is likely back to being a bit player.

Without a practice, McBride wasn’t even expected to see time when the Knicks faced the Timberwolves to kick off a four-game road trip.

Miles McBride
NBAE via Getty Images

Of course, with Walker’s arthritic knee, anything is possible. The Knicks play Detroit on Wednesday in a back-to-back, so it’s uncertain whether Walker will complete both contests. In addition, Immanuel Quickley is out of COVID-19 protocols but Thibodeau wasn’t sure he was ready for meaningful minutes.

That left Walker against the depleted Timberwolves, who were missing their three top players (Anthony Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell), all because of COVID-19 .

Kemba Walker
Kemba Walker
USA TODAY Sports

When McBride got sidelined by the virus and Derrick Rose needed ankle surgery, Walker was resurrected by Thibodeau and it’s been a stunning comeback story.

Though Thibodeau has clear reservations about Walker based on his nine-game banishment due to his defensive malaise as an undersized point guard, he admitted after the Christmas Day triple-double against Atlanta that Walker is playing “much more aggressive.”

Walker’s triple-double that featured 10 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds was a lot different than his prior outing, when he scored 44 points against Washington.

“I thought his passing was terrific,’’ Thibodeau said before the Knicks resumed their schedule.

“Kemba had control of the game. The game tells you what to do. That’s what I loved about the way he played. I don’t think he forced anything. They puts size on him and were aggressive in their pick-and-roll coverage. He didn’t fight it. He attacked pressure the way you like to attack pressure. You don’t fight pressure with pressure. Don’t try to split it. Get rid of it, go to the backside. Let the game tell you what to do.’’

The Knicks coach is finally seeing all the elements of what Walker can do. Before his demotion, Walker was nothing more than a no-defense, 3-point shooter whose plus-minus was an abysmal minus-122.

Thibodeau was also concerned about his durability in sitting out two of the three back-to-back sets. The last load management game in Atlanta in late November triggered Thibodeau’s decision.

But now it’s only superlatives from Thibodeau in judging the last four games.

“Sometimes it’s going to be his shooting, sometimes it’s his penetration and getting in the paint to force a collapse and sometimes they’re being aggressive with their traps get rid of the ball quickly,’’ Thibodeau said. “The overall play, his rebounding. When your guards rebound, those are key to fast breaks. The more guard rebounding we get the better we can be. ‘’

The Knicks still have three players in protocols — centers Nerlens Noel and Jericho Sims and the newly infected Wayne Selden. Quickley and Kevin Knox were cleared on Christmas but were held out for conditioning.

No matter. The Knicks go as Kemba goes.

“He’s much more aggressive,’’ Thibodeau said. “That was the challenge. At the beginning of the year he and Evan were two new starters. Sometimes guys are trying to fit in. he’s being very aggressive which is the way we want him to play. Not deferring at all. When he and Julius [Randle] are aggressive like that our team is different.’’

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Bar raises dramatically for Zach Wilson in matchup with Tom Brady, Buccaneers

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Zach Wilson and Tom Brady

When Zach Wilson stares across the MetLife Stadium field at the opposite sideline this Sunday, it won’t be Trevor Lawrence he’ll be looking at as his game-day counterpart.

Lawrence, drafted by Jacksonville one spot before the Jets selected Wilson at No. 2 overall last April, is a contemporary.

This Sunday at MetLife, the Jets rookie quarterback won’t be staring at a contemporary on the other sideline. He’ll be staring at the GOAT.

Tom Brady.

The bar raises dramatically for Wilson and the Jets, who are coming off of their feel-good, get-well win over the woeful Jaguars and Lawrence this past Sunday.

Brady and Buccaneers, who are 11-4, NFC South division champions and seeking to repeat as Super Bowl champions, play the Jets, who are 4-11 and seeking more signs of development from their rookie quarterback.

To say this is a step up in competition for Wilson and the Jets going from Lawrence and the Jags to Brady and the Bucs is as obvious as pointing out that Tampa Bay receiver Antonio Brown has had a few off-the-field incidents during his otherwise stellar NFL career.

There hasn’t been a lot to keep the interest of the Jets fan this season — other than watching Wilson’s development. That took an unfortunate pause for the four games Wilson missed with a knee injury, but he’s been back for five games and has looked like a better quarterback, throwing only two interceptions in those games (none in the last three) since returning from his injury.

The problem, though, is that Wilson hasn’t been producing enough touchdowns, throwing for three of them and rushing for four others in the past five games.

Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
N.Y. Post: Charles Wenzelberg; AP

Baby steps, though.

Wilson was the better quarterback this past Sunday when matched up with Lawrence, who threw for more yards than Wilson did, but Wilson ran for 91 yards, including his electric 52-yard scoring jaunt, and made key throws when he needed them.

Wilson will not win Sunday’s game against Brady and the Bucs throwing for the 102 yards he had against the Jaguars. He and the Jets will need more.

Consider this: Brady enters the game having thrown 37 TD passes and for 4,580 yards this season and averages a league-high 305.2 passing yards per game.

Then this: The Buccaneers average 29.5 points per game this season, second most in the NFL.

And this: Wilson doesn’t have a single 300-yard passing game, averages 183 passing yards per game and has thrown seven TD passes in 11 games.

Seven TD passes is a pedestrian two-game total for Brady.

Wilson and the Jets are playing with house money anyway in what always has been a developmental season, so Sunday against Brady should, at its very least, be a great measuring-stick learning experience for Wilson, who’s studied Brady on tape.

Wilson revealed this month that he watched film of Brady before the Jets played the Eagles on Dec. 5 in an effort to pick up tips on how Brady worked against the Eagles defense when he played them earlier in the season.

“I thought it was really cool to see kind of how he went through his whole process, how he navigated the pocket, different things like that,” Wilson said at the time.

On Sunday, Wilson gets to see that process up close as Brady tries to dissect a Jets defense that has yielded 29.9 points per game this season, the most in the NFL.

That puts an added onus on Wilson to produce on the other side of the ball, because he knows Brady is going to get his. Wilson will likely need to produce four TDs — any way he can — for the Jets to simply remain competitive with the Super Bowl champs.

That’s a lot to ask of a 22-year-old kid who’s produced just 11 TDs in his 11 starts, up against Brady, who’s thrown 618 TD passes and for 83,784 yards in his remarkable career.

It, too, is a lot to ask playing against an aggressive Tampa Bay defense that’s ranked No. 9 in the NFL in points allowed (20.8 per game) and is led by former Jets head coach Todd Bowles, who’d surely like to send a holiday message to his former employer.

If you don’t think Bowles will be blitzing the bejesus out of Wilson, then you probably think Antonio Brown is a living saint.

The good news for the Jets is that Wilson has shown incremental improvements, particularly when it comes to his decision-making and quicker releases on his throws.

“He’s coming along, he’s getting more comfortable, he’s calmer back there,’’ Jets coach Robert Saleh said Monday. “He’s in a great headspace and it’s going to be fun to watch him grow, continue to grow.’’

A big part of that growth will take place this Sunday as he watches the GOAT operate from the opposite sideline at MetLife.

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