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American political discourse can easily descend from snark to sarcasm to out-and-out sniping. But stabbing is thankfully rare. Of course, that wasn't the case not long ago - well, actually, 2,056 years ago Thursday - when Julius Caesar ran afoul of a rascally band of conspiratorial senators. Poor Julie paid the ultimate price, absorbing 23 stab wounds and quickly assuming room temperature. This happened, of course, on the infamous Ides of March, which Shakespeare immortalized in his classic 1599 play "Julius Caesar."
So as we arrive at the Ides of March - in American terms, the 15th - it's a perfect time to reflect on the legacy of those sneaky senators who instigated Caesar's demise. Who are the nastiest modern-day backstabbers?
Maybe Robert Irsay? Moving vans whisked all the equipment of his Baltimore team 600 miles due west under cover of darkness in 1984, and the Indianapolis Colts were born. So was a blood feud that exists to this day. Maybe Shaquille O'Neal? The Big Backstabber bolted Orlando for Los Angeles in 1996, and you could argue that the central Florida franchise is still trying to extract the knife. Maybe Johnny Damon? He was one of the "Idiots" who won the 2004 World Series for Boston. But one short year later, he was modeling the uniform of the detested Yankees. Was that another manifestation of the Ides of March - or, in this case, the Idiots of March?
So, knowing that a legion of players, coaches and owners have stabbed their teams in the back, we invite you to change into your toga, slip on your sandals and see if any of your favorite villains achieved infamy on the list of our Top 10 Traitors in Sports.
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