Big Lead Sports Bar

5/20/2008

GET TO KNOW DETROIT, MICHIGAN

Detroit, Michigan. It's the site of potentially four Stanley Cup Finals games, and the home of the arena where the Penguins just might skate with a famous trophy if all goes well. Unfortunately, there's no built-in, absolute hatred of the opponent for this series, and since we're lacking for reasons to dislike the Red Wings (other than standing their in the way of a third dance with The Lord's Cup), I felt it was time to do some research on the city of our foe. You have to know your opponent to beat your opponent.
Detroit was founded in 1701, so there's just a bit of history there. I found a Yahoo Answers page titled, "What is Detroit Famous For?", and answers included "mmmm..im gonna say gettin knifed", "cars and gangs baby. paradise in the making", "Badly built automobiles...", "Riots, crime, cars, snow, and ginger ale (vernors)", and "tires and the pistons...and eddie murphys character from 48hrs...but thats about it".

But there has to be a few good things about Detroit, right? Right?

Well, as I've heard one or 400,000 times, Jerome Bettis was from Detroit. And the Steelers won a rather big game there a few years ago, as this picture would indicate:

Of course, it was also the site of the infamous Phil Luckett-Jerome Bettis-Thanksgiving OT coin flip fiasco in 1998. Headstails!

Our sports interactions with Detroit are somewhat limited. The Tigers are in the AL, we don't have a pro basketball team outside of our beloved Pittsburgh XPlosion, and the Red Wings are infrequent visitors to Mellon Arena as per their Western Conference status. Sure, we take our turns beating up on the Lions, but they would probably struggle with Jeannette High.

According to Wikipedia, Detroit was given the name "City of Champions" in the 1930s for "a series of successes both in individual and in team sport." The first "championship" they claim kicked off the era? Gar Wood winning the Harmsworth Trophy for unlimited powerboat racing on the Detroit River in 1931. And if you know anything about powerboat racing, you know how tough that 1931 campaign was. Thanks, but we'll stick with the dual NFL and MLB championships in 1979 and keep the nickname that Boston is currently trying to steal from us.

Detroit has undoubtedly made some important contributions to the world and to pop culture, including automobiles, Motown music, and not one, but two Wrestlemanias: Wrestlemania III in 1987 and Wrestlemania XXIII in 2007. And one can easily make the argument that watching the Hulkster slam Andre the Giant in front of 93,173 can be mentioned in the same breath as the city's status as the automotive capital of the world, no?

OK, enough diplomacy. What has Detroit given the world that the world didn't really need? Let's go through a visual history!

--A little incident called "The Malice at the Palace" that the Indiana Pacers still haven't recovered from. And you thought Philly fans were bad!

--The Detroit Lions. Whether they're drafting wide receivers year after year, telling their fans to "F off", keeping Matt Millen around despite his Littlefield-esque record, having assistant coaches go through the Wendy's drive-through naked, naming Scott Mitchell as the starting QB or chasing Barry Sanders into early retirement, the Lions would be better off to close up shop. Maybe there really is something to that Bobby Layne Curse.

Pictured below is former Lion coach/Fred Flintstone-lookalike Wayne Fontes, whose game plans were never confused with Bill Belichick's.

--The octopus-on-the-ice fetish. Pittsburgh sports fans wave yellow towels. Detroit fans bring dead sea creatures to the arena. I'll let you be the judge of what's stranger.

--The Career Revival of Jim Leyland

I never understood why Jim Leyland was so beloved and Neil O'Donnell so hated in Pittsburgh. One oversees a tremendously talented team to three consecutive choke jobs, never even reaching the World Series. The other gets a team featuring offensive weapons like Bam Morris and Ernie Mills to a Super Bowl, unfortunately throws a few crucial picks, and he's hated forever. "But O'Donnell left the city!"

Yeah, and so did Leyland, when he quit on the Buccos after the 1996 season. So excuse me if I wasn't celebrating the success of the 2006 Tigers like the rest of Pittsburgh.


