Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

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Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Dthefritz » 01 Jul 2015, 19:00

So I decided to do a breakdown of an old Simmons column just to tide myself you over. I remember that last year's reprehensible Rolling Stone puff piece had a list of his alleged best columns, so I picked one that should have been a layup for a basketball junkie like Simmons - a retrospective on Elgin Baylor's career after he got unceremoniously booted from the Clippers front office by Donald Sterling. http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/st ... ons/081008

Jesse Owens. Jackie Robinson. Bill Russell. Jim Brown. Elgin Baylor. Oscar Robertson. Muhammad Ali.

Elgin doesn't belong on the list. That's what you're thinking.


Thanks for telling me what I'm thinking Jackass. If you're like most basketball fans of my generation, I'm guessing you'd remember Baylor as that guy who was really good at basketball along time ago, and probably wouldn't get all argumentative about him appearing on this list.

Not the guy who wore goofy sweaters to the NBA lottery every year. Not the unofficial caretaker for the worst franchise in professional sports. You might accept him on the "Worst GM" list, or even the "Celebs Who Looked Most Like Nipsey Russell" list. But not the list above.


Who the fuck follows basketball closely enough to know what kind of shit elgin wore to the draft, but not closely enough to know that he was once a great player?

Not with Jesse and Jackie and Russell and Brown and Oscar and Ali. That's a stretch. That's what you're thinking.


Well what I'm thinking is why the fuck Wilt is left off that list, but we'll get to that later.

So come back with me to 1958, the year Elgin took Seattle University to the NCAA title game and then skipped his senior season to join the Minneapolis Lakers. If you don't think Minneapolis is teeming with black people now, you should have seen the city in 1958.


Notice how a normal writer would have casually noted that Minneapolis is and was a predominantly white city. But asking simmons to rattle off a fact without drawing attention to his own cleverness? Why you might as well ask Kobe Teen Wolf Bryant to get his teammates involved!!!

Blacks were still referred to as "Negroes" and "coloreds." They drank from different water fountains, stood in their own lines for movies and were discriminated against in nearly every walk of life.


Not only do "we" not realize that elgin Baylor was a great basketball player, "we" lack a basic working knowledge of American history.

Elgin came into a league where guys shot running jump hooks and one-handed set shots. Teams routinely took 115 shots a game and made less than 40 percent of them. Nobody played above the rim except Russell


Pretty impressive that Wilt averaged like 20 rebounds a game without playing above the rim.

Rebound, run the floor, get a quick shot. Quantity over quality. That's what worked. Or so they thought.


How could an editor possibly correct his sentence fragments when they lead to such poetry?

Because Elgin changed everything. He did things that nobody had ever seen before. He defied gravity.


He jumped really high, which Russell and Wilt already did.

Elgin would drive from the left side, take off with the basketball, elevate, hang in the air, hang in the air, then release the ball after everyone else was already back on the ground.


And sometimes, when he jumped really high, he put the basketball in the basket, resulting in two points for his team.

You could call him the godfather of hang time. You could call him the godfather of the "WOW!" play.


You could also not try to come up with lame nicknames 50 years after the fact.

You could point to his entrance into the league as the precise moment when basketball changed for the better.


if it helps you drive an asinine narrative, sure, why not?

Along with Russell, Elgin turned a horizontal game into a vertical one.


Man if only Wilt had figured out how to use his athleticism to propel himself upwards, I bet he'd have been real special!

It's impossible to fully capture Elgin's greatness five decades after the fact, but let's try. He averaged 25 points and 15 rebounds and carried the Lakers to the Finals as a rookie. He scored 71 points against Wilt's Warriors in his second season. He averaged 34.8 points and 19.8 rebounds in his third season -- as a 6-foot-5 forward, no less -- and topped himself the following year with the most amazing accomplishment in NBA history. During the 1961-62 season, Elgin played only 48 games -- all on weekends, all without practicing -- and somehow averaged 38 points, 19 rebounds and five assists a game.


It's impossible to describe his greatness, except by using stats and recapping his team's accomplishments

Wilt's 50 makes sense considering the feeble competition and his gratuitous ball-hogging. Oscar's triple-double makes sense considering the style of play at the time -- tons of points, tons of missed shots, tons of available rebounds. But Elgin's 38-19-5 makes no sense whatsoever.


This, my friends, might be the biggest Simmons logic-fail in the history of his career- oscar and wilt's numbers were mitigated by the era in which they played, but that somehow doesn't apply to a guy who played at the exact same fucking time; McGwire hit all those HR's with roids, but how on earth did Sosa do it? IT DoESN'T MAKE SENSE!!!

I don't see how this happened. It's inconceivable. A U.S. Army Reservist at the time, Elgin lived in a barracks in the state of Washington, leaving only whenever they gave him a weekend pass ... and even with that pass, he could only fly coach on flights with multiple connections to meet the Lakers wherever they happened to be playing. Once he arrived, he would throw on a uniform and battle the best NBA players alive on back-to-back nights -- fortunately for the Lakers, most games were scheduled on the weekends back then -- and make the same complicated trip back to Washington on Sunday night or Monday morning. That was his life for five months.


Not trying to downplay his accomplishment, because this is one of the great feats in any sport, but Simmons just pointed out that he was a transcendent athlete, playing against inferior competition; So that's how it happened, genius, that's how you can conceive of it - it's not a supernova exploding in front of your very eyes

Forty-six years later, nobody even remembers Elgin's 38-19-5 happened.


Except for anyone who was alive and watching basketball at the time, or has ever read Baylor's wikipedia page/one of the many acclaimed books about basketball in that era;

When he carried the Lakers to the cusp of a championship against a juggernaut Celtics team -- becoming the first-ever member of the 60-20 Club in the process (in Game 5, Elgin exploded for an incomprehensible 61 points and 22 rebounds) -- he came within an errant Frank Selvy 10-footer of winning the title in Boston. Standing under the basket, Elgin jumped too soon for the rebound and didn't tip it in. He would never come closer to a ring.


