Best Sports Speeches

I’ve always loved speeches and ones given by athletes, coaches, and other important sports figures are especially touching to me. Here are some (but certainly not all) of my favorites.

1. Lou Gehrig Farewell Speech

It’s a short and sweet type speech but the emotion is so evident. Lou Gehrig was such a great baseball player who had gained so much respect from the Yankees fans over the years. It’s such a famous speech that’s had such an impact and is still celebrated to this day. It’s incredibly quotable and thoughtful to say the least.

2. Jimmy V Speech

Yet another powerful speech from somebody that knew they may not have much time left on Earth. The speech is filled with pathos and was actually used by my English teacher when we were learning about pathos, ethos, and logos because Jimmy uses pathos in such a natural way that really is showcased in his extremely touching delivery. You’ve got to love the heart of this legendary coach, who never lost his vibrant personality even in his final days. This will always be my go to video when I need an extra dose of heart and motivation.

3. Kevin Durant MVP Speech

This was a much more recent speech but still a memorable one. Kevin Durant was the NBA MVP last season and this was his rather long yet touching acceptance speech. The most memorable parts were where he talks fondly of his mother, who is in the crowd beaming up at her son. It’s evident how grateful Durant is to his mom, who he notes did everything possible to make sure he and his brother had a roof over their heads and that they weren’t out in the streets. It’s always nice to see such a humble and gracious player.

4. Stuart Scott ESPY Speech

This popular beloved ESPN announcer lost his fight to cancer early in January. Last summer, he accepted an award at the ESPY’s in the name of Jimmy V, the guy I previously mentioned who gave a famous speech and also lost his battle to cancer. This is such an awesome speech because of the manner that Scott carries himself. He had such a natural grace about him and you can’t help but love that. He was also just a great storyteller and his shout out to Jimmy V made me bawl my eyes out.

5. Rickey Henderson Hall Of Fame Speech

Henderson is a player known for his rather cocky personality on the field. This speech is mostly memorable for how humble he was in it. My favorite part about it is the hilarious personal stories that he adds here. I think it’s hilarious that he had to be bribed in order for him to play baseball.

Poems About Sports

Poetry is such a beautiful and emotional thing. Poems about sports has always fascinated me endlessly. Each of these poems are about several different sports and paint such fabulous pictures, regardless of whether or not you like the sports, you can’t help but respect the poems. So without further ado, here are some of my favorites about sports.

1. A Boy Juggling A Soccer Ball

This poem has such gorgeous and descriptive imagery while describing this seemingly simplistic event. It’s just a boy juggling a soccer ball, nothing outrageously interesting, but the language used turns it into something much more respectable and fantastic.

2. Slam, Dunk, and Hook

I love this poem because it makes a game of pickup basketball about so much more than just that. It uses great descriptive language that captures the fun that can come from just playing a simple game of basketball with your best friends, while you go through events in your personal events at the same time. It makes me want to get my friends together and just play the game and make memories.

3. Fast Break

“A hook shot kisses the rim and hangs there, helplessly, but doesn’t drop,” I love this line because it really puts us in the shoes of somebody playing the game of basketball, in the present tense. We can feel all of the sights and sounds around the boy. Poetry is really a beautiful thing because it takes the most simple words and spins it into something more complicated and striking.
This is a very long poem and reads more like a story. But it holds up as a poem due to the structure. I love how the story flows in such a unique way that makes it all the more memorable. It’s filled with words, I typically enjoy poems that are much shorter than this one is. But something about this poem still makes it work and stick out in my mind as being one of the better sports poems.
Could I really talk about famous sports poem and leave this one off? It’s by far the most famous poem on the subject and it’s become a type of pop culture phenomenon. There’s an interesting cast of characters that fill the lines of this incredible poem. It also takes you through many different emotions. It’s odd how easily he’s able to get you emotionally invested and just caught up in the story. Basically, the question most fitting for me to ask is, who doesn’t love this one?

The Less Popular Sports

There are several sports that I really haven’t touched on yet this month. Unfortunately, there’s 30 days in April and there’s many many sports that I could talk about. However, I didn’t really want to talk about sports that I don’t know much about. So I just stuck to what I know the best which isn’t exactly a lot of different sports, just the main ones. I thought it’d be best to at least acknowledge these sports.

1. Hockey

I think hockey is a really awesome sport. It’s one that definitely doesn’t get enough credit. I mean, what other sport has so much physical action? Basketball, football, and baseball don’t have the type of physical contact and the fouls are hardly ever called. Like one hockey player once said, hockey gives you a free nose job. Hockey does have it’s pretty big stars but only a few of them, much less than the main sports I’ve already mentioned frequently this month. But here is my much too short talk about hockey. I’m sorry I couldn’t talk about it longer, I’d just sound uneducated on the sport (because I am) so I’ll stop here!

