Its long been argued that basketball is by far the most enjoyable of the major pro sports to watch in a live setting. Not only can you can get a true perspective of the players' size and athleticism, but you're constantly entertained during all dead-ball situations by the dancers, party music, t-shirt cannons, jumbotrons, contests, and most importantly the mascots. Most people tend to either sit on either of the extreme ends of the love/hate table when it comes to mascots, but I simply have a deep-seated childhood fear of anyone in a giant suit. Basically, the Easter Bunny at the mall was my scary clown. Thus, THF is proud to bring you a bracket-style tournament, where only one will emerge as The NBA's Creepiest Mascot.
Round 1 - Atlantic Division
Lucky (Boston Celtics)
It's only been since the '03-'04 season that Lucky has been unmasked, revealing a stereotypical-Boston goatee. Not so native to Boston though is his over-sized bow tie and a shiny gold vest, which makes him look like a Broadway star who's about to break out in song rather than a Sam Adams-guzzling dude named Sully. Not so creepy to me because of the lack of a suit and mask, but terrifying to the homophobic Bostonian.
Sly and Mini Sly (New Jersey Nets)
To quote BBJ:
Sly is the Nets mascot, and I don't give a SHIT what anyone says, he is the creepiest looking- and thus the best- mascot in the NBA.If I were seeding this tourney, Sly's a lock for a #1. He and his accomplice, Mini Sly, share stark blue eyes of a sniper and the same shit-eating grins that both the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toys and my roommate from freshman year had. In true Dirty Jersey fashion, Mini Sly struts and flexes his guns like a guido who's just come from getting his swell on at the gym. Sly is notorious for hiding in remote corners of the arena where he waits for the perfect moment to scare the shit out of whomever is shooting a free-throw by slamming two planks of wood together. I strongly encourage all of you to visit Sly's Den, where one can watch videos of him whackily terrorizing other mascots and tearing around in his Slymobile. Truly terrifying stuff.
*For full disclosure's sake: I applied and failed to become Sly's assistant during games and public appearances, but there's no hard feelings.
Zeke (New York Knicks)
The Knicks actually lack a mascot, instead relying upon Isiah Thomas to be the face of the light-hearted and carefree side of the franchise. Obviously just another drop in an ocean of mistakes, but that doesn't mean one shouldn't break this down for what it really is. After a legendary high school, college and pro career as a player, Zeke now stoops to entertain the masses by ruining your team or league (as in the case of the CBA) all the while sexually harassing all the fresh tail in sight and blurting out his catch phrase, "What the fuck is your job? What are your job responsibilities, you fucking ho?"
Hip-Hop (Philadelphia 76ers)
In a poor attempt to identify with the hip-hop culture, the 76ers have slapped on a do rag and sunglasses to a Sylvester Stallone look-a-like that's fully jacked on HGH and designer steroids. WARNING TO PARENTS: Do not mistake Hip-Hop for the Easter Bunny because he will take out his roid rage on your children's spinal column.
The Raptor (Toronto Raptors)
Those charming Canucks don't fuck around. "The team is the Raptors, so we're going to give the fans a fucking terrifying red velociraptor creatively named The Raptor. For good measure let's throw in some reptillian eyes that'll pair nicely with sharp 5'' teeth that are so massive that his blood thirsty mouth won't close. Now let's go have a Labatt's, eh?"