I'm sure Greg and CTZ can explain why it was all Elgin's fault that they didn't win that title, and TRU WINNERS do what they have to do when the game is on the line

During the first two weeks of the '72 season, Elgin believed he was holding back a potentially great team and retired nine games into the season. The Lakers immediately rolled off a record 33-game winning streak and eventually beat the Knicks for the title.


Somehow, the Ewing Theory doesn't apply to him, but it does apply to Ewing, who has seen his Knicks make the playoffs just 4 times in 15 years following his departure, and win just one series;

Elgin lived through some things during his career that we like to forget happened now. Lord knows how many racial slurs bounced off him, how many N-bombs were lobbed from the stands, how much prejudice he endured on a day-to-day basis as the league's signature black star.


I thought Russell was the league's signature black star, as well as honorary pope and special ambassador to all extraterrestrial life forms

Russell bottled everything up and used it as fuel for the next game: He wouldn't suffer; his opponents would suffer. Oscar morphed into the angriest dude in the league, someone who screamed at his own teammates as much as the referees, a great player who played with an even greater chip on his shoulder.


What if I told you that in his book, Simmons spins these qualities to drive up one of these players in his rankings, and the other down? Which one of them would you guess?

Elgin didn't have the same mean streak. He loved to joke with teammates. He never stopped talking. He loved life and loved playing basketball. He couldn't hide it. And so his body soaked up every ugly slight like a sponge.


Just makes things less awkward when the dahhhkies are cheerful, don't you think?

"But the indignity of a hotel clerk acting as if you aren't there, or people who won't sell you a sandwich because you're black ... those are the things you never forget." And he didn't.


Were you just going to take the word of the guy who lived through all this, that he wouldn't forget? Don't be such a fool

Throw in today's nine-figure contracts and the babying and deifying of today's basketball stars and you can see why they would be a little bitter. Do any of the modern players realize that someone like Elgin paved the way for their eight-car garages and McMansions?


Yes, they all realize it, you fucking idiot, they just can't fully imagine what things were like in the Jim Crow era

Frustrated by low wages, excessive traveling and the lack of a pension plan, Elgin, Oscar, Russell and others decided to strike at the 1964 NBA All-Star Game in Boston. It was one of the ballsiest and shrewdest decisions in the history of professional sports that nobody ever mentions... According to David Halberstam's "Breaks of the Game," the votes were split


Nobody ever mentions it, except in arguably the most celebrated basketball book ever written

For whatever reason, this story never developed legs historically, although we hear about Curt Flood and Marvin Miller all the time.


Because baseball was a much higher profile sport at the time, and because Flood's court case went all the way to the supreme court and dragged out over a number of years; or whatever reason I don't know

Only die-hard fans remember at this point that, by any calculation, Elgin was one of the eight or nine greatest players ever and the second best forward behind Larry Bird;


HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA you just had to pre-empt your fucktarded readers from putting 2 and 2 together, didn't you?

(Note: I have seen some of the early Elgin tapes and can't emphasize this strongly enough -- watching Elgin dismantle his "peers" is like watching the scene in "Back to the Future" when Marty McFly starts cranking his electric guitar solo as everyone else stares at him in disbelief


IDK, you could have just described some of the basketball plays that he actually made in that footage, but you can't risk that some of your readers might actually enjoy sports for its own sake and are not in it just to make poorly informed wisecracks and terrible analogies

He didn't have that signature "thing" to carry him through eternity


Honestly, I think he's earning his $5M salary a lot better by not writing at all than by writing sentences like the above;

You rarely hear Elgin mentioned with the big boys anymore. Unless you're talking to an NBA fan over the age of 50. Then they defend Elgin and berate you for not realizing how unbelievable he was.


As do the people who got to interview him for their cushy sportswriting job, and pretended they always knew his career stats by heart

My theory is everything that happened after Elgin's playing career ended up obscuring the career itself. The Clippers hired Elgin to run them in 1986, and really, he has been something of a punchline ever since.


Unless they're trainwrecks like Isiah or great successes like Jerry West, very few people are going to remember a HoF player's career differently because of what they did in the front office afterwards

For instance, I wrote these two paragraphs about him in 2004, after I had purchased my first season of Clipper season tickets:


And who better to define his legacy than me!

When he found out I was coming for lunch, he wasn't pleased. Coincidentally, he ended up in the Staples cafeteria at the same time we were eating; one of my lunch partners asked Elgin at the salad bar if he wanted to join us. Elgin glanced over at our table, noticed me sitting there and growled, "That guy's an [expletive]."


Baylor: good player, better judge of character; That's what overshadowed his UNDISPUTED top 8 career - his "f e u d" with you;

Only he used a seven-letter expletive, placing most of his emphasis on the first three letters. For instance, let's pretend the word was "Bassbowl."


oh ho ho! how salacious! how SPICY!

People loved that story. Of everything I ever wrote for ESPN.com, it's easily one of the most popular anecdotes I ever passed along. You bassbowl! I hear that 10 times a year at Clipper games.


If that's actually true, there are some sad, sad people in this country

"And you-you-you know what else? He went first, but after you made your shot, he-he-he made it seem like he had last shot. Did you catch that?"

"I caught it," I said. "I thought it was funny that he cheated."

Elgin made another face.

"I'm glad you caught that," he said. "I didn't think you caught it."


He thinks I'm smart! Take that Herald editors who treated me as they would any other junior staff writer!

One time I asked Elg how he felt about chartered planes and he flew off the handle.

"Sheeeeeeeeeet," he said.


It must have been good to finally get confirmation from a real life black person that they talk just like the guys in the Wire

"When I played, we flew coach and carried our own bags! We landed two, three, four times! You ever hear about the time we crashed in a cornfield?"


of course we had to get past a compelling account of the Biggie/Tupac caliber beef to hear something as mundane as this

You probably don't know that story either


I didn't, but I also wasn't about to interview an NBA legend, which should have prompted some cursory research about his life and career;

If you're younger than 40, when you think of Elgin, you probably remember him wearing one of those Bill Cosby sweaters and wincing because the Clippers' lottery number came too soon.


