The Envelope Please


HOLLYWOOD, CA – Well, I guess I got to write about this stuff. The only sports of note yesterday were the NBA All Offense Game and the Academy Awards (and frankly I didn’t even notice that the Daytona 500 was apparently postponed until today), so let’s break down them both and report on the interesting.

In the NBA All-Star Game, where would-be defenders clear lanes faster than wailing fire trucks, the score at half-time (88-69) resembled the full game score of most Charlotte Hornet losses this year. Scoring at will may not be as boring as a 0-0 tie in soccer, but it’s close, and give me a 1-0 baseball game any day over this.

Hey now, you're an all-star!

Since it’s how most of the scoring comes, they should just go ahead and make a rulethat all points in these things must come off of alley-oops. The idea that Kobe Bryant achieved something by breaking the record for most NBA All Star points is hilarious by itself, since it’s is a little like Homer Simpson beating James Coco’s record for eating donuts in Hell.  Lo and behold, however, the third quarter saw him actually take a hard foul from Dwayne Wade, bloodying the Black Mamba’s nose.  Not quite Rudy Tomjanovich getting decked in the worst atrocity committed by a Kermit (Washington) until Muppets From Space, but it at least started to feel like a game after that.

Hugh Jackman is making me do this.

As for the Oscars... In what seemed like a relatively weak year for quality movies, 2011 did see some sports films make it down the red carpet.

Moneyball, of course, with its strange casting of Brad Pitt as John Kruk making more dough after his testicular cancer surgery, got a lot of nominations but couldn’t bag any statuettes.
Hugo, about 1934 White Sox automaton Hugo Klaerner (who went 0-2 with 21 earned runs, 4 dingers, and 16 walks in his two career starts) won five Oscars, but mostly in technical categories.
Real Steel, the authentic story of George “The Animal” Steel, got a surprise nomination in special effects (through movie magic it really looked like he was eating that turnbuckle!), but the make-up department went unheralded because most people didn’t believe that was fake back hair all over him.

Once a Yankee...

On a similar noteNick Nolte didn’t win for his turn as an MMA trainer in Warrior because voters just don’t appreciate the difficulty of playing Nick Nolte as an MMA trainer.
The one sports movie that did win was the fine documentary Undefeated, which was not about the ’72 Dolphins.
Of course the big winner was The Artist, which was kind of about sports since it was about Prince’s halftime performance at the Super Bowl a few years ago.

If I’ve gone all this way without a Billy Crystal comment, it’s because I’m hoping that we can all move on and let the healing begin.

Grote2DMax will offer up some award-worthy topic tomorrow.

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West Coast Craig reports from Hollywood with an endearingly laid back style. A happily married father of two little boys, WCC has an avocado tree in his yard, plays the hot corner in a “Valley” hardball league and always manages to take cool sports-related mini road-trips, often with his immediate clan. He hails from Oneonta, NY but has been “So very L.A.” for twenty years, so his sports teams are the Yankees AND the Dodgers, the Pittsburgh Steelers, the L.A. Lakers and the Colorado Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques. WCC loves bacon-wrapped hotdogs and can touch his heel and his ear… with his hand.

  • bufflaobilly84

    There is nobody else on this planet they could have used instead of Billy Crystal??? The Matts could have done that better with 4 beers and 10 minutes prep.

  • I didn’t watch too much of the Oscars here (because it put me to sleep), but here was the comment of the night at my house: 

    ‘Do you think Billy Crystal has had any plastic surgery?’

    • Sam’s-A-Fan

      He could use some now, anything would be an improvement.  And let me be the first to say…Yours!

      • His first love.. immortalized in the cinematic splendor of ‘City Slickers’ and ‘City Slickers 2’ is.. the Mets. Enjoy. 

  • Different Matt

    Any column with a George “the Animal” Steele reference is top notch in my book. Its never a pretty sight when you have more hair on one shoulder than you do on your head.

    • As Jesse the Body once commented to Mean Gene, “You could make a very ugly rug out of him.”

      • AngryWard

        Now that is great writing.

  • Grote2Dmax

    Was Crystal the Yanks 2nd Baseman after Horace Clark?

    • Big Fat Toad

      Sandy Alomar, Sr. senor.

  • Sam’s-A-Fan

    I must protest your making light of Homer Simpson breaking the great James Coco’s donut record!  That one will stand for a long while, or at least until I take up residence in Hades.  Mmmmmrrlllrrrsslllssssllllllrrrrpppss.

  • Did I win?

    • AngryWard

      Yes. Scariest visual effects. Congrats!

      • AngryWard

        What I meant to say was: Yes, Rango, you did win.

  • Johnny Rox

    Congrats to WCC on putting together an entertaining column after what’s probably the worst night of TV/Sports!
    Kudos to you mi amigo!!!

    I did not watch one second of the Oscars! With that said, what’s up with Angelina Jolie? Is she preparing for her next role as a bulimic crackwhore??? Seems like yesterday she was voted sexiest woman alive, and now she’s only BARELY alive! She looks like she should be hanging in an anatomy class somewhere, with her feet several inches off the floor, mobile only via four little plastic casters!!! Dude, what’s up???

