Raheel Ramzanali: 4 other present day sports movie sequels we need

The success of Cobra Kai should spur more sequels.

YouTube Red hit it out of the park with the critically acclaimed series Cobra Kai. The series follows present day Daniel LaRusso and Johnny Lawrence and how they’re dealing with the fallout of the legendary Crane Kick. I highly recommend you watch it not only for the nostalgia, but because it’s a really good show on an emotional and storyline level. While I was watching it this weekend, I started to wonder about some of my favorite sports movies growing up and how the characters would be doing in 2018. So, here are four movies I want to see done in Cobra Kai style with a sequel:

  1. Mighty Ducks - Emilio Estevez is a young 55 right now and has to be in this present day sequel as the commissioner of a local hockey league that is struggling to find teams because kids are more interested in playing Fortnite and not an actual sport.  It’s an age old, “kids are too lazy, but we can’t let the sport die” plot. In a moment of inspiration, Gordon Bombay creates a Facebook account despite all the threat of losing his data and friends the entire roster from the first movie. In a tragic turn of events, Coach Bombay finds out that his star Charlie Conway passed away in a freak scuba diving accident while off the coast of Mexico during a summer trip. Charlie left behind a 12-year-old son that lost all hope in mankind, but when Coach Bombay messages him, he finds new hope. Coach Bombay ends up mentoring the kid, they have the typical fight because Coach wants Charlie Jr. to be more like his dad, fast forward a few minutes and they end up becoming friends again when Coach Bombay gives Charlie Jr. his dad’s hockey stick. The kid ends up recruiting a bunch of kids to the hockey league and they save it. The end.

  2. The 6th Man - I watched this Marlon Wayans classic at least once a month growing up. A&K ALL THE WAY! Few movies capture the heartache and love of brotherhood like The 6th Man did for me. However, the sequel isn’t as fun and loving as the original. After the Huskies won the national title, we find out that Kenny Tyler was actually diagnosed with schizophrenia when he tried to tell everyone about seeing his brother Antoine. Kenny spent the next 20 years trying to convince everybody that he really did see Antoine, but nobody believed him. In fact, he was put into a mental hospital and on a heavy dose of medicines. There’s actually no silver lining to this movie. It’s a dark and uncomfortable look at the dependency of medicinal solutions to mental problems in our country. Think Requiem for a Dream meets The 6th Man.

  3. Above The Rim - I always considered this movie to be the Allen Iverson story so it’s only right that Kyle Watson went on to lead the 76ers to the NBA Finals with a D-league team. Kyle is now 42-years-old and trying to find a new purpose in his life. He tried playing in a 3-on-3 league, but was always late to show up and sometimes didn’t show up to the games. In a moment of self-realization, Kyle decides he needs to mentor the youth. Kyle still has a nice relationship with Shep so he creates an AAU team featuring the best New York City ballers. This is where the movie picks up because Kyle and Shep find out about the dirty underbelly of the AAU circuit. They go on a quest of mentoring young kids and cleaning up the summer basketball circuit that once made them happy to play the sport they love so much. The final scene is them cutting the ribbon on the brand new Birdie and Buggalo Community Center.

  4. Rookie of the Year - Henry Rowengartner experienced success at such an early age that he, like many child stars, had to deal with the consequences of said fame. Unfortunately, that “dealing with” came at the cost of a crippling addiction to drugs. One night Henry was so wasted that he had a dream of being in a table receiving shots from a faceless doctor. The dream felt too real. It wasn’t a dream, it was his life. We keep seeing flashbacks to this dream and piece-by-piece we find out that his rocket arm wasn’t because of some lame thing like his tendons being “a little too tight” after the cast came off - it was because he was the subject of some illegal government testing on kids. With every clue he gets closer to finding out who did this to him and eventually the faceless man has a face: It was his mom’s boyfriend Jack Bradfield. Henry eventually hits his mom’s ex-bf with a 100-mph fastball and gets a congressional medal for shedding light on these illegal experiments.

