50 Best Sports Gifts of 2013
Holiday shopping is a cross between rioting and 20 questions. You want to get that perfect gift—one that's both unique and needed—without being sure of how either is defined.
When it comes to the sports fan in your life, there are as many pitfalls as opportunities for making good on the gift giving.
The world of sports merchandise is a crazy mishmash of awesome, tacky, horrifying and everything in between. If you pick the right gift, you're gold, baby. The wrong one? Awkward...
So, stay calm and be prepared—and don't be afraid of others doing the legwork for you. Here are 50 of the best sports gifts of 2013.
NFL Dry Erase Fantasy Draft Board
Everyone is into fantasy football these days, and this dry erase fantasy draft board is a great individual gift that could also work as a group offering to your league.
If you take care of the fantasy gods, they'll take care of you.
NCAA Christmas Gift Ornament
Giving a Christmas ornament is a great way to tell someone you care enough about them to buy a gift but not enough to overspend on something.
Choosing a personalized NCAA ornament will mean more to the sports fan in your life than going with the traditional holiday-themed ornament.
2 in 1: Universal Remote and Bottle Opener
Depending on how you look at it, combining two things you can never seem to find—like the remote and a bottle opener—either makes all the sense in the world or none at all.
Which makes the universal remote/bottle opener either the greatest gift in the world or the worst.
Personally, I think it’s the best. The fewer individual items I can lose in the couch, the better.
Scotts Lawns Fenway Park Grass Seed Mix
Going to a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park is one of the most expensive ways to spend a day in American sports. It’s particularly pricey if you’re looking to consume a few beers.
Not everyone can afford to do that on the regular, but they can afford to bring the turf at Fenway to their own lawns—thanks to those mad scientists at Scotts Lawns.
NBA Executive Engraved Super-Fan Gift Set
The NBA executive engraved super-fan gift set isn’t the most exciting or original gift on this list, but not everyone who receives gifts this time of year is super exciting.
This is a good gift for tedious list makers, obsessive organizers and people who like to have their name printed on everything. Plus, the price is right.
Stanley Cup Popcorn Maker
The Stanley Cup popcorn maker may be a little bit on the ridiculous side, but it’s a lot on the awesome side. And anything that takes the guesswork out of cooking makes a welcome addition to any kitchen.
So now you’ve got the perfect gift for the hockey-loving popcorn enthusiast in your life. Assuming you have one.
NFL Serving Bowls
These NFL serving bowls may not get as much daily action as some of the other sports gifts on this list, but they’re perfect for the Super Bowl host and/or hostess in your life.
And at just $39, the customizable dishes are a great value too (relative to other NFL licensed products).
NCAA Infant Embroidered Gift Box Booties
If these little booties seem like a ridiculous gift idea, obviously you have yet to reach the stage in your life when everyone around you is procreating. That phase is sandwiched in between everyone getting married and everyone getting divorced.
Having an inexpensive go-to gift like this is absolutely necessary. It says you care about your friends and the various humans spawned from their life choices, but you don’t care too much. That’s pretty much the space you always want to be occupying in life.
Neon Signs and LED Pictures
The fact is that no man cave is complete without a neon sign of some sort. These signs come in every size, for every team and in every price range—so there’s no excuse for going without.
NFL Watch and Wallet Gift Set
Why dump your hard-earned sheckles into a bunch of overpriced fan gear, when you can get a tasteful wallet and a matching watch for a bargain?
So if you’re on a budget, this is a great way to go. You can display your team pride while being reminded to be on time and not to blow all your money.
Franklin Deluxe 6-in-1 Table Game
Foosball is the star in this 6-in-1 table game, which also includes air hockey, table tennis, chess, checkers and backgammon.
Just put “drunk” before all of those games and imagine the world of fun that the recipient of this gift could have, all thanks to you and your thoughtful gift giving.
NCAA Golf Gift Set
A little golf set like this is perfect for the person in your life who loves golf and you’re, for one reason or another, forced to buy for this year.
You don’t want to overspend on your boss or father-in-law, but you do want to let them know you know something about them.
NCAA Licensed College Team Doormats
When it comes to the most serious of sports fans, often times you won’t even get through the front door without at least three indicators of the team they support.
The least intrusive and obnoxious outdoor display is definitely a doormat. This one says politely: “I love the 'Noles...please wipe your feet because we just had the carpets cleaned.”
Auburn Football Fantasy Camp
This July, Auburn University—which may or may not be the reigning BCS champions—is hosting a fantasy camp for fanboys who have always lamented not trying to make the football team as a freshman walk-on.