    J Hoe had her Lil’ boobies out, and caused quite a stir! Meanwhile her ASSet is STILL bigger than most apartments in NY!!! She keeps half the kids in El Salvador employed simply by wearing jeans! Her dress required more sequins than can be found in liberace’s ENTIRE WARDROBE!!! Help, I can’t stop!!!

    Anyway, the NBA All-Star game was last night…

    Moving right along, the NHL clock is ticking on the trade deadline. Let’s hope that all the effin’ clocks are synchronized and we don’t have some major effin’ trade nullified cuz the effin’ NHL clock is a half second ahead of the REST OF THE WORLD!!! Let’s also hope that the New York Rangers keep PERFECT alone! We need nobody! We got the squad, and are in a position to rest the guys that need resting! I can’t believe how much this years Rangers remind me of last years STANLEY CUP BOSTON BRUINS! Is this for real? Or did they just change uni’s???

    Billy Crystal (meth) must go! He’s done a fine job but, bye bye!
    Kudos to Sasha Baron Cohen for having the stones to attempt actual humor during the Oscars! “When they ask you who you’re wearing, you could say Kim Jong IL”.
    That shits funny!!!

    George “the Animal” Steel, wow! Let’s here it for WCC!!! That’s when Wrestlers looked like that guy in your neighborhood, that lived with his mother, and nobody REALLY talked to! Remember Ivan Putski? How bout Chief J Strongbow and Billy White Wolf? Wow!

    Thanx WCC!


    • Thanks for the kudos, JRox!  Sounds like you boycotted the Oscars but watched all the red carpet crap…you’re a brave man.  I once saw Ivan Putsky driving around the Binghamton Arena right before the show, looking as confused as Pascal Perez about where he should be going.  

      • Johnny Rox

        Didn’t watch ANY of it! I got the recap this morning.

        You seeing Ivan driving around is AWSOME! Wish I could’ve gone to a wrestling match back then!

  • The Chris Guest bit was funny at least.  It should’ve had more flying monkeys.  

    • ‘I can’t believe they give little people jobs when there are plenty of short regular people who could use them.’   

      ‘Was there someone with a green face in there?’

      • If flying monkeys could talk, what would they say?

        • ‘What character DIDN’T you like?’

          ‘I didn’t like Dorothy.’

  • Oh, why didn’t I just write about the Red Sox banning beer in their clubhouse?

    • Johnny Rox

      – No Terry Francona
      – No beer
      – No Manny being Manny (aka a friggin’ Retard)
      – Add Bobby Valentine (who isn’t even good enough for the Mets!)


      • Ram Rules

        The sox should have kept Francona and hired R Lee Ermey as bench coach. The Gunney would scare their them straight and they could win.

        Although I like having valentine in the dugout and not the press box. At least this way I dont have to hear him postulate stupid crab about which he knows nothing.

        Valentine was the john gruden of baseball. “If I were the coach I woulda and when I was coaching we did it this way…”.

        Well buddy now you are the coach. I bet ESPN mic’s his ass up for entire games. Good thing I will never watch a red sox game.

      • Jgclancy

        Manny being Manny makes my A’s smell last place too!
        And was Billy Crystal  Mahvahlous!! ….or what.Okay…it’s or what but hey I did pick Christopher Plummer .
        Go Aztecs!!

  • Doc Diz

    I can remember when Billy Crystal had no botox and was a Mets fan…

  • MeetTheMatts

    As long as Billy Crystal isn’t associated with the Mets hat, especially after he performed like Armando Benitez under pressure, we’re good… Thank you West Coast Craig, for following up Cheesy Bruin’s poignant piece from yesterday, with this game-winning hit.

    • Johnny Rox

      Billy Crystal WAS NEVER a Mets fan!

      He just wore the hat in a movie cuz the character he was playing was a loser!


      • Dude

        take that… from the mouths of babes. The master of the whore emporium is in fact YOURS Yankee fans. enjoy

        • Different Matt

          Rox just misremembers. Crystal was and is a Mets fan. He’s yours. No Backsies. Double Stamp.

          • Must we.  MUST we???   


             1991.  He didn’t jump on the Yankee bandwagon until ’96 when they exited the 80’s-early ’90’s dark ages.      a REAL Yankee fan would NEVER represent another baseball team in public.. much less on celluloid FOR-E-VER.   Clearly after the ’86 Mets win…. Billy waited about 10 years and then decided he’d had enough waiting for some hardware back at Shea.

          • Dude

            see previous post… billy is a fair-weather yankee fan just like the rest of you. cookie i don’t want to hear about your graig nettles shirt – that team won the world series, really doesn’t qualify you as a die hard.

            CRYSTAL IS A YANKEE FAN, one who bails when times get tough, but that’s his team. until you accept this, i will continue to bring it up.