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How much does it cost to attend an Astros baseball game?

According to the just released 2023 Team Marketing Report of Fan Cost, a family of four has to shell out $343.72 at Minute Maid Park to catch a game. That’s the third-highest price tag in all of Major League Baseball, trailing only the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.

This cost analysis data is courtesy of Sporting Post and runs a tab of four “non-premium” tickets, four hot dogs, two small beers, two small soft drinks, two team hats and one parking space.

Sporting Post put the average price for Astros tickets at $58.61 per person, hot dogs $6 each, small beers $7.50 each, small sodas $5.50 each, Astros caps $24.99 each and parking $9.30.

Let’s crunch the numbers and get real.

I do not sit in the press box with a media pass. I go to games and I pay for tickets. I do not pay $58 for a ticket, however. For example, right now you can go on the Astros website and buy tickets for the June 19th game against the Mets – upper deck behind first base, third row, on the aisle, for $37 each. They’re good seats. And you don’t have to deal with secondary market entrepreneurs.

I don’t need to buy an Astros hat, certainly not a new one each time I go to a game. I have never paid for parking. There’s free parking downtown after 7 p.m. and you can find a space if you’re willing to walk a few blocks. You probably can use the exercise. Plus, unlike some other MLB towns, public transportation will get you near the ballpark.

I buy a hot dog and soda. I know they’re overpriced but a dog and Coke (or beer) are part of the baseball experience. I’m worth it. Fans are allowed to bring food, in reasonable amounts, to Minute Maid Park. Hot dogs supposedly taste best at a ballpark. I’ve never heard that about a tuna fish sandwich. Minute Maid Park is not a high school cafeteria.

I’m not an Astros apologist for their high prices. But …

You want a winning team? Pretty things cost money. It’s the difference between going to dinner at McDonald’s or an upscale steakhouse. The Astros are filet mignon. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for a doggie bag.

Yes, it’s expensive to attend a game at Minute Maid Park, but the Astros are putting out a quality product. They’re the best thing going in Houston. Why stop there? The Astros are the most successful pro sports team in America over the past seven years. You know the numbers: four American League pennants, six ALCS appearances in a row, four World Series appearances and two championships.

You get what you pay for. You want the Astros to sign Alex Bregman, Kyle Tucker and Framber Valdez to long-term deals? Those players won’t come cheap.

Signing slugging first baseman Jose Abreu to a three-year deal took a ton of money. OK, bad example. But you get my point.

It’s not like the Astros are printing money with their local TV contract, like the Dodgers, Yankees and Red Sox. The Dodgers’ deal is worth upwards of $250 million. The Astros deal with AT&T SportsNet is worth about $73 million. For comparison, the Rangers’ local TV deal is worth about $111 million. I get it, the Dallas designated market is larger than Houston, but it’s still annoying when Dallas gets anything bigger or better than us.

Astros fans love their team and show out. The Astros are averaging 37,111 fans so far this year. That’s in the upper echelon of baseball, and 4,000 more fans per game over last year.

According to Forbes, the Astros are worth $2.25 billion (with a B), up 14 percent from 2022. Jim Crane and his support group bought the Astros for $610 million (with an M) in 2011.

The cheapest deal in baseball is offered by the Baltimore Orioles. A family of four can attend an O’s game for $198, according to Sporting Post data.

Now we enter the Bizarro World, or as they call it out west, Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. The A’s charge the 11th highest prices to attend a game - $240 for a family of four to watch the historically awful A’s lose game after game after game after (tell me when to stop).

On the other hand, you can enjoy quiet private time with your spouse and children in the empty upper deck. The A’s are averaging only 8,600 “fans” per game.

You know me and attendance figures. I’m calling bull on 8,600 fans.

I’m saying more like 5,000 … and I’ll still take the under.

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