Watch 30 for 30 Shorts

30 For 30 Shorts is a television series that debuted on ESPN beginning in 2012. 30 For 30 made reference to 2012 being the 30th anniversary of ESPN and the shorts were 30 minutes long. The shows and short movies showcased inspiring sports stories of the day and looked back at sports events from yesteryear. The shows were directed and produced by some well known movie directors and film makers.

ESPN
3 Seasons, 46 Episodes
May 15, 2012
Documentary & Biography
8.8/10
Cast: Ice Cube, Dick Vitale, Brent Musburger, Mike Tyson
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30 for 30 Shorts Full Episode Guide

  • Elvis Presley was many things in America from rock and roll god to film star to cultural icon, but one thing most people didn't know about The King was how much he loved the game of racquetball and what lengths he went to keep it popular.

  • No diver had ever won two gold medals in consecutive Olympics, so the pressure on Greg Louganis before the 1988 Games in Seoul was huge. And that was before he found out that he was HIV positive, and before he knew he needed to keep his condition secret.

  • On November 3, 2013, 86-year-old Joy Johnson ran her 25th consecutive New York City Marathon--it would be her last. Near the 20 mile marker, Joy fell and hit her head, but with unwavering resolve got back on her feet to complete the race.

  • With the nation gripped by Kansas City Royals' fever, filmmaker Josh Swade flew to South Korea. He was dead set on bringing back the Royals' good luck charm- super fan SungWoo Lee- in time for the World Series.

  • Tells the story of the Pittsburg Pirate drug trials of 1985 and the significance it had upon the game of baseball. The film will shed light on this truly unique, profound and incredible event in sports history that might be lesser known but its reverberations are still being felt today. In all, seven men were indicted and eleven players suspended after giving honest and at times shocking testimony about cocaine usage around the league. The bargain was simple- give us what you know and in exchange you will be granted immunity. The trials made national headlines and ignited the first serious discussions around drugs in sports.

  • On the night of October 30, 2001, Derek Jeter walked into the warmup area beneath Yankee Stadium and saw a man practicing for the ceremonial first ball. "They'll boo you if you throw from in front of the mound," he told the 43rd President of the United States. "And they'll boo you if you bounce it." But George W. Bush had a lot more riding on that pitch than just approval from the fans.

  • Casey Stengel said he was the "strangest man to ever play the game of baseball". Morris "Moe" Berg was a third string catcher and a first rate spy. Whether he was dining with the Marx Brothers, learning Quantum physics from Albert Einstein, or on a mission to assassinate Heisenberg, Moe Berg was in a league all his own.

  • Under the cloak of secrecy, a rookie pitching prospect attended the New York Mets spring training in 1985. His name was Hayden "Sidd" Finch and he had never played baseball before, had dropped out of Harvard to study transcendental meditation, spoke ten languages, wore one hiking boot and the other foot bare when on the mound, and threw a 168mph fastball. He was about to change baseball, as George Plimpton wrote in his article published in Sports Illustrated on April 1st, 1985. This film follows one of the greatest April Fools' Day hoaxes the sports world has ever seen.

  • March Madness, 1989. Faced with the last seed in the tournament, sixteen seed Princeton is set to play tournament favorite number one seed in Georgetown. The game was expected to be such a blow out that it wasn't even originally scheduled to be broadcast on television. Unbeknownst to the Princeton players or their innovative coach, Pete Carril, they were about to play one of the greatest games in college basketball history.

  • Kevin Von Erich was part of a legendary wrestling family that consisted of five brothers: David, Michael, Chris, Kerry and Kevin. Although the Von Erich family had huge success in the ring, this famous family is also known for the tragedy it has endured. Now Kevin is the only surviving brother, the other four were lost to drug addiction or suicide. Now he lives off the grid, in a remote part of Hawaii. Here he finds a sanctuary, a place to retreat from the memories of his days in the ring and the ghosts of his brothers.