          • That’s a Nettles BAT Dude.  Back in the days when they still handed out full sized bats at bat day.  I was hatched and raised a Yankee fan in Washington Heights some years before that ’77 Series… so unless you needed me to be a Yankee fan separately as sperm and egg… I can’t really chronologically get much more die hard than that.    (And yeah.. suffering the Bob Lemon and the ’80’s qualifies me on TOP of that.)

          • Dude

            a-hem bob lemon won the ’78 world series- that doesn’t qualify as suffering. in the ’80’s the yankees were a perennial 2nd place team. only the early ’90’s could be looked at as a bad time- when steinbrenner was suspended from running the team. i bet you can’t name one member of the 1990 team without looking it up.

          • Mel Hall, Jesse Barfield, Mike Pags, Don Mattingly of course, Jimmy Key?  Was Kevin Maas that year or a year later?  I’m pretty die-hard but I can’t remember who managed in 1990…Stump Merrill?  

            Cookie, I would love to have either a Graig Nettles bat (preferably one with superballs inside), shirt, or jockstrap.  

          • Wow.  You SO love getting into it with me Dude.  Don’t be so bitter… it’s still under 20 years ago that the Mets won.

          • And early ’80’s Bob Lemon was pretty insufferable thanks.  That’s what is burned in my brain.  In the early ’90’s.. I had college drinking to numb the pain.    

            In my mind… the ’78 series was nothing as exciting as the ’77 Series.  But maybe it was  the blackout and Son-Of-Sam that just really put the icing on it for me.  That.. and the field full of Reggie bars.

          • Dude

            i would say your exhibiting typical yankee fan arrogance there saying “i didn’t like that championship as much as the previous vintage”

            ’78 you had bucky f-ing dent and a comeback from 14 games out to win a one game playoff and then the world series over the bosox.

            sorry that doesn’t meet your qualifications as excititng…

          • Dude

            ws over dodgers, one game playoff against bosox

          • they were also down 0-2 in that World Series before my man Nettles took over at third.

          • Dude

            no misremembering.. he’s YOURS always –was a yankee fan growing up- huge fan of mickey mantle. like many a front running yankee fan type he jumped on the mets bandagon in ’86. a met fan would never wear a yankee cap, not the other way around. sorry, no backsies he’s yours and always will be.

      • Jgclancy

        Billy took his now wife on their first date to….drum roll please…Shea!!!

  • End of argument.

    • Dude

      from wickepedia:
      On March 12, 2008, Crystal signed a minor league contract, for a single day, to play with the New York Yankees, and was invited to the team’s major league spring training. He wore uniform number 60, in honor of his upcoming 60th birthday.[12] On March 13, in a spring training game against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Crystal led off as the designated hitter. He managed to make contact, fouling a fastball up the first base line, but was eventually struck out by Pirates pitcher Paul Maholm on 6 pitches and was later replaced in the batting order by Johnny Damon.[13] He was released on March 14, his 60th birthday.[14]

      Crystal’s boyhood idol was Yankee Hall of Fame legend Mickey Mantle who had signed a program for him when Crystal attended a game where Mantle had hit a homerun. Years later on The Dinah Shore Show,
      in one of his first television appearances, Crystal met Mantle in
      person and had Mantle re-sign the same program. Crystal would be good
      friends with Mickey Mantle until Mantle’s death in 1995.

      Crystal also was well known for his impressions of Yankee Hall of Famer turned broadcaster Phil Rizzuto. Rizzuto, known for his quirks calling games, did not travel to Anaheim, California in 1996 to call the game for WPIX.
      Instead, Crystal joined the broadcasters in the booth and pretended to
      be Rizzuto for a few minutes during the August 31st game.

      Although a life-long Yankee fan,[15] he is a part-owner of the Arizona Diamondbacks, even earning a World Series ring in 2001 when the Diamondbacks beat his beloved Yankees.[16]

      In the movie City Slickers, Crystal wears a New York Mets baseball cap.


  • People please!  I said I wanted to move on and let the healing begin!  But there’s nothing like this completely MtM manufactured argument to get these comment numbers up…and, since I remember seeing him emerge from a Limo in a Yankee hat for Battle of the Network Stars back when he was just Jody from Soap, I’m ashamed I’m on the Crystal-Yankee side, at least until he does a movie called 69*.  Then of course I’ll gouge my eyes out.  

    • Jgclancy

      The only way to heal is to talk it out WCC…you know that!
      Hope there’s a Manny episode next week 🙂
      But back to Billy Crystal….or else some flyin mokey talk at least or is that the same thing?

    • But will you gouge your eyes out with a penis?  that’d only be appropriate. 

      • (WCC… i hope you find the humor in that.   If not.. please know that i’ve been up since 3AM.  Thank you.)

        • not to be confused with the movie *69, where it calls you back.  

          • Along the same baseball movie lines… ‘Moneyball’.. not to be confused with ‘Money Shot.’   (i’m frickin’ punchy, people!!)

  • AngryWard

    Is Billy Crystal a Clippers fan or a Knicks fan?

    • Dude

      i’ve seen him at clippers games when they sucked. clippers

  • The were was more competition and will to win at the Oscars!!

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