Meaningless Clichés Spouted by Sports Media -- and Their Pointless Opposites
In celebration of Sports Cliché Week, we hate on the worst perpetrators of clichés: The sports media!
Sportscasters and sports writers (we’ll just call them “Sports Guy”) don’t actually communicate. Rather, Sports Guy spouts forth a spray of words that, once unraveled, should reflect one of two possible positions: THIS IS GOOD or THIS IS BAD.
They’re easy, they’re obvious, they’re repeated ad nauseam -- they are sports clichés.
Clichés allow the typical Sports Guy to appear interested and interesting, but actually disguises the fact that, were he not in his current position, Sports Guy would probably be working as a fence post.
The problem with clichés is that they're dressed up to be analyses, which would imply some amount of study and consideration. But clichés are generally meaningless. For instance:
“He makes his teammates play better” and
“He carries this team on his back”
Sports Guy loves the Sports Hero, the “go-to guy,” who has “the heart of a champion” (veteran) or “tremendous upside” (rookie). Sports Guy will always qualify that a team sport depends on more than one man -- but when the Hero shows up with a great performance, you’ll hear all about it. If the team wins but the Hero was somehow not so heroic, well, the Hero’s spread that ineffable quality that makes him great among his teammates!
In the final analysis, the Hero is great from every angle.
“They’ve gotta come together as a team” and
“They’ve got great team chemistry”
Generally, Sports Guy will choose what he thinks about a particular team’s ability to come together and perform early on, then stick with it throughout a season. Thus, a team will have “great chemistry” even when they lose a couple games, or they still “gotta come together” even when they’re in position to take it all. And if a team that “wasn’t gelling” somehow does manage to win the championship, well, they “put the pieces together” just like Sports Guy said they had to.
No matter what, circular reasoning makes Sports Guy always right.
“He gives 110 percent!” and
“He’s gotta step up if they’re gonna pull out a win”
If a pla
And if he’s playing poorly? He may have “lost a step or two” or be the “subject of trade rumors.” Either way, whether his team wins or loses depends entirely on him being able to “step up” and not being outplayed by the other guy (who, not ironically, is either going to be identified as playing “110 percent” or is in need of “stepping up”).
Someone wins, someone loses, and Sports Guy is there to tell us about it in the least interesting way possible.
"Defense wins championships” and
"The best defense is a good offense”
Naturally, many teams will have an outstanding offense or tremendous defense as they go into the playoffs. Depending on which team they’re watching at the moment, Sports Guy will pronounce which side of the equation is most important to success on the field. “They’re here because of their [fill in the blank].”
The real fun begins when a top defensive team meets a great offensive team, at which point “all bets are off.” Until a result occurs. Then Sports Guy can once again pronounce which side of the ball is more important to winning –- leaving us to wonder why the pla