No, because my basketball fandom at the time consisted of watching games, not writing a yearly column that involved me watching the NBA draft and pointing out how black all the black people were;

You should think about him creating hang time from scratch in 1958.


Nice prose, bruh;

Think of him telling Hundley that he couldn't play that exhibition game in West Virginia, not because he was trying to prove a point, but because it would have made him feel like less of a human being.


You could almost say that he was trying to prove the point that he, and other members of his race, were in fact human beings equal to whites

Elgin ended up leaving the Clippers on the same day Barack Obama took part in his second presidential debate. The two events weren't related at all.


Correct;

Or so it seemed.


Seriously fuck this guy; Even if he never writes again, it will take sportswriting a decade to recover
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby ctz31 » 02 Jul 2015, 08:07

Good job, but out of all of simmons old columns you choose one about Elgin Baylor to cover? No one even knows who that is. Shoulda went with the OJ case column or when his dog died.

When he carried the Lakers to the cusp of a championship against a juggernaut Celtics team -- becoming the first-ever member of the 60-20 Club in the process (in Game 5, Elgin exploded for an incomprehensible 61 points and 22 rebounds) -- he came within an errant Frank Selvy 10-footer of winning the title in Boston. Standing under the basket, Elgin jumped too soon for the rebound and didn't tip it in. He would never come closer to a ring.


I'm sure Greg and CTZ can explain why it was all Elgin's fault that they didn't win that title, and TRU WINNERS do what they have to do when the game is on the line


61 and 20 but he passed the ball to presumably a white guy named frank selvy for the last shot? Great job Elgin. He was probably just too exhausted to shoot.
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Briandong79 » 02 Jul 2015, 08:31

ctz31 wrote:Good job, but out of all of simmons old columns you choose one about Elgin Baylor to cover? No one even knows who that is. Shoulda went with the OJ case column or when his dog died.

When he carried the Lakers to the cusp of a championship against a juggernaut Celtics team -- becoming the first-ever member of the 60-20 Club in the process (in Game 5, Elgin exploded for an incomprehensible 61 points and 22 rebounds) -- he came within an errant Frank Selvy 10-footer of winning the title in Boston. Standing under the basket, Elgin jumped too soon for the rebound and didn't tip it in. He would never come closer to a ring.


I'm sure Greg and CTZ can explain why it was all Elgin's fault that they didn't win that title, and TRU WINNERS do what they have to do when the game is on the line


61 and 20 but he passed the ball to presumably a white guy named frank selvy for the last shot? Great job Elgin. He was probably just too exhausted to shoot.


From Frank Selvy's wikipedia page:
The player who initially had the ball on that final play was Rod "Hot Rod" Hundley. And Hundley had in fact dreamt the night before that he would make the championship-winning shot. And further, after pump-faking his defender into the air, Hundley indeed briefly had an opening to take a shot. But rather than selfishly insisting upon attempting to play out his dream in real life, when Hundley noticed that Selvy was open for an even better shot — a shot that Selvy usually could be counted upon to make — Hundley gave up his own chance for glory and passed the ball. Selvy's miss, however, meant that Hundley's sacrifice had been for naught and that Hundley would never know if indeed he would have won the championship himself, had he taken the shot he had available. Because of this, Hundley has said that to this day, he occasionally calls his friend Selvy and, when Selvy answers the phone, Hundley simply says, "Nice shot!" and then hangs up.


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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Mario Speedwagon » 02 Jul 2015, 08:32

Dthe, break down this piece of shit:

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/st ... ons/060719
#2C4S

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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby NotAndyGreenwald » 02 Jul 2015, 10:30

Mario, my man, lemme do this for ya:

Picking an English Premier League team is like picking a new car: If you don't throw yourself into it and assimilate as much information as possible, you could end up getting stuck with a lemon.


Well, you are a sprotswirter, so it's YOUR FUCKING JOB to "throw yourself into it", but good on you telling us in the very first paragraph that you were happy doing what you get paid for.

But soccer does have the one thing that drew me to sports in the first place: Great crowds


What if he had just gone to some other sort of gathering as a kid? Would he be just as much be a fan of, say, the advancement of colored people if he had attended a rally at age 5 with his dad? Such a sweet alternate reality...

You know how Red makes the comment that, after a life spent in Shawshank, he can't even squeeze a drop of pee without asking for permission first? I feel like that's happening to us.


In what world is this considered good writing? "Look, this fictional scenario with no tangible connection to the topic at hand is just something I wanna namedrop real quick"

Not to pull a Madonna on you, but European soccer stands out because of the superhuman energy of its fans


Let me translate: I only started caring about this thing because people cheer, it is pure coincidence I did not end up at a neonazi parade(man those guys shout ALL DAY and with their choreographed gestures, almost like college football)

And no, that same energy hasn't completely disappeared; you can see a similar energy on display at Fenway


Look, you and I both knew this was coming. This column is about soccer on the outside; the experienced reader will notice the familiar undercurrent of me sucking off my cold-ass, pasty white racist hometown. It's a Massholet thang.

We'd rather hear artificially created noise than genuine noise.


For the cheap price of just one 5th rounder in the upcoming NFL Draft!

One more note on this: I watch old Celtics games from time to time and always think how the Bird Era could never be recreated -- not the team itself, but its connection with the Boston Garden and the passion of the fans attending those games. We didn't need a Jumbotron or musical prompts to tell us what to do. When the Celts were introduced, we screamed for every starter and saved one extra decibel level for Bird. When we needed a defensive stop, we stood and shouted at the top of our lungs. When Bird found a wide-open cutter for one of his gorgeous no-looks, we were cheering even as the pass was being delivered -- that's how attuned we were to his passing skills and how they spilled over to everyone else on the team. The best moments happened when the C's would blow someone off the floor and force a timeout, and the roof would practically come off, and we'd keep cheering and cheering -- all the way through the timeout, no organ music, no other noise, nothing. That's how we judged the level of excellence, by how long everyone felt obligated to cheer. If we made it all the way through the timeout, the horn would sound, which only made us cheer louder because we had lasted so long. I'm telling you, there was nothing quite like it. And this happened all the time.


