The Ultimate 8: Movie Sports Props We Wish We Owned
04.30.14 by BJSprecher
Watching Robbie Senior, Robbie Junior, Shaggy and the rest of the Robbie’s First Base crew handle some of the rarest, most sought-after sports memorabilia on each episode of our new reality series Ball Boys got us to thinking about the type of rare sports items we would die to get our hands on to decorate our homes and offices. What we realized was that all of the sports memorabilia that we would really love to own actually comes, not from the gridiron, green or rink, but from the silver screen. In no particular order, we present to you the "Ultimate 8," iconic sports props from movies about sports and movies in which sports are central to the plot. Check out the list below and then be sure to tune in to Ball Boys on REELZ.
"Wonderboy" Bat, The Natural (1984)
Roy Hobbs (Robert Redford) could have been one of the greatest baseball players who ever lived, but one poor decision took him out of the game and nearly cost him his life. When he is given a second shot to play baseball for the New York Knights as a 35-year-old Rookie, Hobbs reclaims his former greatness with the aid of his trusty bat, "Wonderboy," which in his youth he had carved from the wood of a lightning-struck tree.
Red, it took me sixteen years to get here. You play me, and I'll give ya the best I got.
Hickory Letterman Jacket, Hoosiers (1986)
When Coach Norman Dale (Gene Hackman) takes over as coach of the high school basketball team rural Indiana town of Hickory, he is not met with a warm reception. The basketball-loving community finds his style of coaching too dull and his personality too volatile and want to see him fired, but they eventually back him when his dedication to the sport convinces the town's best player to rejoin the team. Dale redeems himself and brings pride to the small town by taking the tiny team all of the way to the state championship game in Indianapolis.
If you put your effort and concentration into playing to your potential, to be the best that you can be, I don't care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we're gonna be winners.
Al Czervik's Golf Club Caddy, Caddyshack
Like most upscale country clubs, Bushwood values blue blood and conformity above all else, so when the garish and gregarious Al Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield) arrives on the scene, the sparks immediately begin to fly. Stuffy club co-founder Judge Elihu Smails (Ted Knight) denies Czervik membership at Bushwood, but agrees to settle their differences over a team golf match, with a club rules-breaking $20,000 wager on the side. Czervik plays the links in style, sporting a custom golf caddy complete with remote controlled club launcher, stereo, telephone, TV and beer tap, even if an "injury" prevents him from finishing the match.
Country clubs and cemeteries are the biggest wasters of prime real estate! Dead people? They don't need buried nowadays. Ecology, right? Ask Wang. He'll tell you. We just bought property behind the Great Wall. On the good side!
Vaughn's Jersey, Hat & Glasses, Major League (1989)
When a former Las Vegas showgirl inherits the Cleveland Indians, she is determined that they perform so poorly that she will be allowed to break her contract with the city and move the team to Miami. To that end, the new General Manager puts together a team of "has-beens and never-will-bes" that should be guaranteed to lose games and drive away fans. Instead, the motley crew wins game after game with the powerful arm of former prison yard pitcher Ricky "Wild Thing" Vaughn (Charlie Sheen) on the mound and Cleveland rallies around the team.
Just a reminder, fans, comin' up is our "Die-hard Night" here at the stadium. Free admission to anyone who was actually alive the last time the Indians won a pennant.
Rocky's Boxing Gloves, Rocky (1976)
With guts, determination and a seemingly limitless ability to absorb bodily punishment, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) rose up from the obscurity of urban poverty and petty crime to challenge the greatest boxer in the world, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers). Though Rocky ended up losing by decision, just being able to step into the ring to tap gloves with Creed was already an accomplishment beyond compare for the big-hearted former enforcer from Philly.
I was nobody. But that don't matter either, you know? 'Cause I was thinkin', it really don't matter if I lose this fight. It really don't matter if this guy opens my head, either. 'Cause all I wanna do is go the distance. Nobody's ever gone the distance with Creed, and if I can go that distance, you see, and that bell rings and I'm still standin', I'm gonna know for the first time in my life, see, that I weren't just another bum from the neighborhood.
Despite being the butt of everyone's jokes, including his own — "I'd like to @$$ you a few questions." — pet detective Ace Ventura (Jim Carrey) outwits everyone by solving the mystery of the abduction of the Miami Dolphin's revered mascot, Snowflake. After discovering a 1984 AFC Championship ring in Snowflake's tank, Ventura suspects a Miami Dolphin is behind the crime and tracks down every member of the championship team until he discovers the disturbing identify of the dolphin-napper.
I found a rare stone at the bottom of Snowflake's tank. It belonged to a 1984 AFC Championship ring. It would have been a Super Bowl ring, but Ray Finkle missed the big kick. Blames the whole thing on Marino. We're talking mental institute escapee. I saw the guy's room. Cozy if you're Hannibal Lecter!
Reggie Dunlop’s Charlestown Chiefs Jersey, Slap Shot (1977)
When he is told that his team will be folded at the end of the season, player-coach Reggie Dunlop (Paul Newman) uses all of the tools in his con man bag of tricks to raise local interest in the perennially losing Charlestown Chiefs. Out of desperation, Dunlop puts the Hanson Brothers, a trio of dimwitted thugs on blades, on the ice and discovers that the crowd responds to their particularly aggressive style of hockey. Seeing an opportunity, Dunlop retools the team around the Hansons and starts a rumor that investors in Florida are interested in buying the team. Increased attendance and a few wins are not enough to save the Chiefs, however, and Dunlop is forced to confess to his players that there is no next season, only the final game against the Syracuse Bulldogs, which he hopes they will all play clean, like "old-time hockey."
It's their rink, it's their ice, and it's their f*ckin' town. But tonight we got our fans with us! They spent their own dough to get here, and they came here to see us! All right, let's show 'em what we got, guys! Get out there on the ice and let 'em know you're there. Get that f*ckin' stick in their side. Let 'em know you're there! Get that lumber in his teeth. Let 'em know you're there!
As depicted in Bruce Brown’s classic 1966 surf documentary, Robert August, along with Mike Hynson, traveled to the coasts of Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Tahiti and Hawaii in search of the perfect surf spots, chasing summer around the world on his white 10-footer with the redwood stringer and tail block.
Summer means many different things to different people. To some it might mean the thrill of a high speed catamaran. Others like to float around and soak up a few stray rays. Still others like some kind of inland activity. But for us, it's the sport of surfing.