Lamar Odom Wants ESPN to Denounce Stephen A. Smith's Crack Comment


How can you go lower than taking a jab at Lamar Odom?





Betsy DeVos Ignores Title IX’s 45th Anniversary


VICE Sports inquired with the Department of Education about what celebrations Betsy DeVos and the department might be planning for the anniversary. They provided no information.





Try Not to Watch this Hypnotic Video of Kids' Jump Rope WR Forever


These kids have cooked up a batch of perfect perfection.





We’re Hiring A Copy Editor


FiveThirtyEight is hiring a copy editor. We’re looking for someone to edit articles for clarity, style and, especially, accuracy. A significant portion of the FiveThirtyEight copy desk’s job is fact-checking stories that rely on statistical analysis and data, so the ideal candidate will be comfortable working with numbers. He or she will also be collaborative […]





College World Series Names to Know


In Omaha, the College World Series is in full swing, and some of the players have already been selected in the MLB Draft. Here are a group of players to keep your eye on as they move from college through the Minors.





Breaking Down The Jimmy Butler Trade


The Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves completed the biggest draft-day trade, swapping draft picks and moving Jimmy Butler to Minnesota in exchange for a couple of lesser players. In the video above, Kyle Wagner breaks down the trade and wonders what the Bulls were thinking.





Messi to Pay $800 For Each Day He Should be In Jail for Tax Fraud


It appears to be a kind of good faith fine, given that Messi's 21 month prison sentence was expected to be thrown out anyway.





Dale Youth ABC: The Boxing Gym on the First Floor of Grenfell Tower


Lost to the flames of Grenfell Tower in London, the Dale Youth Boxing Club vows to box on.





Some Cardinals Fans Are Freaking Out About Gay Pride Night at Busch Stadium


The Cardinals announced a Gay Pride Night in August at Busch Stadium and some of the Best Fans in Baseball are not happy about it.





McGregor In Reverse: Boxer Heather Hardy Ready for MMA Debut


After building a 20-0 as a boxer, Brooklyn mainstay Heather Hardy is ready to make her MMA debut at Bellator 180 on Saturday.





The Sacramento Kings Are No Longer a Laughingstock


After a decade of incompetence, dysfunction, and general sadness, the Kings had their best draft in years on Thursday night. It's officially an exciting time to be a Sacramento fan.





Biscuits 33: The Season Finale


In the season's final episode, Dave and Sean react to the expansion draft, the NHL awards, Marian Hossa, Shane Doan and much more.





How Much More Is Enough for BJ Penn?


Seven years since his last victory and with a fight against Dennis Siver on Sunday, the end of "The Prodigy" is as far off as ever.





The Bulls Made The Right Decision But The Wrong Trade


CHICAGO — NBA franchises fail all the time in trying to construct a team. On Thursday, the Bulls illustrated that it’s possible to botch the dismantling of one. Anyone who watched the Bulls over the past two years could see that this team — whether it managed to sneak into the playoffs or not — […]





Wait and C: Tribe, Tribe Again


The Indians are starting to create some separation in the AL Central as they begin a weekend series against the Twins at home. But the memories of last year's World Series loss are still fresh, and this is a team hungry for another chance.





Teams With Longest No-No Droughts


Max Scherzer came very close to throwing a no-hitter this week, losing it in the eighth inning. If he had finished the no-no, it would have been the fourth since the start of 2014 for the Nats. Not all teams have been so lucky.





Will The Senate Pass Its Health Care Bill?


We’ve seen this movie before. Republicans, after a secretive drafting process, finally unveil a health care bill. But the initial reaction is tepid, with both moderate and conservative Republicans expressing “concerns” and demanding changes to the bill. That’s what happened when the House Republican leadership released its health care bill, the American Health Care Act, […]





Can You Drink More Coffee Than Your Co-workers?


Welcome to The Riddler. Every week, I offer up problems related to the things we hold dear around here: math, logic and probability. There are two types: Riddler Express for those of you who want something bite-sized and Riddler Classic for those of you in the slow-puzzle movement. Submit a correct answer for either, and […]





Significant Digits For Friday, June 23, 2017


You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news. 3 states Missouri has become the third state to sue drug manufacturers, accusing them of misrepresenting the risks of the opioids that are fueling a national epidemic. Ohio and Mississippi have also sued. [Reuters] 3 defections Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell […]





Winners & Losers of the '17 NBA Draft


The picks are in, but the drama may just be getting started. The 2017 NBA Draft took place in Brooklyn on Thursday night, with Markelle Fultz going to the 76ers at No. 1 and Lonzo Ball to the Lakers at No. 2. Let's look at what's coming next.





