There will always be fans who insist that sports used to be better — that whatever decade in which the speaker was aged between seven and seventeen represented the true golden age of athletic competition, and that the players today don't hold a candle to those of the past. Bullshit. Heroes still conquer. Villains still sneer. Clowns still lighten the mood. The characters haven't changed.
What has changed are the ways we share their stories, and the ways they share their stories with us. The social web has pulled back the curtain on our protagonists and turned sports into a running communal conversation, argument, and comedy routine. We didn't know who Mickey Mantle really was off the field until a memoir came out years later. Now Logan Morrison takes to Twitter to tell us that he occasionally likes to pee in his cat's litter box because "red wine makes [him] loose." We all watch Dwight Howard say that he'll stay on the Orlando Magic for one more year out of loyalty and one of the first people on Twitter to say anything about it is Dwyane Wade tweeting "Loyalty, hahahahaha." Everyone — players and coaches, owners and fans — is involved in this constantly moving and evolving conversation.
Starting today, that includes BuzzFeed.
We want to tell you these stories in a way that will make you laugh, make you think, and make you want to share them with your friends. And whenever possible, we'll be telling you them as they happen with live game coverage — because that's when you're talking about them. When Kobe first donned his "Phantom of the Staples Center" mask, it blew up on Twitter the night of the game. Not the next day. So we're going to be there.
Oh also, you'll probably yell at us sometimes, because we don't really like that guy that plays for your team*. But that's part of the fun.
Blood oaths and aspirations:
•We will not tell you what you already know.
•We will keep you up to date on everything crazy and awesome that JaVale McGee does.
•We will not post pictures of a quarterback's penis. Unless they’re really impressive.
•We will admit our mistakes and do it publicly (and if necessary, in a humiliating fashion).
•We will not waver in our belief that the best play of 2011 belonged to Abby Wambach.
•We will refuse to accept the prevailing wisdom that fantasy sports and sabermetrics can't coexist with folk heroes.
•We will not limit our pop culture references to "The Wire."
•We will continue to believe in Russell Westbrook.
•We will actually leave our desks from time to time and watch sports in real life.
•We will always believe that Candace Parker could be more successful in the NBA than both her brother (Anthony Parker) and her husband (Shelden Williams).
•We won't pretend to hate Interleague Play just because everyone else does.
•We will not say anything bad about Roger Gooddell**.
•We will cover all of the Olympics. Not just the big events, but the small, crazy, weird ones too.
•We will let you have your opinions, if you let us have ours.
•We will never act as though sports only happen on the coasts.
•We will be honest about our biases.
So about those biases…
BuzzFeed veteran, author of the world’s first children’s political thriller, and die-hard Cleveland sports fan who is trying his best to forgive LeBron James. He has thus far been unsuccessful. Has an epic man-crush on Kyrie Irving, and thinks that Bryce Harper's attitude may be the best thing to happen to baseball since Ricky Vaughn struck out Clu Haywood. Hates Duke (despite his massive Kyrie love).
Miserable Jets fan since 1995; Duke alumnus who turned into a screaming nitwit after Gordon Hayward's heave clanked off the backboard in 2010. Lover of high-top fades, unadulterated swag, and telling you all the ways Brandon Jennings is like Method Man.
But we won’t be the only voices here, as we’ll be bringing you essays, cartoons, and other general sports mayhem from a host of great contributors.
And if you have a tip about something happening in the sports world — be it a funny moment in a broadcast or an actual piece of news — please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Conversations go two ways, so we want to hear from you.
Welcome to BuzzFeed Sports. We’ll try not to suck.
With (Kevin) Love and (Metta World) Peace,
Jack Moore and Kevin Lincoln
*Not that one, the other one. Yeah, him. Sorry. He sucks.
**Shhhhh… He's watching us.