The700Level

Remembering the best sports video games of all-time

untitled-2.jpg

Remembering the best sports video games of all-time

Yesterday was National Video Game Day, so CSN posted asking fans what their favorite sports video games were and it brought back all kinds of nostalgia.

Most of the games were older, so let’s jump in the time machine to remember the amazing games from our childhood that we still love to this day.

NHL 94

This was one of the first games I remember really begging my dad for. I was eight years old and I got a Sega for my birthday, but I’m not sure my dad really got the concept of needing the newest and best games to play on the console. This was definitely one of them.

The introduction of the one-timer was an absolute game-changer and I basically scored every goal either this way or doing a wrap-around, which the goalies could never figure out how to save. While fighting was removed from the game, NHL 94 was one of the first games where the gameplay really took over.

Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out

What an experience.

I can’t tell you how many hours I spent as Little Mac on my Nintendo, and later on an emulator at Cheltenham High School on the computers in the library when I was supposed to be doing some sort of project.

The story was tremendous. Running through the streets with Doc and facing the likes of Don Flamenco, King Hippo, Great Tiger, and eventually, Mike Tyson was remarkable.

My mind was absolutely blown last year when this game secret was discovered.

Backyard Baseball

For the simple fact that we were introduced to one of the greatest sports video game characters of all time, Pablo Sanchez.

 

NBA Jam

Nick brings up an interesting point, this game was not only amazing on console, but also in the arcade. I spent the majority of my youth at Challenges Arcade at the Willow Grove Mall (RIP) because my step dad was the manager. I think I had every single birthday there. NBA Jam was one of the best games to play at the arcade, unless you also count Top Skater as a sports game. In addition to its prowess at the arcade, NBA Jam was tremendous for Sega, especially if you used the Bill Clinton cheat code.

Tecmo Bowl and Tecmo Super Bowl

There were a lot of votes for both versions and along with Madden 2004 and Joe Montana’s Sports Talk Football, these are my favorite football games of all time. Sorry to everyone who listed NFL2K5, I just was a Madden guy.

What I loved about the Tecmo Bowl games the most was how absolutely dominant some individual players were. In Tecmo Bowl, the Chicago Bears were almost unfair to use unless you were playing the computer. What Walter Payton could do was absolutely unfair. In Tecmo Super Bowl, Bo Jackson was unstoppable and we were all introduced to QB Eagles, who of course, was the incomparable Randall Cunningham.

Honorable Mention

 

Special mention to these three for successfully executing a scene from Billy Madison.

The 700 Level’s 2018 Philadelphia Sports Awards

ap-eagles-jason-kelce.jpg
USA Today Images

The 700 Level’s 2018 Philadelphia Sports Awards

Thank you for joining us for The 700 Level’s fifth annual, almost-didn’t-happen-this-time Philadelphia Sports Awards. If you’re wondering why you don’t recall reading or hearing about any of our first four outings, that’s because we’ve rebranded for 2018, moving away from “The KULPYs” due to the writer’s lack of marketability or relevance. Pretty sure that guy is covering the food scene somewhere over in the Middle East these days.

In other words: New title, slightly different format, same shtick. Now that we’ve suckered you in, let’s get down to business.

It’s been a big year for the Eagles, as you might imagine.

Philadelphia Athlete of the Year: Carson Wentz
Runner-up: Joel Embiid

Prior to suffering a torn ACL, Wentz was enjoying an MVP-caliber season. He set an Eagles franchise record with 33 touchdown passes – and only needed 13 games to do it. And while the team managed to win the Super Bowl without him, Wentz helped secure home-field for the playoffs with an 11-2 record as a starter. He was the most consistently dominant athlete in the city over the past year.

Comeback Athlete of the Year: Nick Foles
Runner-up: Claude Giroux

Let’s make sure Foles gets his due, though. Pretty much everybody left his career for dead after an ugly stint with the Rams, and even as late as the second quarter of divisional playoff game against the Falcons, few believed he would ever catch lighting in a bottle again. Sure enough, Foles regained his 2013 form just in time to post one of the most incredible postseason runs in NFL history, completing 72.5 percent of his passes for 860 yards and six touchdowns to one interception over his last 10 quarters of action. Unlike ’13, we’re pretty sure this isn’t a fluke – he has the ring to prove it.