CFB's Wild 2007 Season, 10 Years Later


Every college football season features at least one week in which the sport descends into chaos, but we need to resist the urge to compare anything to 2007. Ten years later, it's a season that deserves to be celebrated for its unsurpassable drama and quirkiness.





Butler Makes Wolves Playoff-Ready


The Bulls parted ways with Jimmy Butler on Thursday's draft night, trading him and the 16th pick to Minnesota for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the selection of Lauri Markkanen. Here are three takeaways from the first blockbuster trade of the evening:





Markelle Yeah! Fultz Goes No. 1, Ball No. 2


The Philadelphia 76ers selected guard Markelle Fultz on Thursday night with the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft. The Los Angeles Lakers followed by taking Lonzo Ball as the draft started with a pair of freshmen point guards from the Pac-12 Conference.





FWIW, Brady's Sumo Game Is Huge


On this week's For What It's Worth, Tom Brady goes to the land of the rising sun and wedgies. Ray Lewis has advice for Colin Kaepernick. And the worst thing to happen in a video game in the history of the world, happens.





What The Senate GOP Plan Would Mean For Health Insurance


Senate Republicans released the text of their bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act today, and like the House bill before it, the measure would give big tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans and roll back Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor. It also would get rid of the unpopular mandate […]





The Knicks Would Be Crazy To Trade Kristaps Porzingis


New York is not a place where hope lives long. On the eve of the 2017 NBA Draft, Knicks president Phil Jackson appeared on the team’s MSG Network to explain why the team was entertaining trade offers for Kristaps Porzingis, the best young prospect the franchise has seen since Patrick Ewing. Not that there are […]





MLB All-Star Game: My Roster Picks


2017 All-Star Game voting ends at the end of June, and if you need help putting a ballot together, here are my selections for the All-Star rosters. While some names are shoo-ins, other cases are a bit more difficult to determine.





To Beat The Warriors, You Gotta Draft Like The Warriors. (Good Luck With That.)


In the age of superteams and super-duper teams, the Golden State Warriors built the ultimate doomsday machine when they added Kevin Durant in free agency last summer. Winning a championship this year seemed — and ultimately was — inevitable. But before KD put pen to paper, Golden State had captured one title and set the […]





Going Back to The Future In Baseball


Twenty years is a long time. The world will change a lot more than baseball will in 20 years, and baseball can't help but evolve. If you look at an MLB game from 1997 -- 20 years ago -- it barely looks like the same game. Here's how much has changed.





The Senators Who Could Take Down The Health Care Bill


If you’re wondering what will happen with the Senate’s effort to repeal Obamacare, I recommend you follow the words, actions and eventually the votes of four Republican senators over the next days or weeks: Susan Collins (Maine), Mike Lee (Utah), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Rand Paul (Kentucky). Why those four? First, they are part of […]





All-Star Game: My NL Roster Picks


2017 All-Star Game voting ends at the end of June, and if you need help putting a ballot together, here are my selections for the National League All-Star roster. While some names are shoo-ins, other cases are a bit more difficult to determine.





Significant Digits For Thursday, June 22, 2017


You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news. 5 Uber founder Travis Kalanick stepped down as the CEO of the troubled ride-hailing company Tuesday after five major investors in the company called for his resignation. [The New York Times] 10 percent stake The Wall Street Journal fired its chief […]





Golden Goal: Building a Vegas Winner


The Las Vegas Golden Knights began constructing their roster on Wednesday in an expansion draft. While some names drew some applause, the main goal for the NHL's newest team is compiling assets to compete later on.





CFB Breakout Team Candidates


The 2016 college football season featured several examples of teams breaking out of recent ruts to achieve breakthroughs, and it's inevitable that the 2017 season will feature similar achievements. These are the teams with the best chance of making a leap forward.





40 Years From Now, The U.S. Could Look Like Las Vegas


The United States is changing rapidly. The oldest baby boomers are into their retirement years, and the median age of the U.S. population is climbing. At the same time, each generation is more racially and ethnically diverse than the previous one. For the foreseeable future, the U.S. will grow older, more Hispanic and more Asian. […]





Does It Matter That Senate Republicans Wrote Their Health Care Bill In Secret?


