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The Top 10 Lamest Rivalries in Sports

by davidbreitman   January 21, 2010 at 10:15PM  |  Views: 1,661

8. New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox


Source: Chris McGrath/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

Contrary to what ESPN and every Yankee fan that pleasures himself to topless photos of Jorge Posada thinks, the world doesn’t revolve around the Boston-New York rivalry (only free agency does). Whenever these two teams play, their fans expect the world to completely shut down and take notice every time Alex Rodriguez stops to explain why his steroid use isn’t technically cheating. (Apparently if you close your eyes while someone sticks a needle in your ass it doesn’t count.)

The Yankees-Red Sox rivalry is a lot like watching two rich kids playing polo during recess in elementary school. It’s shocking how utterly ridiculous they look riding around on their high horse, but no matter how much everybody else hates them, none of the regular students can do anything because they can’t afford to play in the same league.


7. Brett Favre vs. Green Bay Packers


Source: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

Speaking of rivalries that ESPN is essentially responsible for creating (though I really did enjoy the way they interrupted the WNBA slam dunk contest in order to provide live coverage of the Favre family landing at the Minneapolis airport just in time for a bellboy who looked a lot like Brad Childress to pick up his luggage), the Brett Favre-Green Bay Packers feud has literally become the single least interesting news story on the planet (with all due respect to Kate Gosselin’s new hair cut).

The Packers decided to let their 38-year-old quarterback go in order to make room for a first round draft pick who turned out to be one of the best young players in the NFL. Favre, who elected to retire and unretire a few times, didn’t want to ride off into the sunset, so consequently came back to play for a different team. This literally happens all the time in sports. Let’s call it the “Joe Montana-Steve Young” paradigm.

Had both parties elected to handle this with the absolute minimum level of class (let’s call that one the “Rasheed Wallace Bar”) that would've been the end of the story. As everyone with cable television and a subscription to Spoiled Athletes Illustrated will tell you, though – that’s not how it played out. So, in turn we are now we’re forced to endure the lamest “he said, she said” bitch fights since the Mike Piazza/Olsen twins fallout.


6. Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady


Source: Jamie Squire/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

There’s nothing more rewarding for a defensive player on a Super Bowl winning team than answering questions about how great his quarterback is. “Dwight Freeney, you just had three sacks in the team’s second Super Bowl win this decade as your front seven completely shut down Adrian Peterson. I think all the folks at home want to know, is how do you think your performance will affect Peyton Manning’s legacy or his chances for more endorsement deals?”

In a sport built on teamwork and excessive violence, it’s remarkable how much attention is paid to the two quarterbacks every time the Colts and Patriots play. Not only do they have zero direct effect on each other’s performance ever since Manning stopped subbing in at strong safety, but the 104 other players around them kind of factor into the winning equation too. Sure, Manning and Brady are two of the greatest athletes south of Randy Ferbey, but to constantly reference a quarterback rivalry amongst two talented teams is sort of like talking about how great Inglorious Bastards was because of Brad Pitt. Even though he may have been the biggest name involved in the project, there were more than a few other people who made it special.


5. Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather


Source: Eric Hatton/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

At this point it’s unclear if these two are ever going to step inside a ring, or simply trade verbal jabs over blood tests and training regimens for the next six years. Neither boxer appears to want to actually fight the other, but for some unexplained reason nobody can stop talking about a rivalry between two guys that have no video evidence to prove that they’ve ever been in the same part of the country at the same time. Until either one of them signs on the dotted line and schedules a fight that involves Las Vegas, excessive gambling opportunities, and a chance for Don King to rob them blind afterwards, maybe it’s time to move on and somehow get excited to watch Pacquiao beat the everliving crap out of a guy who should suffer an entertaining amount of brain damage.


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