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30 for 30 4 Seasons 2010

Season 1
4.6 out of 5 stars (382) IMDb 8.9/10

Inspired by ESPN's anniversary, ESPN Films' 30 for 30 is an unprecedented documentary series featuring films from some of today's finest storytellers. Own select films from this acclaimed series today.

Starring:
Jalen Rose, Michael Eric Dyson

Available to watch on supported devices.

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Season 1

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1. Kings Ransom

On August 9, 1988, the NHL was forever changed with the single stroke of a pen. The Edmonton Oilers, fresh off their fourth Stanley Cup victory in five years, signed a deal and exported Wayne Gretzky, a Canadian national treasure and the greatest hockey player ever to play the game, to the Los Angeles Kings in a multi-player, multi-million dollar deal.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: October 6, 2009
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2. Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL?

In 1983 the upstart United States Football League (USFL) had the audacity to challenge the almighty NFL. The new league did the unthinkable by playing in the spring and plucked three straight Heisman Trophy winners away from the NFL.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: October 20, 2009
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3. Muhammad and Larry

In October of 1980, Muhammad Ali was preparing to fight for an unprecedented fourth heavyweight title against his friend and former sparring partner Larry Holmes. To say that the great Ali was in the twilight of his career would be generous.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: October 27, 2009
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4. Without Bias

More than two decades after his tragic cocaine overdose, the late Len Bias still leaves more questions than answers. When Bias dropped dead two days after the 1986 NBA Draft, he forever altered our perception of casual drug use and became the tipping point of America's drug crisis in the mid-80s.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: November 9, 1995
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5. The Band That Wouldn't Die

In late March of 1984, a moving company secretly packed up the Baltimore Colts' belongings and its fleet of vans snuck off in the darkness of the early morning, leaving a city of deeply devoted fans in shock and disbelief. What caused owner Robert Irsay to turn his back on a town that was as closely linked to its team as any in the NFL?

TV-NR CC Runtime: 55 minutes Release date: November 3, 2009
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6. Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks

Reggie Miller single-handedly crushed the hearts of Knick fans multiple times. But it was the 1995 Eastern Conference Semifinals which solidified Miller as Public Enemy #1 in New York City. With moments to go in Game 1, and facing a seemingly insurmountable deficit of 105-99, Miller scored eight points in 8.9 seconds to give his Indiana Pacers an astonishing victory.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 10 minutes Release date: March 14, 2010
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7. Guru of Go (Loyola Marymount)

By the mid-1980s, Paul Westhead had worn out his welcome in the NBA. The best offer he could find came from an obscure small college with little history of basketball. In the same city where he had won an NBA championship with Magic and Kareem, Westhead was determined to perfect his non-stop run-and-gun offensive system at Loyola Marymount.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: April 3, 2010
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8. No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson

On Valentine's Day 1993, 17-year-old Bethel High School basketball star Allen Iverson was bowling in Hampton, Va., with five high school friends. It was supposed to be an ordinary evening, but it became a night that defined Iverson's young life.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 23 minutes Release date: April 13, 2010
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9. Silly Little Game

Fantasy sports is estimated to be a $4 billion dollar industry that boasts over 30 million participants and a league for almost every sport imaginable. But for all this success, the story of the game's inception is little known.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: April 20, 2010
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10. Run Ricky Run

Ricky Williams does not conform to America's definition of the modern athlete. In 2004, with rumors of another positive marijuana test looming, the Miami Dolphins running back traded adulation and a mansion in South Florida for anonymity and a $7 a night tent in Australia.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: April 27, 2010
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11. The 16th Man

Rugby has long been viewed in South Africa as a game for the white population, and the country's success in the sport has been a true source of Afrikaner pride. When the 50 year old policies and entrenched injustices of apartheid were finally overthrown in 1994, Nelson Mandela's new government began rebuilding a nation badly in need of racial unity.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: May 4, 2010
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12. The Birth of Big Air

In 1985, at the tender age of 13, Mat Hoffman entered into the BMX circuit as an amateur, and by 16 he had risen to the professional level. Throughout his storied career, Hoffman has ignored conventional limitations, instead, focusing his efforts on the purity of the sport and the pursuit of "what's next."

