Sunday, November 4, 2007


In fairy tales, action movies and stories that parents tell their children before putting them to bed, good always prevails over evil. It comforts the person watching or listening, to know that those of noble actions and pure intentions win out in the end, squashing those of the dark side.

In the world of sports though, "evil" has reclaimed their throne. The throne they held in 2003 and 2004 has been returned to them for the time being. In years past, their drive was fueled by desire; the desire to prove those who doubted them wrong. In 2001, they were America's underdog, bearing the name everyone could rally behind at a time when a nation needed a distraction from the evils of the world. The underdog prevailed, and America felt good.

As their dominance stretched on though, America turned on them. Just like every other dynasty, people looked for a weakness. They looked for anything to discredit them. As the championships mounted in 2003 and 2004, people angrily accepted them as a dynasty. When their reign was interrupted in 2005, there was rejoicing. Rejoicing because their leader is an asshole in their eyes, and to see him knocked from his throne was awesome.

In 2006, they seemed poised to reclaim their throne. For the third time in four years, the playoffs pitted the ultimate battle of good vs. evil. On one side was the good, the team that said everything right, was gracious in victory and noble in defeat, led by their coach who oozes class and bases all that he does on his never-wavering faith. On the other, the evil, the 3-time champions that had the world against them. Twice before, the evil had triumphed over the good in the postseason en route to glory. And even now, the good could not overcome, falling into an 18-point deficit.

This time though, evil would be thwarted. The media darlings, the "good", finally exorcised the demons, defeated evil, and won their own championship.

But, like all good evil entities, the thwarted analyzed what was wrong, and retooled. They reloaded with weapons to equal their arch enemy's. The results have been terrifyingly efficient and deadly - but not just because of their new weapons.

This time, they're pissed off. They're pissed off because people have dared to question their previous glory. They were caught cheating, and the floodgates opened. Everywhere, people got their shots in, claiming that they only won their previous titles because they were cheating the whole time. Their response to these naysayers?

"Fuck you."

With that, they provided even more ammo, this time in amusing fashion - they were daring to run up the score! This isn't how you're supposed to behave in this sport! You're supposed to win with dignity and class, and be gracious and feel bad for teams that you're defeating. Instead, they have stomped the throat of their opponents while simultaneously flipping the bird at those who dared to question them.

All of it culminated today, as once again, Good met Evil. The winner was expected to establish themselves as the dominant team, the true favorite to reach the summit this season. All the while leading up to today's game, questions have swirled around Evil - are they being classless? Are they the greatest team of all time?

There is no definite answer to either of those questions. #1 is strictly a matter of opinion, and while #2 is as well, that opinion can't be formed until January. But today, they passed their first test. "Evil" triumphed over "Good" today. Their dreams of perfection are still alive. Their vendetta against the rest of the free world remains. If "Good" was the only hope at stopping them, then this is one story parents aren't going to want to tell their kids.

All while being led by a Michigan Man.

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