Kobe Bryant and 6 Other Folks Who Should Retire Like Doc

Roy Halladay knew when to call it quits. These people don’t.

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With the announcement of Roy Halladay’s retirement yesterday, I was reminded of Robert Frost’s bittersweet poem, “Nothing Gold Can Stay.” If you watched the ace labor through every start last season, you saw the end was coming, and in this case, a walk into the sunset is merciful and just. But not everyone knows when it’s time to call it quits. In tribute to Doc, here’s a list of Philly-connected folks who would follow his lead if they knew what was good for them.

Kobe Bryant

The Lower Merion product is one of the greatest ballers of all time. He also never lets you forget it. After blowing out his Achilles last season, Kobe could have walked away from the game and passed the time feeding $100 bills to Bengal tigers while he waited for a call from the Hall of Fame. Instead, he announced his comeback with this mini-movie that proves two things: His jersey is the toughest and most stain-resistant in all of sports, and the only thing greater than his talent is his ego.

Frank Rizzo

Walking away from public office should be easy for the newly converted Democrat, who’s considering a run for mayor in 2015. See, he already retired once — two years ago, for a day, so he could collect a DROP payment of $194,518. Why come back? Maybe he’s hoping we’ll pay him again to stay away from City Hall.

Martin Brodeur

The longtime Flyers nemesis is 41. He was named rookie of the year when current Flyers goalie Steve Mason was six years old. Brodeur is practically a backup at this point. But if the Flyers make it to the playoffs this season, somehow they will end up playing the Devils, and somehow, Brodeur will look like it’s 2003 all over again. The road to the playoffs will never feel safe while he’s around.

Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy’s only connections to the Delaware Valley are that Black Sabbath’s first American gig was in Glassboro, New Jersey, he’s played here a ton, and my colleague Victor Fiorillo trashed their show in August. Ozzy helped lay the template for heavy metal; without him, kids would be throwing up Taylor Swift hearts at rock shows instead of devil horns. Ozzy is also responsible for some of the most horrendous, coked-out album covers of the 1980s (which is quite a feat). The latest Sabbath album has riffs that would make Satan’s goat-hair stand on end, but Ozzy sounds processed and propped up. That’s understandable, considering he’s tried more drugs than Pfizer. But please, retire with some shred of musical dignity still intact.

Kevin Bacon

Not from acting; the man’s still got it. He always gives props to his hometown. And he’ll charm the damn pants off you, as evidenced by his late-night appearances. But The Following, his serial-killer yarn on Fox, is horrible. He’s stuck in a one-note role with a storyline that’s less plausible than anything on The Walking Dead (and that’s a show about zombies). Remember Mystic River? Crazy, Stupid, Love? More projects like those, please. We’d much rather see him twice in a year in something great than weekly on a lousy TV series. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipz48bhAWb8

Terry Bradshaw

OK, really no Philly connection here at all, other than Bradshaw’s narration of Eagles highlights on Fox NFL Sunday. Or, more accurately, his failure to keep pace with those highlights, as he mispronounces names and often seems unaware of his surroundings or that he’s on live television. It’s sort of funny when your grandpa rambles incoherently at holiday get-togethers. It’s strange and a little sad when he’s on television, getting paid to act like a broadcaster.

Jaden Smith

Everybody loves Will Smith. His son, however, seems like an entitled Hollywood jerk-of-the-future. It may sound harsh to judge a 15-year-old or to suggest that he leave show biz, but the kid’s already dating a Kardashian and gives Kanye West some competition for the Most Ludicrous Celebrity Tweets. (“We Need To Stop Teaching The Youth About The Past And Encourage Them To Change The Future”; “If Everybody In The World Dropped Out Of School We Would Have A Much More Intelligent Society”; “The Great Gatsby Is One Of The Greatest Movies Of All Time, Coachella”). Mr. Smith, please tell your son he’s leaving Tinseltown and movin’ with his auntie and uncle in West Philly, asap.




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