It’s open to men ages 21 and up, and the price fluctuates depending on whether or not the “camper” wants to participate in the golfing or fishing portion. While costly, it’s definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
NFL Party Fridge Cooler/Warmer
NFL Cheerleader Swimsuit Calendar
What better way to celebrate the holidays than with NFL cheerleaders in bikinis? Quit brainstorming because there is literally no better way.
These days you can’t bring much into a sporting event with you, especially when it comes to things you’re likely to spend money on at a game. Like food and beverages.
And there’s no beverage you’re gonna spend more money on at a game than alcohol. One way to curb those costs is with the sippin' seat, which serves as both a cushion for your rear and a flask.
MLB Keyscaper Wireless USB Keyboard
The MLB Keyscaper wireless keyboard is a great way to show your team spirit at work without breaking the bank. There’s one available for fans of every MLB team.
And because the keyboard is wireless, it can be easily transported between work and home, depending on your technological requirements.
Personalized Zippo Hand Warmer
This Zippo hand warmer looks so ridiculously simple, but it has the ability to change your life for the better if you’re watching a game in frigid weather.
Hockey Stick Rockers
If it’s been a while since you last sat in a really great rocking chair, you may have forgotten how glorious it can be. These hockey-stick chairs offer a creative twist on a tried and true classic.
Everyone loves games, but not everyone loves video games. Baseball enthusiasts are the most aged of the fan population and far less likely to be comfortable with gizmos from the digital age.
This old-timey baseball dice game doesn’t have that much to do with the sport itself, but it is a way to bring the game to a friend and keep it going all through the winter months.
Double Dribble it is not. With its stunning graphics and kick-ass soundtrack, there’s a reason that 2K Sports’ NBA 2K14 is the bestselling sports game for both the PS4 and Xbox One.
It’s the "must-have" next generation game for the "must-have" next generation gaming systems. Try not to get distracted by LeBron's cold, dead stare.
Red Cup Koozies
Nothing says "party" like a big, red plastic cup. The problem with red plastic cups is they’re bad for the environment and very easily misplaced in a crowded area.
Thanks to the red cup kool koozie, the party atmosphere created by the red plastic cup can become a more permanent part of all our lives. It’s a small price to pay to buy back a piece of your youth.
FANMATS Automotive Mats
People are almost as protective of their cars as they are about their college football teams. So it only makes sense to bring the two together.
Which is why we have customized automotive mats for the ultimate in anal-retentive clean freak college football fans. That’s certainly one way to keep the floors clean!
Authentic Stadium Seat Cufflinks
These MLB stadium seat cufflinks will set you back as much $200, but the fact that they’re made from actual salvaged seat material makes them worth the investment.
Fenway Park, Wrigley Field and Yankee Stadium are among the 10 stadiums available as fashionable wrist-wear for the right price.
NFL Football Dartboard
A team dartboard is an excellent addition to any man cave, college apartment or anywhere else fun and games are to be had and played.
NFL Elegant iDock Speaker
There isn’t any reason why someone needs his favorite team logo on an iPod dock, but there also isn’t any reason why someone doesn’t need it either.
Given the extremely reasonable price of these NFL iDocks, I say: Why the heck not?
College Sports Scoreboard Wall Clock
This one isn’t ideal if you’re buying for an adult, but it is well-suited to sports fans who are still in school—particularly frat bros looking to add a little pizzazz to the great room.
NBA Team Logo Binoculars
Depending on how much cabbage you have to fork over for tickets, seeing all the action at a game can be an issue. NBA team binoculars can fix that problem, as well as help you scam on those pretty girls a few sections away.
The only thing that can make a Sunday afternoon of football watching even better is the addition of some of your favorite brewed alcoholic beverages.
Of course, there’s no better way to consume the aforementioned brewed alcoholic beverages than out of customized NFL glassware. Everyone should have a set.
NCAA Locker Room Comforter
A team comforter is an excellent gift for sports fans who aren't yet sharing a bed with someone who doesn't share their enthusiasm for decorating their home strictly in their favorite team's colors.
NFL Solar-Powered Projection Rock
After the sun goes down, the NFL solar-powered projection rock picks up where your standard team hanging flag leaves off. Which makes sense, because you don’t stop being a superfan just because it’s dark.
NCAA 2x8 Tailgate Pong Table
This gift is vital to keep college kids busy, even when they're drunk. Otherwise they’ll end up roaming the streets and setting couches on fire.
Make this NCAA beer pong table the perfect gift for the matriculating student in your life. And think of all the innocent pieces of furniture whose lives will be saved.
