For the Win: The Coolest Stuff in Sports for the Week
The 2014 Masters got underway in the exact way we have come to expect, with three golf legends teeing off in one of sports' more wonderful traditions. Now we feel spoiled, because that was just one of the cooler stories this week.
Welcome back to another rousing edition of all things that are right and marvelous in the sports world. I will be your host, the guy with a smile on his face and a skip in his step.
Really, this is just a breakdown of the coolest stories from the week that was, a veritable Stefan Urquelle flashing swagger all over the living room.
We all love a good story, so please feel free to chime in with something we may have missed. Otherwise, kick up your feet and prepare for a healthy dose of awesome.
Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player Do It Again
The Big Three once again started the festivities this year at Augusta, teeing off amid cheers, smiles and a few chuckles. It's like a visual apple pie cooling on the ledge.
There is hardly a better way to begin a tournament, corralling some of the biggest names in the sport's history to knock a single ball down the fairway.
They are like the geriatric version of Voltron, coming together each year to save the world from whatever the opposite of this wonderful, nostalgic feeling might be.
Conan O'Brien Lives out Our Dream
If we had a bucket list, it might include playing a game of Madden on the biggest screen imaginable. (Living long enough to actually experience a Holodeck is up there too.)
Well, the DiamondVision at the Dallas Cowboys' AT&T Stadium certainly qualifies, because its dimensions are a whopping 72 feet high by 160 feet wide.
O'Brien, in another edition of his "Clueless Gamer" segment, got to play Madden on a truly big screen, later delving into classic hits like Street Fighter II.
I'm sorry, but we simply have to know what NBA Jam would look like on that thing.
Dioner Navarro Steals Second and a Little Bit of Our Heart
There is nothing we appreciate more than fat guys doing amazing things; it's what makes fat-guy touchdowns so splendid.
To that end, we have a chubby catcher past his base-stealing prime (did he have one?) getting an unlikely stolen bag. As MLB.com notes, this is the first stolen base since 2009 for Dioner Navarro, and it's one that came thanks to a bungled hit-and-run play.
We don't care what you say, because this beats anything Rickey Henderson ever did.
Mason Plumlee Plays Hero, Still Picks Up the Towels
This week featured the "Block Heard 'Round the Internet" (working title).
Mason Plumlee had a game-winning stuff on LeBron James, proving that kids have absolutely no respect for authority. Of course, Miami Heat fans will contend there was a foul, while Brooklyn Nets fans are too busy watching the replay to bother with any controversies at the moment.
So there you have a rookie playing hero on a magical April night. However, the best part was the team's veterans, who had fun putting Plumlee in his place.
The best might just be Joe Johnson proclaiming, "I just told him big play, but get the towels. Get your towels, and make sure you get us some Gatorade and water and meet us at the bus."
Good job, kid. Now wipe that smile off your face and pick up the towels.
5-on-5 MMA. That Is All.
A tip of the hat to Twitter user Phuket Top Team, who led Middle Easy's Zeus to this posted video. That's how we came across it, and it's essentially how we realized there is an entire world of loveliness just outside our home—far away from our computers.
Good thing they had the sense to record it all and place it on the Internet.
Safely in our pajamas, we get to see five men beat the snot out of another five dudes, all for our benefit and entertainment.
Yes, it's ridiculous, but the good kind, like Brendan Fraser movies and Saved By the Bell marathons. Yes, I guess you could say we absolutely love Team Fighting Championship.
Excuse me while I wait for all of the goosebumps to subside.
That there is the ESPN commercial for the upcoming World Cup, and it's chockablock filled with the passion and pageantry that makes this such a wonderful time to be a sports fan.
Then again, we don't have to tell you, because you are already busy putting on your red, white and blue paint and practicing your chants.
9 to the 3 to the 2
The video comes from a game between Division III baseball's Greensboro Pride and the Maryville Scots. While Maryville won 5-4, Greensboro managed to pull off a spectacular 9-3-2 triple play.
Tickle us entertained.
OK, when, exactly, did MMA become a boring sport?
It's as if its fans are trying to replicate how pizza companies work and stuff as much fun as they can into its figurative crust.
We have fights ramped up with two teams going at it and now bouts taking place underneath a bunch of flying dirt bikes.
The video was spotted by Middle Easy and features antics at the "Backflips and Beatdowns 4" in Billings, Mont.
Look, we can't have everything, people. Then again, perhaps we can. Never mind me.
Warning: The posted video contains massive amounts of adorable judo combat.
We aren't quite sure when this epic match of judo champions took place, but it was spotted by SB Nation this week, which is all we need to consider this topical.
After the sighs end, we are left with the realization that these kids fight roughly with the same tactics that most of us do.
Lastly, we bring you this video of one man's half-court triumph that led to a free Kia, spotted by Sports Illustrated's Ben Golliver.
Unfortunately, it wasn't all smiles throughout the building. As Golliver writes, "His take? A free Kia from a local dealership. One interesting twist? The dealership’s owner was actually in the building to see the action unfold."
The dealership owner feigns a smile when he realizes he has to give up a car. Then again, it might just be how Sacramento Kings fans look when appreciating an eventual 107-92 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder.