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This Week In GIFs: It's round and it's going to kill you

This week's terrific crop of animated sports GIFs teaches us an invaluable lesson: effort is for suckers. Vote, and help us decide the best of the week.

Welcome once again to THIS WEEK IN GIFs, everyone. As we move closer to GIF TOURNAMENT IV, we also find ourselves in the middle of prime GIF season. Recent weeks have been crowded with greatness, and so is this week.

I put on a suit and tie for this week's GIF video, and for a very good reason:

Voting, as usual, will remain open until Sunday at 11 p.m. Enjoy!



In this moment, the San Antonio Spurs resemble a 10-legged creature that has just tripped and fallen, and there's really no excuse for that, because I've never seen a spider trip and fall. Spiders don't bother me that much, because they generally want to stay out of my way, and they're nimble enough to do so. But if they were stupid and clumsy and stumbling around and all that? That would scare the shit out of me.



(Via @DanWeiner)

GIF of the Year so far. I stake my reputation on it, and if it doesn't win this week, I wore a suit and tie in that video for nothing.



(Via @bubbaprog)

Poor kid. Team's down by a goal with about 12 minutes left and he's just ruined. I can deal with crying from any kid up until the age of, say, five or six, because everyone else (including, eventually, them) recognizes that it's normal for them to do so. After that, though, kids begin to accept the social norms of crying: that they're for babies, that they shouldn't be done in public, and that they should be ashamed of themselves. If they cry anyway, they're really upset, and the undue shame that comes in tow surely doesn't help.

Especially if he's all by himself like that. Oooof. NEXT GIF.



(Via @GoldAndOrSmith)

Peter Chiarelli, the Boston Bruins' general manager, is seen here celebrating the Bruins' game-tying goal against the Leafs in Game 7. It completed an incredible three-goal comeback, and if he wants to get to get super-stoked about that, I don't have a problem with it. I guess maybe he thinks we would, because upon realizing he's on TV, he makes a face that would win any ordinary week of THIS WEEK IN GIFs



Carlos Boozer put himself on a one-second deadline the second he decided to jump. From personal experience, I can testify that creativity can blossom under the gun of a deadline, but it's not a magic wand. I still have to give myself enough time.

A critical danger of working under a too-short deadline is that I have to cut out one of the most time-consuming components of the creative process: doubt. I love doubt. I love stopping every so often and asking myself, "should I throw the last half-hour of work away? Should I throw the whole thing away? Do I like it?" The more I've written, the easier that gets, and the more matter-of-factly I take it that, yeah, sometimes I'm gonna spend time writing stuff that I'll need to throw out. It's helped me save y'all readers from thousands upon thousands of words of dog shit.

But the doubt process takes time, and if I don't have that time, I have to tell myself, "you have no time for this to not be great. Therefore, by necessity, it is great." And then I am Carlos Boozer.



I probably watched this GIF 20 times before I realized that while this guy is diving for the baseball, the guy in front of him caught the bat. What are the odds of both a bat and ball flying into the stands at the same moment, and in the same place? And how much smaller are the odds that both items would actually be caught in mid-air? If that dude in the red hat doesn't do his job, our hero dives straight into a face full of bat.

(UPDATE! It looked to me like the bro in the red hat was in a bat-catching motion, but he'd actually caught the ball earlier in the game and was trying to hit the ball with it. This, to me, makes it more remarkable. If you catch a bat and then hit a foul ball with it later, your name should be in the standings with at least 40 wins next to it.)

We generally employ the term "NATITUDE" pejoratively in this space, but this is just an unreal display of skill.



(Via Buzzfeed)

So ... we're gonna do this again, huh? Last year, we had three different GIFs named "DAMN IT, ASTROS." (One is here, and another is here.) Here we see a pitcher, whose name I don't know and am not all that interested in finding out, trying to field a home run ball like a punt and puttin' the "failing" in "flailing."

These Astros are on pace to lose 118 games, so it's a rather safe bet that they'll finish with 100-plus losses for the third consecutive year. They've dropped 16 of their last 20. They're allowing an average of over six runs a game. In right field they're starting Rick Ankiel, who could probably wander into their rotation and make a start once a week without anyone really noticing. (UPDATE: I originally forgot that he got traded to the Mets, but the point stands. He could even wear his Mets uniform if he wanted.)

<3 ASTROS <3