  • Ted Williams was already one of baseball's immortals when two of his three children decided there might be a way to give him life after death. That way was cryogenics, and in this film directed by Miles Kane and Josh Koury, the 2002 controversy over what to do with his remains-- "The Big Chill" read one headline--is revived. Doctors, writers and intimates offer up their opinions, but the one truth that shines through is this: love works in mysterious ways.

  • The film will explore the inception of the original formula set against the 1965-1966/7 seasons of the University of Florida Gator football team. In time for the 50th anniversary of its creation, we'll hear from many of those who were involved in testing the original formula, including Dr. Cade's wife, co-inventor Dana Shires, players Steve Spurrier, Larry Smith, Jim Yarbrough, Coach Ray Graves and others.

  • In 1976 Muhammad Ali and Ken Norton met inside the ring at Yankee Stadium. The conclusion of this fight would go down as one of the most controversial decisions in the sport of boxing. But this fight, which should have been remembered for what happened inside the ring, was tainted by gang activity and theft in the wake of the NYPD strike happening just outside the stadium's doors. This short will reveal a little known story of the chaos taking place behind the scenes, recanted by legendary boxing promoter Bob Arum.

  • John Wensink's most infamous moment came on December 1, 1977. After finishing up an exchange of fists with Alex Pirus, Wensink skated over to the Minnesota bench and motioned with his hands, challenging the entire team but no player responded. Through Wensink's own words and additional context provided by die hard fans, family and fellow NHL players, this short will delve into the mindset of the Bruins' most legendary enforcer and the journey one takes when that life is left behind.

  • The film will tell the story of Mackey Sasser, a talented catcher for the New York Mets, who could hit, call pitches, block the plate and fire missiles down to second base but he couldn't throw the ball back to the pitcher. Through interviews with Mackey, his sports psychologists and commentators, as well as footage of his playing days and his treatment (which involved using a baseball to find the boyhood traumas underlying his career-ending anxiety), this program will look at the mental side of sports and probe what takes a player in and out of the "zone".

  • In the summer of 2001, a controversy unlike any other led to the disqualification of the Bronx baseball team from the Little League World Series. At the center of the bizarre story was a quiet, unassuming 14-year-old kid named Danny Almonte. Nicknamed "The Little Unit", the hard-throwing left-hander was exposed by Sports Illustrated as being too old to have competed in the tournament. The story instantly caught national and even international attention, as Danny was pushed into the spotlight and accused of cheating in the most sacred of all amateur sports. Twelve years later, the reclusive Almonte finally tells the truth about one of the strangest chapters in youth sports history: a hoax that would forever change the way people view amateur athletics in America.

  • This short will explore the origins and nuances of the high five, bringing to life the unique legacy of the gesture and the story of one of its unsung originators. The filmmakers will tell the story of Glenn Burke and his origins as a baseball prodigy, his time in the majors and spontaneous &invention& of the gesture. Using this moment, the story then pivots to chronicle the simultaneous spread of the high five as both celebratory and political gesture alongside the professional and personal decline of Glenn Burke.

  • Marquette University's men's basketball team is known for some of college's most unique uniforms. The most iconic of them being the untucked jersey worn in 1977 when Marquette won its first and only national championship. Commissioned by legendary coach Al, this forward thinking, and subtly subversive, jersey was designed by then current player and art major Bo Ellis. The jersey would later be banned by the NCAA. This exploration into the history of the 1977 Maguire jersey will provide insight on Bo Ellis and Al Maguire, the power of uniforms, the correlation between sports/fashion, and the benefits of a creative environment, which allowed a Championship team to flourish.

  • In the winter of 2003, two cities went after the same man. On one side, New York. On the other, Boston. In the middle: Alex Rodriguez. In a 36-hour period, the best player in the league went from the messiah of the Red Sox to the savior of the Yankees.

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30 for 30 Shorts is currently available to watch and stream on ESPN. You can also buy, rent 30 for 30 Shorts on demand at Amazon, Google Play, iTunes online.