Saturday, July 21, 2007

Top 5 Worst Crimes Perpetrated by ESPN

Straightforward. It's reaching a boiling point.

Ryan's Top 5:

1. Who's Now? - Offensive because it's a ridiculous premise to begin with, and also because they drag it out to last about 40 weeks. The absolute worst part of this is the panel discussing it. Who cares??? In all seriousness, what panel of human beings greenlighted this? What test audience gave thumbs up?

2. John Kruk - "Hm, I really admire your insight there Kruk." If you ever hear me say that in a serious tone, smother me with a pillow, please.

3. Stephen A. Smith - "The Patriots are a really good team with really good players and a really good coach who have won three Super Bowls recently. And quite frankly, that's all you need." Wow. Thanks.

4. Poker, Poker, Poker - THIS IS NOT A SPORT. THIS IS NOT EVEN AN INTERESTING NON-SPORT. Can we watch spelling bee reruns instead?

5. Playmakers - No. No, no, no. No. No original entertainment. No.

Tim's Top 5:
See Ryan's Top 5. It's actually ironic that Ryan posted this now of all times, because this morning on the treadmill, ESPN was on, and I saw the Who's Now garbage and thought about starting "Top 5 Shows That Used to Be Great But Have Jumped All Available Sharks" -- a list Sportscenter would really just about have to make. Instead, I comply.

1. Poker - Poker is not a sport. The spelling bee's not a sport, but it's a one-off. You decided you could broadcast seven nights of poker in lieu of sports like, say, hockey. The ratings support it. But the ratings would also support you broadcasting Meerkat Manor, that doesn't make it a fucking sport. Oh, and by the way, who is so goddamn boring and friendless that they watch this garbage? If you want to experience real poker action, make three or more friends and play. Or just go to the internet, gamble away your life savings of $18 (you are watching poker on TV, after all), lose your wife and kids to a white slaver, and take a new job answering phones at 1-800-BETS-OFF. At least it'd make for an inspirational made for TV movie...that ESPN would then broadcast in lieu of sports.

2. Red Sox/Yankees - To be fair, technically the Red Sox and Yankees existed before ESPN, but it wasn't until ESPN turned it into the Ohio State/Michigan of major league baseball that it became insufferable. Frankly, was this really a meaningful rivalry to anyone pre-2000? If you were a Red Sox or Yankees fan, then probably. But if you're a Red Sox or Yankees fan, you should be denied the right to vote, thrown in the dankest prison on earth, and left to feed off the scraps of the damned.

3. New England Bias - Try watching ESPN for a second and telling me that they're not rooting for the Red Sox and Patriots. Try. You will inevitably fail. You'll be able to say "There's no way that ESPN is ..." and before the word "biased" leaves your lips, you're going to find yourself with Maura Tierney playing your ex-wife and
discover that your mop-topped boy-girl child has made a birthday wish that you would be unable to lie for a day. (That's how long it took to set up the reference to Liar Liar, you're welcome.)

4. Around the Horn - So you have a show that has sportswriters giving their opinions? Well, that's called The Sports Reporters, it's the sports equivalent of Meet the Press, except hurtfully slow and dull. Oh, wait, you're going to have King Douche sit around and award them points based on whether he agrees with their opinions, regardless of whether they're supported? And you're going to have the same lame reporters day after day and expect people to watch Max Kellerman on TV? Oh lord. So wrong. Max Kellerman is gone, incidentally, the show still sucks.

5. Mohr Sports - This show lasted about twenty seconds, but it was pretty much where ESPN went wrong. I like comedy, I like sports, I need them to be not merged, lest I be left with only one joy in my life. It was a hackneyed show, it only aired once a week, rendering it not timely with respect to the sports references, given that sports are the most fly-by-night of news events, but not funny because the jokes had already been made by the time it aired.

Honorable mention to Joe Morgan (I let the folks at take this one. I hadn't really noticed how awful he was, but they do a good job of pointing out that there's little to separate him from Tim McCarver, Satan, or the indistinguishable combination of Tim McCarver/Satan known interchangably as Tim McCarver or Satan) and Mel Kiper - a man who created the world's greatest job, but, astoundingly, has no real track record of being good at his job. To be fair, I can't include Playmakers, 3, Hustle, or any of the ESPN original movies because no matter how bad an idea they were, they were so transparently bad ideas that I was never in danger of watching.

Dan's Top 5:
1. The ESPYs - I'm not entirely against sports awards, but Jesus. "The ESPYs?" I'd show much more respect for something with a more "official" sounding name. For example, the "Academy Awards." I'd take those much less seriously if they were called the "ABCsies." Also, Jimmy Kimmel should be executed. Preferably by LeBron James.

2. NFL Programming in the Offseason - With the possible exception of the draft or various criminal trials, there is absolutely no reason to cover any aspect of the NFL from February through August, it being the most boring and pointless of the big three professional sports leagues (the others being the MLB and the NBA). I would go to eat lunch and see a half-hour program about current NFL news in May. That's just got to stop.

3. Around The Horn - This is why I know who Woody Paige is. Need I say more? The answer is, "no."

4. Pardon the Interruption - Another excuse for people to make chat about sports news which just isn't worth talking about, much less by two of the most unentertaining individuals on ESPN. I do guess it's better than watching CNN or something on a down day, though.

5. Chris Moneymaker and the 2003 WSOP - I love poker. I'm glad I have to opportunity to watch professionals play it on television. I watched the 1999 World Series on ESPN, and it was amazing. If it has no other home than ESPN, then so be it. But the continuous hype over the 2003 WSOP and Chris Moneymaker's rookie win of the main event opened a flood gate of WSOP coverage. Just air the main event, please, and keep the repeats in the bowels of the ESPN2 programming schedule, so I can still download exciting episodes.

Tory's Top 5:

1. Human Interest - This is the pinnacle of no sports news when sportscenter has to revert to boring crap about people with some sort of disability - like a fat female football player. Whiners.

2. Not Enough Football - A. There is actually a point in which they don't air episodes of NFL live. B. When NFL starts coming on, it's still only thirty minutes, and with sportscenter you generally have to wait a while for the roughly two minutes of football news (at least in non-football season.) Despite Daniel's list, we all know that football is in actuality the best sport (and highest rated sport) that exists, much better than basketcrap.

3. Chris Brrr, it's cold, man - His puns are not funny. He is in no way entertaining. I hate him.

4. Female sports reporters - What do women know about sports?

5. Original Programming - I have never watched any and I'm sure there's a reason.

Honorable mentions - essentially every show that isn't NFL live or sportscenter. And most reporters.

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