Rookie of the Year: Rhys Hoskins
Runner-up: Ben Simmons

What’s the KULPYs without a little controversy? Simmons seems like the obvious choice, but his unwillingness or inability to shoot the basketball caused him to get exposed in the end. Then there’s the whole debate over whether he’s even truly a rookie or not after missing his first year with an injury. Hoskins hasn’t lit the world on fire in 2018, though he’s still hit 32 home runs in his first 586 plate appearances, with a supporting cast that isn’t making things any easier. We'll operate under All-Star Game rules and select Hoskins on the basis the Phillies need a little representation here.

The Andrew Bynum Award for Most Disliked Sports Figure: Robert Covington
Runner-up: Gabe Kapler

Covington signed a four-year contract worth $62 million in November, then fell out of favor with fans almost immediately. He began the ’17-18 season with a hot shooting hand, but cooled off and became extremely streaky from beyond the arc. What’s worse, RoCo’s defensive effort seemed inconsistent at times as well, which he could always hang his hat on previously when the offense wasn’t there. Now, there’s no question a good portion of fans would like to see him moved, though the reality is the Sixers might be stuck with that contract for awhile.

The Chip Kelly Award for Most Nonsensical Scandal: Bryan Colangelo
Runner-up: Markelle Fultz

Take your pick from a host of Sixers screw-ups. From Embiid constantly feuding with management over playing time, to trading hometown hero Mikal Bridges during his introductory press conference, it’s certainly been an interesting year. Yet, Colangelo’s wife’s numerous Twitter burner accounts releasing sensitive information and defending the former GM’s choice in shirt collars was the most bizarre thing to happen in Philly sports in the last 12 months, probably longer. By the way, the Sixers are still seeking Colangelo’s replacement, which means the repercussions of this stupidity are still being felt.

Dumbest Philly Sports Take: Mike Lombardi
Runner-up: Colin Cowherd

If Lombardi had merely insinuated Doug Pederson mat not have been the greatest choice to lead the Eagles, few would’ve strongly disagreed with that statement a year ago. But even at the time, after Pederson won seven games as a rookie head coach, claiming he was “the most unqualified coach” in NFL history was over the top. Few hot takes have ever aged so poorly so quickly, with Pederson leading the Eagles to the Super Bowl. The truly ironic part is Lombardi is a failed NFL executive and out of the league – maybe he should’ve realized he isn’t necessarily the greatest judge of talent.

The Competency Award for Best Coach or Executive: Sam Hinkie
Runners-up: Doug Pederson, Howie Roseman

What would the KULPYs be without some good ol’ fashioned trolling? Obviously, Pederson, Roseman or even Jay Wright are all worthy choices here. Then again, after watching the Sixers win 52 games and coast to the second round of the playoffs with a coach (Brett Brown) and core (Embiid, Simmons, Dario Saric) Hinkie put in place, the former GM’s sacrifice deserves remembrance. Maybe the day will come when we can leave Hinkie in the past. Then again, if there were any justice in the world, the Sixers would probably rehire him to take Colangelo’s place right now.

Philadelphian of the Year/Lifetime Achievement Award: Jason Kelce
Runners-up: Not applicable

There wasn’t even a close second. Kelce’s profanity-laced speech at the Eagles victory parade was the single greatest moment a lot of people from this area will ever witness in their lives. More than that, it cemented Kelce as not only one of the legendary players in Philly history. It demonstrated he's one of us to the core. Ranting and raving? Check. Gratuitous swearing? Check. Visible intoxication? Check, check, check.

That’s all we have. Sorry, Flyers, better luck next year.

Carson Wentz and wife do 'Thriller' dance at their wedding

Carson Wentz and wife do 'Thriller' dance at their wedding

We've seen Carson Wentz orchestrate a victory celebration before. But he's never had a dance partner quite like his new wife Maddie Oberg.

As we wrote Monday, the pair got married over the weekend up in Bucks County in what looked like a beautiful affair. Wentz shared some photos from the lovely day.

And now some of the fun has started to pop up on the internet. Like their introduction for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Wentz.

The intro has a bit of Pam and Jim from "The Office" wedding vibe before a "Dirty Dancing" fake out leads them into the "Thriller" dance that includes much of their wedding party.

Looks like a good time to me.

Wentz also shared a teaser video of their day on his Instagram: