On Anchorman, Sequels and Championship Rings

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On Anchorman, Sequels and Championship Rings

Wednesday night on Conan, the great Ron Burgundy tore up the stage on his jazz flute, and then shocked the audience with an urgent and horrifying news story

CANNNONNNNBAAAAALLL!

Nah, he announced that the long-awaited sequel to Anchorman is finally in the works. And in case you thought Burgundy was joking, later that night writerdirector Adam McKay hopped on Twitter to confirm:

A few people questioning if Anchorman 2 is 100 for sure happening. Let me assure and assuage: it is. We're writing now and we shoot in Feb Adam McKay (@GhostPanther) March 29, 2012
Now this is obviously great news. Anchorman was one of the best comedies of the past decade. It catapulted the comedy careers of Paul Rudd and Steve Carrell, spawned an army of dogs named Baxter and changed the way we think about scotch, milk, lamps, tridents, wheels of cheese and the scent of Big Foot's genitals.

And now it, or more specifically he, Ron Burgundy, and his Action 4 news team are back.

This is exciting stuff.

But, as with any sequel especially for a movie as legendary as Anchorman through all the excitement there exists one sad reality:

There's no way it will be as good as the original.

It's impossible. Even if they bring back all the characters. Even if they find the perfect story, write a hilarious script and execute the whole thing as precisely as possible. There's no way Anchorman 2 will have the same impact as the first one. There's no way it can capture that same glass case of emotion or recreate how it felt to meet and experience those characters for the first time. We're spoiled now. We're expecting too much. As a result, as good as it may eventually be, Anchorman 2 is almost guaranteed to be a letdown.

And that kind of sucks. Almost enough to make you wonder: Hey, would it be so bad if they just left Ron Burgundy alone?

Why risk ruining that legacy?

In other words: If you can't beat it, why even try?

Now let me finally bring this back to sports.

Over the last 12 years, the city of Boston's obviously been fortunate to experience an absurd amount of sporting success. We've won seven titles, and made it to an additional seven league and conference championships. We've seen MVPs, Rookies of the Year, a long roster of All Stars and double digit Hall of Famers. But regardless of any and all achievement, even if Boston wins three or four more titles over the next five years, we all know the reality:

It's never better than your first time.

February 3, 2002: Patriots 20, Rams 17
October 27, 2004: Red Sox 3, Cardinals 0
June 17, 2008: Celtics 131, Lakers 92
June 15, 2011: Bruins 4, Canucks 0

For a new generation of Bostonians those who weren't alive andor cognisant when the Celtics won in 1986 these four dates will forever be the apex of our lives as sports fans. (For the Sox, you might even go back to October 20, 2004: Game 7 of the ALCS). The way we felt on those four days will never be matched. They can bring back all the same characters, they can have a great story and execute to perfection, but they can never recreate the magic, experience or emotion of that first title. We're spoiled now. We expect too much.

Of course that hasn't stopped them from trying, and in the process, finding all sorts of success. The 2007 Red Sox. The back-to-back champion Pats. Three amazing, memorable and absolutely historic teams. But all three paled in comparison to their originals; all three were victims of their own ridiculous and unfair self-imposed precedents.

It's like, imagine if the Bruins somehow win again this year. It will be amazing. But it won't be the same. The Rolling Rally won't be as big. The after party won't go quite as long. In a sad and messed up way, it just won't be as good. How could it be?

And, bringing it back home, I'm sure that Anchorman 2 will suffer the same fate.

I'm sure we'll all walk out of theater saying stuff like: "Yeah, it was pretty awesome, but it doesn't hold a candle to the first one."

And that sucks. but honestly who cares? At the end of the day, does not being as good as the original actually hurt the original? Does the fact that Hangover 2 wasn't that great make the first one any less awesome? Did the slightly decreased sensation of the last two Super Bowls and the 2007 World Series taken anything away from the life changing experiences of 2002 and 2004? No. Of course not. And even if they did, those are problems that anyone would be lucky to have. Problems that we'll hopefully have to deal with around here through the Anchorman sequel and beyond.

