The_Black_Hand's profile

Name: Thomas
Location: South Bend, Indiana
Gender: Thomas
Member since: June 20, 2005
Last visit: April 16, 2014

The_Black_Hand has posted 139 links and 2547 comments to SportsFilter and 20 links and 732 comments to the Locker Room and 1 column.

Sports Bio

My new goal in life is to organize the JerseyGirl Memorial Clam Shot Celebrity Co-Ed Fast-Pitch Softball Tournament.

The List (in no particular order):

Red Sox and Braves
--Growing up in Florida in the seventies, I saw the Braves almost every day on WTCG (later to become WTBS). These were the good ol' days when the Braves were lovable losers, and I was hooked. Bob Horner, Raffy Ramirez, Glenn Hubbard, Dale Murphy, Chris Chambliss, and especially the Mad Hungarian, Al Hrabosky. Good times, good times. When I saw the Red Sox - Yankees game in 1978 that Bucky Dent won with a three-run shot off of Mike Torrez, I decided right then and there that I must root for the poor, downtrodden Red Sox, and I must hate the Yankees. It's brought me immense pain through the years, but it was all worth it when the Sox brought the trophy home in 2004.

Rangers and 'Canes (the Carolina kind, not the Miami kind)
--Again, an underdog story. Back in the day, as the New York Islanders were crushing the entire league on the way to four Stanley Cups (including three in a row), the New York Rangers sucked, so I had to root for them. The fact that Billy Smith was a total prick didn't hurt, either. As for the 'Canes, I blame 11 years of living in North Carolina and my habit of geographical loyalty, plus their incredible run to the Stanley Cup Finals back in 2001 (stupid Red Wings!), which made me alternately want to shake Arturs Irbe's hand and/or punch him right in the head.

--As previously stated, I grew up in Florida in the seventies...what else did we have? No hockey, no basketball, no baseball outside of spring training...we watched the Dolphins, that's what we did, and we damned well liked it! As a small boy, watching the Phins during the 1972 "Perfect Season" while sitting on my grandfather's lap is one of my earliest memories. Through the years, I've lived and died with A.J. Duhe, the Blackwood Brothers, Dan Marino, and an impressive roster of unimpressive running backs (Andra Franklin, Sammie Smith, Cecil Collins, please let it end with Ronnie Brown!) and drug suspensions for the one good running back we've had since Csonka and Kiick. I still can't believe that Danny only made it to one Super Bowl, and I still blame Shula, which is heresy for a Phins Phan, but if he'd built a running game to go with Danny, who knows what might have happened? Thankfully, I'm not bitter.

Fighting Irish and Gators
--I'm Irish-Catholic, and it was quite clear in my house that we were Notre Dame football fans, no matter what! It would have been perfect had I gone to ND, but I stayed in-state instead and went to the University of Florida. Luckily, Dad forgave me. That said, the Notre Dame - Florida Sugar Bowl in 1992 nearly tore my family in half. Thankfully for the familial unit, Jerome Bettis racked up 150 yards and three touchdowns, and the Irish won the game. If Florida had prevailed, who knows what happens to my family dynamic? Good thing Dad wasn't around to watch Notre Dame lose Urban Meyer to the lure of Gainesville.

Jeff Gordon
--Back in 1994, I watched his first win at the Coca-Cola 600 and I remember thinking, damn, this kid's gonna be good. That, combined with the fact that everybody hated him, made me a fan. Simple enough. The four Winston Cup championships, three Daytona 500 wins, and four wins at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway were just gravy.

--I became a casual Celtics/Larry Bird fan in 1979, but it wasn't until bigmouth Moses Malone said he could pull four guys off the streets in Petersburg (Va.) and beat the Celtics before the 1981 NBA Finals that I became a rabid fan. I still think Bird was a legit MVP every year he played, and I'm still heartbroken over the deaths of Len Bias and Reggie Lewis.

Queen's Park Rangers
--Because yerfatma said so.


Remembering the good ol' days: Tidewater Tides games at Met Park in Norfolk, Virginia. What a dump, but the atmosphere was fantastic. You could actually yell across the park to friends sitting on the opposite side, and they could hear you, clear as a bell:

"Hey Dave, we're goin' fer dogs n' beer! You comin'?"

"Naw, man, I gotta take a leak...I'll catch ya during the seventh inning stretch!"

Then they built a half-assed replica of Camden Yards (same company, same architect, different vibe), changed the team to the Norfolk Tides, jacked up ticket prices, and ruined the whole experience.


Working in Baltimore back in 1992-93, I stayed at the Omni Inner Harbor for about six months, and got to look down on Camden Yards the first year it was open. Many nights spent drinking beer and listening to the game on the radio while I looked down from my room at one of the most inspiring sports-related sights I've ever seen. And I'm not even an O's fan.


The night I walked away from the TV while the Red Sox were leading the Mets in Game Six of the 1986 World Series has scarred me for life. If there's a TV on, with one of my favorite teams playing, I am now physically unable to walk away, because I am haunted by the knowledge that if I walk away, they will lose. Of course, they often lose while I'm watching, but at least they have a long as I'm there.


