Washington D.C. (AS) -- Thursday afternoon, the Associated Press released its annual list of the top ten sports stories of the year. The Tiger Woods sex scandal edged out the Saints Super Bowl victory and LeBron James' free agency among the top three on the 2010 list.
In other words, if you encountered an over-played story being beaten into the ground in 2010, there was a 66 percent chance it was profoundly depressing.
"Sounds about right," said everyone.
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...Um, full disclosure: I had no idea this list even existed until I joined up with the Media and learned how to write a killer lede like the one above. You may not know (or care) about it, either. It's a pretty terrifying concept, though.
Do we really want to know what stories dominated our culture for the past twelve months? For all the evils of the 24 hour news cycle, at least it precludes any serious introspection. I mean, thank God this list was limited to sports, lest we relive the national obsession over Ground Zero Mosques, Sarah Palin, and the ending of Inception. But since we've gotten this far... Here's the sports Top 10 in full:
- TIGER WOODS
- SAINTS WIN
- FREE AGENCY FRENZY
- WORLD CUP
- GIANTS WIN
- NFL CONCUSSIONS
- JIMMIE JOHNSON
- BRETT FAVRE
- UCONN WINS
- WOODEN DIES
And ten quick thoughts:
The Tiger Woods story was really more of a 2009 story, right? It spilled well into 2010, but the real story in all of it was the Thanksgiving car crash in 2009, and the phenomenal reporting in the weeks that followed. None of which was done by sports reporters, because, um, well, good question. In any case, US Weekly owes Tiger money (which will go straight to Elin).
I don't understand the criteria with this list. Putting Tiger Woods number one makes me think the AP voters are judging based on the volume of stories generated. Putting the Saints above LeBron's free agency makes me think they're basing this on heartwarmability (new word!). Putting UConn on the list makes me think they're openly pandering to all the people that got pissed off about the Ines Sainz scandal (which was totally more memorable than UConn).
- Whatever the criteria, Brett Favre should be definitely higher on this list.
But also much, much lower on every list, ever. He is sports' Sarah Palin.
Did the AP Writers forget the most inspiring story of the year? Ron Artest won an NBA Championship and thanked his psychiatrist. If Ron can do it, then there's hope for all of us (provided we get access to the right mood-stabilizers).
Totally forgot the World Cup happened this year. That octopus was so great!
Other stories that could have made the cut: the Celtics getting no respect, the Patriots getting no respect, the Red Sox getting no respect. On the bright side, Sports Illustrated finally put Mark Wahlberg on their cover.
Seriously, my top ten in order: 1) LeBron's free agency, 2) New Orleans' Super Bowl, 3) Brett Favre Brett Favre Brett Favre, 4) Tiger's return, 5) the Giants' run to the World Series, 6) USA's World Cup run, 7) Canada wins the Winter Olympics, 8) Lakers win the Finals in Seven 9) Cam Newton as Jesus/Judas, 10) Michael Vick's re-birth.
To review: the Associated Press ranked UConn women's basketball above the Winter Olympics. Really, I'm not sure who that reflects poorest on.
Top 10 in '11? 1) The NFL Lockout 2) The NBA Lockout 3) Patriots become the team of the new millennium (NO RESPECT!!!) 4) Someone other than Boston or Philly wins World Series 5) Michael Vick gets a dog, PETA's subsequent assassination attempt fails miserably, 6) Tiger's REDEMPTION 7) Deadspin leaks a series of incriminating e-mails from either David Stern or Roger Goodell 8) A.J. Daulerio charged with "sex by surprise" 9) Duke wins back-to-back titles 10) ...But so does Ron Artest.
But who will replace Paul the Octupus?!