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ESPN's 30 for 30 - Real Captivating Stories

Updated on August 20, 2011

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30 For 30 Trailer

ESPN's 30 for 30

In October 2009, ESPN began a year long documentary series highlighting some of the greatest sports never told during the network's thirty years history.

30 For 30 shows many unknown facts about some of the biggest sports figures. Many famous directors such as Barry Levinson and Ron Shelton. The first documentary of the series is titled King's Ransom discussing the Wayne Gretzky trade from the Edmonton Oilers to Los Angeles Kings.

The hour long documentary provides viewers with interesting unknown facts. Some of the episodes include the Baltimore Colts band, the demise of the USFL, Muhammad Ali and Larry Holmes, Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder, the Boston Red Sox epic title chase in 2004 and Steve Bartman.

As viewer of 30 For 30, I have been quite captivated by the storytelling in each documentary. Each story is unique. The episode shown on November 10, 2009, was on Jimmy "the Greek" Snyder. This documentary showed his rise and ultimate downfall as analyst/resident bookie on CBS's The NFL Today. Snyder was on the NFL Today from 1975 until 1988 when he was fired by the network for comments about African American athletes. Snyder was famous for his knowledge of betting lines on NFL games before it became popular. Snyder once bet $10,000 on the 1948 Presidential election where incumbant President Harry Truman defeated Thomas Dewey. Truman's re-election was a long shot and Snyder won over $170,000. If you used today's figures, Snyder would have made several million dollars.

Sports is a great reality show. Viewers are captivated by the inspirational stories and the flaws of our heroes. So, if you are looking for a good historical documentary on sports and society, check out 30 For 30 on ESPN. It is worth an hour of watching.

12/6/09 Update - ESPN's 30 for 30 series returns to the air Saturday, December 12th, at 9PM Eastern/8PM Central with "The U" by Bill Corben. This documentary will feature the meteoric rise of the University of Miami (FL) football program under Howard Schnellenberger and later JImmy Johnson.

The next new documentary will air on Sunday, March 14, at 9PM/8PM Central with "Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks" by Dan Klores. This documentary focuses on the Knicks/Pacers rivalry of the mid 1990's.


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