Watching the 1982 Phins-Chargers playoff game with my dad was as heart-breaking a moment as I've ever had in sports; watching Uwe VonSchamann and Rolf Benerschkie trade missed field goals, watching that damn Kellen Winslow run rampant, when it was all over, I felt like I'd been cheated. Let down by our European kicker, beaten by their European kicker.

Friggin' Europeans.

Res Ipsa Locquitar.

Recent Links

Tigers Fans Owe Inge Better: Yes, it's a Yahoo! article, and yes, it was possibly written by Brandon Inge's little brother, but still.

posted by The_Black_Hand to baseball at 01:18 AM on April 28 - 12 comments

Delonte West Can Help You Install A Ceiling Fan...: The lockout is hurting NBA players in different ways. Delonte ain't scared to wear an orange apron. Brotha's gotta work, right?

posted by The_Black_Hand to basketball at 05:03 PM on August 16 - 1 comment

Get Out There And Hit Somebody!: The NFL lockout had to end, because I contacted all players and owners and told them it was time for SpoFi to get it on! The SpoFi Head to Head Fantasy Football League has been reconstituted...all managers from last year should have received invitations already. All are welcome to join! High scoring, drama, action, romance, passion, violence, ennui, lethargy, it's all there...and that's before the draft even happens! Come play with us! ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL! SpoFi Head Games 2011-12 League ID# 514611 Password spofi2011

posted by The_Black_Hand to fantasy at 02:29 PM on August 13 - 27 comments

Link Dump!: Just haven't seen one in forever, so I figured I'd start one with an old favorite. Take cover...Boom Goes The Dynamite!

posted by The_Black_Hand to navel gazing at 01:30 PM on June 24 - 5 comments

Roger Goodell, Pants On Fire?: NFL Commisioner Roger Goodell tries a little PR with players and season-ticket holders, and gets branded "a blatant liar" by San Diego Chargers linebacker Kevin Burnett.

posted by The_Black_Hand to football at 01:51 PM on March 18 - 2 comments

Recent Comments

Urban Meyer's Florida Gators Arrested Often

How else were we supposed to balance the piety of The Tebow?

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:19 PM on July 12

CFL Pick 'Em, Week 3

I arrive fashionably late, as always...I figured I'd spot you guys a head start, just to make it fair.

Montreal by 9 Hamilton by 5 B.C. by 12

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:14 PM on July 12

Just dropping in to say hi

Sawx are in first place, so all is right with the world...except that I live in the Midwest. Meh.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:06 PM on July 12

SportsFilter: The Monday Huddle

All those guys talking about Randy Johnson being "intimidating?" They obviously don't remember Maddux wearing another guy's face at the 1995 World Series celebration.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 11:24 AM on July 02

Patriots Release Aaron Hernandez

Or, make a little scratch off that jersey. After all, nothing increases profitability like a murder or three.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 11:11 AM on July 02

Rajon Rondo Tears ACL, Out for Season

So, if the season becomes a wash, do the Celtics blow up the team and ship out Pierce and KG?

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:37 AM on January 28

Accountant Signs With Dolphins

As a Dolphins fan, this actually gives me something to cheer about heading into the season. And, as a Dolphins fan, at this point, I'll take just about any reason to cheer I can get...

posted by The_Black_Hand at 07:06 AM on April 26

Man-Down Chelsea Buries Barcelona

We should open a series of SpoFi theme taverns in various locations

I will happily open the Clam Shot here in South Bend...

posted by The_Black_Hand at 06:28 AM on April 26

Panthers President Too Important for Twitter Critic

I'm upset at the number of people on the internet who haven't apologized to me yet as well, particularly professional sports franchise owners and senior management. These fuckers need to get on the ball, metaphorically speaking.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 06:26 AM on April 26

Completely unsurprisingly, Terry Francona does not want to be part of Fenway's 100th Birthday

Do you accept their offer to attend the company barbeque 6 months later to make them look good?

Depends...are they serving Johnsonville brats?

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:40 AM on April 13

Arkansas Lays Down Petrino

If Petrino weren't such an absolute douchebag, maybe the penalties wouldn't be so harsh. Unfortunately for him, he doesn't seem to inspire a lot of respect from people lately.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 12:12 AM on April 11

SpoFi Fantasy Baseball 2012

The Chuck Norrises are gonna straight up murder your asses.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:44 AM on March 23

Tebow Traded to New York Jets

All I know is, my evil plan to get David Garrard to Miami for the highly anticipated quarterback competition with Matt Moore has finally come to fruition. Quake with fear, tiny mortals!

posted by The_Black_Hand at 01:35 AM on March 23

Prep Soccer Team Punished for Doing the Bernie

They shouldn't be punished for doing the dance as much as they should be punished for actually watching Weekend at Bernie's II. Come to think of it, sitting through that movie was probably punishment enough.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 02:50 PM on November 10

Plane crash kills ‘majority’ of KHL team Lokomotiv

"Though it occurred thousands of miles away from our home arenas, this tragedy represents a catastrophic loss to the hockey world -- including the NHL family, which lost so many fathers, sons, teammates and friends who at one time excelled in our League," said NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "Our deepest condolences go to the families and loved ones of all who perished."

Jesus...awful, horrible news.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 02:22 PM on September 07