I Guess Red Sox Fans Are Just Born Narcs

The YouTube clip’s quality was so bad it looked like it was filmed in 1993, so you’re gonna have to watch the play here courtesy of our good friends over at ESPN.

First things first, I HATE when fans interfere with balls in play, especially when it hurts your team in some way. This wasn’t even a Steve Bartman where the ball is coming at you, this guy just throws himself at the ball which is clearly still in play. Springer had a double either way, so it honestly didn’t matter. But how about this little narc of a Red Sox fan tattling on the Astros fan?

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Classic Red Sox fan right there. Always the first to point out that A-Rod did indeed take steroids, but seem to forget what steroids are when you remind them Manny and Big Papi BOTH took PEDs. Also, 2/10 effort from this Astros fan. If I’m him, I’m denying the shit out of touching that ball. If you have first row seats and let them kick you out with that little of restraint, you’re doing it completely wrong.

Also, how about this blonde smokeshow in the first row?

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Too bad she’s a Sox fan though. Almost completely ruins it.

P.S. I was gonna blog about the Yankees but I’d get too depressed.

Throwback Thursday: National Geographic Lights Up the Internet with Penguin Fighting Video

Not these Penguins

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These boys.

What a fight, let’s get these penguins in the octagon and get this shit on Pay-Per View.

Beak, flipper, beak, beak, beak, left flipper, THIS GUY’S A SOUTHPAW!!!!!

I mean the back and forth, the suspense, the COMEBACK?!?!, and the final defeat. Unbeatable and undefeated, Mother Nature takes another W.

Imagine sitting around watching that, though? That’s bigger than middle school drama, that’s like if you see parents fighting at a Little League game and even the players stop to watch, but nobody says anything about it EVER. You just have to let them clear the air and let bygones be bygones (I have no idea what a bygone is by the way).

All the other penguins were just sitting there watching like:

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Sadly enough, the hoe of a wife chose the homewrecker, and somewhere Chris Brown is hollowly shouting “These hoes ain’t loyal”.

If this video doesn’t describe modern Twitter crazes, I don’t know what else would. Before you know it there will be a series on E! called “Keeping Up with the Penguins”, and you’ll NEVER guess what Mother Penguin said.

Keep up the good work, Nat Geo.  That’s journalism at its finest.

 

 

I’ll Watch the Rocky Movies Over Mayweather/McGregor Any Day

This fight has been anticipated for awhile now. Boxing’s best vs. the MMA’s best. These guys are both champs that have big personalities and a certain swagger to them. Sounds like an awesome fight. But you know what? I’m not buying it.

I’ve got no rationale behind this. I know next to nothing about boxing or MMA but I just don’t care about this fight. Means nothing to me. I think all the guys in the fighting industry are amazing promoters who can get people excited for these fights, but the fights will never live up to expectations. I remember sitting in my basement with my friends senior year watching the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. We all spent like $16 on the pay-per-view and had been looking forward to it all week. I don’t know what happened after that, but it wasn’t a fight. It looked like an awkward bar encounter between two guys who were both too drunk to actually throw and punches. One of the biggest wastes of time and money in my entire life, and definitely the most disappointed I’ve ever been by a sporting event.

So now you’re telling me I’m supposed to spend money to watch the same defensive boxer “fight” a guy who doesn’t even box? No thanks boys, I’m good. I’d much rather put my money towards beer.

Am I possibly wrong? Could this end up being one of the best fights ever? More than possible. I don’t know enough to deny that. But my standards of boxing will always be too high because of the Rocky movies. I mean look at this fake 30-for-30 on Rocky 4.

 

“These guys were landing 91% of their power punches!” Classic. I mean when else have you seen a juiced-up Soviet kill an American boxing hero in the ring, only for his best friend to come out of retirement to fight him in Russia on Christmas and end the Cold War by beating him? That’s what I thought. And even if the old Rocky movies aren’t your thing, you can’t tell me you didn’t enjoy Creed. Michael B. Jordan is one of the more underrated actors in America.

So have fun wasting your money on Mayweather/McGregor. Hell, maybe McGregor will win and I’ll miss out. But no matter what happens, neither of these guys will ever be as big of a legend as Rocky Balboa.

Best Minicamp Headlines

It’s possibly the most boring part of the NFL season (except the Scouting Combine): The practice sessions before training camp. Luckily, thanks to many hard-working reporters, us fans get a little sniff of the 2017 NFL rosters.

