January 26, 2005

NUMB3RS: [via offwing]

posted by garfield to general at 10:41 AM - 36 comments

Just glancing over the list, it occurs to me that maybe hockey's missed in South Florida more than I would have guessed. That's nice.

posted by chicobangs at 11:04 AM on January 26

My favorite Zero was probably Oddibe McDowell, but that might have been because he had a name like Oddibe...

posted by chris2sy at 11:13 AM on January 26

Number 88 on that list, Minnesota Supreme Court Justice and NFL Hall of Famer Alan Page.

posted by chris2sy at 11:41 AM on January 26

Dan Marino was an offensive machine, but Wilt did more scoring. *crash*

posted by dusted at 12:03 PM on January 26

No love for "1/8"? And they are lucky they are all the way down in Florida, because if you made a list like this near the Canadian border, we'd have stormed across and burned you to the ground for the triple-snubbing of Mr. Hockey, The Rocket and The Golden Jet for #9. And I don't care HOW damn good a driver can be, NOBODY tops Babe Ruth when it comes to sporting accomplishments and social impact. However, that Cal Ripken tidbit about the little league was really sweet...

posted by grum@work at 12:18 PM on January 26

Agreed. Ruth is #3. The other guy drove a car.

posted by blarp at 12:26 PM on January 26

At least they had Gilmour down for #93 on their list...

posted by chris2sy at 12:27 PM on January 26

I went straight for #44, and thank god, they actually picked Hank Aaron. Then I read the rest of the list. Good list.

posted by NoMich at 12:43 PM on January 26

I'm glad Stevie Y at least got a mention at 19, but I think he should take it.

posted by holden at 12:49 PM on January 26

I'd get into how the NHL gets the shaft in these lists, but at the moment, the NHL deserves the shaft. And on that depressing note, here's another 1-99 list that might also spark som debate. Namely, where is the chick from 'Lost'??!!!!!!

posted by garfield at 12:56 PM on January 26

ESPN's version of the list (I can't get it to load though) from a few years back. Including some uniform facts and figures and why 24 is the ultimate number

posted by gspm at 01:20 PM on January 26

You can tell he's from north florida. Any south floridian writer who dared suggest that any other athlete has even worn the number 13 at all would be dragged out into the street and beaten severely. I'd grab a bat, myself.

posted by tieguy at 01:48 PM on January 26

Havlicek steals the nod, Havlicek steals the nod from Brett Hull. That cracked me up. Shouldn't there be an exclamation point on the end of that though?

posted by hootch at 01:49 PM on January 26

a mention of donnie baseball for #23 would have been nice.

posted by goddam at 02:00 PM on January 26

I found myself reading this article in two parts...first I'd read his pick and say "are you nuts???" Then I'd read his reasons, and kinda talk myself into at least respecting his picks, if not always agreeing with it. But, damn equal rights, #9 is an injustice...

posted by MeatSaber at 02:12 PM on January 26

The only real argument I have is picking Broadway Joe simply because of a television moment. Joe couldn't hold Bradshaw's jock, let alone his number, the bloody drunk.

posted by scully at 02:13 PM on January 26

I love these things. There goes my afternoon. I once stumbled across an article which talked about the sheer number of retired numbers in Montreal, and why no Ottawa roster players are allowed to wear numbers higher than 40. Of course I can't find it now.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 02:33 PM on January 26

#3 is Ruth. End of story. #22 is almost as ridiculous. You can't pick one play (Flutie) over 18,000+ yards rushing in the NFL (E. Smith). I'm writing my Congressman. #33 is a beauty. Kareem, Bird, and Roy. There is no wrong answer. #32 is equally tough.

posted by 86 at 03:15 PM on January 26

here's another 1-99 list that might also spark som debate Who the hell is this? Why does she get the "one-name" treatment? Shouldn't she be a bit more famous to deserve it?