Women’s 2-Button Cable Knit Boots
For the lady in your life! These days most major sports teams have a wide selection of female footwear, like these cable knit boots. And they’re offered for relatively reasonable prices compared to a lot of other fan gear.
OptiShot Infrared Golf Simulator
OptiShot is a computer simulator that allows you to improve your golf shot from the privacy of wherever you have enough room to set up a tee.
It’s a bit pricey, but compared to a couple of months of paying green fees, this contraption is a bargain (and there's no possibility of being struck by lightning).
Patented 'Stadium Chair' Wide Stadium Seat
This deluxe stadium chair may not look like much at first glance, but it has the power to make almost any bleacher seat in the country a lot more comfortable.
The chair is easily cleaned and mildew resistant, and it won’t fade. It can also be customized with silk screening or embroidering on the seat back—imagine the possibilities.
There’s a lot of exceptionally eye-catching fan gear out these days—and not eye-catching in a bad way! There’s way too much to cover individually, but rest assured, something exists for everyone.
NFL Personalized Address Plaque
The personalized NFL address plaque is perfect for the ultimate superfan, as well as the fan who just doesn’t look great in the team colors but still wants everyone to know what’s up.
ESPN 30 for 30 Gift Set Collection
A box set collection of the critically acclaimed ESPN documentary series 30 for 30 is the perfect gift for any sports lover. They can be purchased in sets or individually, which makes it work for all budgets.
Stance NBA Socks Collection
The Stance NBA sock collection features Larry Bird, Patrick Ewing, Shaquille O’Neal, Allen Iverson and Hakeem Olajuwon among its many options.
Your favorite baller will be forever immortalized outside your feet and inside your shoes. You can’t really beat that.
Game Used-Base Stool
These stools don’t come cheap at $950 a pop, but if you’re raking in the dough these days, the baseball fanatic in your life would consider it money well spent.
They’re made from game-day bases used by the Cardinals, Cubs, Pirates, Red Sox and Yankees, among others, and each is handmade and welded right here in the USA.
Tradesman Heavy-Duty Aluminum Cooler
Given what a necessity they are for the true sports fan, most coolers are surprisingly unimpressive to look at. Which means that anyone who owns this bad boy will be the envy of everyone at the tailgate party.
NHL/MLB/NFL Team Lanterns and Lights Set
This is going to sound like a gross generalization, but every woman on earth loves Chinese lanterns for outside entertaining. It’s OK to say that because I’m a woman.
If you have a woman in your life who loves sports and dinner parties in equal measure, there is no better gift than these team lanterns. I promise.
Team Logo Meat Branders
A meat brander isn't a necessity by any means, but having one with a personalized team logo is an entertaining way to liven up an otherwise dull piece of meat at a tailgate party.
For less than $10, you can transform that overcooked burger into a conversation piece. I'd pair mine with a customized one that sears "BLAMBER" into ground chuck.
Vintage NFL Antique Silver Beer Stein
At $69, this antique silver beer stein costs a bit more than you’d normally spend on a single cup, but sometimes it’s worth a splurge when it will become someone’s favorite cup.
It can be customized with any of the NFL’s 32 team logos as well as the name of the recipient.
Fat Cat Vancouver Air Hockey Table
Air hockey is quite simply one of the most underrated games on earth. It often gets lost in the shuffle, being forced to play second fiddle to foosball.
If you want to be a hero, you either have to be the dude who has an air hockey table or the dude who gives someone an air hockey table. That’s just science.
MLB Ballpark Blueprints
Touring the ballparks of America (and Toronto) is the dream of countless baseball fanatics. Unfortunately, extensive travel is cost prohibitive for most of us.
The next best thing is, of course, bringing the ballpark to you. These ballpark blueprints will set you back well over the cost of a couple of tickets, but they can be enjoyed for much longer.
Samsung Galaxy S4
If you know someone who's looking to trade in her smartphone over the holidays, there’s no better option than the Samsung Galaxy S4.
Not only is it far more competitively priced than most of its competitors on the market, the Galaxy is the preferred phone of LeBron James. Boom. You don't want to disappoint King James, do you?
Madden NFL 25
It’s hard to believe that Madden has been around for 25 years now. Today, the game is completely unrecognizable compared to the first version released in 1988.
And that’s a good thing. Not only is John Madden mercifully absent from the cover, the graphics and gameplay are about as close to watching, playing or coaching a real game as you can imagine.
Game tickets are the can’t-miss gift for any and every sports fan. So if you have the means to pay for them, by all means do so. You’ll be more popular than Santa at the North Pole.
OK...maybe not that popular...but darn close.