People seem to be getting all upset about the names of some professional sports teams. Now remember what sports really are: A group of people (called a team), throw, kick, strike or carry, an object (ball or puck) to a designated location (goal, zone, base) in a restricted space (field, court, rink). Another team tries to prevent the first team from placing the object there. If the team is successful in placing the object in the desired location, it is awarded points. These points, which cannot even be used for free gasoline, have magically been transformed into something that is now deemed worthy of billions of dollars by our culture.
This is not a criticism as much as it is an observation. Please, I have season tickets for two college sports at my alma mater. However, regardless of how you view the sports world, you do have to admit some teams have terrible, really terrible names. Here is my list of the worst team names in the professional sports:
3rd Runner Up – (Tie) Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox. It is not very manly when your team is identified by their attire.
2nd Runner Up – San Diego Padres. Padres spend all their time studying scriptures and performing religious duties. They have no time for recreation and thus make lousy baseball players. Plus they are always tripping over their robes.
|Trying hard to avoid being hit by the ball!|
Winner – Los Angeles Dodgers. This is a great name for a dodgeball team. But a baseball player is supposed to catch the ball, not run away from it. I picture some “girly-man” running across the field, arms flailing, screaming “Please don’t hit me with the ball, please don’t hit me!”
Dishonorable Mention – New Jersey Devils. Sure, name your team after Satan. If God does really care about who wins, your team is toast in the close games.
3rd Runner Up – (Tie) Carolina Hurricanes, Colorado Avalanche. Let’s name our team after something bad that kills people. You wouldn’t name your team the Denver Diabetes now, would you?
|The new Columbus mascot?|
2nd Runner Up – Columbus Blue Jackets. Who names their team after formal dinner attire? Why isn’t the mascot a preppy wearing a blazer?
Winner – Nashville Predators. The use of this word is now almost exclusively to describe sexual criminals. I don’t even want to think about what an appropriate mascot would look like, but I sure as hell am not taking my kids to any games!
3rd Runner Up (Tie) Detroit Pistons, San Antonio Spurs. You name your team after a car part or a boot part? At least spurs is slang for the whole boots.
2nd Runner Up – (Tie) Miami Heat, Oklahoma City Thunder. Let’s name our team after something negative associated with our city!
Winner – Cleveland Cavaliers. Don’t name your team after an attitude, especially a bad, irritating, attitude. This is the equivalent of naming a women’s sports team the Boston Bitches.
3rd Runner Up – New Orleans Saints. The team is named after a song. But there are extremely few saints in the NFL and any news report that starts out: “The Saint was arrested for possession of” is just plain wrong.
2nd Runner Up – Cleveland Browns. The team was named after an old coach. Good thing the guy’s name wasn’t Rebinowitz! But now you are associated with the color of something that describes how the team has played for the last 50 years.
Winner – Well you know where this is going. Yes, the worst team name in the NFL is Redskins.
But I don’t think the name is racist, I think that it is just plain stupid, really stupid. You named the team after a skin color. Would anyone name a team the Blackskins? Try the Yellowskins, the Whiteskins or the Brownskins. No you wouldn’t, that would be stupid, just as stupid as Redskins. It was a dumb name at the beginning and it is still a dumb name.
However, the team has had the name for 81 years. It is part of team history and is ingrained in the team’s culture and tradition. Because sports are so esteemed in our culture, the earnest sports fans treat it like a religion. Changing the name of the team would be akin to telling Christians that the name of the savior will be now changing to “Frank”.
A few Indians say they find the name Redskins “disparaging” which means to belittle or bring reproach on. But I can think of no better way to bring reproach on yourself than to bitch and moan about something this trivial. If you have survived this “atrocity” for 81 years, guess what, it ain’t going to kill you! You are belittling yourself, Chief Whinyass.
But I’m a uniter, not a divider. So I propose a 25 cent “stupidity” tax be placed on every Redskin ticket sold and every piece of Redskin merchandise. The money would go to provide counseling services for people who need guidance about how not to be “disparaged” by this dreadful team name.