In the meantime, you stay classy Boston.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Haggerty: Jacobs may not be beloved, but he's Hall of Fame-worthy

Haggerty: Jacobs may not be beloved, but he's Hall of Fame-worthy

If it was based solely on his 42 years as owner of the Boston Bruins, it might be debatable as to whether Jeremy Jacobs would have been selected to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Bruins have won one championship and been to a handful of Stanley Cup Finals during Jacobs' long stewardship, of course. They also enjoyed the longest running playoff streak (29 years) in NHL history, though it began before he purchased the franchise. Altogether, the B's have won one Cup, four conference championships, two Presidents' trophies, 15 division championships, and 35 Stanley Cup playoff berths during the Jacobs Era.

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But Jacobs didn't make the Hall of Fame solely on his accomplishments with the Bruins organization. He's being inducted in the "builder” category, which is defined as "coaching, managerial or executive ability, or ability in another significant off-ice role, sportsmanship, character and contributions to his or her organization or organizations and to the game of hockey in general.”  In addition to overseeing the Bruins over the last four-plus decades, he has been a power broker at the league level for just as long.

"I am flattered to be included in with this great group of 2017 inductees, and I am humbled to be included with the legends of hockey that went before me,” said Jacobs. "Owning the Boston Bruins for 42 years has been one of the most rewarding honors of my life. I am indebted to our team's leaders and players, but most of all, to our fans, for giving me a broad and deeply appreciative perspective of the game."

The 2011 Stanley Cup victory was the overriding on-ice moment in his stewardship of the team, and the Jacobs family has had a major, altruistic impact in Boston. No one should overlook the Boston Bruins Foundation, which has touched so many lives with the $28 million that's been awarded to those in need since its inception in 1993.

Unfortunately, Jacobs will always have a reputation with a large portion of the Bruins fan base that his ownership wasn't willing to spend enough for truly competitive teams. At times he was viewed as an absentee owner living in Buffalo, overseeing the team from afar while Harry Sinden ran the operation. Those fans hold that grudge even today, despite the Bruins consistently spending to the salary cap ceiling while fielding competitive teams. They view Monday's Hall of Fame announcement as something akin to Montgomery Burns being inducted into the Springfield Hall of Fame.

Cam Neely disagrees.

"As a player, I knew of Mr. Jacobs' passion for the Bruins,” said Neely, who has served as Bruins president for nearly a decade after a Hall of Fame playing career highlighted by his years in Boston. "Over the past decade while in the front office, I have seen firsthand his dedication to winning, by consistently providing the Bruins the resources that we need to compete for Stanley Cup Championships and also his unmatched commitment to growing the game of hockey."

That commitment to hockey is a key factor in Jacobs' Hall of Fame selection.

Jacobs was unanimously voted in as chairman of the NHL Board of Governors in 2007, and he's been a major driving force in each of the last couple of oft-contentious CBA negotiations. While Jacobs clearly had a hand in the cancellation of the entire 2004-05 season due to a labor dispute, and in the lockout-shortened season of 2013, those CBA negotiations ultimately led to the imposition of a salary cap and a pathway for small-market NHL teams to survive as the cost of doing hockey business continues to go up.

Without Jacobs as an often hawkish, hard-line owner, there's a chance that a team like the Western Conference champion Nashville Predators might not have been able to survive in the NHL, and it's highly doubtful they'd be able to be as competitive as they are now if teams like Toronto, New York and Chicago could outspend everybody else. So there's no denying the seismic impact that Jacobs made at the league-wide level with his leadership and commitment to growing the game, and that the NHL is better off for the battles waged in collective bargaining while he's been in a position of power.

If you polled every single Bruins fan on the street, it's unlikely he'd be a populist choice for the Hall of Fame. The lean budgetary years durinhg the playing days of Neely, Ray Bourque and others will always be part of the Spoked B history. Some will hold those grudges forever, which is part of makes us who we are as a fan base.

But faithful, rabid fans continue to stream into TD Garden, continue to spend money to support their favorite hockey team, and continue to provide the kind of support that's led to a 338-game home sellout streak. It's a sign Jacobs and Bruins ownership continue to do things very right, even if we shouldn't be scheduling any popularity contests anytime soon.

O'Connor: If C's get George, would Griffin be a better fit than Hayward?

O'Connor: If C's get George, would Griffin be a better fit than Hayward?

The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor discusses the potential decision the Celtics could have in free agency between Gordon Hayward and Blake Griffin. If the Celtics are able to sign Paul George, is Griffin a much better fit?