Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Which one of these is not like the other?

The Miami Herald fairly asserts that the stage is set for new sports icons:

Brett Favre retires. Polarizing Bob Knight walks away. Whether heroes or villains, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens don't have jobs. The once-dominant Diesel has been sent to the desert to finish the gloaming of his career.

So the stage is further cleared for the next crisply named, cultural touchstone sporting icons, branded names that stand for greatness, fan adoration, movie roles and hosting Saturday Night Live. And there will be stars to fill that space on the stage, if not always in the way the 35-and-up crowd prefers.

That's cool. But check out their list of 8 "young athletes most likely to become cultural touchstones over the next decade:"

Maria Sharapova
Tony Romo
LeBron James
Dwyane Wade
Adrian Peterson
Jacoby Ellsbury
Kevin Durant
Morgan Pressel
Sidney Crosby
Alexander Ovechkin

Well, actually, in looking at the names again there are a few things that need to be said before we get to the point. First, if LeBron James isn't a cultural touchstone no athlete is. Second, why include hockey players? Waste of ink. They'd have been better off bartering that ink for a ticket to Pens/Caps. And finally, the point, why is Jacoby Ellsbury on this list? Not only that, why is he the only baseball player on the list? Two hockey players, one baseball player; same number of baseball players as lady golfers. Reyes, Sizemore, Fielder, Howard, not only very good (and handsome!) also more than 116 Major League at bats. In fairness, the Herald does acknowledge they're jumping the gun on Ellsbury, "Could be a Mark Fidrych one-season wonder." But ummmm, Fidrych's year of wonder was... oh never mind. Look, I love Jacoby! I just don't want the pink hats to get sad when they realize he's not Fred Lynn (who am I kidding, the pink hats don't know who Fred Lynn is) he's Kenny Lofton minus some pop.*

*That's not meant to be a diss, I LOVED me some Kenny in his prime.

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