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: July 29, 2010
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13. Jordan Rides the Bus

In the fall of 1993, in his prime and at the summit of the sports world, Michael Jordan walked away from pro basketball. After leading the Dream Team to an Olympic gold medal in 1992 and taking the Bulls to their third consecutive NBA championship the following year, Jordan was jolted by the murder of his father.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: August 31, 2010
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14. Little Big Men

On August 28, 1982, Cody Webster and a small group of schoolyard friends from Kirkland, Washington, sat anxiously in a dugout waiting to take the field for the championship game of the Little League World Series. Their focus was just about what you'd expect from any 12 year old: hit the ball, throw strikes, cross your fingers and then maybe you'll win.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: August 25, 2010
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15. Unmatched (Evert & Navratilova)

The first time Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova stepped onto a tennis court together, the world scarcely noticed. Only a few hundred spectators saw the pert 18-year-old beat the scrappy 16-year-old Czech in 1973. "I remember that she was fat," Evert recalled. But I remember thinking, if she loses weight, we're all in trouble."

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: September 14, 2010
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16. The House of Steinbrenner

Love him or hate him, there is no denying that George Steinbrenner has been one of the most colorful and successful owners in contemporary sports. Heading up a group that bought the New York Yankees in 1973 for $10 million, "King George" emphatically branded the world's most celebrated sports franchise as his own.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: September 21, 2010
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17. Into the Wind

In 1980, Terry Fox continued to fight bone cancer and deep despair in pursuit of a singular, motivating vision: to run across Canada. Three years after having his right leg amputated six inches above the knee, Fox set out to cover more than a marathon's distance each day until he reached the shores of Victoria, British Columbia.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 56 minutes Release date: September 28, 2010
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18. Four Days in October

When the night of October 16, 2004 came to a merciful end, the Curse of the Bambino was alive and well.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 52 minutes Release date: October 5, 2010
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19. Once Brothers

Drazen Petrovic and Vlade Divac were two friends who grew up together sharing the common bond of basketball. Together, they lifted the Yugoslavian National team to unimaginable heights.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 21 minutes Release date: October 19, 2010
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20. Tim Richmond: To The Limit

Natural. Rock star. Outsider. In the 1980s, race car driver Tim Richmond lived his life the way he raced car. Born into a wealthy family, Richmond was the antithesis of the Southern blue-collar, dirt-track racers who dominated NASCAR.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: October 12, 2010
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21. Fernando Nation

'The Natural' is supposed to be a blue-eyed boy who teethed on a 36-ounce Louisville Slugger. So how was it that a pudgy 20-year-old, Mexican, left-handed pitcher from a remote village in the Sonoran desert, unable to speak a word of English, could sell out stadiums across America and become a rock star overnight?

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: October 26, 2010
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22. Marion Jones: Press Pause

Few athletes in Olympic history have reached such heights and depths as Marion Jones. After starring at the University of North Carolina and winning gold at the 1997 and '99 World Track and Field Championships, her rise to the top culminated at the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney, Australia.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: November 2, 2010
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23. The Best That Never Was (Marcus Dupree)

In 1981, college athletic recruiting changed forever as a dozen big time football programs sat waiting for the decision of a physically powerful and lightning-quick high school running back named Marcus Dupree.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 41 minutes Release date: November 9, 2010
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24. Pony Excess (SMU)

From 1981-1984, a small private school in Dallas owned the best record in college football. The Mustangs of Southern Methodist University were riding high on the backs of the vaunted "Pony Express" backfield. But as the middle of the decade approached, the program was coming apart at the seams.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 45 minutes Release date: December 11, 2010
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25. The U

Long before the hip hop culture filled our airwaves and shopping malls, the Miami Hurricanes brought street values and hood bravado into America's living room.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 43 minutes Release date: December 12, 2009
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26. June 17th, 1994

Do you remember where you were on June 17, 1994?

TV-NR CC Runtime: 53 minutes Release date: June 16, 2010
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27. The Two Escobars

This critically-acclaimed film exposes the intersection of crime, sports and nationalism in 1990's Colombia.

