Quit Saying That! Sports Phrases That Need to be Abolished
Have you ever been watching a sporting event on TV and heard something that made you wonder, "Who was the idiot who thought saying that was a good idea?"
It seems that no matter what sport you watch, there is a phrase or comment that the announcers and analysts love to use for no apparent reason.
Some are overused; some make no sense. Some really don't need to be said because of their obviousness—and some seem just made up for the express purpose of just having something to say.
Some people will agree with these—and some people might actually like or use these phrases themselves. I am sure that I will leave a few out, too, but feel free to leave your favorites in the comments.
Maybe I just get annoyed too easily or just have a low threshold for stupidity. Here are some of these wonders that if I never hear them again, it would be too soon.
With baseball season just around the corner, this is something that analysts like to use to classify certain players. It is used as a way to say that a position player has all the necessary skills to excel in the major leagues.
But what exactly does it mean? If you look up the definition of a five-tool player, here is what you will find:
"A five-tool player is one who excels at hitting for average, hitting for power, base-running skills and speed, throwing ability, and fielding abilities."
So, let me get this straight: A guy is getting paid millions of dollars to play the national pastime, and this is all he needs to be able to do? He needs to be able to hit, run, throw, and catch? Seems like the basics that every player learns in T-ball and Little League.
Now I realize that the hardcore fans will argue that how a player performs each of these skills is what makes him stand out. I agree—to a point.
I am a huge baseball fan. I understand the importance of a Gold Glove fielder, a base stealer, an outfielder who leads the league in assists, the batting average winner, and the home run and slugging percentage leader.
However, to the casual fan, this just seems a bit of stating the obvious. It is like calling a golfer a three-tool player because he can drive, chip, and putt. It really doesn't need to be articulated.
I am all for talking up an all-around great player, but basing the praise on the things that a 12-year old can learn to do just doesn't make me want to watch in awe.
When categorizing how a college quarterback will translate to the pro game, this phrase being attached to your name is practically a death sentence on Draft Day. But what does it really mean?
In recent years, it has meant that the only reason that a QB has gaudy numbers is because of the system his team uses to accentuate its passing attack.
The school that has most often been associated with having system quarterbacks is Texas Tech during Mike Leach's tenure. Brigham Young, Houston, and Hawaii have also been accused of this in the past.
When the draft comes around, the experts like to talk about guys who played in a pro-style offense or a West Coast offense—or who were game managers because their teams had a great running attack.
But aren't all of these types of offensive systems? One is a system that emulates what a majority of NFL teams run, and one is a system where the tailbacks are the focus.
It doesn't seem fair that quarterbacks in these types of systems are running an offense, and others who the experts don't feel are as good are deemed "system quarterbacks" as a way to diminish what the stats show.
Every quarterback runs a system. Find a better way to tell us that you think someone's numbers are skewed based on how his team is coached to play.
"He is Long and Athletic"
I was watching the NBA draft several years ago when this one really got on my nerves. I think Jay Bilas used this to describe about 62 of the 64 picks.
He might have been at the concession stand and just missed the other two—I am not sure.
No player in that year's draft was under 6'2", and they all seemed to have a wingspan of more than seven feet.
Unless you are Spud Webb or Nate Robinson, if you're in the NBA, you are long and athletic. That is the reason you are getting paid to play this game.
I have yet to see a 5'0", 400-pound couch potato sign a contract with the Celtics.
When you are describing the best basketball players in the world, stating the obvious is not expert analysis—it is just plain lazy and unimaginative.
"The Goalposts are a Goalie's Best Friends"
Take it from someone who played goalie in hockey (three years) and soccer (28 years)—the posts are, without a doubt, not the friend they are made out to be.
On occasion, a shot will get through the defense, get past the goalie, hit the post, and deflect back into play.
When this happens, the goalie is still following the play, trying to make sure that an easy rebound isn't shot in—and he is trying to figure out which defender needs to be yelled at for allowing that shot in the first place.
If you ever watch a hockey highlight reel, you don't see shots that were "saved" by the post. What you do see are a lot of goals that either hit the post on the way in or hit the post, ricocheted into the back of the goalie, then trickled into the net.
Now what kind of friend would allow that to happen behind your back? Definitely not a best friend, that is for sure.
"That was a Great Golf Shot"
This, by far, is my least favorite. This is both obvious and unnecessary.
When did you ever see Nolan Ryan throw a strike, and then hear the announcer say, "Now that was a great baseball pitch." I would guess never.
How about "Peyton Manning just threw a great football pass" or "Sidney Crosby just made a fantastic hockey shot?"
Do we really need to use the actual name of the sport as an adjective to describe something done as part of the sport itself?
This is just a case of trying to add something to the commentary when you have nothing else to contribute. The overall lack of effort and the hope to increase the importance of the shot by basically adding nothing is amazing.
It is bad enough that we have to listen to British color analysts who talk like their ego could beat anyone currently playing on the tour. The fact is that their accent makes calling it a "golf shot" sound even more pompous than need be.
Regardless of the sport, there are always going to be guys getting paid to say stupid things that are suppose to add to their opinions. Sometimes not speaking your mind and letting the game speak for itself is the better option.