Share Your Favorite Sportswriting


#1

This thread is the place to share your favorite pieces of sportswriting, both from the past and that you come across in your day to day. This is the thread to share long form pieces, past faves, and less traditional journalistic sportswriting work. Articles referencing news and current events should be their own threads or go into the corresponding sport thread if you don’t feel it’s worth a new thread. This is about the really standout sportswriting itself.

I’ll start – some faves:

David Foster Wallace on Roger Federer

Brian Philips on Sumo

Brian Philips on Gennaro Gattuso

Brian Philips on Kobe

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Legitimately all of Free Darko. This website changed basketball journalism and sports journalism at large, opened the door for a truly stunning amount of creativity in the medium. One of the most important Sports Sites of the 00s.


#3

This is maybe an outsider pick, because I am literally an outsider, I don’t really follow or enjoy most sports (I can get into curling though). but when Jon Bois writes a piece, for a brief and glorious moment, I understand why people get so very into men running around a rectangle.


#4

Spencer Hall at SB Nation writes a thoughtful piece at the beginning of almost every college football season (my favorite sport). Here’s last season’s:

Spencer Hall on buffalo


#5

Yes! Jon Bois is such a refreshing voice in sports writing/commentating/whatever. Have you seen his “Pretty Good” series of videos?


#6

they’re So good! I think I’ve seen just about everything the man’s done, including his incredibly short lived “Lowlights for Children” which is like Austin’s piece on working to stay black in Animal Crossing in that it was the piece I knew about before I knew about the man.


#7

Was just about to post the same outsider pick myself! I don’t follow any sports but I do enjoy sports whenever I’m with people who love the sport and love talking about it in a way that brings people in. Jon Bois is pretty much the perfect example of that and–because he deserves all the praise he gets–I do think that he’s my #1 pick for funniest person on the Internet.

I do love his Pretty Good series but I kinda think that the piece that sticks with me most is “What the heck is a catch in the NFL, anyway? An explainer


#8

Jon Bois is probably one of my favorite creators on the internet. The Death of Basketball is one of the funniest things I have ever read. He simulates several continual season of franchise mode in NBA2K and uploads the draft class as worthless players each year and documents the downward spiral as no more talent is infused into the game. Plus his video series Pretty Good and Chart Party are amazingly produced. They are all worth watching, but here are links to a few stand outs.

‘NO!!!’ (about the Music City Miracle and similar plays)
Rat poison and brandy: The 1904 St. Louis Olympic marathon
222-0 (the story of the highest scoring football game ever)
Chart Party: Scorigami The art of unique final scores in NFL games
Chart Party: What if Barry Bonds had played without a bat?

Seriously though,everyone read the Death of Basketball.


#9

SB Nation has some of the best writing on football around right now. Spencer Hall just came out with a new piece yesterday on the football of the future.

Also that Jon Bois one on Rat Poison and Brandy is fucking insane to me.


#10

I’m in the worthless draft class in The Death of Basketball. I got an MVP award in one of the seasons!


#11

Something from across the pond, I love Barney Ronay’s ability to zero in on a player’s great distinguishing characteristic and then wax lyrical about it.

Here is his ode to Marouane Fellaini’s chest.

And on Thomas’s Muller’s astronaut level ability to explore space.

On a similar note, here’s Michael Cox on David Trezeguet’s unpredictable symmetry.


#12

Love all the Jon Bois love in here but my absolute favorite piece by him ever is The Tim Tebow CFL Chronicles I believe it’s truly a modern epic and love reading it every 6 months or so.


#13

Loved that Mueller piece! gonna check out the others later. Anything Trezeguet makes me think of the 06 WC :\


#14

This piece on Russell Westbrook and the World Series by David Roth is also a personal fave.


#15

Not technically writing, but there was some new Jon Bois content I missed. I got some good chuckles out of the first episode.


#16

Came in to mention Jon Bois, glad it’s already covered.


#17

At some point he probably wrote a script for that? (extremely Madden voice) Boom, sportswriting! I don’t know Jon Bois (only seen his most famous ones) that well so please share more of his stuff!


#18

Thi one literally made me cry on the day after the Cavs won last year.


#19

I’ll read any longform by Sid Lowe or Howard Beck

But right now Rory Smith has become my favorite. Since he’s moved to the NYT he’s put out excellent piece after excellent piece, just about every week. A couple of my recent favorites:

Pep Guardiola: A Continental Success and English Soccer’s Measuring Stick

Premier League’s Festive Slog: Adored by Fans, Endured by Players

A Coach Is Forging a New Path in Danish Soccer


#20

Let me add some more Jon Bois in here. Not sports, but it shows the horrors of working at RadioShack / retail and made me laugh at my desk so hard.

A eulogy for RadioShack, the panicked and half-dead retail empire

SB Nation doesn’t do longform anymore, which is sad because that was my favorite content of their site aside from Jon’s work. These are some that I really liked:

The many crimes of Mel Hall (Content warning: Sexual assault)

The Great Wight Hope

Death of a ballplayer

These too are really good.

The Malice At The Palace

Escape from Cuba: Yasiel Puig’s Untold Journey to the Dodgers

The Fall of Miguel Fuentes


#21

Gonna put in another vote for Jon Bois here.

The Tim Tebow Chronicles have no right to be as good as they are.