"Allow me to veer off on a ridiculously useless, overlong tangent on how some white assholes cheered in the GAHHHDEN for some white dude who was like Jesus if Jesus were a baller. What was that? You were asking about soccer? Just give me two to thirteen more masturbatory sentences describing the one time I saw Larry Bird's ballsack hanging out his shorts..."

First, English soccer goes way back to the 19th century (The Football League was founded in 1888)


WHOA WEIRD FACT THAT MMIGHT ONLY INTEREST YOU. The synergies between BS and PK are unimaginable, but I am willing to bet together they could generate enough white noise to last us three generations.

Second, picking a team really IS like picking a car -- every team offers something unique (good and bad).


These teams are not all the same! Now it really gets confusing!

And third, the passionate arguments from hundreds upon hundreds of readers (we're talking about e-mails in the range of 1,000-1,500 words) convinced me even more that I was doing the right thing.


Again, a man telling us that doing his job is "the right thing", after he had to be "convinced". He gets paid 7 figures for this Bullshit. I hate him so, so much right now.

Goal No. 1: Avoid the whole "jumping on the bandwagon" thing. I didn't want to be like those losers in the mid-'70s who started rooting for the Cowboys or Steelers just because they were winning.

"those losers". But the Cletics were a complete abomination in the 70s, you say?

Fulham -- On the bright side, they feature American star Brian McBride. On the flip side, one of their celebrity fans is Hugh Grant. And they're owned by Mohamed Al Fayed, the Harrods owner whose son was in the limo with Princess Di. Too many bad vibes.



/gratuitous Lady Di namedrop, because #ENGLAND (there has to be a "London Calling" youtube embed in there somewhere, 100 bucks)

Middlesbrough -- One of their fans ran on the field last year and ripped up his season tickets right in front of their coach. True story. I wish my dad had thought of this during the Rick Pitino Era in Boston.



"I was too lazy to research real facts, so #Celtics".

West Ham -- Demoted in 2003 but climbed back up to the EPL and finished in ninth place in 2005-06 -- so they've had some recent suffering, as well as a reputation of finding young studs who end up leaving in their primes for bigger teams. I have to say, I loved their jerseys. They have a cool nickname ("The Hammers"). They're even based in London. But there were two major drawbacks. First, one of my readers described them as "Good for people who like '80s music and make references to George Michaels." Whether he was referring to the former Wham! singer or the guy who hosts "The George Michael Sports Machine," I'm not sure, but either way I was a little turned off. And second, West Ham was prominently featured in the Elijah Wood movie about hooliganism ("Green Street Hooligans"). Again, I want to minimize the role of hooligans in my life -- it's been a productive three and a half decades without them and I'd like to keep the streak going.



Now this paragraph makes no sense at all. Let's unpack: three random factoids, then something about the nickname, so far, so good. But then the George Michael thing (would have pegged BS to stand in front of the mirror and mouth the words to "Wake me up before you go-go) and then the unreasonable hate for GSH! That film is MINT if you are a teenage boy, and BS essentially never graduated from high school emotionally.

Manchester United[...] Wouldn't you hate that person? I don't want to be that guy.


That's OK. You are a bunch of other very hateable guys already. "The sports guy", "The Boston superfan", "The guy who keeps talking about his dumbass kids", "The LeBron hater", "The crypto-chauvinist", "The guy who printed an Email-exchange with that asshole Malcolm Gladwell"... I could go on

SHEEESH THIS JOINT HAS A SECOND PAGE WHY AM I EVEN DOING THIS?

• American Comparison: Like a competent version of Isiah's Knicks, only if James Dolan was a Russian mob boss.



Classic Bill Simmons: "Let me look at this from a very distorted perspective just so it fits my general modus operandi"

And the other EPL fans dislike them to the point that they derisively call them "Chelski" (veiled dig at the Russian owner).


How is this veiled? Of course Simmons does not realise this is just some raycess bullshit, because he is using veiled racism himself quite often, so maybe thsi was intentional.

• Sponsor: Samsung, the poor man's Sony.



Yeah, how'd that go? Leave business to dudes who know shit, like Richard Quest.

many people seemed to think this was the logical choice for me, which made me NOT want to pick them, if that makes sense.


Your reminder that we are reading ~6000 words about which EPL team this douchebag should root for, even though he doesn't know the first thing about the sport. He is agonizing about facts like "reminds me of Mark Cuban" or "they play like the Phoenix Suns". WTF is this shit?

17-year-old wunderkind Theo Walcott (the LeBron of the EPL) and crazy German keeper Jens Lehmann (you might remember him from the Cup).


Theo Walcott is not the LeBron, and even then, this statement showed tremendous ignorance. Shrek, that dude would have been a better LeBron comp, considering dominance and sheer physical power. A better Walcott comp would be, I dunno, Penny Hardaway if you are generous (was on a good team, did a bit of stuff when he was younger, got hurt, never fulfilled potential) or, if you are cruel, Jimmer, maybe(yuuuuuuuge hype, did nothing of consequence in the League). Also, bow down to Lehmann, one of my all-time fave soccer players (gratuitous factoid that definitely only interested me).

• Unintentional Comedy: Once had a legendary goalkeeper named "Seaman."



Jesus fuck was that dude incompetent. good times. Like, almost Tomislav-Piplica-level bad!

(Another reason to pick them: As a reader explains, "Like the Green Bay Packers and unlike anyone in the EPL, no one owner owns the team, but rather, fans own shares of the squad." That sounds cool. Not as cool as having a Russian mob boss own your team, but pretty cool.)