posted by grum@work at 03:55 PM on January 26

black eyed peas, yo

posted by garfield at 04:29 PM on January 26

#3 is Ruth. End of story. Of COURSE it's not the end of the story. About Dale at #3, you-all are diminishing his accomplishments for the sake of arguing the point. (NASCAR is more popular in many ways than anything else, baseball most definitely included, especially off the coasts. Remember that.) No dis on Ruth, but it's not a clear-cut thing. The article was trolling, and a few of you took it. Frankly, I'm more aghast at Ozzie Smith over Sadaharu Oh for #1.

posted by chicobangs at 04:38 PM on January 26

the curse fell apart, which might have something to do with his demotion.

posted by garfield at 04:45 PM on January 26

grum pondered: Who the hell is this? gargield provided: black eyed peas, yo From the article that grum posted: Fergie's striking face... Jeesh, she's got so much makeup on, I'll just have to take their word for it.

posted by NoMich at 04:45 PM on January 26

I agree with chico, and I add this...I think I can safely say that no one on this site ever saw Ruth play, yet most at least have seen highlights of Earnhardt's career. There comes a time when a legend gets replaced by another, no matter how good the original was...it's called progress. At any rate, I know every time I see a #3, I automatically think of The Intimidator, but then, it seems I'm the only NASCAR fan here. So take my opinion as it is...

posted by MeatSaber at 04:52 PM on January 26

I just wanna race, Daddy. Every time I think of number 3, I think of the Calvin-pissing-on-the-Ford-logo sticker I usually see on the other side of the back window.

posted by holden at 04:58 PM on January 26

just some quick football comments - firstly, david beckham now wears 23 and he isn't even the greatest to wear the manchester united number 7 - that honour goes to george best. and lev yashin at number 1. good to see pele at number 10, but many (not me, but) would have put the hand of god or even ferenc puskas there. number 14 could have been johann cruyff, and as for number 9 - while mia hamm has done a lot for the women's game - this is the classic centre-forward's number, and you could draw a line back to len stapleton, john charles, gianni riva, bobby charlton, marco van basten .... i could go on

posted by owlhouse at 12:58 AM on January 27

sorry that should have been len shackleton, not stapleton .. oops

posted by owlhouse at 12:59 AM on January 27

(NASCAR is more popular in many ways than anything else, baseball most definitely included, especially off the coasts. Remember that.) Not so fast. TV ratings for Game 6 of Boston/NY: 14.6 TV ratings for Daytona 500 2004: 10.6 And that baseball game was competing directly with Monday Night Football (which it crushed).

posted by grum@work at 07:54 AM on January 27

Look, I'm not here to bash NASCAR or Dale Earnhardt. And I'm certainly not diminishing his accomplishments. By their very nature these lists are going to cause dispute, I just never thought it would come over the #3. Earnhardt has some astounding numbers and his influence over his sport is unquestionable. He too won seven titles. He too brought his sport to a wider audience. But this shouldn't even be an argument. By nearly any standard, Babe Ruth was one of the top three athletes on the last century. Dale Earnhart may be pretty high up, but he doesn't come near Ruth. Babe Ruth made baseball. He pushed it into the national limelight. He dominated baseball in a way no one has since. He dominated it in a way no individual has ever dominated a sport. He played baseball the way I played NHL '94 against a computer opponent. He hit 60 home runs in 1927, just ten years after Wally Pipp won the AL home run title with 9. He broke the all time home run mark with homer number 137. And then he hit 577 more. Babe Ruth won seven World Series titles. He competed in ten. For forty-some-odd years he held the longest scoreless innings pitched streak in World Series play, at just under thirty innings. He still holds the record for the longest complete game in the World Series, winning a 13 inning gem (he gave up a one run... in the first inning). And these are his on-the-field accomplishments. Off the field, he gave birth to superstardom. He defined that role. 75 years after Ruth left the game we still talk about him as an icon. Everyone in American knows about Babe Ruth and he's been dead fifty years. They've made one movie about Earnhardt... Babe Ruth acted in movies. Earnhardt starred in commericals, Babe Ruth was the first marketing superstar. There are still groups that think the #3 should be retired by MLB and they think that his is the only number that should ever be retired. To this day, we talk about the rivalry that he created and we're 86 years down the road. Not only has his legend not been replaced, but it's thriving a century down the road. If Earnhardt's legend is alive and well fifty years from now, we can talk about this, but for now #3 belongs to Ruth, with curse or without.

