Grew up in the Bay Area and as a result a fan of the Giants, 49ers, Warriors, and Cal Bears. Rarely did my teams have the upper hand growing up (aside from the 49ers), but the tide has turned and there are finally a few things to brag about in the Bay (aside from the 49ers). 

HOW SPORTS SAVED MY LIFE

I loved sports growing up. LOVED them. Couldn’t get enough of collecting baseball cards, going to baseball games, and watching Sportscenter every single night.

I still have a few VHS tapes of ’90s NBA Finals games in fact (including game 6 of the ’97 finals–the Kerr game winner–and the Heat/Knicks/Van Gundy fight as well). 

But the reason I watched (and taped) so many sporting events was because my dad loved sports.

Through sports, we could converse and connect, and eventually those conversations turned into real, substantial ones about life, careers, girls, and whatever else was going on in my childhood. 

But as much as I like talking sports now, I’ll always push for deeper, more life-impacting conversations to come out of them. Without those real connections, sports are simply a distraction from reality. 

There’s something special about the Bay. There’s the rare beautiful of the rolling green hills of the Marin headlands, the endless foggy mornings, and of course the booming Silicon Valley to the south. Between Sacramento and San Jose there’s a multitude of teams and sports to choose from if you’re looking to get your sporting fix.

There’s the classics: the 134 year of Giants baseball, the 71 years of 49er football, or one of the original NBA teams in the Warriors, who’ve been 70 years now. Then there’s the Sharks, the Kings, the Raiders, the Quakes, the Raiders, the A’s, and don’t forget Cal and Stanford. And while we’ve had our share of bad streaks and even a few decades of disappointment, there’s always a team on the come up, and you just hope it’s one you’ve been following through the bad times. 

FAVORITE SPORTS MEMORY

It’s gotta be game 7 of the 2012 NLCS.

My boy Jorge called me a few weeks before and told me he’d bought two game 7 tickets for the Giants. At that point however, the NL Wild Card Cardinals were about to face the Nationals and if the heavily favored Nats won the series, then game 7 of the NLCS would’ve been played in D.C., so his tickets would’ve been refunded. 

On top of that, the Giants had just dropped the first two games of the NLDS (at home) against the Reds and had to win three straight to even make the NLCS. 

Lucky for me (and the rest of the Bay Area), they did just that, and the Nationals completed a comeback as well. Oh yeah, and lastly, the Cardinals/Giants series needed to even go to a game 7, a rare enough feat to begin with, especially after the Giants went down 3-1. 

All in all, it was an amazing, historic, rainy, blessed game. One in which Hunter Pence hit a ball three times with one swing, Marco Scutaro sealed his NLCS MVP trophy in glorious fashion, and the Giants went on to win their 22nd NL pennant. Definitely one of my all time favorite sports memories.

Since I was a kid, sports have continued to be a big part of my life. I’ve bonded with coaches, teammates, and made countless friends due to playing and even just talking about sports.

One of those relationships that’s been bolstered by sports has been my relationship with my big brother. Neither one of us live in the Bay anymore, so every year we try to meet up and go to a game or two. During those trips, we love going to the games, but the real goal of those trips is to connect and bond much more than it is to simply root for our teams. 

Sports is much bigger than the 10 guys on the court, or 22 men on the field, but to me it’s about the 20-50 thousand people in the stands, and the experience their sharing with those around them. 

ALL THE 'THE' MOMENTS

The Catch     •     The Play     •     The Dunk

Bay Area sports have become synonymous with unexpected, game-changing, era-defining moments over the years. They’re rarely the favorites in any sporting event, and often seem to come in second place to Los Angeles in the headlines, but when it really counts, the Bay Area tends to come up big consistently. 

From Montana fading back and heaving it to Clark deep in the end zone and Cal’s unbelievable five lateral kickoff return against Stanford, all the way to Baron’s insane, unexpected dunk during the We Believe playoffs, or a record-breaking 73 Warriors team, it’s like each year there seems to be more and more to cheer about.

And let’s not forget to mention the even year magic from the Giants who’ve won 3 World Series this decade, and of course the current dynasty that’s brewing in Oakland for the Warriors. 

And while we’ll never have the flash and spotlight of SoCal, we’ll always have endlessly great moments to look forward to.

Meet some of the other gentlemen

Chad
Southern California

Specialties:

Clippers, Angels, Trojans

Brent
Los Angeles/Seattle

Specialties:

Seahawks, Mariners, Lakers

Sean
Bay Area/Seattle

Specialties:

Cal, Mariners, Warriors

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