Angry Ward Wednesday: Dante’s Sports Inferno – Your Guide to the 9 Circles of Hell

rollendefBRONX, NY – It’s the neverending week before the Super Bowl, we had a faux blizzard, we’re staring down the worst month of the year (February), and it’s Wednesday… we are officially in hell. What better time to talk about the final destination for the sports condemned than now. Here’s a quick-and-dirty guided tour of that horrid place every sports fan would like to avoid, but where some of us already reside. We’ve got nine filthy floors to cover, so steel yourselves.

The Hapless. This isn’t the worst place to be, in fact you hear some interesting stories here, but they’re not exactly uplifting. Steve Bartman is here, a guy who just wanted to catch a foul ball at a Cubs game, and is now partially blamed for that franchise’s continued futility. Jeffrey Maier’s in the house too! He was celebrated as the “angel in the outfield” who helped the Yankees beat the Orioles in Game 1 of the 1996 ALCS, but it’s hard to peak when you’re 12. While here, try to avoid all of the umpires and refs who have blown calls over the years.

billy_crystal Angry_Ward Meet_The_MattsThe Idiotic. Most Eagles and Jets fans find their way here. Sorry, no booze in this circle of hell. You are also surrounded with the most annoying mascots around, such as the Yankee Doodle Dandy and every single Olympic Games mascot ever. Rainbow-wigged wingnut “John 3:16” is also here. Apparently those signs he held up did not guarantee entry into paradise.

The Disgusting. This section is populated by those that just couldn’t control themselves. Every crotch-scratching, booger-picking, 50-yard-line-puking, Ironman-defecating athlete resides in this port-o-john portion of hell. This includes Jack “Hacksaw” Reynolds who had to have teammates surround him as he relieved himself on the field during Super Bowl XVI at the Pontiac Silverdome. The decor of this quadrant resembles the Silverdome, while the bathrooms are straight outta Shea.

crystalThe Loafers. Maybe the most boring of sports hell inhabitants live here. Every guy who never ran out a triple, all of those running backs that ran out of bounds (Franco Harris?) rather than pick up an extra yard, basketball players that never bothered to practice their free-throw shooting, tennis players who retired from matches because they had a cramp, or any fair-weather fan, particularly those of the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Lakers, and New York Yankees variety.

Geographic Atrocities. Cleveland and Buffalo rule this roost, but it’s also open to Florida and Arizona hockey, pro football in Jacksonville, and the Utah Jazz. This portion of hell is like an airport you can never leave.

Don King. It’s just Don King, no one else, talking to you all the time, 24/7 for eternity. Nothing but “Only in America!” and “Tim Witherspoon will get another shot!” throughout your miserable afterlife. Good luck with that.

Screen shot 2015-01-27 at 11.05.43 PMInsufferably Smug Cheating Bastards. This venue is practically sold out. A-Rod, Bonds, Clemens, Belichick, Billy Smith, Canseco, et al, bowing down to the Mayor of ISCB-ville, Lance Armstrong. Bring lotsa vomit bags.

Racists, Rapists, and Murderers. Way too many to single out individuals. How deep are we into the sports abyss? O.J. and Aaron Hernandez and Ty Cobb are roommates and they are scared s*****ss.

The Owners. The bottom rung of crappy sports eternity. All of your favorites are here. Money-grubbing, I-don’t-give-a-sh!t-how-I-get-it-as-long-as-I-get-it a-holes. Oh, and yes, this includes the NCAA and FIFA for sure.

That’s all the hell we got for you today. Come back tomorrow for a little slice of heaven, Big Al Sternberg/Fake Sandy Alderson.


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About Angry Ward 751 Articles
Angry Ward, who has admirers at the New York Times, is the quintessential angry sports fan but for 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 Nancy Pelosi embraces Mitch McConnell at charity events. And while his Vikings only tease him with success, his Golden State Warriors actually win these days. A-Dubya is MTM's longest-tenured indentured servant, its Larry David and quite simply, "The Franchise." (Junoir Blaber disputes this). Vent, curse and giggle with him on Angry Ward Wednesdays.