Angry Ward Wednesday: The Worst of 2016 in Sports

BRONX, NY – This is the time of year when hacks, making a whole lot more than me, cash in on writing the easiest end-of-year columns. Most of these efforts consist of nothing more than “Best of...”or “Top 10” lists. They take almost zero thought and can be cranked out in a matter of minutes. It’s really pathetic… and I want in! Here now, my Worst of 2016.

The Year of Death. This was the year that seemingly EVERYONE dropped dead. Names like Bowie, Prince, Cohen and Lemmy were just the tip of the iceberg on musical legend obit column. Hollywood celebs fell hard too with everyone from the unkillable Abe Vigoda to Gene Wilder to Mrs. Brady (Florence Henderson) feeling the swift, sharp business end of the Grim Reaper’s scythe. In sports we lost huge names like Ali and Gordie Howe and Arnold Palmer, among many others. Seriously, so many greats died this year, including our own Al Sternberg, and that sucked.

Golden State Gets Shafted. On a personal note, watching the NBA get involved in stealing a second straight basketball championship from my favorite team, the Warriors, was special torture. The Draymond Green suspension for retaliating against LeBron James’ dragging his nutsack over his head, was soooo weak. The 3-1 series lead evaporated and Golden State lost to Cleveland in a Game 7 that never should have happened. But that wasn’t the end of my sports misery.

The Big Hurt. I can’t say I was surprised when the Mets ended up being decimated by injuries yet again, but with guys like Harvey and Wright lost for the season and Matz, DeGrom, Duda and so many others lost for significant portions, it really seemed like overkill. So then things would have to balance out for my favorite football team, right? They’d remain healthy for sure and be a Super Bowl contender, like I predicted. That’s the way things work. Nope. My Vikes lost their starting QB for the season in preseason, traded for a capable backup but then lost both of their starting offensive tackles for the season and then lost replacement tackle Jake Long for the season. Oh, yes, they also lost Adrian Peterson for the season. No biggie.

The Election. I refuse to write about this.

Entertainment. These days I seem to be moving at a remarkable pace towards uber-cranky geezerdom. When it comes to TV, I don’t really have any “shows.” Used to, a million years ago, when sitcoms like “Taxi” and “Cheers” and “Seinfeld” ruled primetime. But, I can’t seem to muster the energy to pay attention to stuff like “Walking Dead” or “Game of Thrones,” probably because I feel like a dead man walking and spend way too much time on the throne. As for movies, I used to see ’em all. And I still see ’em all, as long as they are kids movies. That’s right, Junoir Blaber and Ben Whitney, you have nothing but Disney and Pixar in your future. My advice, embrace it.

“Nice to meet you. Sorry about no line or running back. Good luck.” Photo: Elizabeth Flores, Star Tribune

2017. So, am I supposed to feel optimistic about 2017? Sure, I’ll be one of those people dropping F-bombs and yelling “good riddance” to 2016 on New Year’s Eve, but there’s no way you’re tricking me into thinking 2017 will be better. If anything 2016 was the slippery “Wide World of Sports” ski jump lead-up for Vinko Bogataj and 2017 will be the horrific end result. If I were to make a few predictions, something horrible is going to happen to Noah Syndergaard, the Super Bowl will be attacked by a blimp-flying madman, and the Yankees will win the World Series.

Please, come back tomorrow for a more positive outlook from @BuddyDiaz19, a man who has yet to be beat down by years of slave labor on this site.

Share Button
About Angry Ward 755 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.