DAR TV: The Best And Worst Sports Shows Today

By @TrueGodImmortal

We here at DAR love sports. This should be well known based on the extensive articles we've had on the NBA and NFL over the last two years, but outside of watching the games, we also watch the shows that document the game. Whether it's the opinion and discussion talk shows, sports journalists, or a documentary based program, if you're a sports fanatic, there are so many options to watch. Today, we wanted to take a look at a few of the best and the worst shows on TV today in the sports genre. I've picked 5 of the best and 4 of the worst (I did this purposely), and I've given reasons for why they are the best and worst. Let's take a look at these shows.

The Best
These are the cream of the crop. The best of the best. Each show listed in this section is special for their own reasons, whether they're just downright entertaining, hilarious, or actually showcase solid opinions on sports. Let's get into the best of the best.

*Inside The NBA 
-If you know me, you know how much I love the NBA. The NBA is my favorite thing in the sports world and of course, basketball will always be my favorite sport. The truth of the matter is, there is nothing like watching former players analyze the game and give their opinions. Sometimes they may be misguided, other times they may just be downright wrong, but there's no sports show that is competing with Inside The NBA in terms of entertainment. With a panel that features Kenny Smith, Shaquille O'Neal, Ernie Johnson, and of course Charles Barkley, the show provides you with some of the best NBA and basketball talk after the game and before the game. Their halftime reports are always entertaining, and whether their opinions are accurate or not (usually they aren't), the Inside The NBA panel draws you in, and I could watch hours of them talking over and to each other. The in house rivalry between Shaq and Chuck is also very fun to witness and their jokes and banter make for some of the funniest television in sports history. Inside The NBA is the BEST of these type of shows hands down.

-It's still the best show on television for sports. Sportscenter isn't as dominant in the sports world as it once was, but the truth be told, if you want to catch up on all the events of the day without the bias, comedy, or mostly ridiculous opinions of the hosts then Sportscenter is the show for you. With over 38 seasons under their belt, this is the most important show in the history of sports reporting. Though I'm far from a big fan of Sage Steele, I definitely enjoy watching Cari Champion, Scott Van Pelt, Jemele Hill, and Michael Smith, who all provide their own perspectives in a fun and engaging (though sometimes annoying) manner. Sportscenter is where I go for most of my daily sports news (outside of social media of course), and it's easily the greatest sports show in the history of cable.

-Skip Bayless is tough to watch sometimes. I think that's the beauty of what he does. He gets paid to troll. He gets paid to make you angry with his opinions. He's playing a role. That's the thing about this show. As much as I find Skip annoying, I find Shannon Sharpe at times equally annoying, but they're both entertaining. Understanding that this is entertainment first and foremost is the biggest thing. From time to time, you might see Rob Parker or even Chris Broussard on the show, and their unique perspectives. However, Skip and Shannon are the focal point and much like Stephen A. Smith and Skip were on First Take, and some of the guests on the show are fun to watch. Shannon Sharpe speaks out for black athletes and the black plight in a way that not many analysts would, and even though his LeBron obsession is alarming, it actually makes for great comedy throughout the show. Joy Taylor isn't as abrasive or outspoken, but she contributes well from time to time. This is probably my 2nd favorite "opinion debate" sports show on television mostly due to Shannon.

*Hard Knocks 
-This show is presented in more of a documentary style, which works very well as they take a look at the personal and professional lives of NFL players. With teams such as the Baltimore Ravens, the Houston Texans, the Miami Dolphins, and the Atlanta Falcons (among others) being featured through the seasons, the show has a bit of a reputation for showing these teams in a different manner. Each year a team is selected or picked to become the topic of the season, and we witness all the issues, the growth, and experiences of every team. This season, the focus is on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and it has been pretty fun to watch that so far and I can't wait to see what else the show has it store and which team will be next.

