I don’t much care for the theatre of sports (if I wanted to see real dramatics, I’d go to Walmart and watch angry mom-types fight over a floor-model cake pop machine) but I love major league sports mascots. I find just about every sports game is super-duper boring, but there’s something wonderfully cringe-worthy about a 20-year-old kid sweating his balls off and awkwardly shuffling along to LMFAO’s Party Rock Anthem in a brightly-colored hot-as-shit animal costume. Sadly, Nugget’s fans were cringing at their mascot for another an entirely different reason this weekend.
According to TMZ, Friday night’s season opener between the Denver Nuggets and the Portland Trail Blazers was to commence with Nugget mascot Rocky (a mountain lion, I believe. Not that it really matters) being ceremoniously lowered from the rafters to the cheering crowd. Everyone below Rocky had a feeling something was up when Rocky stayed motionless during his entire descent to the court, and once his feet (paws?) touched the floor, he collapsed into a limp pile of felt, as several people began freeing him from his harness.
Rocky was then carried off court to the sound of every dad in attendance assuring their kids that ”Rocky’s not dead, he’s just sleeping”. Tom Merolla of CBS Denver reports that the man inside Rocky simply passed out from dizziness and he’ll be fine.
I come from a city where our basketball mascot also has the inability to stand upright, so I feel for all the Nuggets fans in Denver today. There’s nothing worse than being convinced by a friend: “I know the game sucks, but the mascot does these really cool dunk tricks at halftime” and then watching him come out on a pair of Rollerblades and fall on his ass. But is it so wrong to laugh at this? I mean, forget that Rocky’s wearing a swishy warm-up suit like that of so many retirees in Boca Raton, FL; Rocky’s face is permanenty frozen in a look that screams “Y’ALL READY FOR SOME BASKETBALL, NUGGETS FANS!!” as he’s sleepily lowered down from the ceiling and takes a snooze on the court. If aliens are researching Earth, they must be watching this clip and thinking “Why does the giant cat puppet behave like Lindsay Lohan exiting a club at 4am?”
(Pic via @TomM_CBS4)