I would be a huge fan of this signing. Tennessee’s receiving core is a little murky, and even though Decker is far from a No. 1 receiver, he brings some experience to their position. Plus they have to cut Harry Douglass, guy is more focused on tearing ACL’s than catching passes.

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I really don’t blame the guy, I think he deserves a new deal. In his past three seasons, he’s recorded 1,000 yards-receiving in each year. If that doesn’t convince you enough, Zach Ertz and Charles Clay are making more than him, according to NBC Sports. Not saying they’re terrible, but Olsen is practically Carolina’s best receiving target.

That Ravens receiving core was looking very strange with Mike Wallace and Breshad Perriman set in stone as their two outside guys. Luckily, the Chiefs gave them a blessing in the form of Jeremy Maclin. He already enters the team as the best route-runner, pass catcher and overall receiver. Kinda makes me question Baltimore. Like, if Kansas City never released him, that was their plan? Wallace and Perriman? Ozzie Newsome must be sipping some shit.

Look at that. First day on the job and he already jacks Perriman’s number.

Thank the lord this crisis it over. Yes Odell is “back” as he says, and the NFL world can go back to their normal state. The more I think about it, the more silly it seems. The guy missed OTAs and fifty different rumors emerged. You would’ve thought he was skipping actual games to go clubbing with Lavar Ball and co.

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Probably in an enviroment like this.

This…this right here deserves no commentary.

Gary Sheffield Wants to Make Baseball Tough Again

In a recent article in The Player’s Tribune, the formerly relevant Gary Sheffield was asked how he’d change the game if he was the new commissioner of baseball.  Some changes made sense for sure, like getting rid of replay to speed the game up, and some were kind of a stretch, like extending the play-in wild card game to a series.

But one stood out to me, and that was the fact that Gary Sheffield wants brawls…and he wants them now. He believes that if a pitcher has the right to throw at a hitter, the hitter should have every right to go right the fuck back at the pitcher and light him up like a Christmas tree.

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I’m all in, Gary. Granted, you have forearms that are bigger than most people’s legs and could probably end a pitcher’s career with one punch to the esophagus. But, you still have a point. You have to be able to defend your right to stand in that box.

Baseball, along with other sports, is getting wayyyyyyy too soft. We gotta go back to the days when batters didn’t even wear helmets at the plate and still cranked 500 footers like it was nothing. No batting gloves, no helmets, no elbow guard, no Evo shield, no problem. It was Stud City, Popualtion: Everyone.

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If there is anything that needs to be changed about baseball, it’s that it needs to stop being such a gentleman’s sport.  If you wanna stay safe and avoid bruises and brawls, stay on the bench. If you wanna man up and defend your team and yourself, then step right up, you’re first in line.

It’s one of the few reasons I like Bryce Harper. Nobody fucks with him without getting it right back.

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Ignoring the fact he looks like wanna-be frat star who’s dad bought him the wrong boat for his 19th birthday and he freaked out, he takes no shit.  Not that we need more Bryce Harper’s, but we need more athletes with that “Fuck you” attitude.

We need another Pedro, a guy who is gonna throw an 80 year old Don Zimmer (RIP) to the ground.

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We need more guys like Roger Clemens who throw broken bats at players like they’re throwing knives in COD.

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And we need straight BRAWLS

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KD Should Forefeit His MVP Trophy For Spitting Out His Beer

I’ll save the whole usual KD rant because everyone already understands this guy is a sellout who took the easy road to win a title. Was even gonna say I gained a tiny bit of respect for him considering how well he played in the Finals. But I draw the freaking line at this.

What the fuck, man? Are you a 28-year old man who just won his first NBA Finals or a DARE officer? There isn’t a better feeling than cracking open a cold one with the boys after a big win, but apparently KD isn’t a fan. So have your superteam. Keep shooting 3’s and attacking the rim only to fade away from contact because you’re the lankiest human being ever created. But don’t you ever spit out another postgame cold one. Especially when you’re with the boys.

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The Basketball/Hockey Beef Needs to End

I know Bert wrote about this already today, I just wanted to add my two cents. Zero hockey blogs on BTB since its launch and now two today, big day for sure.

I’m a big basketball guy. Played my whole life, continue to play/officiate it today. However, I grew up with hockey playing friends, and I really enjoyed watching it, too. I feel like I’ve definitely seen more hockey than the average basketball fan.

Anyway, there certainly is somewhat of an NBA vs. NHL dynamic considering their seasons go on at the exact same time. The NBA is way more popular and gets a ton more media exposure. This brings up the first of my points:

Does the NBA get more exposure because it’s more popular, or is it more popular because it gets more exposure?