/member of Kroenke holdings. Thanks, Obummer!

every season is highlighted by home/road games against United that are called "derby matches" (pronounced "darby" -- any time two teams from the same town play, it's called a "derby match")


OH LOOK, they have different names for rivalries! I would know, but the only sport I follow is basketsball, where teams don't have that.

Baby blue, a shade lighter than the UNC Tar Heels.


Wait, what? Simmons knows college sports exist? I call BS.

• Single Best Reason NOT To Pick Them: They're just not good enough. You don't want a team that's on TV twice a year and might get relegated at any time. Unless you're from there. Sorry, Stein. You're on your own.


Might I reference you to earlier this column, where you scolded bandwagoners for being "losers"? Or do you honestly believe your readers have such a short attention span would not rule that out doe)?

They're named after a beer I actually like


Sez the dude who calls himself "The Sports Guy" and usually tries to be cliché af.

• American Comparison: The Boston Celtics, only if it were 1986 and Lenny Bias made the decision, "I'm never doing drugs."



You knew this was coming. The column is old, but since this is ESPN, I half expected an update reflecting his displeasure with the Harden trade as well.

as well as an English city that everyone compares to Boston (port city, tons of Irish immigrants and blue-collar people, rivalry with London that mirrors Boston/New York, sports means a little TOO much, etc.). Reading the e-mails about Liverpool almost made me feel like I was reading about a Boston team, actually


GO FAAACK YAAHSEELF WITH A LUNCHPAAAIHHL!

(Note: Continuing with the Red Sox parallel, they staged the most famous comeback in recent soccer history last year, rallying back from a 3-0 deficit in the second half to win the Champions League. It's hard to say whether this was more or less incredible than the Red Sox rallying back from three games to zero against the Yankees. And if you thought this was a thinly-veiled excuse to mention the 2004 ALCS again, well, you know me too well.)



This was a game for the ages, and he dares comparing it to baseball. Like, superfuck him with a rake for that alone. Who does he think he is?!

"ROUTINELY goes out to bars after games because he's an average scouser (he was much criticized for this earlier in his career)"


Typical mouthbreathing Simmons reader "HE GOES TO BAR HE SO COOL SO SEXAY"

• Stadium: Anfield was originally built in 1884 and also received some Fenway Park comparisons from readers, mostly because of the Kop (a banked stand on one side) that's a little Green Monster-esque. Although I wonder if the fans of various teams were buttering me up by describing their stadiums as "a lot like Fenway Park." If so, you succeeded.


This column is about 45% just talk about the Red Sox. I legit learned more about this team than about soccer. Fuck him for doing this to me.

•In a Nutshell: If London was the Corleone family, Manchester United was Sonny and Arsenal was Michael, then the Spurs would be Fredo with a little more street smarts …


"If London was... " correct me if I'm wrong, but this sentence should never contain the word "Manchester" then, right?

blessed with a devout fan base in North London that routinely packs the other team's house during road games (a la Sox fans)


so basically the team he decides to root for will turn out to be the one where the most SAWWWX references can be shoehorned in one paragraph. For someone who is getting a college education, I am ashamed it took me this long to find out.

• Signature Players: Irish striker Robbie Keane (known for his crazy celebrations after goals), 20-year-old wing Aaron Lennon (considered the odds-on favorite to take Beckham's spot on the 2010 World Cup team), midfielder Edgar Davids (a black Dutchman with dreads and tinted goggles). In particular, Lennon looks like a potential Dwyane Wade-type down the road. So that's appealing.



Aaron Lennon was never good, his ceiling was "Walcott with less hype", and Walcott can only sprint and occasionally finish. Probably only compared him to Wade cause "wing". Just like if I said Ribery and DeMarre Carroll are similar because they are both surprisingly effective on D - looks alright, but makes fucking zero sense.

• Stadium: A 105-year-old stadium (White Hart Lane) that holds only 36,000 seats … the same number as Fenway Park. Hmmmmmm.



"My dick is white and shaved...like the crowd that frequents Fenway Park. See, I can do it, too!

The equivalent of having Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium at opposite ends of Charlestown.


IS THIS REAL LIFE OR IS THIS JUST Fenway Park?

Besides, they're named after a Shakespeare character! How can you beat that?


I thought the soccer Papi had a strong case...

just doing a quick search, and it turns out, the word combination "Fenway Park" has been used ...only five times? Aaaaaanyway, not doing this again so soon, my spirit is b-r-oken.
mj3528 » 03 Dec 2015, 22:34 something rarely said, but NAG was right.

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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Mario Speedwagon » 02 Jul 2015, 10:48

A good first effort, NAG.

I did enjoy this tidbit:

17-year-old wunderkind Theo Walcott (the LeBron of the EPL)


:lol:
#2C4S

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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Gregs Kite » 07 Jul 2015, 07:09

Nobody likes a quitter, NAG. I think you did fine. Sack up, get ahold of your man and get blessed, then try this again.
You fuckers ruined kite.

Apr 22, 2015 3:49 pm Clayton Bigsby i enjoy sports

BostonSucksMyBalls - Thu May 11, 2017 2:07 pm: greg your being a lil bitch in the hall of sand

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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby chrisco » 07 Jul 2015, 20:26

Gregs Kite wrote:Nobody likes a quitter, NAG. I think you did fine. Sack up, get ahold of your man and get blessed, then try this again.

NOW THERE IS SOME LIFECOACHING.
BostonSucksMyBalls - Fri Apr 07, 2017 9:03 am: I listen bc ive listened for about 25 years. I need to see this stupid thing thru.
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Dthefritz » 07 Jul 2015, 21:46

Well I guess NAG didn't bite; So here goes a doozy of an old classic, the "Why almost famous is da best movie ever!1!!!" column, which is somehow even worse than I remembered, mostly due to staggeringly wrong predictions about the NBA being presented with absolute certainty

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/st ... ons/090727

"I'm flying high over Tupelo, Mississippi, with America's hottest band ... and we're all about to die."

