Angry Ward Wednesday: Tom Petty Sports Tribute

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BRONX, NY – As I sit here tapping this out on a Tuesday evening, just a little over an hour from Wild Card baseball action – Yankees won,  I’m taking a deep breath. It’s been quite a few days of lousy news. More hurricane destruction, more gun insanity in Vegas, and, to add insult to injury, Tom Petty dies. I’m sure Mr. Petty would be the first to point out that his passing isn’t on the same scale as other things going on in the world but, make no mistake, he was one of the all-time greats. In an effort to make myself feel a little better, and to celebrate a guy who cranked out a sh!tload of solid rock ‘n’ roll hits, here’s my Tom Petty sports tribute.

Even the LosersAs I already mentioned, tonight they play the AL Wild Card game. I was hoping against hope that those losers the Minnesota Twins, would get lucky sometimes, get lucky last night against the Yankees.

Mary Jane’s Last DancePerennially suspended Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon can’t seem to lay off the weed, has yet to file for reinstatement to the NFL, despite being out of rehab and eligible. This leads one to wonder whether Gordon has yet to have his last dance with Mary Jane.

Jammin’ Me. Speaking of NFL wideouts, is it just me or have some of the biggest receivers in the game been way quiet. The season’s a quarter gone and guys like Julio Jones, Antonio Brown, Dez Bryant, and Odell Beckham Jr. have barely done anything of note. So far it looks like defenses are jamming these guys up pretty good and allowing no-names to run wild for long scores.

You Don’t Know How it Feels. We make a lot of fun of Short Matt around here but, believe me, you don’t know how it feels to be that guy. So be sure to get down on your knees every night and thank God that you don’t.

Learning to Fly/Free Fallin’The New York Jets and the New York Giants, respectively. Cam James covered this Monday but the Jets are flying and, like the song says, they ain’t got wings. Coming down in next year’s draft will be the hardest thing. The Giants, and their ticket prices, are free fallin’. Bet they can’t wait to send their own Rebel without a Clue, Ben McAdoo, out into the great wide open… job market.

The Waiting. These days I find the hardest part about watching sports on TV is waiting for commercials to be over. I’ve taken to pausing games for long stretches or recording them and catching up as the game is still being played so I can fast forward to those brief moments of action. It actually works great!

Don’t Do Me Like That/I Won’t Back Down. There will be a lot of exchanges like this as I attempt to get out of my lifetime contract (sentence) with Meet The Matts.

Listen to Her HeartFor those of you frustrated with your go nowhere teams, listen to your heart and stick with them. You might need a lot of things but you don’t need the New York Yankees or the New England Patriots. Once you start jumping from team to team, it never ends. Believe me, you don’t have to live like a refugee.

That’s it for me this week. I’ll leave you with “Room at the Top,” one of my favorite Petty songs. Don’t come around here no more, unless you want to check in tomorrow to see what Buddy Diaz is serving up.

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Wednesday: Angry Ward, who has admirers at the NY Times, is the quintessential angry sports fan but one exception... he's flat-out funny. And the angrier he gets, the more amusing his work becomes. Psychiatrists say, "Angry Ward's 'anger' is a direct result of "Bronx/Mets syndrome: growing up in the Bronx as a Mets fan." As if that weren't enough, his Minnesota North Stars abandoned him for Dallas, forcing him to embrace The Wild the way conservatives embrace Mitt Romney. While the Vikings tease him incessantly with flirtations of success, the Golden State Warriors, "Don't have a enough short, white angry guys but I don't dislike them... that much." A-Dubya is MTM's longest-tenured indentured servant, its Larry David and quite simply, The Franchise.

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