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Who is Boston’s biggest sports villain?
We’ve officially hit March Madness in the college basketball season with Sunday’s reveal of the seedings for the men’s tournament. (Still no at-large bid for dear old UMaine. Unjust!)
You know what else it means – it’s bracket season on various websites for pretty much anything else you can think of. And we’ve got an appealing one this year: a 64-villain tournament ranking the most unlikeable, annoying, and downright loathsome opponents in Boston sports history.
— Boston.com (@BostonDotCom) March 18, 2019
The No. 1 overall seed is an appropriate one, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, and my hunch is that he will win this whole thing. (Voting for the first round starts today.) Might be the first time in his life he gets something he deserves.
He’s not my pick, though. I’m going with former Whalers and Penguins defensemen Ulf Samuelsson, a cowardly cheap shot artist who in effect ended beloved Bruin Cam Neely’s career.
The top four seeds are, in order, Goodell, Alex Rodriguez, Kobe Bryant, and Peyton Manning. I’d actually vote for Eli Manning (a No. 29 seed) over Peyton. Eli was the lesser player, but he was more of a nemesis than his big brother for obvious reasons.
Don’t know about you, but I’ve lost some animosity for some of these villains over the years. Aaron Boone (No. 22 seed) crushed Red Sox fans souls in 2003, but it set up the great redemption in 2004, and he’s currently a mediocre manager for the Yankees.
I also voted for former Colts GM and chief Patriots hater Bill Polian (No. 24) over George Steinbrenner (41). The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry is pretty good right now, but imagine what amusing nonsense Georgie Porgie would add to it.
I’ll never think of Magic Johnson (No. 20) as a villain. I’ll never stop thinking of Jack Tatum (27) as one. And I’m convinced, out of pure respect, that Andrew Toney (No. 14) could score 20 points on 9 of 12 shooting if the Sixers called him out of retirement to play against the Celtics Wednesday night.
But my choice is Samuelsson, the bum. I’m betting on Goodell in a landslide. But what does everyone else think? Tell me who your main villain is, and be sure to play along. And as a certain movie villain once said, let the hate flow through you.