2. Soccer

One of the biggest sports in the world. It has a much bigger appreciation and following in other countries but I think it’s sort of catching on in the United States. The World Cup had such a high rating when it was on this summer. Pretty much everybody was suddenly a huge soccer fan but not so many people care during the actual season, but that’s typically how it goes. A lot of the most popular players aren’t actually American, but again, the World Cup gave some American soccer players attention like they’ve never seen before. Outside of the World Cup, there really isn’t much to say about the sport. I think the clubs and how they organize the teams can be a little more complicated than what I’d like for it to be. But it does deserve it’s special shout out since there are so many people who play the sport and also love watching it!

3. Swimming

I love swimming for fun but it was never something that I was good enough to do as a sport. I think it can be a really fun sport to watch, especially during the Olympics. There’s also several different popular athletes I can name off the top of my head: Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte, Mark Spitz, etc. Okay, let’s be honest, Michael Phelps is easily the most popular but Ryan Lochte is pretty up there too. Lochte is most famous for his attitude and vibrant outspoken personality. Phelps is most famous for his incredible swimming and his weed smoking. There are also many talented women swimmers who deserve some recognition as well. Both men and women swimming teams were absolutely dominant for the United States in the Olympics back in 2014. It was a really fun time to watch and I can’t wait for 2018 for the next one.

Best Babe Ruth Quotes

The Great Bambino said some incredible things during his life. These are some of the most memorable and striking quotes.

1. “It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up.”

2. “Every strike brings me closer to next home run.”

3. “Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.”

4. “Heroes get remembered, but legends never die.”

5. “You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.”

6. “The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together, the club won’t be worth a dime.”   

 

“I Hate Christian Laettner” Review

This 30 for 30 or ESPN film, whichever name you prefer, looks at one of the most hated college athletes in the history of the game. It explores many different reasons why the hate for Christian Laettner was so serious. After all, he was just a kid, what did he ever really do to deserve the hate? The film talks to many different people including Christian Laettner himself, his family, Coach K, Coach K’s wife, past teammates, the Fab Five, opponents of his, and many different authors, reporters, etc who wrote books and stories about their hate. Many different perspectives were offered during this film which is what I’ve always loved most about documentaries- especially sports documentaries.

The first reason that they look at is that Laettner was perceived as a rich kid because he attended Duke University and a prep school before that. In reality, Laettner came from a middle class family. His mom was a teacher and his dad was a journalist. He couldn’t afford prep school but they offered a type of work study where he would work these dirty type jobs extremely early in the morning in exchange for his tuition. He only went to Duke because Coach K offered him a full scholarship. This alone gave me personally some new respect for the guy. He didn’t have anything handed to him, he worked for everything he had which is something worthy of respect.

Another reason why people hate Laettner is that he’s a white kid. Some people thought he might be racist or view black people differently since the only black guys on his basketball team were called “Uncle Tom” and things of that sort. Laettner was actually extremely tolerant of other races, maybe even was more against white people than black. His teammates bragged on how impressed they were with his style and his knowledge of hip-hop.

The third reason explored was that he was a bully who preyed on the weak. I actually laughed out loud because they used Kanye West interrupting Taylor Swift as the image for a bully. Yes, Laettner was an animal on the court and he was certainly a big trash talker. The way he carried himself and seemed to get away with so much stuff other players wouldn’t get away with was extremely disheartening and irritating. But he also seemed like a good teammate and actually a cool guy off the court. He just knew how to get under people’s skin.

After watching this documentary, I learned a lot about the background of this guy that got such a terrible reputation over the years. I think it’s sad how much people disliked him and how far some people took it. Like it’s actually ridiculous that his 12-year-old sister was called a whore just for being his sister. Like what did she ever do to deserve that? Sometimes the hatred people have isn’t rational and is fairly upsetting. Ultimately, people hated how good he was and I love that the documentary explored that. But I think it wasn’t just one sided, it also showed the reasons behind why people hate him by talking to the sources directly. Overall, it’s one of my favorite ESPN films.

Best Of MLB Hall Of Famers

There have been many guys that have been inducted into the hall of fame. Among those men, it’s hard to pick out a few that really stand out. I’ve attempted to look at some of the best hall of fame inductees so far.

1. Hank Aaron

Hank Aaron is an incredibly underrated player. Most people instantly think of Babe Ruth when the discussion for the best baseball player comes up. Aaron actually had more home runs than Ruth did. Hank ended up with 755 home runs of all time and Ruth had 714 home runs of all time. I love what his hall of fame profile says about him and I think it really shows what kind of person he was and how he was received by his peers and the public in general.