I always wanted to lead a column that way. That's a quote from "Almost Famous," my favorite movie of the aughts, the double zeroes or whatever we end up calling this stretch from 2000 to 2009.


Always good to start a column by drawing attention both to your lack of skills as a writer and your questionable taste.

In a mid-July B.S. Report with Chris Connelly, we tried to determine the decade's defining movie


What could be me defining of the 00's than a movie set in 1974?

My three qualifications? Excellence, originality and (this is crucial) rewatchability.


Hopefully, the quotes he throws in here will dispel any notion of this movie's originality.

Now, you could argue "The Dark Knight" was the decade's defining movie -- and it very well might be -- but we don't know about its rewatchability yet.


I haven't re watched this movie - therefore no one has.

Hence, I went with "Almost Famous." Many readers were stunned


Turns out my braindead readership actually caught me trying to condescend to them. Shocking, isn't it?

Yeah, really. Has there ever been another good drama about the dynamics of a rock 'n' roll band?


The Usual suspects is the only good drama about a Hungarian crime lord whose existence is ambiguous. Therefore it is the greatest film of all time.

Think about how much time we spend listening to music. Think about how much time we spend wondering about bands and individual artists.


okay

Now, think about your favorite movies about fictional bands.


Not movies about real band, like The Doors? Not documentaries about real bands? Even so, I feel pretty good about preferring Spinal Tap to Almost Famous;

OK, give me one other good one. You can't.


Sorry to ruin your point with my valid counterexample from above;

The degree of difficulty for "Famous" was off the charts. It was a 10 out of 10. A period piece about a rock band?


What the hell are you talking about? What makes that harder to make than any other kind of movie? As this column was being written, James Cameron staked his entire considerable fortune on filming the first 3d blockbuster using largely new technology; That seems kind of hard

It has a salient theme -- namely, that 1974 was the exact time when music lost its innocence and started to go corporate.


Salient - has a day gone by when you haven't lamented that music in 1973 was soooo much less corporate than it was in 1975? Really one of the central aspects of American life in the 2000's for all people

And best of all, of any movie of the 2000s, it has the best quotes. A treasure chest, if you will.

You know what? I'm just going to have to prove it to you by dusting off one of my old-school column gimmicks. Let's hand out 50 of my favorite "Almost Famous" quotes and exchanges to the winners and losers of the NBA's 2009 free-agent buying spree.


Yes, let's

2. And you can tell Rolling Stone magazine that my last words were ... "I'm on drugs!"

To the Lakers' fans. If you think your boys improved by swapping Trevor Ariza (a 24-year-old who came into his own this past spring, shot 45 percent from 3-point land, came through repeatedly in the clutch, turned into the NBA's single best defensive swingman and doesn't care about his numbers) for Ron Artest (an unreliable 29-year-old head case/attention hog who slipped noticeably as a perimeter defender these past two seasons and has a knack for taking terrible shots at the worst possible times), then absolutely, you're on drugs. I don't know what else to tell you. Your team is worse. I'm sorry.


Note that Artest hit a number of big shots in the playoffs in 2010, including a big 3 that basically iced Game 7 of the Finals;

Here's a classic case of someone hoodwinking the American public with a 10-year pattern of bizarre behavior that eventually immunized them to all future crazy Ron Artest stories and anecdotes, such as the fact that he's wearing No. 37 to honor Michael Jackson because it's the same number of weeks that "Thriller" led the charts (um, what?)


That makes so little sense, you know, as opposed to writing an NBA column with a bunch of quotes from a movie about a fictional 70's rock band;

5. What, are you like the star of your school?

They hate me.
You'll meet them all again on their long journey to the middle.


So original - the popular kids in high school might not always succeed at everything later in life! Mind = blown

If you were to have a DVD-collection draft with five buddies (and by the way, don't think I haven't done this) in which everyone picks six actors in snake fashion and you get every single movie they made on DVD, Hoffman would be a sneaky late-first-round pick.


I honestly don't know if it's worse if you've actually done this, or if you're trying to impress people by lying about something so pathetic;

6. Live? "American Woman"? The most brilliant piece of gobbledygook ever! Give me some white light hot heat! (Picks up an album.) IGGY POP!!! Aaaaaa-men!

To my three favorite sneaky-good moves this summer ...


only hollywood insiders like Billy know about obscure artists like Iggy Pop

Anthony Parker, two years, $6 million (Cleveland)


swing and a miss

Arron Afflalo, trade (Denver)


ok

Jannero Pargo, one year, terms not disclosed (Chicago)


This was after he killed New orleans in a game 7 against the Spurs in '08, no idea what the eff he was thinking;

7. Tell him, you know, it's a think piece about a midlevel band struggling with their own limitations in the harsh face of stardom. He'll wet himself.

According to NBA history, the Bulls will struggle coming out of the gate as this season's enticing "Watch out for these guys!" team that surprised in the previous playoffs, receives a little too much attention and briefly self-combusts the next season (copyright: 2007-08 Warriors).


In 2009, the Bulls went 41-41 and lost in the 1st round; in 2010, the went 41-41 and lost in the first round; all that attention musta really got to them;

10. Side proposition to the winner: For 50 bucks and a case of Heineken, I'll throw into the pot three lovely ladies, including Miss Penny Lane of the famous Band-Aids, who have to leave the tour before we get to New York.

To Milwaukee. Wasn't 50 bucks and a case of Heineken what the Bucks got for Richard Jefferson and Charlie Villanueva? Or was it 100 bucks? I can't remember.


Jefferson was washed up and Villanueva was terrible; Not like they got fleeced; Jefferson couldn't find a role with the Spurs which should tell you just about everything you need to know

(Note: The blind poker scene was extended in "Untitled" -- including a part in which one of the guys mentions having some special David Crosby pot on him, followed by someone else saying, "You have Crosby pot?" as if this was the medicinal marijuana stash of the '70s. And it probably was.