Senate Republicans are expected to release the text of their health care bill Thursday morning, after weeks of negotiations that have occurred behind closed doors. We convened a group of FiveThirtyEighters to talk about the process so far — and what might be coming down the pike. The transcript below has been lightly edited. blythe […]





Chances Are Your Team Is Not Picking The Best Player In The NBA Draft


In the video above, FiveThirtyEight’s Neil Paine explains why the NBA draft can be a crapshoot, even if you have the No. 1 pick.





MLB's 5 Most Fun Player Debates


Who is the best pitcher in the league? It's a trickier question than you might think. How about the best young shortstop? And If you were starting a franchise, would you draft Nolan Arenado or Kris Bryant? Let's settle some fun arguments.





The NHL MVP’s Big, Bearded Snub


At the NHL’s annual awards show tonight in Las Vegas, the shiniest piece of hardware that will be given out is the Hart Memorial Trophy, which is awarded to the player deemed to be the most valuable to his team by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association. The shortlist of nominees includes Penguins’ captain Sidney Crosby, […]





Let’s Play The Democratic Blame Game!


In this week’s politics chat, we sift through Democratic finger-pointing after their latest special election losses. The transcript below has been lightly edited. micah (Micah Cohen, politics editor): Democrats are not happy today, having lost special elections in Georgia and South Carolina on Tuesday. And we’re here to talk about that unhappiness, to really dive […]





Send In the Crown! Can King Save L.A.?


If you believe the rumors, LeBron James just might have one more move left in him. Some people think, if he feels he can't win another title in Cleveland once he hits free agency next year, he could be going west. That might mean Jerry West.





Baseball’s Mediocre Teams Are Disappearing


This is an era of tanking and rebuilding in baseball. Teams like the Cubs and Astros drop into the cellar for a few years, stockpile talent, and then burst back into first place, stronger than ever. Never before have teams so consciously chosen between contention and reconstruction. The ebb and flow of teams through the […]





Playoff Odds Report: June Edition


Every month, we take a look at the MLB playoff picture with the help of Baseball Prospectus' Playoff Odds Report. This month, the numbers show that the Rays and Indians are surging while Brewers fans may have something to worry about.





The Perils of Being a Knicks Fan


Even though most of my 17 years as a Knicks fan has been miserable, I've stuck with them through some of the lowest points of the franchise. But if Phil Jackson ends up trading Kristaps Porzingis, that might be the last straw.





The Sixers Finally Made A Move To Compete


Welcome to the latest episode of Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight’s sports podcast. On this week’s show (Jun. 20, 2017), we’re covering all the latest news as the NBA draft approaches. We’re joined by FiveThirtyEight’s Kyle Wagner, who helps us make sense of the latest rumors and developments. Plus, a significant digit on MLB’s Cody Bellinger. Here […]





Emergency Politics Podcast: The Results In Georgia And South Carolina


The FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast team reacts to the special election results in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District and South Carolina’s 5th. How’d the polls do? And what do the results portend for the 2018 midterms? You can listen to the episode by clicking the “play” button above or by downloading it in iTunes, the ESPN App […]





Where Can Democrats Win?


The special election in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District on Tuesday night, where Republican Karen Handel defeated Democrat Jon Ossoff by just under 4 percentage points, will have plenty of near-term consequences. Republicans are in the midst of trying to pass a health care bill, and Handel’s win should give GOP members of Congress a confidence […]





Movers & Lakers: L.A.'s Next Play


On Tuesday, Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Lakers will be trading Timofey Mozgov and D'Angelo Russell for Brook Lopez and the 27th pick in Thursday's draft. It looks as if L.A. is ready to make a bigger move -- back to relevance.





'Real Deal' Memories of The Bite Fight


On June 28, 1997, Mike Tyson shocked the world by biting the ear of his heavyweight opponent, Evander Holyfield. Twenty years after the infamous fight, I chatted with "Real Deal" to talk about that night, and the power of forgiveness.





Huskies Hope For New Golden Age


It's been one hundred years since the end of the first golden age of Washington football, when it went a record 64 games without a loss over a decade. With Chris Petersen at the helm, the hope is that, a century later, Washington is heading for new glory days.





