Seven Athletes I’d Like to Punch in the Face

ESPN– “A Birmingham City fan has been jailed for 14 weeks after pleading guilty to assaulting Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish during the derby between the sides on Sunday. Paul Mitchell, 27, swung a punch at Grealish when the player’s back was turned after Mitchell ran onto the pitch at Birmingham City’s St. Andrew’s stadium during the Championship match.

Mitchell, from Rubery, Worcestershire, also admitted to invading the pitch and has been banned from attending any football match in the U.K. for 10 years. He was also ordered to pay £350 in fines. The incident happened in the 10th minute of the match between the rivals as Grealish walked away from the stands when the ball went out for a corner. He required no further treatment and went on to score the winning goal for Aston Villa in the second half.”

Now, I’m not generally one for promoting morons running onto the field and streaking and all that jazz. I find it annoying and disruptive to the game, and they rarely do anything exciting aside from getting lit up by security guards (which admittedly can be pretty hilarious). However, if you’re going to do it, you might as well get your moneys worth and punch someone you hate in the face. Did you see the way that guy was celebrating as he was being escorted off the field? He was damn proud of himself, and for that, I’m proud of him too.

The big question becomes, is it worth it? There’s a lot of people I’d like to punch, but not all of those people would I want to spend 3.5 months in jail for on top of a $400 fine and disbarment from attending live games for a decade. In order to risk all that, I’d really have to pick my punches, so to speak. Unfortunately for Paul Mitchell, Grealish got the last laugh as he scored the game winning goal later on in the game, which is admittedly pretty badass on his part. Without any further ado, here’s my list:

7. DAVID PRICE

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For anyone who’s a Sox fan, I would think a lot of people agree with this. Although he may have slightly redeemed himself with the World Series run this year, he still pisses me off a lot. Whether it’s because he’s getting in fights with the legendary Eck, throwing 5 out duds in the playoffs, or gaming hard enough to miss games, he’s as irritating as they come for players are actually important to a team. If he sucked, we could just cut him. But since he’s good enough to want to keep around, I’ll settle with a shot to the jaw.

6. LANE JOHNSON

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I bet he had a lot of fun not winning a Super Bowl this year. This guy’s obsession with the Patriots is hilarious, and while he revels in beating us one time, we can rest easy knowing he’ll never be on a team as good as that Eagles team that won two years ago. He can run his mouth as much as he wants, but if I had a chance, I’d punch that fucking mouth.

5. BRYCE HARPER

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What a frat boy douche. I will admit, there are times in his press conferences that make me laugh, but it’s usually a “what a dumb idiot” kind of laugh. This guy is such a douche he named his dog Swag. If that’s not enough, he’s also the quintessential dipshit bro that describes himself as Hercules and takes 30 minutes to do his hair before games. On top of that, it looks like his jaw was sculpted for punching. I mean, look at that angular monstrosity jammed to the bottom of his mouth just begging for a left hook!

4. NDAMUKONG SUH

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This one is a little tough to put here, mainly because of everyone on this list, he’s the one who would murder me the hardest. However, he does make it because if we were to give me the o’ one punch KO at least I’d be too dead to go to jail and pay a fine. That having been said, dude’s a cheap-shotting asshole who probably shouldn’t be in the league anymore. What else is there to say?

3. LEBRON JAMES

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It may surprise some people that I only have Lebron at number 3. The truth is, since joining the Lakers, he hasn’t bothered me nearly as much. He’s finally gonna miss the playoffs, he’s one year closer to being too old, and his record off the court is impeccable. Not once has he ever been in an off-the-court scandal the likes of which so many other players fall victim to these days. However, the fact that he’s a known flopper and denies it to all hell, takes plays off on defense and blames his teammates, thinks his ring with the Cavs makes him the GOAT even though he’s 3-5 in the finals and has always been a frontrunner (until signing with the Lakers), and has been the bane of the Celtics existence for the last ten years makes me want to punch his god damn face so fucking bad.

2. ANY WHITE DUKE BASKETBALL PLAYER EVER

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Fuck all these guys. A bunch of gritty, obnoxious, punchable punks who rarely if ever become anything more than a role player in the NBA. From Grayson Allen to John Scheyer, JJ Redick to Greg Paulus, all these guys spend 4 years being dicks for Duke before eventually going on to not make the NBA or make sure the bench stays warm. JJ Redick is the main exception to this, and he still pisses me off to this day. And now he’s got that ridiculous sleeve that makes him look less tough than if he didn’t even have tattoos. Seriously, how is that possible? Then you have Grayson Allen, who despite not doing anything since coming to the NBA still drives me crazy for all the shoe untying, pants pulling sac taps he pulled off in his career at Duke. He’s like a dweebier version of Lance Stephenson, and with a much more punchable face. I’ll say it again, Fuck all these guys.

  1. Curt Schilling
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And our champion of the guys I’d like to punch in the face tournament, Curt Schilling. Now I know he hasn’t been an athlete for 10 years, and his bloody sock game is one of the best performances in Red Sox history, but I still can’t stand this guy. I respect the hell out of him as a player, but the rest of him can go screw. When he was playing, he had a tendency to be a dick in his morning interviews and blame it in on how he just woke up (maybe try scheduling them for when you’re awake? Just a thought). He is an arrogant, self-righteous prick that made enemies in the clubhouse, in the media and with management everywhere he went. One time when I worked at Best Buy back in college, he came in to buy a bunch of video games for his charity (I’ll give him that one), and my managers took me off the register because they were afraid I’d call him a douche to his face.

But despite being nearly universally hated, screwing over nearly 400 employees and conning $75 million out of the state of Rhode Island, he had the gall to run for political office and think anyone would vote for him? I would trade in all my punches from everyone else on this list to punch Curt in the face just once. Screw you, Schilling.

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About Grenga

I grew up in Natick, Mass, and was raised on Boston sports. Got a film degree from Quinnipiac that I used for all of 6 months. Now, thanks to my wife, I'll be traveling the world alongside a member of the Foreign Service in my quest to become a Boston curmudgeon abroad.
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