Analyzing Professional Athletes’ Head Shots part 1
Wandering around boxscores every night, checking up on my fantasy teams, I always seem to encounter entertaining, intriguing and confusing heads shots. This is just part one of my analysis of professional athletes’ head shots. Stayed tuned for part two, which includes the “I got a new haircut” shot, the eyes closed shot, and the “I am too hung over to do this” shot. Until then, enjoy part one.
The “playoff beard in the pre-season” shot – Richard Hamilton, Detroit Pistons. Hockey players believe in playoff beards. Basketball players believe in pre-season beards. This is what Rip’s facial hair suggests, anyway. Either that or Rip slept in and didn’t have time to shave.
The “this is finally going to be my year, so I better look good” shot – Jeff Francouer, Atlanta Braves. Frenchy evidently put a lot of thought and effort into his 2009 shot. After several years of disappointment, Francouer figured that since this year will finally be the year that he breaks out, his picture is more than likely going to be shown on ESPN more times than not. In this case, the head shot needs a concentrated effort.
The “I don’t give a fuck” shot – Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic. Howard knew he was going to have a big season. He knew his picture was going to be everywhere, so he wanted to portray and attitude of toughness. Well he did it with this beauty. The only problem is that this picture does not justify his personality. On the court he is hard as fuck, but off the court, he is a costume wearing-So You Think You Can Dance enthusiast.
The Action shot – Manny Ramirez, Los Angeles Dodgers. Yes, this is his current profile headshot at Yahoo! Sports. This picture is extremely unique. If this was a baseball card, it would be a keeper. This is a candid picture, he is not looking at the camera, and he is wearing a helmet, instead of a hat. A HELMET!! The only person who is justified in wearing a helmet in a headshot is John Olerud, and even then it is questionable.
The “I am clearly new to this country” shot – Zaza Pachulia, Atlanta Hawks. International players are new to this whole thing. Their natural reaction is to show gratitude for the country that has employed them. This reaction is generally in the form of a very enthusiastic smile or a very confused smile. In Zaza’s case, it is the latter. What is odd about this picture is that Zaza has been in the league for 6 years now, so this PR bullshit shouldn’t come to a surprise.
The “this should have been done over” shot – Gregg Zaun, Baltimore Orioles. That doesn’t even look like him. Zaunbie Nation can’t make shirts out of this mug shot.
The “I still have last year’s uniform on” shot – Jason Blake, Toronto Maple Leafs. Usually found with guys who were traded at the deadline or signed to a different team in the off-season. Not with Jason Blake. He signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs 2 years ago, yet, on his current Yahoo! Sports profile, he still sports a jersey from his days as a New York Islander. Whosever fault that is, Blake will always be a victim.
The “Can you please push your hat up a little, I can’t see your eyes” shot – Johnny Damon, New York Yankees. We have all been there. Every time an athlete tries to make his/her headshot as authentic as possible by wearing their hate as they would during a game, the photographer always complains how they cannot see the eyes. Therefore, the hat needs to be pushed up. It’s a bad look. Unfortunately for Damon, he falls victim to this trap.
The “my head is too big for this” shot – Goran Dragic, Phoenix Suns. His head is not really as big as it is long. The top of his head are non existent. Poor kid. Welcome to the NBA. Welcome to America.
The “my hair is too big for this” shot – Robin Lopez, Phoenix Suns. Not at the fault of the photographer. Nothing they could have done about this. Lopez, looking like Sideshow Bob, would have needed to be 20 feet back from the camera in order to get that whole thing in there.
The “I thought this was a mug shot” shot – Robert Andino, Baltimore Orioles. Why do players do this? You’re not going to jail, why look like it. It’s just a terrible look.
The “this is my second take” shot – Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys. There is absolutely no way that Romo did this picture in one take. Tony’s hair was probably a little off in the first take, so he demanded another shot. Everything in this picture is perfectly symmetrical. He has the school boy look hair going, the half squinty eyes, the shadow and the pearly white teeth. How Dreamy. No homo.
The “I don’t actually wear glasses, but I will for this shot” shot – Sean Avery, New York Rangers. This is my favorite head shot ever and also one of the all-time confusing pictures in head shot history. He could have easily taken the glasses off, why leave them on? He doesn’t need his own eyes to clearly see the camera, the camera just needs to see you clearly. Another question: Why those frames? They do not remind me of the frames that George Costanza chose, but they would be the type of frames that would warrant the same type of reaction. (Kramer: “may I have one of those, madam?”)