*30 For 30
-There isn't a single show on television or set of specials better than 30 For 30. In reality, this is more like a TV film or TV documentary series, but it counts under the guise of a TV series/show. There are 30 For 30 shorts, which are short episodes or mini films, and there have been some great ones in that category. They also have the 30 For 30 Soccer Stories, which ran for a short period of time in 2014, but the bread and butter of the brand remains the full length documentaries that engage the audience instantly. It's impossible to list all of the documentaries from this brand that I enjoyed because there are so many, but some of the most infamous are the Muhammad Ali vs Larry Holmes one, the in depth look at the death of Len Bias, the Reggie Miller vs The Knicks documentary, the trial of Iverson documentary, the L.A. Raiders one directed by Ice Cube, The Michigan Fab Five piece, the epic documentary on the Bad Boy Detroit Pistons, the Shaq and Penny classic, the infamous O.J. Made In America one, the extended Celtics/Lakers edition, and the one we've all been waiting for, the Ric Flair 30 For 30. The fact is, 30 For 30 keeps us glued to the TV every time it comes on.

The Worst
This is where the list gets tougher and tricky. In all honesty, all of the shows minus the  documentary based program could fit in the worst pile at times, but the choices that make this segment of the list are regularly terrible and unbearable to watch IMO. A few shows, like The Jump, and The Starters, and even Inside The NFL just missed both lists, as they aren't good enough to make the best, but aren't bad enough to make the worst. Let's take a look at the worst.

*The Herd With Colin Cowherd 
-I'll say it again: Colin Cowherd is one of the worst sports journalists and analysts ever. EVER. He's one of the worst analysts I've ever witnessed and Kristine Leahy isn't much better (stay in your lane). The show really has one of the more pretentious vibes to it for a sports show and Cowherd is a bit of an asshole that spends a lot of time on his imaginary soapbox, but says nothing of value or validity half the time. Add in the frequent appearances of Jason Whitlock and Nick Wright, and this show gets worse and worse and worse and worse and worse by the minute. When Chris Broussard is the most reasonable voice on your show, you know the program is dreadful and beyond awful.

*First Take 
-I used to love First Take. I used to love it. Stephen A. Smith used to be extremely entertaining. He still is moderately, but alongside Max Kellerman, who knows more about boxing than he does football or basketball, and Will Cain, who looks like he's angry at the world for his parents' trust fund being 100,000 dollars short, this show is painful to watch. Stephen A. gets lost in the mix on his own show and Molly Qerim has a tendency to be annoying when she manages to chime as well. In addition to having mostly lackluster viewpoints and debate points for their argument, the show has lost a lot of the bite it had with Stephen A. and Skip. It just isn't the same.

-You know.... the truth is, I always hated this show for some reason. I was never a fan of Colin Cowherd when he was on this show (and that's not changed), and Michelle Beadle has a tendency to be hard to listen to. Their panel now is decent for a laugh or two, but the biggest issue with this show is that the two hosts have no chemistry. Michelle Beadle and Marcellus Wiley have no chemistry together as hosts and I tend to find myself bored watching them banter back and forth. Many of Beadle's arguments feel listless, and Marcellus has some of the worst opinions on sports, political issues surrounding sports, and everything in between. Also, I don't think there's much that I can say positively about the inclusion of LZ Granderson. Overall, this show just falls flat, which is why this makes the worst list.

*Speak For Yourself 
-Yes. Colin Cowherd makes the worst list twice. Outside of The Herd, we also have this horrible show, and Cowherd isn't the worst host on the show surprisingly. First off, let me start by saying Fuck Jason Whitlock and anyone who loves him. Jason Whitlock is an idiot, and it's beyond me that he gets paid to do this job. He spews the most ridiculous rhetoric on sports and any matters on black athletes, he tap dances to appease the masses, and speaks out of turn for absolutely no reason. If I had to watch this show for the rest of my life, I would just put it on mute, turn off the closed captioning, and throw the remote far away. Jason Whitlock is the worst analyst in the sports world and Cowherd is a close third with Nick Wright right ahead of him at no. 2, and they're all on the same shows together.... FS1 knows how to sign and put together the worst hosting casts in sports... aside from Undisputed of course. Regardless, of all the shows listed here, this is the worst and I don't think it's even close.



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