posted by 86 at 09:58 AM on January 27

Word to 86.

posted by holden at 11:11 AM on January 27

1) I agree with 86 on 3. This one isn't even close. 2) I disagree with all the people who say Mia Hamm is the wrong choice for 9. Given the list is US-centric and that there are a number of other hockey players chosen for other numbers, to me this is a no-brainer: What other (professional) female athlete can you suggest for this list? She's the only woman included! There aren't too many possibilities, given that the more established female pro sports (golf, tennis, track & field, skiing) don't feature permanently assigned numbers; the only one that does is WNBA and none of the leagues players come close to Hamm.

posted by billsaysthis at 02:58 PM on January 27

I don't care if she's the only woman that MIGHT have a chance of making the list, that's not enough of a reason to list her above Howe and Richard (sorry Hull...you are fantastic, but you aren't in the same class as those two). What if her number was 23? Would you bump Michael Jordan from the list to give her room?

posted by grum@work at 03:21 PM on January 27

Yeah, what if Mia's number was infinity? That's no argument. Especially considering there aren't any other women on the list. (I eagerly await Lauren Jackson (or Hayley Wickenheiser, who also wears #15 IIRC) supplanting Thurman Munson on this list in, oh, a decade or so.) And for what it's worth, I happen to agree that #3 should go to Ruth, even the better part of a century on from his best days. But to deny that there's a discussion to be had is to be openly myopic abut it. Ruth competed in a different time, when the Yankees treated half the American League as their own personal farm team and anyone with too much of a tan didn't even get to be in the stadium, no matter how good they were. It was just a different era. Dale was as iconic in what has become (thanks in huge part to him) a major sport on the North American landscape, a sport which celebrates and reveres its icons as much as any sport out there, as anyone who's stepped behind the wheel. To say "Dale doesn't count; end of story" is frankly insulting to literally millions of people across the planet who would never have found NASCAR and who now love it unconditionally. There is a debate there. Don't pretend there isn't.

posted by chicobangs at 06:50 PM on January 27

Yeah, what if Mia's number was infinity? You know, I tried to get that on one of my hockey jerseys one year. But the coach said that they league probably wouldn't allow it since they couldn't enter that number into the database. I mean, it's just a sideways "8"...

posted by grum@work at 09:09 PM on January 27

chico, you got me wrong... I don't see how saying Babe Ruth... Babe Freaking Ruth!... was more iconic than just about any other athlete comes across as insulting to millions of people on the planet. I don't even understand how questioning the validity of any other athlete being assigned #3 is insulting. Ruth beats everyone. If he wore #10, #23, #42, or ALI on his back, maybe the debate would be even. To say I'm dissing NASCAR and a significant portion of humanity by pointing out that Babe Ruth was THE sports icon of the last century is silly. Had he worn a different number, a case could be made for Ruth against anyone, and it would be a no-brainer in all but maybe four cases that I can think of right now. Simply put, Earnhardt is not on that level, no matter how many people watch NASCAR. Maybe Dale's on Tier 1-A, but he isn't in the class of sports icons that includes Pele, Ali, Jackie, Jordan, and Ruth. Dale dominated his sport and ushered it to the national spotlight, but Ruth transcended sports. He went into another category... Hell, he was the founding member of that category. And again, I'm not trying to insult people. Coming in second to Ruth is not like coming in second to Oddibe McDowell... He's Babe Freaking Ruth.

posted by 86 at 10:41 AM on January 28

Of course, I could be wrong.

posted by 86 at 11:08 AM on January 29

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