Extra Points Column: Sports Movies Help Pass the Time
In the unlikely event the Escape the Cape Triathlon is held on June 14, I'll be ready.
I've spent the last month or so getting outdoors as often as possible each day both for my physical and emotional well-being. Yes, I practice social distancing. My 3-mile walk/run along the Cape May beachfront - I wish they'd reopen the boardwalk and beach soon - requires me to cross the street a few times. Same thing for my 15-mile bike ride - it was 18 miles before they closed the road leading to David Douglass Memorial Park - along the Delaware Bay and Lower Township. I've been careful to veer away from walkers/runners and even fellow bikers in order to maintain that six-foot gap.
The problem is the swim leg. The Joseph Von Savage Memorial Pool in Wildwood Crest and all other aquatic centers are closed. I do have a wetsuit, but it's not thick enough to handle the 48-degree ocean - assuming I was allowed to cross the Boardwalk and beach to get there - or bay. Of course, there's nothing to prepare you for the 12-foot leap off the front of the ferry. I've done it five times and the excitement/anxiety/fear that washes over me as I inch closer to the edge doesn't leave until I hit the water, come to the surface, retrieve my swim cap that always gets ripped off, and start heading toward the beach.
Assuming race director Steve Del Monte has recovered from being kicked in the groin by a dog Friday morning, I'm sure he's hard at work trying to work out a reasonable solution with the DRBA, Lower Township officials and other entities regarding the race. Given the slow recovery from Covid-19, however, it's a long shot the race will be held on the scheduled date. It's getting close to the point where out-of-state competitors will have to consider dropping out in order to get refunds on their rental properties and/or hotel rooms.
It seems to me the most logical solution would be to move the race to the fall, like mid-September. The water is still warm at that point and it might provide a much-needed boost to a local economy that's going to be taking quite a hit over the next few months.
Until a decision is made, I'll be riding, running, drinking tequila - OK, that's not part of the training, but still necessary - and filling out the dozens of Facebook and Twitter polls that are asking for my favorite sports movies.
Here are my top 5 flicks, according to sport. Editor's note: some are much more entertaining with a shot of Patron.
1. Brian's Song (I dare you not to cry), 2. Friday Night Lights (Boobie Miles was the man), 3. North Dallas Forty (I also recommend the book), 4. The Longest Yard (original with Burt Reynolds) 5. All the Right Moves (Craig T. Nelson should have taken the safety). HM: Everybody's All-American, Heaven Can Wait, Jerry Maguire, Necessary Roughness, Remember the Titans, The Replacements, Rudy, Varsity Blues, Wildcats.
1. Bad News Bears (Morris Buttermaker once struck out Ted Williams), 2. The Natural (Before Mike Trout, there was Roy Hobbs), 3. Eight Men Out (1919 Black Sox scandal), 4. Bull Durham (Crash Davis is a legend), 5. *61 (Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle chase Ruth's record). HM: Fever Pitch, Field of Dreams, A League of Their Own, Little Big League, Major League, The Rookie, Rookie of the Year, The Sandlot.
1. White Men Can't Jump (Watch out for the Stookie Brothers), 2. Hoosiers (Great movie about Indiana high school basketball), 3. One on One (Henry Steele can play anywhere he wants), 4. He Got Game (Ray Allen as Jesus Shuttlesworth), 5. Finding Forrester (Riveting story of a recluse writer who befriends a high school player). HM: The Air up There, Blue Chips, The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh, Love & Basketball.
1. Rocky (Now everyone runs up the Art Museum steps), 2. Raging Bull (Jake LaMotta story), 3. Cinderella Man (James J. Braddock story), 4. Million Dollar Baby (Hillary Swank is terrific), 5. Diggstown (Boxing's version of "The Sting"). HM: Bleed for This, The Champ, The Fighter, I Bleed for This, Requiem for a Heavyweight.
1. Tin Cup (Roy McAvoy can't lay up), 2. Caddyshack (Looks good on you, though), 3. The Greatest Game Ever Played (True story of 1913 U.S. Open), 4. Legend of Baggar Vance (Rannulph Junuh takes on Bobby Jones and Walter Hagen), 5. Happy Gilmore (Shooter McGavin never stood a chance).
1. Endless Summer (Mike Hynson and Robert August surf around the world), 2. Riding Giants (Laird Hamilton, Greg Knoll, Jeff Clark tackle huge swells), 3. Chasing Mavericks (I've always wanted to see Mavericks in person), 4. Fast Times at Ridgemont High (Jeff Spicoli is a legend), 5. Point Break (Bank robbers who are also surfers). HM: Back to the Beach, Momentum Generation.
OTHER FAVORITE SPORTS MOVIES
1. Breaking Away (Cycling), 2. Kingpin (Bowling), 3. Vision Quest (Wrestling), 4. Dodgeball (If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball), 5. Seabiscuit (Horse Racing): HM Blades of Glory (ice skating), American Flyers (cycling), Chariots of Fire (track), Johnny Tsunami (snowboarding), Slap Shot (ice hockey).
More from 97.3 ESPN:
Greater Atlantic City Area Athletes Who Played Games In NFL