Will To Win? Grier Gives WVU QB Boost


West Virginia will look a lot different in 2017, with many of its key players gone from a 10-3 team. However, one area is looking a lot better: Quarterback. Florida transfer Will Grier received a waive to be eligible at the start of the season, giving WVU a prized new passer.





Ranking the Best NFL O-Line Units


Without protection, even the best running backs and quarterbacks can't succeed. A great offensive line is often as underrated as it is important. Let's take a look around the league and see which units are the strongest and which might need an overhaul.





Top 5 Athletes On Earth This Week


A baseball rookie blasted some home runs at a never-before-seen pace, an NYCFC veteran showed that he isn't slowing down just yet and a WNBA star set a historic record. But which athlete topped our list this week?





Top 13 Photos Of The Week


As part of an ongoing series, Sports on Earth is partnering with Getty Images to bring you the best snapshots from around the sports world each week. Here we count down the best 13 photos from June 14-20.





Debatable Me: Warriors and POTUS


There is much discussion about whether the Golden State Warriors should visit President Donald Trump at the White House to celebrate a title after being outspoken against his political policies. Here, I debate the hot topic ... with myself.





2017's Most Tortured NHL Fan Bases


The Pittsburgh Penguins won their second consecutive Stanley Cup this week, and so now that the season is over, it's time for a Sports on Earth tradition: Our annual ranking of the league's franchises based on how tortured their fan bases are.





All-Star Game: My AL Roster Picks


2017 All-Star Game voting ends at the end of June, and if you need help putting a ballot together, here are my selections for the American League All-Star roster. While some names are close calls and others are no-brainers, they are all well deserving.





Best NBA Draft Classes In History


While we don't know where the 2017 draft class will rank among the best of all time, we can still know where the bar has been set. Let's look to the past and determine the top 10 NBA Drafts of all time, based on number of titles, All-Stars, MVP Awards and more.





Griffin Done In Cavs' Exec Shakeup


Days before the draft, and less than two weeks before free agency season opens, Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert took everyone by surprise by letting David Griffin walk. Here are three revelations from the stunning turn of events.





CFB Offensive Lineman Rankings 2017


Our weekly preseason college football player rankings continue with the top 35 offensive linemen for 2017, a group deep with potential stars after only two linemen were picked in the first round of the NFL Draft in April.





NBA Mock Draft: Best Case/Worst Case


The NBA Draft is almost here, with a blockbuster trade already in the books between the Sixers and Celtics. Time to mock things up to see how things may shake out on Thursday, along with possible comps for each potential lottery pick.





VAR Is a Kick In Right Direction


So far at the Confederations Cup, the VAR -- "Video Assistant Referee" -- system has shown it can make correct call where referees can't. While it still has kinks that need to be worked out, it's a positive step toward getting rid of human error.





Seven NFL Team Stocks to Buy


After the Titans added receiver Eric Decker, the franchise's strong offseason got even stronger. Tennessee isn't alone, though, in the way it has improved. What other football teams around the league have seen their stocks on the rise?





Time to Put Rose On HOF Ballot


Pete Rose shouldn't come off baseball's ineligible list, nor should he be a manager or coach again, nor be on the field for anything except ceremonial occasions. But he still belongs on the Hall of Fame ballot. After that, the voters can decide what's next.





The Making of a Signature Moment


When teams are destined for greatness, they often have a signature moment during the season which validates their surprising success. For the Rockies, that moment may have come on Sunday, when Nolan Arenado crushed a walk-off home run to hit for the cycle.





Solid As the Rox: Colorado Is Tops


Still think the Rockies are just a flash in the pan? Think again. Colorado is perched atop the NL West with the second-best record in the Majors (46-26) following one of the most exciting games in franchise history on Sunday.





NL Power Trio: The West's Best


A three-headed monster has emerged in the National League West, as the Rockies, Dodgers and D-backs could be frontrunners for three of the league's five postseason spots. This week, the teams will battle for divisional supremacy.





Koepka Cruises To Record-Tying Win


Brooks Koepka won the U.S. Open, the first major victory of his career, with a 5-under 67 on Sunday at Erin Hills in Wisconsin to finish 16-under for the weekend, tying Rory McIlroy's record for lowest 72-hole score under par in tournament history.





LaVar Ball: Father of the Year?


Just days away from the 2017 NBA Draft, the entire basketball world has its focus on LaVar and Lonzo Ball. You can criticize LaVar all you want for being an overbearing dad, but there's no question he loves his son, who could be a game-changer.





