There was a period in time where ESPN was great. The station was like the Walter Conkrite of the sports world. Delivering the days sports news with little to no opinion added, and just a nice hint of comedy delivered by some very original sports casters. However, much like CNN, this once great station that we relied on for our daily sports news has become an utter joke and (with the exception of 30 for 30 and Olbemann) has become nearly impossible to watch. So in the words of ESPN’s Keith Olbermann (the irony is not lost on me), “don’t take this completely seriously, I don’t mean it completely literally” but this is why I hate the 4 Letter Network.
No Original Voices: There was a time when ESPN was filled with original personalities, shit there was a point in time when even Chris Berman was original. There was Keith Olbemann, Dan Patrick, Rich Eisen, Stewart Scott, Craig Kilborn, and many more throughout the late 80’s and through the 90’s. Now I turn on Sportscenter and with the exception of beautiful Lindsey Czarniak I can’t tell the difference between anyone on there. It’s just boring people trying to rehash old jokes from the anchors listed above. Sportscenter is just a bore now. They spend little time on reporting about the night’s previous games and more on bullshit fluff pieces on assholes like Tim Tebow and LeBron James.
Tebow, Woods, & James: Speaking of those two, when ESPN decides they like a certain personality they will beat you over the head with them. Tim Tebow, not a bad guy, in fact I dare say he is a decent human being, however, ESPN decided he was the greatest quarterback ever to play football (though his own play on the field would show evidence that he was not) and once he declared for the NFL draft is was non-stop Tim Tebow all the damn time. The absolute worst moment in all of the Tebow coverage was just before the 2012 season when he signed with the New York Jets. ESPN had their own special crew (including Mike and Mike, more on them later) stationed at Jets camp to cover every moment of Tebow’s eventual failure to unseat Mark “Butt-Fumble” Sanchez as the Jets’ starting quarterback, including some very questionable footage of Tebow shirtless in the rain. The worst part of all this 2012 Tebow love is that the team that shares a stadium with the Jets, you know, the Giants, had won the 2012 Super Bowl. They didn’t get a fraction of the coverage the Jets got from ESPN, I hate the Giants with the passion of a thousand burning sun, but fuck, they deserved some coverage, because, you know, they were the fucking champs.
Then we go on to Tiger Woods. Don’t get me wrong I like Tiger Woods but he’s done. He may pull a win out of his ass every now and then or a good showing, but between his back, his knee, and his ex-wife taking half his money he doesn’t have enough in the tank to be the Tiger Woods we once knew. But fuck if ESPN doesn’t talk about him like he’s still the Tiger Woods of the late 90’s early 2000’s. But nope, he’s a shell of himself. Granted when his downward spiral first started it was news, when ever a great athlete seems to suddenly lose their mojo that’s news, however, Tiger has sucked for a few years now, it’s no longer news. ESPN, I don’t need to know when Tiger finishes 26th in a tournament, or if he doesn’t make the weekend cut anymore. That was once news, but now it seems to be the norm, I don’t need to know this. You know what I do need to know, when someone good like Rory, you know wins a tournament. That’s the news I need to hear when I tune in, not that Tiger finished with a +10. If Tiger ever makes a comeback, that’s news, but while he continues to fade away, I don’t need to hear about him.
LeBron James, you know how I feel about him, so I won’t rehash that, go read the article you lazy bastard. But ESPN can’t help themselves with James. When the NFL isn’t doing anything (so two months out of the year) all ESPN can talk about is James. I dare say even if Cleveland wasn’t in the Finals this year they’d still be talking about James somehow. I get it, he’s the best player in the league, but there are other players, like reigning MVP Steph Curry (though if have had a boy’s name he might have made that shot the other night and GS would have the series lead). No matter what he does or how irrelevant he might be on a given day, ESPN can’t help themselves but to talk about him.
Chris Berman: Fuck that guy, when I was 7 he was entertaining but so were a lot of stupid fucking things. He needs to go.
Almost No NHL Coverage: We’re in the middle of a pretty fucking good Stanley Cup final but you probably don’t fucking know this because ESPN doesn’t give two shits about hockey. Granted they’ve shown a highlight or two of the Cup and have trotted out Barry Melrose but during the season there is almost no coverage and if there are any big transactions during the off-season you might get to read about it on ESPN.com, maybe. Seriously fuck them for their lack of coverage of this sport, shit NASCAR has a bigger presence on the four letter than hockey and that is a fucking shame. Tonight, watch the game, it’s on at 8 on NBC Sports Network, I promise you, you’ll be hooked.
