Note from Dennis Hans: I’d like to wish the Rushman well as he attempts to kick his addiction to painkillers. The following article is based on an imaginary conversation Rush and I had two weeks before he publicly acknowledged his problem. Without further adieu, here’s Rush:
A few weeks ago, I enlightened ESPN viewers about the consistent mediocrity of the Philadelphia Eagles’ Donovan McNabb, who for years has been ridiculously overrated by a liberal sports media desperate to sing the praises of a black quarterback. My comments elicited millions of requests from adoring dittoheads to apply my vast, 100-percent-accurate knowledge and unrivaled analytical skills to the entire sporting spectrum and expose all the others who, for a myriad of reasons, are overpraised and overrated.
On the theory that 50 million dittoheads can’t be wrong, it is with considerable pride that I present “Rush Limbaugh’s Top-Ten Overrated Athletes of All Time.”
10. Dennis Rodman. The sexaholic cross-dresser so freaked out his opponents that they were afraid to touch him. If you’re afraid to touch him, if you won’t aggressively jockey for position, you can’t keep him off the boards. But I have to ask myself, If I were in the NBA, would I back MY butt into Dennis Rodman? The obvious answer explains why this Madonna-loving mediocrity won more rebounding titles than any player in NBA history.
9. Annika Sorenstam. My friend, do you know what kind of system Sweden runs? Socialist. Whereas young American golfers develop their games as rugged individualists in a survival-of-the-fittest capitalist system, little Annika got free lunches and free lessons at the state-run Stockholm Golf Uhu?den -“Uhu?den” being Swedish for “Academy.” Tiger Woods’ golfing achievements are his own; Annika’s are the product of the same soul-less socialist bureaucracy that produced Hans Blix.
8. O.J. Simpson. It took us a while, but we finally figured out how this slowpoke managed to knife his way through defenses on his way to 70-yard touchdown jaunts: Defenders instinctively knew better than to do anything – such as make a tackle – that would land them on the bad side of this homicidal-maniac-in-waiting.
7. Babe Diedrickson Zaharias. Ribald humor and rough-and-tumble lockerroom ways gave this she-man an unfair advantage over her feminine-and-fearful competition. Whether the sport was track, field, softball or golf, the Babe’s butchy gamesmanship propelled her to victories she didn’t deserve.
6. Jim Thorpe. Every last one of this injun’s achievements is tainted by his reliance on performance-enhancing fire water.
5. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. This journeyman center is in the NBA Hall of Fame for one reason only: the bias of the Muslim-loving NBA writers and announcers who vote on Hall nominees.
4. Pel?. What is it with these egomaniacal Brazilian soccer players who think they’re so special that a single name will suffice? Even in his prime Pel? was all style and no substance, not unlike that other overrated one-namer we know as “Cher.” In the entire history of the universe, only four have shone so bright as to merit the ultimate star treatment a single name implies: rock’n’roll’s Elvis, baseball’s Babe, Heaven’s God and radio’s Rush.
3. Muhammad Ali. If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s a blowhard. First he seduced the boxing judges with his dime-store “Float like a butterfly/Sting like a bee” poetry. Then he won over the radical-left boxing media with his pro-Vietcong propaganda. Ali’s “The Greatest” all right: the greatest self-promoter who couldn’t punch his way out of a wet paper bag.
2. Serena Williams. Well la-di-da. If you hit the ball harder than everyone else, and you cover more territory than everyone else, and you’ve got all the shots, you SHOULD be better than everyone else. Why does the media shower praise on Serena for winning SOME of the tournaments when, with her ability, she should win ALL of them? She’s the penultimate overrated underachiever.
1. Jackie Robinson. Everybody makes a big deal about him integrating the Major Leagues. What about my great uncle, Kennesaw Limbaugh, the brainy backup catcher who in 1938 integrated the Negro Leagues? Do you have any idea how tough he had it, forced to dine and sleep alone in the best hotels on the ritzy side of town? Robinson had so many adoring fans across our good-hearted land that every game was like a home game. Also, opposing pitchers were so fearful of being branded bigots that they didn’t throw the hard, inside stuff to Robinson they hurled at his Dodger teammates, making Robinson the first beneficiary of the ugly reverse discrimination we euphemistically call “Affirmative Action.”
Dennis Hans pens essays both straight and bent on a variety of topics, including sports. He can be reached at HANS_D@popmail.firn.edu.