This is sort of a chicken-or-the-egg type of situation, to which I’ll say it’s a little bit of both. The NBA is more popular because it has more stars, guys people have been following since they played in college or even high school. However, you can’t tell me that if ESPN covered hockey in the same capacity they cover the NFL, NBA or even the MLB that it wouldn’t be more popular. Sports media covered the shit out of the Cavs and Warriors steamrolling their opponents in early rounds of the playoffs, but you barely heard about competitive NHL series. I had no idea the Predators were an 8 seed until the Cup started. At the end of the day, I think the NBA would still be more popular even with hockey exposure. However, I think there are a LOT of people out there who would watch and love hockey if they were exposed to it more.

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Basketball and Hockey are Inherently Different Sports

It’s tough to compare these two sports because even though they’re played at the same time, they are extremely different. Here’s why. In hockey you’re usually playing 4 lines of 3 forwards, as well as 3 defensive pairs. Add in the goalie, that’s 19 guys getting solid play time every game. In basketball, that’s not the case. You’ve got 5 guys on the court at once, and NBA rotations usually go 8-10 guys deep. A star like LeBron James is gonna play 40+ of the 48 minutes a game come playoff time. A hockey star like Sidney Crosby, though? He logged 17:17 of ice time in Game 6, out of a possible 60 minutes. That’s just how hockey is. You can’t have guys (besides the goalie obviously) playing 90% of games, it isn’t physically possible. I love the fact that hockey teams need depth to be successful. In basketball, depth is important, but not nearly to the degree it is in hockey.

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Stars Have More of an Impact

Because of what I just said, star players are infinitely more important in basketball than in hockey. Let me explain. Sidney Crosby, the best hockey player of our generation, plays a little under 1/3 of a clinching Game 7. LeBron or Kevin Durant or Steph Curry? Those guys are playing nearly all of every playoff game. For this reason, if you have a star in basketball, you have an immediate advantage. Put Crosby on one of the NHL’s worst teams and they’ll certainly get better. But put LeBron on any NBA team and they’re instantly a playoff team, if not title contenders.

Hockey Players are Tough, But so are Basketball Players

It’s always amazed me how hockey players do everything that they’re doing, while on skates. They make it look so easy. It’s a physical sport, guys lose teeth, etc. If you don’t think hockey is the hardest sport to play, you’re wrong. When people say hitting a baseball is the toughest thing to do in sports, I’ll immediately correct them and say it’s being a hockey goalie. Not that I’ve ever done it, but trying to stop 100 mile-per-hour slap shots from going into a net while simultaneously getting screened by your opponents as well as your teammates sounds pretty freaking impossible. However, just because they aren’t as tough, don’t act like basketball players are a bunch of wimps. Yeah, some of them can flop and be dramatic, but don’t generalize that to every basketball player. Ever seen Ben Wallace? The dude wore headbands around his biceps.

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Basketball is still a physical, contact sport. Are they getting their teeth knocked out on a nightly basis, or slammed into the boards? Absolutely not. But these guys are the best athletes in the world going at each other full speed. They’re stepping in for charges, taking elbows to the face, and maybe even taking the occasional shot below the belt (Get it???? Because the blog is called Below The Belt?!?!) That doesn’t come without a level of toughness.

The NBA isn’t the Best Representation of Basketball

I kind of hate the NBA. There, I said it. Let me explain. I’m a Knicks fan so that’s part of the reason why, but there’s just a lack of effort and defense in the league. This new superteam era has the players all buddy-buddy with each other in case they want to play together somewhere and I hate that. You should despise the guys you’re going up against, at least while you’re on the court against them. However, just because the NBA has become watered down doesn’t mean we should hold that against basketball in general. College basketball is full of guys who play hard, and play the right way. Stars don’t have the same impact in college as they do in the NBA. Two years ago LSU had the best player in the nation, Ben Simmons, and didn’t even make the tournament. March Madness is and always will be the best sporting event of the year. Kids playing the most important games of their lives, every game win-or-go-home? It doesn’t get better than that.

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My whole point in writing this blog is this. The NHL is awesome, and totally underappreciated. The Stanley Cup is the best trophy in sports, and it would be nice to see these players’ journey for it get some more attention. However, comparing the NHL to the NBA is dumb. The sports are so different in nature, and the NBA isn’t even the best representation  of basketball. So if you’re a hockey fan who can’t watch any other sport without saying why hockey is better, stop doing that. And if you’re a basketball fan who unnecessarily shits on hockey because “it isn’t as popular,” stop that, you’re being ignorant. Mic drop.