Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Heart of a Champion

Yesterday morning I was driving to the office listening to Mike and Mike on espn radio. In for Golic was Cris Carter, and they were discussing the once-in-a-lifetime run of Tom Watson at last week's British Open. Carter's comments surrounded the topic of, to paraphrase "there's no joy in being second", or as Ricky Bobby put it in Talladega Nights, "if you're not first, you're last". I have heard similar statements by Golic when the topic came up around last year's US open, as Golic blasted Rocco Mediate for having a blast while finishing second.

First, let's take a look at Golic's resume. He played from 1986 - 1993 for the Houston Oilers, Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins. The Oilers and Dolphins did not make the playoffs in Golic's years there, and the Eagles went 1-4 in the playoffs from 1987-92, when Golic played on the D-line there. They never even made it to the NFC Championship game.

Now, Cris Carter. Carter was a great WR and played for the Eagles from 87-89, Vikings from 90-2001, and finished his career in 2002 with the Dolphins. We know from research on Golic that the Eagles didn't win any playoff games from 87-89, so let's look at the Vikes. The Vikings were 4-8 in the playoffs during Carter's tenure, with two appearances in the NFC championship game. In 2000, Carter's experience and knowledge of what it takes to be a champion helped the Vikings get beat 41-0 in the NFC title game. Cris Carter never played in a Super Bowl.

But he's going to criticize Tom Watson, a man who won eight major championships during his career.

Even worse is ESPN NBA analyst Tim Legler, who is constantly telling us what it takes to win championships. Legler played 10 years in the NBA, which is an impressive feat. However, his playoff experience? 3 games, 19 minutes. Total.

I'm not sitting here saying I only want to listen to players who have won championships (Joe Montana in the booth was a nightmare), but please don't talk like you know what it takes to win, when all your experience is finding out what you don't have to win. I realize failure is part of the road to success, but these gents never finished the road, but talk like they can't lift their hands because of the championship rings.

1 comment:

jaydou said...

Not one of those guys played an individual sport at age 59.

Great analysis...