Turns out Cameron Crowe is just as much of a name-dropping dickcheese as Simmons; No wonder he loves this movie so much

Ever since I saw this scene, I have called superpotent pot "Crosby pot." Um, not that I partake. But still. You're right, I need to stop talking.)


I think we need a site poll on what's worse - acting like an authority on weed when you don't even smoke, or quoting a fucking deleted scene from Almost Famous

11. Before I go, lemme give you a lesson in mystique. (Holds out a cigarette lighter in one hand and closes his other fist.) You can only have one. Which one do you want? As long as you can't see what's in this hand (shows closed fist), you'll always want it more.

To the Knicks' fans. Just remember ... there's nothing in that closed fist yet. Literally, nothing.


This analogy would make sense if the Knicks had been trying to break up a good team to go after Bron in free agency - they were terrible, so hope of signing someone big in free agency was all they had

12. If you think Mick Jagger will still be out there trying to be a rock star at age 50, then you are sadly, sadly mistaken.


And you thought this screenplay didn't deserve the oscar it won? Bet you feel silly now; That's funny I don't care who ya are!

To Shaq, who reinvented himself for the umpteenth time as "the good-natured sidekick who just wants to help LeBron win a title." I'd believe this if he didn't just spend the past season going for his own stats in Phoenix to prove to everyone that he wasn't done yet.


The fuck? Shaq's a low post scorer, was he supposed to be throwing alley oops to Steve Nash?

In the past year, Shaq has become a top-10 celebrity tweeter, launched his own reality show and pretended to make up with Kobe. Now he's going to be happy taking a backseat as a LeBronnaire?


I don't remember, but I'm pretty sure there weren't any blow ups where Shaq demanded that lebron be marginalized in the offense

How do we know he can stay in shape without Phoenix's training staff? How will he help Cleveland stop those high screens with which Orlando killed it this past spring? I don't even need 140 characters in Shaq-speak to say the following: This will not end well.


He did predict that having washed-up Shaq be the 3rd best guy on a contender was a shaky plan; He's got that going for him;

Random note: How 'bout Jimmy Fallon wearing a Bee Gees beard and nailing his part as Stillwater's annoying new manager?


How about a former snl cast member wearing something funny and acting like a dick? A revelation if you ask me;

I'd say it was the best acting performance by a late-night host in history, but I don't want Jimmy Kimmel to ban me from his house with football season looming when he just bought a 103-inch plasma that can break into four quadrants.


I no, rite?

13. Listen, my advice to you -- and I know you think these guys are your friends -- if you wanna be a true friend to them ... be honest and unmerciful.

To my ESPN colleague Chad Ford, who wrote about Indiana's summer (the Pacers added Tyler Hansbrough and Dahntay Jones) that "I like the strategy Larry Bird and David Morway have been employing the past couple of years in Indiana. Instead of swinging for the fences in the draft, they are trying for singles and doubles, and they're connecting." All due respect to my favorite Hawaii-based columnist, but doesn't going for singles and doubles ensure 38 to 40 wins and a mediocre lottery pick every year? What am I missing?


Well you missed that Indiana is a small market team, and smartly played it safe until they got a star player in the draft, an approach you heaped praise upon just a few years' later; other than that you didn't miss much

If "the only true currency in this bankrupt world is what we share with someone else when you're uncool" were a yearbook quote disguised as a fastball, it would be clocked at 107 mph. Just a classic. I love it. And not just because I'm uncool and I'm always home. How can you not love a movie with lines like that?


You mean lines that sound like they're from a MADTV parody of overwrought WB teen dramas?

See, I'm talking you into this Movie of the Decade thing, aren't I? You're getting sucked in. I can feel it'


nodding sadly lololol

16. You know, I think we both wanted to be with her. But she wanted us to be together.

To Crudup for delivering those two corny lines and somehow pulling them off. How?


By being a famous, charismatic Hollywood actor who played a charismatic rock musician; simply amazing

Did you know Brad Pitt signed on to play Russell Hammond, then backed out before filming started because he couldn't grasp the character?


ZoMG No WAYYY

Do you realize what a disaster that would have been? A not-totally-invested Brad Pitt would have murdered this movie.


Acting handsome and confident is not something Brad Pitt can just do in his sleep after all

Instead, Crudup ended up making it. Nobody else could have played Russell. Nobody.


You might have thought we reached the limit of Simmons talking out of his ass about the great Billy Crudup

As it turned out, it was his defining role, and he never became a star along the Pitt/Damon lines, mainly because he never wanted it.


Ahahahahaha I'm at a loss for words - what the fuck is this even about anymore?

He was like the Vince Carter of show business.


Vince Carter pretty clearly loved the spotlight and was arguably the league's most visible player for a little while - even if you're going to accept the greg's schlereth narrative that Vince Carter's failure to achieve MJ status was solely due to his lack of perseverance and drive, this makes zero sense as an analogy

To the NBA and the players' union. They keep pretending we aren't heading for Armageddon in 2011


What were they supposed to say publicly, "Fuck the fans, we're going to fight about money and if that means missing games, then tough shit guys"

20. When and where does this "real world" occur? I mean, I am really confused here.

To Antoine Walker, living proof why we're headed for a 2011 lockout. Here's a man who made more than $110 million playing basketball since 1996. Earlier this month, he was arrested for failing to pay nearly a million dollars to a Las Vegas casino
.