Real Deal! Celtics-Sixers Swap Picks


The NBA Draft is still a few days away, but the wheeling and dealing has already begun. According to several reports, the Celtics have agreed to a trade that will send the No. 1 overall pick in Thursday's draft to the Sixers.





Five Young Aces In the Making


This year, we have seen some truly promising youngsters look ready to make the leap and join the game's elite pitchers. Let's look closely at five whose jerseys you may want to buy before they win their first Cy Young Award.





Previewing WWE's Most 'Money' Event


On Sunday, the WWE will host its eighth Money in the Bank event, a ladder event with plenty of intriguing possibilities. Here's a preview of the two matches -- on the men's and women's side -- and an attempt to sort through the noise.





U.S. Open Still Up For Grabs


Justin Thomas set a U.S. Open record for lowest-score below par with a 9-under 63 on Saturday at Erin Hills. Despite that historic effort, the field is still wide open, and a number of golfers still have a chance to make a run for the title.





10 Great Father-Son Duos in MLB


The relationship between fathers and sons is baked into baseball's mythology as well as reality. Entering Father's Day weekend, there are 19 players on active Major League rosters whose fathers also played in the Show. Let's look at the best.





Dive Into Five: The Weekend Watch List


Father's Day Weekend is here, which means the headlining event of the sports week is the U.S. Open golf tournament at Erin Hills in Wisconsin. Here's our weekly guide to the most essential sporting events to watch over the weekend.





10 Best College Baseball Teams Ever


It's the time of year when the ping replaces the crack of the bat for two weeks. The College World Series starts this weekend, and top-seeded Oregon State will be chasing history, trying to find a place on the list of the best college baseball teams ever.





Gators Swamped With Imbalance


Florida's golden eras have come with entertaining, prolific offenses leading the charge. The past few years have been anything but that, as the Gators' defense has been far ahead of the offense -- a divide greater than any other team in college football.





Most Tortured NBA Fan Bases: 2017


Now that the Warriors have established themselves as a true juggernaut, the rest of the NBA continues to wonder if there's any stopping them. That leads to a lot of angst, with some fans enduring more than others. Let's measure the misery.





FWIW, The 'Big' Fight May Fizzle


The Golden State Warriors win the NBA title and Kevin Durant had more problems with beer cans than the Cavaliers defense. Meanwhile, Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor are teaming up to swindle you out of 100 bucks.





U.S. Open: Five to Watch on Day 2


Even though the U.S. Open is being played on the longest course in the history of the tournament, there were plenty of low scores early. Rickie Fowler set a U.S. Open opening round record with a 7-under 65. Can he and other fast-starters keep it up?





Green Throws Shade at Parade


In keeping with the fine tradition of victory parade hijinks, there were plenty of antics during the Warriors' victory parade and rally on Thursday through the streets of Oakland. The highlight may have been an incredibly petty shirt worn by Draymond Green.





Follow the U.S. Open Live


Entering Saturday, the four players tied for the lead at the U.S. Open -- Paul Casey, Brooks Koepka, Brian Harman and Tommy Fleetwood -- created the largest 36-hole logjam in 43 years at the tournament. Keep track of the leaderboard right here.





NCAA Suspends Pitino, Punishes Cards


The NCAA has ruled that Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino will be suspended for five games and the team must vacate wins from 2012-14, likely including the 2013 national championship, as a result of the investigation into a sex scandal involving a staffer and recruits.





Floyd vs. McGregor is a Moneymaker


The Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor superfight is finally official, as the two will clash in Las Vegas on August 26. But when it comes down to it, this fight is far more about money and publicity than it is about a 12-round boxing match.





The Best MLB Divisions in History


As it currently stands, the AL East has an aggregate winning percentage of .535 and only one team in the division has a record below .500. While that seems very good, where does this collection of teams stand in the history books?





Longest Active All-Star Snubs


Bryan LaHair's miraculous performance at the start of 2012 catapulted him into the All-Star Game. Who, among active players with the most games played, has a chance to do the same this season? We have a suggestion or two.





On Tiger and Father's Day


The symptoms continue for Tiger Woods, once the envy of aspiring golfers everywhere. Now he is buried up to his Nike cap in the sand trap of life. Father's Day is this weekend, along with another U.S. Open, and this was their time of year. He misses Earl Woods. Badly.





