What’s the biggest “asterisk” you’ve seen somebody use in a real-life situation?
The Fantasy Doctor has always suggested we do a regular column called “*Asterisk* of the Day,” calling out the best/worst excuses used by public figures. Because when you cover sports for a living, the old saying “Excuses are like a-holes; everybody’s got one” becomes more real than ever.
Some athletes are worse than others. I watch a lot of boxing and track, and they throw out more asterisks than a little kid in the principal’s office: I had got a cut in training … My groin was a little tight … My gloves were too heavy … There was a wind coming in from the left …
In a sports setting, the biggest *** I’ve ever seen happened during a pickup game in New York. There was a guy who was clearly the worst player on the court, so bad that his man wasn’t even guarding him. After he passed up several wide-open shots, his PG started yelling at him to shoot, and one time he finally complied. With plenty of awkward hesitation, he jacked up a 20-footer that traveled about 16 feet and wide left. When everyone looked at him with a mix of disbelief, pity and disgust … all of a sudden … the guy shouts “Aaaagh!!” and starts limping, favoring his ankle. I couldn’t even help it; I started laughing at him. Of course, six seconds later he was running like normal.
Now excuse me while I talk about “America’s Got Talent” for a minute: In last night’s semifinal, Acrodunk finally put on a show that passed my “I have to call somebody and tell them about that” test, jumping through a flaming ring to dunk on a flaming hoop. (Speaking of asterisks, they did this while wearing jeans. How many times have you seen a dude cry “I’m wearing jeans” or “I got on the wrong shoes” when they mess up on the court?)
Anyway, the jaw-dropping *** of the night came from Arcadian Broad, a teenage dancer who never really impressed me because he’s not much more than twirls and jumps. After a High School Musical-inspired performance, judge Piers Morgan told Arcadian straight-up that he wasn’t good enough to get to the finals. On the verge of tears and grasping at straws, the kid (paraphrasing) blurted out, “Doing High School Musical wasn’t my idea. The producers made me do it!”
Sharon Osborne and David Hasselhoff were too late trying to save him. That kid is DONE. I don’t care if America gives him twice as many votes as anyone else, there’s no way he makes it to the next round. After breaking the fourth wall so blatantly and shamelessly, NBC won’t allow it. Sorry kid, you just iced yourself like Sean Penn in Carlito’s Way.