--Mitch Albom, or as you may better know him, "one of those whiny guys on the Sports Reporters on Sunday morning that wakes you out of your hangover."

--Professional lowlife Tom Sizemore, best known for drugs, Heidi Fleiss, and Best Use of the Whizzinator Outside of Onterrio Smith. He's trying to punch you right now!


--Lily Tomlin, who did not Heart Huckabees:


--Kid Rock, Kiss, Eminem, AND Madonna! I think my head is nearly ready to explode.




--Gifted actress Elizabeth Berkley!

--The comedic stylings of one Tim Allen. Hey, do that caveman noise for the millionth time!

--Tough guy Derian Hatcher. That was a nice fight against Georges Laraque the other day. What? You backed down?


OK, maybe we're being a little rough. Besides cars, music, and major wrestling events, Detroit has also gifted the world with Francis Ford Coppola, Oscar Mayer, James Earl Jones, Ed McMahon, Sgt. Slaughter, Steve Wonder, A-Team's George Peppard, and Little Caesar's Pizza.


And soon enough, they'll be known as the team that Sidney Crosby beat to win his first cup as a Penguin. Wave your octopi, Red Wings fans. Our hands will be full holding the cup.

39 comments:

Dirty Sanchez said...

Any list of all things Detroit that doesn't include an overturned police car or rioting is an incomplete effort.

sshisheng said...

My wife is from the Detroit area and grew up with the Red Wings, but she is completely hypnotized by Pittsburgh, even though she has never lived there. I caught her on the phone telling her girlfriend from Detroit "The Wings did not destroy them, they lost two games and the final was 4-1 not 6-0". So regarding things that come from Detroit, she's a keeper.

kry716 said...

Little Caeser's is owned by Mike Ilitch, who also own the Red Wings. And the Tigers.

C Gally said...

Pretty sure Leyland had an idea of what kind of team the Pirates were becoming. I'd say he made the right choice on that one.

World of Isaac said...

as a detroiter, I urge you to take down mitch albom from this list...guy isn't representative of Detroit at all

great post otherwise

spartanslb said...

Hey douchebag, did you actually read the "City of Champions" bit? Tigers and Lions win championships in 1935. Red Wings win championship in 1936. For a period in 1936, Detroit held all three major team championships (the NBA was not created until the '40s, which you guys wouldn't know because the NBA doesn't find your crappy town worthy of a team). I'll show you guys some math - 3 (1935/36) > 2 (1979).

Jonny V said...

The NBA sucks worse than Kiss does.

HotDog_Zanzabar said...

I'll show you some math douchebag. 54>33

26 mlb teams in 1979 +
28 nfl teams in 1979 =
54

8 nhl teams in 1936 +
9 nfl teams in 1936 +
16 mlb teams in 1936 =
33

So winning championships in two larger leagues is not as impressive as winning against three small leagues?

Two things to leave you with. The Pirates are far superior to the Tigers as we speak (sad in it's own right) and Donnie Iris has more talent in his finger nail clippings than Gene Simmons.

Dirty Sanchez said...

Hey douchebag, you couldn't go back in time a little further to try and prove your point? Isn't 1935 the last time the Lions were in the playoffs?

I'll take an NFL franchise (which Detroit doesn't have) over an NBA team any day of the week.

Cecil from Cecil Twp. said...

Is this guy actually talking about titles won in the 1930's? What is he...a Packer fan?

Detroit gets kind of a bad rap. Yes, part of the downtown area still looks like a war zone. However, its not that bad. A little heavy on cheesy casinos, but not as bad as most people would have you believe.

And, David Stern, if you're reading this - Pittsburgh doesn't want an NBA franchise. Ever. The NBA sucks.

Jim Renaud said...

1. Octopus swinging is way cooler than a dish towel.
2. Kiss are not from from Detroit, they are from Long Island and wish they were from Detroit.
3. White Stripes, Stooges, MC5, Joe Louis, Rosa Parks
4. University of Michigan

J-Robb said...