TV-NR CC Runtime: 1 hour, 45 minutes Release date: June 22, 2010
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Alright, just a quick bit of background as to why I purchased this. Long story short: I was seeking the perfect Father's Day gift. This was it! Actually, I had been eyeing this set for quite some time, but then when I discovered it came packaged with a hat, it was a "no brainer." For those of you wondering, yes, the hat is of nice quality and it is comprised of a rich black color, with the "ESPN" logo in vibrant red color. It is excellent to wear around at sporting events, bars, or anywhere to be quite honest.

As for the documentaries offered in the set, both volumes are included here (films 1-30) and packaged quite nicely I might add. Naturally I haven't been able to watch them all yet, but my father and I have sat down and looked at a good deal of them, and all I have to say is that each-and-every film is extremely well done. Now, I might add, I hadn't seen any of these when they aired on television before purchasing this, but I knew of them, and many of my friends swore they were amazing. Well they were absolutely right, because these videos are filled to the brim with both entertainment and informative learning. There were many times where I found myself stunned at just how much unseen and/or rare footage was used within a great deal of the films (and I still have plenty more to look through). Also, for the older generation, a sense of nostalgia or "I remember when that happened," can definitely be felt when viewing these. It's nice to know that one can easily tell some form of "thought" was put into the production, research, and presentation of these documentaries, and because of that, they truly stand out.

Let's say you were on the fence about purchasing this set though due to consideration of the Blu-Ray set (like I was).
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1 Comment 48 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
I purchased this box set after catching a few of these films on TV on ESPN and was taken back by how great these documentaries were. It tells 30 of the most compelling, controversial and tragic stories in all of sports. I've seen about 4 on TV and I'm excited to catch the other 26. This is a perfect gift to give any and all sports fans and for more than 30 hours of great sports history the price is great. A must have.
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This was a birthday gift from my girlfriend. I have watched most of the movies but missed a couple. I am excited to sit down and watch the ones I missed. So far my favorite is probably "The Two Escobars". I am still amazed with some of the footage and interviews ESPN was able to get for some of these films. Looks like I have about 30 things to do this summer.
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Format: Blu-ray
First, let me say that I'm a guy that doesn't really like sports. I mean I almost never sit down and watch any kind of game on TV, or go to a sporting event, or know what other guys are talking about when the subject of baseball, football, or basketball comes up. I could name a couple of players in every sport, the ones that everyone else knows, but that is it. So that said, I think this set is nothing short of great. I love documentaries that are well made and take you into a world that you don't know about in a way that makes it fascinating. I've watched documentaries on scrabble, spelling bees, or competitive crossword puzzles and loved them. Most stories have taken an aspect of some sport and told a story that has drawn me in almost immediately. Usually it is an interesting part of a much larger picture. For instance, I know who Wayne Gretzky, the hockey player, is and I have a vague recollection of him coming to the US, but I never knew the story of how it affected the people of Edmonton and all of the drama behind it. Also very interesting to hear him talk about it now. So in summary, I would recommend this set to anyone, man or woman, in the knowledge that they would enjoy it as much as me once they got started. If you are any kind of a real sports fan, you should already have this.
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I've caught a couple of these when they aired and just purchased the full set. These in-depth stories are "required reading" for big sports buffs and I can't wait to catch the ones I missed. A perfect gift for the sports lover in your family or for yourself, you can't go wrong with these.

Update: Now that I've watched more of the series, it's amazing how far in-depth some of the stories go. As a Baltimore Ravens fan I knew the story of the Colts leaving in the middle of the night and the band, but exactly how the band was able to keep their uniforms and the details of the story are amazing. Also seeing some of the raw emotion that still lingers is just amazing. Hands down, these are the best documentaries I've ever watched.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Great Docuseries. I've seen almost all of them. Even the subjects that don't seem interesting at all end up being fascinating. I don't like cycling, collage basketball or tennis but I've seen numerous documentaries on each of those by 30 for 30 and I end up loving the subject they present. They manage to make anything entertaining. Like any other series there are some better then others but all worth a watch for the most part.I recommend starting with The U.
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Not quite the entire season - would really like to see the Jimmy the Greek episode - why are 3 shows missing??
3 stars in memory of the fallen ;)
Otherwise - tremendous stuff.
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