THESE DAHHHKIES GET A FEW BUCKS IN THEY-AH PAWWWKETS AND LOOK, JUST LOOK

By the way, the best part of seeing William getting deflowered in the movie is wondering how nervous Patrick Fugit (who played William) was about filming a pseudo-sex scene in his underwear with three Hollywood actresses, including Anna Paquin, well before she became an icon for our current generation of horny teenagers as Sookie on "True Blood." I always picture him sitting there as the girls attacked him, thinking, "baseball, baseball, Bea Arthur's face, cancer, dried throw up, smelly diapers, self-mutilation, Courtney Love naked, smelly diapers, smelly diapers, SMELLY DIAPERS!!!" the whole time.


oh noes, if hee getz a b0nr, den da gurlz wud kno he lieks dem!!! Bill is mentally 13

22. Act 1, in which she pretends she doesn't care about him. Act 2, in which he pretends he doesn't care about her, but he goes right for her. Act 3, in which it all plays out the way she planned it. She'll eat him alive.

To Carlos Boozer and Pat Riley. I don't know who's "he" and "she" in this scenario -- really, they could play either part -- but somebody's getting eaten alive. They deserve each other. (Can two people stab each other in the back if they're both staring right at each other waiting for the other to turn around? It's a great question.) By the way, I wish we could bet on things like "Dwyane Wade will be a Knick or a Bull 12 months from now.


Good linkage of pop culture and sports - better prop bet

23. Show me any guy who ever said he didn't want to be popular, and I'll show you a scared guy. I've studied the entire history of music. Most of the time, the best stuff is the popular stuff. It's much safer to say popularity sucks, because that allows you to forgive yourself if you suck. And I don't forgive myself. Do you?

This one goes to everybody who hasn't seen the director's cut. Why? Because these are the kinds of moments you missed if you didn't see the director's cut, which might be the only time someone added 35 minutes to a movie and made it better. One of the most poignant observations of the movie. And true, by the way.


Yeah, really fucking poignant for you, the virtual avatar of mediocrity in America, to point out that they only hate you because they're totes jelly;

There's also an 11-minute scene in which William makes his mother listen to "Stairway to Heaven" -- yes, the entire song -- in an attempt to get her to understand rock 'n' roll. It's indescribable. I loved it; some hated it.


Really hard to see why watching reaction shots of 2 people for 11 minutes of a song that everybody's heard a million fucking times wouldn't appeal to literally everybody - that's just good, original and rewatchable use of film technology to tell a story

24. It's just a shame you missed out on rock 'n' roll. It's over. I mean, you got here just in time for the death rattle. Last gasp. Last grope.
At least I'm here for that.

To Steve Kerr, who missed out on the Seven Seconds or Less era and took over just in time for the Less Than $70 Million Payroll or Else era.


The Nash-era Suns actually came their closest to winning a title [Game 7 of the WCF] the very next season

See, unlike most stars in this situation, Nash had an out. The entire Suns fan base would have said, "I can't even blame him -- our owner's cheapness drove him away" and directed its venom toward Robert Sarver.


While a lot of fans would have said that, it seems like a stretch to say that not a single person would have been mad at him for leaving; Even when he left for the lakers in 2012, the Suns had zero hope to contend, and Nash was basically at the end of his rope, I'm pretty sure he caught some flak for it;

Nash is a throwback to those wives from the '50s and '60s -- think Don Draper's wife in "Mad Men" -- who stick with their husbands through thick and thin, even when every sign says they should flee. Call them fools, call them saps, just remember to call them loyal.


And in the very next season of Mad Men, Betty left him

If I were his friend -- and again, I have met him only once


oh man, go fuck yourself sooo hard

Part 2 of this turd coming later, if you guys are interested
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby BigJohnStudd » 08 Jul 2015, 00:16

Dthefritz wrote:Part 2 of this turd coming later, if you guys are interested


I'm interested, but I've got about 600 'Sco posts to catch up on.

Could you post it, like, a week from Wednesday?
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby JichaelDick » 08 Jul 2015, 02:08

And, picking nits, the Suns lost in 6 to the Lakers, like they lost to Dallas in 6 in 2006.
TVF wannabe - Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:42 pm: ...a good rule of thumb is if you post some thing like that and IMS quickly jumps in with an uncomfortable reference you went too far
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby NotAndyGreenwald » 08 Jul 2015, 06:19

a few things, listed PK style:
1 - I'll stick to sports columns, nothing that leans too heavily on this guys taste in pop culture. i don't have a gun, but i might just jump out my window.
b - I already said it in the SB, but I was maybe gonna do a column later today. if you don't have part two up, i could also wait; long term I'm thinking we alternate doing these?
III - marvelous breakdown as usual btw
mj3528 » 03 Dec 2015, 22:34 something rarely said, but NAG was right.

Gregs Kite - Yesterday, 20:56: Is NAG _ v2.0?
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby bosux » 08 Jul 2015, 06:20

wow, dthe...i enjoyed that...you picked probably the best possible column too...what pussy ass gay fucking movie that was...its food comp is a big pile of corn with cheese melted on top
by bosux » 02 Mar 2016, 13:34
if the democratic power machine is so tone deaf as to foist $hrillary upon the electorate they will lose to Trump...bet on it
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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby Gregs Kite » 08 Jul 2015, 06:42

JichaelDick wrote:And, picking nits, the Suns lost in 6 to the Lakers, like they lost to Dallas in 6 in 2006.


#GFDIJD

Well done, DTF. Well done.
You fuckers ruined kite.

Apr 22, 2015 3:49 pm Clayton Bigsby i enjoy sports

BostonSucksMyBalls - Thu May 11, 2017 2:07 pm: greg your being a lil bitch in the hall of sand

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Re: Simba's Greatest Hits!!!!!

Postby JichaelDick » 08 Jul 2015, 13:12

Gregs Kite wrote:
JichaelDick wrote:And, picking nits, the Suns lost in 6 to the Lakers, like they lost to Dallas in 6 in 2006.


#GFDIJD

Well done, DTF. Well done.


Can you at least be happy I corrected on something that happened A: in the last 5 years and B: in my lifetime? Goshamighty.
TVF wannabe - Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:42 pm: ...a good rule of thumb is if you post some thing like that and IMS quickly jumps in with an uncomfortable reference you went too far
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