European Soccer: NO NO NO NO! Fuck you ESPN we don’t like soccer in this country, we don’t give a shit. I have no idea why you have such a hard on for UEFA but we don’t. Granted if you were trying to pass off MLS as an actual sports league, I’d still ignore you, but at least I would think, “meh, they’re trying to push American Soccer.” Because really if you’re going to try to ram soccer down my throat at least make it the American teams with player names I can probably pronounce. I can barely give half a shit about MLS and zero shits about UEFA, stop, just quit and cover the FUCKING STANLEY CUP you cock-munchers.
NFL Brown-Nosers: ESPN is so far up the NFL’s ass that legitimate sports sites reported that one of the main reasons Bill Simmons (one of the most original voices ESPN has had in over a decade) was fired because he dare to speak out against the Shield. And you know what, that’s probably why he was let go. Remember that annoying little puppy from the Warner Bros. cartoons that hung around the big dog just constantly praising him and annoying the viewer, well that’s ESPN. They are constantly going on and on about the NFL, fawning over the league and the Ginger Hammer, and doing their part to sweep scandal under the rug for them.
The whole Ray Rice fiasco, ESPN could have easily broken that story with their team of insiders. There is no way Adam Schefter didn’t know about that tape, but someone in Bristol probably told him “don’t you dare fucking report that.” So, we the public, had to get our real sports news from, Sports Illustrated? Nope, Fox Sports? Try again, hmm, TMZ? Bingo. TM-fucking-Z brought us hard hitting journalism and did they do it through bribery or secret handshakes? Nope, they just asked for the tape. It’s only after there is no hiding that ESPN will sling mud at the NFL. ESPN isn’t alone in this though, make no mistake, if your network shows NFL games, the NFL controls the message that you send out about the league. And if you’re talent who works for one of those networks you better toe the NFL line or you’ll end up like Bill Simmons, and if he’s not untouchable, then fuck, might as well just change the name of the network to ESPNFL.
Mike and Mike in the Morning: Of all the things on ESPN (TV or radio) I can’t for the life of me figure out how these two fucking trained apes got on the air waves. They’re not even good enough for the morning announcements at a middle school, let alone national exposure. Golic has had his brains smashed in so much playing in the NFL that you can barely understand his frantic and slurred voice, I’ve heard deeper things from a drunk at a bar at last call, and Mike Greenberg, holy fuck where do I begin with him. He is the worst. He’s like that stereo-typical 80’s nerd from the AV Club who wants to hang out with the jocks. His voice is like nails on a chalkboard and his constant yammering about the fucking Jets is the worst.
Seriously Mike, the Jets have not been relevant since Broadway Joe nearly fifty fucking years ago. Ever since that one miraculous (and boring) Super Bowl they have sucked. Their two runs to the AFC title game were flukes and their best QB since Namath was a washed up Vinny Testaverde. Greenberg, no one gives a shit about the Jets, and furthermore Golic, no one gives a shit about when you played for the Eagles in the 80’s nor do we give a shit about your second-rate son playing for Notre Dame. Seriously you both would do the world a favor if the next time you signed off the air it was for good. In a country filled with just the worst of the worst sports talk radio you two assholes are easily the worst.
Bayless & Cowherd: I’m not going to waste too many words on these two fucks, mostly because they’re not worth my time or your’s (and I value your time dear reader). But I saved these two for last because they are the worst people in the sports world. Both Skip Bayless and Colin Cowherd are known for making outrageous and “controversial” statements on air. Now I’m not opposed to those kind of things, but only if they’re sincere, which these two are not. Much like Jim Rome, these two assholes say these things to get views for their shows and clicks on ESPN.com. They don’t mean what they say and know the dumber their statement the more pissed off you’re going to be and flock to the comments section to post your outrage, and that my friend means you’re a sucker (sorry to be the one to tell you this). ESPN is so controlled there is no way these two idiots say anything the stations doesn’t want them to, hence why they still have jobs and Bill Simmons does not.
So dear reader, that is the sad truth about ESPN, the once great giant of sports has been reduced to a joke because it values the “E” in their name instead of the “S” which is was drove the station to popularity and made Sportscenter a morning ritual for me growing up. Now if I’m watching the network at all it’s usually for Monday Night Football (which I can barely stand) or Sunday Night Baseball (which is still watchable). ESPN is arguably the worst sports network around but still the most popular because it’s the easiest to find on your television.