I was always under the impression that the University of Michigan was in Ann Arbor, no?

the nigerian nightmare said...

ann arbor is a whore

Joe Cullen Drive-Bye said...

What about our prestigous mayor Kwame K.????

Maybe Crosby will win in a few years when he can grow more hair on his face than is on my ass.

Joe Cullen Drive-Bye said...

What about our prestigous mayor Kwame K.????

Maybe Crosby will win in a few years when he can grow more hair on his face than is on my ass.

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

First of all, I think Eddie Murphy's character in Beverly Hills Cop (Axel Foley) was from Detroit, not his character in 48 Hours. I at least know that he wore a Lions jacket in BHC.

Also, Kiss is from New York City, they just wrote a song about Detroit, Detroit Rock City.

And Madonna may be from Detroit, but her uncle lived on the street behind mine in Beaver County PA haha.

And from what I hear, Detroit isn't as crappy of a city as it's reputation suggests (I personally have never been there, I've just heard).

ManBearPig said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ManBearPig said...

Fans I ask you, have you ever seen a more lame logo than the Detroit Red Wings logo? What is a Red Wing anyway? Why does this Red Wing have a wheel? Could there possibly be a more retarded name for a hockey team???

Why didn't they just call them the Automakers or the Big 3 or something stupid like that? But Red Wings? I'll bet that if they had a re-naming contest today that that name wouldn't even be considered...it's that lame.

Not only is the name ridiculous, they've decided to keep the idiotic logo intact too. Real nostalgic (not).

One thing we definitely know that Detroit's not famous for: Creativity. Need further proof? What kind of fuel does your car use these days? Any different from 100 years ago? I thought not.

So when you really analyze it, Detroit is a loser town. Just perfect for Rich Rodriguez to work his magic in (even though he's in Ann Arbor, not Detroit, Jim Renaud!)

ManBearPig said...

Some math for you Detroit whizzes:

Wanny> Rodriguez<0>

13 > 9

ManBearPig said...

Hey Detroit, one last thing. Please don't judge all of us by LouisLippsismyHomeboy. The guy is pure homo (and not sapiens)!

P. Hilferty said...

Derian Hatcher? Oh yeah, the guy who beat the shit out of Ryan Malone in Game 4. Yeah, um, he's a pussy? Two words: Sidney Crosby.

Woodisradio said...

You fail to mention that Detroit not only gave the world Motown, it is also known as the USA's Greatest Rock and Roll City! Not one, not two, but three Rock and Roll FMs! Bob Seger, MC5, Alice Cooper, Iggy Pop, Mitch Ryder, The MC5, just to name a few. Can't recall any major acts from Pittsburg. Detroit was also the the first US appearance city for The Who, Savoy Brown and Rush!

The Motor City Rocks! And it is still and will always be ...HOCKEYTOWN! Come get some Pittsburg!

HotDog_Zanzabar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
HotDog_Zanzabar said...

I'm not from Pittsburg, however, as a Pittsburgh resident, I'll reply.

I wouldn't brag about Faggy Pop. He looks like Babe Ruth's batting gloves. Your opinion of music is negligible since you fail to acknowledge the great DONNIE IRIS! Donnie Iris forgot more about music than all of Detroit will ever know.

Kevin said...

As a Detroiter, articles like this only make me annoyed. And while I love going downtown (and not just for games), it's easy to admit that Detroit isn't on anyone's top 10 list.

But cmon dude. My buddy goes to med school at Pitt. My first (and second) impression of that city was that it's no better than Detroit. Yeah, the Lions suck hahahahahaha we get it. As far the cities go, Pittsburgh is Detroit junior.

The majority of Steelers fans that were here in '06 were awesome and I thought Pittsburgh and Detroit had a neat little connection being part of the Rust Belt together. All things aside, I probably won't let this douchebag change my opinion that Pittsburgh is a nice, medium-market town.

ManBearPig said...

The "h" at the end of Pittsburgh, (which you forgot, genius) is short for getting the Hell beat out of you.

Musical acts? Ever hear of Donny Iris? He's bigger than any of that garbage you mentioned. Want to go back farther? How about the Jaggerz? History of rock? How about the Vogues?

