Angry Ward Wednesday: Browns in the Hunt, Knicks Durant Desperation, and Scenes from the Baseball Wasteland

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BRONX, NY – Three days ago I was on a sunny beach watching the beautiful blue surf come crashing in. Today I’m back in slushy NY, on this hellscape, offering up another in a long line of thankless posts. To quote Short Matt’s favorite literary character, as well as life model, Ignatius J. Reilly, “Oh, Fortuna, blind, heedless goddess, I am strapped to your wheel!” Let’s just get this over with.

Browns Sign Kareem Hunt. The Cleveland Browns have apparently beat the rest of the NFL to the punch (see what I did there?) and signed former Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt. As you’ll remember, Hunt was released by KC after footage emerged of him knocking around a woman in a Cleveland hotel. That’s right, a CLEVELAND hotel. So, clearly, Browns scouts had a jump on studying all that extra tape on him. Funny thing, everyone thinks they’re bringing Hunt in to be a back, but it’s his kicking that really caught their eye. What else is going on? Oh, right?

Knicks Use Durant to Sell Season Tickets. In a move that is even beneath the New York Knicks (though nothing is sub-Dolan), the team used a photo featuring Kevin Durant to try to sell tickets for next season. Who’s working in the MSG promo department these days, the guys who organized the Fyre Festival? What’s next, Meet the Matts announcing they’ve signed Roger Angell, Gay Talese, and the ghost of Ring Lardner to staff and are becoming a subscription site? This Knicks move is so hamfisted, it’s impossible to call it tampering. Let’s move on.

Manny Machado and Bryce Harper Still Unsigned. I’m really starting to enjoy this. Don’t get me wrong, I think sports owners are the scum of the Earth, but agents and prima donna ballplayers are right up there. In other baseball news…

Marlins Fan(s) Not Happy. I was recently down in Florida and, in between stories about people having relations with alligators and eating their cousins, the local news zombies ran a story about the Miami Marlins welcoming fans to their stadium for a meet-and-greet with their entirely unrecognizable roster of players. They drew around as many to this event as they do to any game after Opening Day, which is almost none. But there was one bright spot in this sad little South Florida skid row get-together. In the middle of it, Derek Jeter rolled out in a golf cart, like King of the City Dump, and got booed. Trust the process, Derek. One day your team might be good enough for you to draw more fans, so they can boo you even louder.

The Lake Show Needs a Producer. You heard of the LA-based Elmore Leonard book/movie Get Shorty? Well LeBron James, Magic Johnson, and the Lakers were recently in “Get Anyone” mode. And it DIDN’T exactly work out. I applaud the New Orleans Pelicans for not just handing Anthony Davis over to the Lakers so LeBron can make another championship run in what’s left of his prime. I’m not-so-secretly hoping that he gets to experience missing the playoffs for once. Though the realist in me sees him once again putting a team on his back and fighting his way in. I actually don’t have anything against LeBron as a person; he’s done plenty of great and worthy things. But I’ll never have sympathy for the Lakers, who are pretty much the NBA’s version of the Cowboys. Let them wait until next year, and then duke it out with the desperate Knicks and everyone else for the big free agents.

That’s it for today. Come back tomorrow for our own resident stuntman, DJ Eberle.

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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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