ESPN's Marvel and NBA 2010-11 Team Crossover Covers
Pow! Bam! Biff! Zok!
For comic book fans like me, this feature is like giving your brain a delicious cookie covered in chocolate chips and Scarlett Johanssons. I loved it. Sure, there was some (presumably) unintentional comedy, like the (very appropriate) "Pistons: Destination Doom" cover or the "Grizzlies: On The Prowl" cover where a front-and-center Rudy Gay is cheering on a particularly gay looking Captain America.
Oh, I also liked the Bulls cover with Carlos Boozer as the Red Hulk. Uh, the Red Hulk jumped into outer space and beat the crap out of Thor with his own hammer. Boozer broke his hand in three places tripping over a bag. I'm just sayin'.
On the other hand, some of the covers were just plain mean. For instance, the covers for the Hornets and Nuggets focused on Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony leaving their respective teams. I get that. I do. I mean, the imminent and seemingly unavoidable prospect of losing their superstar is a team's most cogent storyline, right? But it's still kind of a bitch slap to the guys who are, you know, sticking with the team and trying to win games and stuff.
That said, the biggest kick to the crotch was reserved for fans of the Cleveland Cavaliers. A few short months after suffering what may have been the most painful heel turn in the history of professional sports -- I mean, seriously, their superhero broke up with them on a live television show specifically dedicated to him breaking up with them -- now Cavs fans have to deal with this?
If you don't know your classic comic book covers, this is riffing the iconic "Spider-Man No More!" cover, which is famous enough to have its own Wikipedia page.
Sure, it's reasonably accurate. LeBron walked away, probably after stuffing his jersey into the nearest trash can, and so the team is pretty unamazing now.
But man, throw these people a bone, ESPN!
Personally, what I would have liked to see was an extended scene from The Amazing Spider-Man #33, where Spidey is (seemingly) hopelessly trapped under a giant machine, but then he gets really pumped and pushes the damn thing off him.
That's what I want to happen for the Cavs and Clevelanders everywhere: Them pushing the giant, crushing, lethal weight of LeBron's departure off their backs and delivering an antidote to Aunt May in the nick of time before she dies of radiation poisoning. Or something.
It's probably not gonna happen...but it would be a nice story.