2. Roberto Clemente

This powerhouse right fielder made history and impressed the world. It’s sad that he wasn’t able to live long enough to see himself get inducted into the hall of fame. His statistics say it all, he’s an incredible player who deserves so much respect.

3. Lou Gehrig

“If you look up the word ‘ballplayer” in the dictionary, it is likely they’ll have a picture of Lou Gehrig, stalwart New York Yankee first baseman.” This is what the Baseball Hall Of Fame says about Lou Gehrig. The short biography about this timeless first basemen is extremely important. Besides his awesome personality, you have to give him credit for playing in 2,130 consecutive games for the Yankees. It’s not hard to see why he was so loved by Yankee fans.

4. Sandy Koufax 

I’ve previously mentioned my love and respect for this pitcher. He’s easily one of the best pitchers and he definitely deserved to be inducted into the Hall Of Fame. As a left-handed pitcher, Koufax showed the most restraint and ability which hadn’t really been seen before in the history of baseball, and hasn’t been seen since.

5. Rickey Henderson

Henderson was an extremely talented left-fielder who made history. Henderson was an athletic guy, he turned down many football scholarships in order to sign a contract with the Oakland Athletics. He holds the single season record for stolen bases with a whopping 130 steals. He is still noted for being the greatest lead off hitter of all time.

Quotes From Vince Lombardi

Vince Lombardi is probably the most beloved coach of all time. His time coaching the Packers placed him on the map and helped him earn the respect of more or less the whole nation. His quotes were beyond inspiring and here some of his best just in case you’re running low on inspiration.

“If you can’t accept losing, you can’t win.”

“Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is.”

“The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will.”

“The quality of a man’s life is in direct proportion to his commitment to excellence, regardless of his chosen field of endeavor.”

“It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get back up.”

“Winning is a habit, unfortunately, so is losing.”

“If winning isn’t everything, why do they keep score?”

“People who work together will win, whether it be against complex football defenses, or the problems of modern society.”

“Football is a great deal like life in that it teaches that work, sacrifice, perseverance, competitive drive, selflessness and respect for authority is the price that each and every one of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile.”

“If you’re lucky enough to find a guy with a lot of head and a lot of heart, he’s never going to come off the field second.”

“Winning is a habit. Watch your thoughts, they become your beliefs. Watch your beliefs, they become your words. Watch your words, they become your actions. Watch your actions, they become your habits. Watch your habits, they become your character.”

Guide To Affordable Workout Clothes

Okay, I know that not all of us can be like Taylor Swift and come from the gym still looking super cute and well put together. However, you can still look trendy even when you’re working out. Here are some suggestions for some trendy yet still super comfy clothing for you to wear when heading to the gym, out for a run, to sports practice, or whatever it might be.

These colorblock capri’s from Kohl’s aren’t my favorite color but they offer several other different colors also. These are the perfect bottoms to wear to the gym. They aren’t sweatpants but they aren’t ridiculously short either, you can still get active without get too hot and sweaty, you know what I mean?

Here’s yet another pair of pants that are colorblocked except this one is from Target. I really love the color of these leggings and think they would be awesome to workout in.

This one isn’t exactly cheap but if you’re looking for a fashionable supportive crossback sports bra, this is for you.

If you’re looking for something bound to make an impression, check this sports bra from Forever 21 out. And these VERY short shorts also from Forever 21 out. They would both go really well together.

Love these Zumiez galaxy workout pants. They are comfortable, affordable, and also cute and trendy. These are must haves for workout wears.

This Roxy’s hoodie is perfect if you’re going outside to run during the colder weather and what not. It’s an equal balance of comfortable and cute, therefore it’s perfect for wearing when working out.

What better place to shop for workout clothes then Nike? A lot of their stuff may seem a bit on the expensive side, but a lot of it is also pretty affordable and always good quality. Be sure to check out this particular sports bra and other workout gear and running shoes.

Best Longform Sports Stories

1. Mike Tyson

I love this story about Mike Tyson. Sports Illustrated uncovers all of Mike Tyson’s boxing success- beginning to end. He even mentions some of his later work, like his brief appearance in the movie The Hangover. I think he does a great job at really digging deeper into all of these decisions made by Tyson and just respecting what a good boxer he is. It’s definitely something sports fans should read.

2. Watching Rocky II With Muhammad Ali

This is Roger Ebert’s interesting encounter with watching Rocky movies with the greatest boxer of all time. Muhammad Ali is hilarious throughout Ebert’s story, at one point he relates to Rocky’s opponent Apollo. Apollo is the heavyweight champion who is taunting Rocky in the ring. I think Ali has a great sense of humor and I love this story.