Ranking CFB's Transfer Quarterbacks


While expectations are often unreasonable for transfer quarterbacks, the national leader in passer rating in three of the past six years has in fact been a transfer. Will another one become a star in 2017? The list of possibilities is deep.





10 Biggest Trade Deadline Needs


With the MLB Draft behind us, fans can look ahead toward the Trade Deadline. Each of baseball's contenders have a need they should try to fill to solidify their standing in the playoff race. Let's explore what teams might be looking for.





Baseball, DC & Sickening Shots


Rep. Steve Scalise was one of five wounded in a shooting on a baseball field on Wednesday during practice for a congressional charity baseball game. They had all come to the field to feel young, but this time witnessed the kind of scene that keeps playing out over and over again in America.





French Soccer's Future Is Now


With their performances against England, 18-year-old Kylian Mbappe and 20-year-old Ousmane Dembele arrived on the big stage for the French national team. And they're good enough to be difference-makers for France in the year leading up to Russia 2018 and beyond.





Edwin Jackson's Baseball Saga


Edwin Jackson has played for 12 different teams and has experienced baseball's greatest highs, from winning a World Series to throwing a no-hitter. But after getting cut by the Orioles, this may be the end of the road for the hurler. Let's take a look back at his marvelous journey.





Every NFL Edge Rush Unit, Ranked


Edges are the new trenches. As passing gets more prevalent in the NFL, defenses can focus their attention on pressuring the quarterback, and those who can do so best are extremely valuable. Let's rank every team in the NFL based on such rushers.





Defense Now Star of Clemson Show


Deshaun Watson is rightfully given the most credit as the face of Clemson's rise to the national championship, but the defense's growth shouldn't be taken for granted. And with Watson gone, that defense ensures that the Tigers won't fall far after their title.





Top 5 Athletes On Earth This Week


A Yankees slugger continued to amaze, a superstar finally saw his championship dreams fulfilled and an unseeded Latvian won her first ever major title. But which athlete topped our list?





Top 13 Photos Of The Week


As part of an ongoing series, Sports on Earth is partnering with Getty Images to bring you the best snapshots from around the sports world each week. Here we count down the best 13 photos from June 7-13.





Kevin and L: Durant Rises Up


When it was all on the line in the biggest moments of the NBA Finals, the Warriors threw it to Kevin Durant. It doesn't mean he's Michael Jordan, but he sure played that way against the best in LeBron James and came out victorious.





Boston Longs For Papi's Bat


Someday, there will be a statue of David Ortiz outside Fenway Park. He is one of the biggest and most important players the Red Sox have ever had. And the slugger's absence from the lineup this season has been felt in Boston.





10 Best players without a title


Kevin Durant was arguably the best player in sports without a title to his name, and that streak ended on Monday night. What other future Hall-of-Fame players, then, bear the burden of missing that one final puzzle piece on their storied resumes?





Can the King Get Back The Crown?


After losing to the Warriors in the NBA Finals for the second time in three seasons, the Cavaliers head into the offseason knowing that their best was not good enough. For LeBron James, there are some doubts he wants to address.





Kevin Sent: This Is Durant's Moment


When the Golden State Warriors took home the Larry O'Brien trophy on Monday, defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games (capping things off with a 129-120 victory), Kevin Durant was anything but a second fiddle. He was the real MVP.





Golden Age: Warriors Conquer Cavs


The Warriors may not have been perfect in the playoffs. But, in the end, that didn't matter. They are champs once again after beating the Cavaliers in Game 5 of the NBA Finals. And, the scary thing is, Golden State could just be getting started.





Every MLB Team's Best Draft Pick


Since the institution of the MLB Draft in 1965, every Major League team has drafted and signed at least one player who has gone on to compile more than 40 WAR in his career. Here is the best player ever drafted and signed by each of the 30 Major League franchises.





CFB Defensive Lineman Rankings 2017


A pair of sophomore defensive tackles, Houston's Ed Oliver and Clemson's Dexter Lawrence, are in the conversation for best overall player in college football this season, and they headline our list of the nation's top defensive ends and tackles.





Good As Golden: Warriors Are Champs Again


Kevin Durant scored 39 points, Stephen Curry added 34 and the Golden State Warriors won their second NBA championship in three seasons with a 129-120 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 5 of the Finals on Monday night.