Face it Detroit, the only good thing you had (motown sound) you ruined.

Woodisradio said...

Donnie Iris! His career died as quickly as the flower does! You call him rock n roll and question my opinion! Iggy is still rocking forty years later!

Woodisradio said...

Donnie Iris, The Jaggerz? You tellin us that Pittsburg is a town of one hit wonders?

Hockeytown Rules!

jasonl51188 said...

KISS is not from Detroit. They are from NYC. Check your facts!

Jay said...

Was this article supposed to be funny or informational? Cause it was clearly neither. People have already pointed out the numerous errors, but on top of that, you just make Pittsburghers looks like mud-slinging fools. Our city has its own problems, very similar ones to Detroit. It is ignorant pieces like this that make sad to share a town with such low-class yinzers as yourself.

worstavid said...

Lighten up Francis

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

Who the fuck are you "played out South Park joke from two years ago" guy?

I'm on your side against the Detroit trolls Douchebearpig.

Mondesis House is a humor website. The people from Detroit coming in here are taking it WAAAAY too seriously. Relax, this isn't the ESPN.com comments section.

And Assbagpig, I don't know what the fuck this guy's talking about.

Fade1 said...

Men everywhere should be thanking Detroit, for producing automobiles with obscenely large back seats.

Cecil from Cecil Twp. said...

Please with the Donnie Iris talk. It's just embarrassing.

Give the Detroit fans a little credit. They all rooted for the Steelers back in '06 and allowed Steelers fans from across the country to seize control of The Hockeytown Cafe for Super Bowl Wknd.

I'm sure they'll encounter something similar this wknd.

(For the sake of those making the trip, I just hope those morons in Ohio have finally joined the rest of the civilized world in adopting the EZ Pass system so you don't have to wait in line for an hour to exit that pathetic state.)

jtads14 said...

Enough with the Hockeytown comments. When you can't even sell out your arena during the playoffs, that's a complete embarrassment. And when Pittsburgh fans can go onto Ticketmaster and buy Stanley Cup tickets for games in Detriot, that's even worse. Hockeytown my ass.

Go Pens

Big Snack said...

Oh, you mean the Derian Hatcher who repeatedly wouldn't fight Georges Laraque, even though he's bigger then him?

That's all my trash talkin, although I've driven through Detroit (right past Eight Mile and such) and it was kind of a dump. Imagine the worst parts of our city except 20x larger.

Matthew said...

I am from Pittsburgh and have no real problems with Detroit, thought the super bowl was awesome there and respect a hard working town similar to ours, but the Derian Snatcher Hatcher comment is totally off base. He repeatedly back down from big George and is a big pussy, and I hardly call the Malone ordeal an ass whooping more like a flurry of about 5 mostly missing punches. One more thing, don't ever stick up for one of those piece of trash flyers, Umberger can kiss my ass evernthough he is from Pittsburgh......and one more thing the Flyers symbol is the one that is worse than Detroits'....

Dewman said...

Nice, Just remember those words. They will be bitter to swallow. This is about A ******* HOCKEY SERIES. Who gives a flying crap about the two cities. Every city has good and bad. If someone from Detroit wanted to waste their time searching the history of Pittsburgh, they could find plenty of dirt too. You Penguin fans haven't earned the right to talk **** yet. If you beat the Wings you will earn it. But not until then. You will soon see the talent of the West is far superior than you have faced this postseason. Oh and your regular season success against the West means nothing. Those were not 7 game series.

Gargamel said...

I felt some embarassment when Gary Roberts sucker punched the recovering post concussion syndrome victim/post season scoring leader in the temple for no apparent reason. However, I'm sure Gary Roberts understands things on a far different level, much beyond our puny, human comprehension. So, he had his reason, but I as a mortal cringed and felt ashamed... But I still love Gary Roberts. He makes me want to get up for work every morning and beat the crap out of the younger guys with my iron Gary Roberts-like fists of anger. Look out Youngsters!