3. Young, Gifted, and Homeless

I love how this article talks about some famous successful athletes who have openly talked about their past with homelessness. Sports Illustrated asks, “Well it’s great that these guys who are now successful are talking about it, but what about the kids living through it now?” They explore a high school boy who sees sports as an escape from his life of being homeless. And he’s not alone, the article also discusses the fact that this is an issue that’s only gotten worse over the years. It’s interesting to see things from their points of view.

4. The One And Only

This is a rather depressing story about Dan Marino and how he never won a Super Bowl. His one and only chance of winning one was against Joe Montana and the 49’ers. The Dolphins seemed to be on top but the 49’ers came back in the second half and pretty much blew Miami out. It was devastating to Marino and it still haunts him to this day. He figured he’d get a chance to go back considering he was still young at the time, but he never did. I just thought it was really interesting how such a successful quarterback considers himself not the best because he never won a Super Bowl.

5. Following Terry Fox

I’ve already talked about Terry Fox- a Canadian who ran across Canada on one leg raising money for the Cancer Foundation. However, this is a more recent article that shows the impact that this one man had on millions of people. The documentary began to touch on the reaction from the people who began paying attention to what Fox was doing, but it failed to really go in depth and tell the stories of people that Terry touched. Even after he died, his legacy continued to live on and it’s still doing just that even today. You’ll definitely be inspired after reading this.

6. The Man In The Van

Easily the best baseball profile I’ve read so far during this early start to the official season. The opening line of the story says it all, “The future of the Toronto Blue Jays wakes up in a 1978 Volkswagen camper behind the dumpsters at a Wal-mart and wonders if he has anything to eat.” It really paints a picture of how Daniel Norris is receiving so much hype about what he does on the field but off the field he likes living the life of a minimalist. It isn’t a dramatic story but it’s a fascinating one that really kept me interested in his story.

 

Pittsburgh Pirates Updates

So I’m already getting a little bored/not sure what direction to go in with this theme. So I figured I’d just stick to talking about what I know best, sports! Okay, I don’t know as much as I would like to but it’s something I enjoy talking about and there’s a lot of news to uncover in it. So right now, I’m going to talk a little about the Pittsburgh Pirates. The organization was fairly respected back when Barry Bonds was on the team. But it gradually went down over the years and didn’t show any signs of hope until a hot prospect from Florida named Andrew McCutchen began playing for the Pirates and they really ended up building the team around him. He’s definitely a star and this season, he’s started out as good as ever, except Saturday night he set himself out of the game in the 9th inning due to a knee injury. However, he’s shown that his knee is better and has started since that night. McCutchen has previously started out pretty much every season ready to go and hasn’t in general been setback by injuries. Fingers crossed that this lucky trend continues.

We all know the potential that McCutchen shows and has shown these past 7 seasons, there are also other players on the Pirates team that should also be singled out. The Pirates have one of the best outfields in the MLB right now. One of those spots obviously belongs to Andrew McCutchen but younger players Starling Marte and Gregory Polanco take the other two spots. Marte is one impressive player and has showed tremendous growth as he enters his third full season of playing in the big leagues. He has a ridiculously high number of home runs and steals, plus his on base percentage is also good. Polanco was one of the best minor league players and moving him up to the big leagues was a smart move to say the least. He’s still getting his footing in the big leagues but that doesn’t say he isn’t impressive, he certainly is and he probably has the most room left to grow out of these three guys.

Josh Harrison is one of my personal favorite players besides McCutchen. Harrison has never been a big all-star or a guy who’s received a lot of hype. He’s a player who worked his way out of the minors gradually. I remember him a couple of seasons ago only being in the game when he was a pinch runner during the games. He’s come miles since those days. However, he still has been thrown around to practically every position out there on the field, which goes to show you how adaptable and talented Josh is. He’s just a quality hitter who has the ability to sneak up when you least expect it and get a home run out of you. He’s certainly a big time threat and I love how humble he is.

There are many other players that I want to talk about. I’m just going to mention some other key players including: Pedro Alvarez, Jordy Mercer, and Neil Walker. These are all guys that are okay and pretty good infielders (Alvarez is the one who notably has some crazy random errors every now and then) who are even better hitters. Walker and Mercer aren’t known for being as powerful as Alvarez (nicknamed El Toro because he’s so strong and awesome) but they are still solid players that the Pirates depend on. The Pirates are still working out the whole catcher situation since losing one of the best catchers around Russell Martin.

I haven’t gotten the chance to touch on all of the starting, relief pitchers, and closing pitchers that I really want to. So I’m just going to save a whole post to talk about that situation. But this is what I’ve come up with so far so I hope that gives you an introduction to the Pirates that you may (probably not) want to know in case you end up watching a game or something like that. But anyway, I’ll shut up now but thank you for reading my rambles!