Warriors Look to Put Away the Cavs


The Cavaliers are hoping to once again rally from a 3-1 deficit in the NBA Finals to take home their second straight ring. But this Warriors team isn't the same as last year's -- Kevin Durant, Steph Curry and Co. are determined to end things Monday night at Oracle Arena.





Jeremy Maclin Heads To Baltimore


The Baltimore Ravens upgraded a depleted receiving corps by signing former Kansas City Chiefs wideout Jeremy Maclin to a two-year deal. Maclin was also in talks with the Buffalo Bills but will now join Joe Flacco as a possession receiver.





Rebuild Battle: Jets vs. Chiefs


This offseason, the Jets have gone into full rebuild mode, while the Chiefs are making incremental moves for the future at the expense of the present. Are both viable options for success?





Christian Pulisic is USMNT's Future


The USMNT managed to play to a 1-1 draw at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, all but securing their spot in the World Cup. But maybe even more important than the action on the pitch was the realization that US soccer now has a superstar, and his name is Christian Pulisic.





Longest No-Repeat Streaks In Sports


The Penguins went into Nashville on Sunday night and captured the Stanley Cup for the second time in two years, becoming the first NHL team to repeat as champions since the 1997 and '98 Red Wings. Which sports have gone the longest without repeat champs?





Crosby Secures All-Time Great Status


Sidney Crosby is the rare athlete who began his career with the expectation that he'd finish it as one of the all-time greats. He's the even rarer athlete who's lived up to those expectations, a legacy further secured by the Penguins' second straight Stanley Cup.





Cup and Away! Pens Win Second Straight Title


Patric Hornqvist scored with 1:35 left and Matt Murray made 27 saves as the Penguins became the NHL's first team in nearly two decades to repeat as Stanley Cup champions following a 2-0 win over the Nashville Predators in Game 6 on Sunday night.





Golazo Gives U.S. Draw against Mexico


Michael Bradley scored one of the most stunning goals you'll ever see by an American in the USMNT's 1-1 draw with Mexico. It's only the third time in the U.S. has drawn against Mexico at the Estadio Azteca in a World Cup qualifier.





MLB Draft Picks: The Game-Changers


The MLB Draft begins on Monday night. Just for fun, let's take a look at a few examples of recent picks that have shaped the 2017 standings. One of these guys is currently hitting mammoth home runs for the Yankees.





Nadal Wins 10th French Open Title


Rafael Nadal has long been known as the "King of Clay," and no performance exemplified that more than his victory over Stan Wawrinka in the French Open final on Sunday. The Spaniard beat Wawrinka in straight sets to win his 10th French Open title.





8 of MLB's most underrated players


Some great players in the league are still quite underappreciated, and it's our duty to make sure that they get some well-deserved praise. Here are 8 players that have been flying under the radar all season (and even last season as well).





USMNT Aims to End Azteca Struggles


The USMNT travels to Mexico City this Sunday for a crucial World Cup qualifying match with El Tri at the dreaded Estadio Azteca. With almost nothing to lose and almost everything to gain, can the U.S. once again get one over at their theatre of nightmares?





Tapwrit Takes the Belmont Stakes


A late surge carried Tapwrit to a Belmont Stakes win over Irish War Cry and Patch on Saturday. He's the fifth horse in the past nine years to finish out of the money in the Derby, skip the Preakness and win the Belmont.





Ostapenko's Historic French Open Win


Any way you look at it, Jelena Ostapenko's win over Simona Halep in the French Open final was an amazing feat. Ostapenko is the youngest winner of the major in 20 years, the first Latvian to win it and the first unseeded woman to take the title since 1933.





What to Know for the 2017 Belmont


There's no Triple Crown on the line this year, but there's still plenty of reason to be excited for the 149th running of the Belmont Stakes on Saturday from Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. Let's get you ready for the race.





Best NBA Finals Plays of All-Time


In Friday's Game 4 NBA Finals win over the Golden State Warriors, LeBron James threw an alley-oop to himself in the third quarter, a play normally reserved for All-Star Games or dunk contests. Where does it stand among all-time Finals plays?





Still Believeland? Cavs Show Fight


Down 3-0 in the NBA Finals to the juggernaut Warriors, the Cavaliers didn't back down. They beat Golden State, 137-116, in Cleveland on Friday night, setting offensive records -- and exchanging plenty of trash talk -- in the process.





Dive Into Five: The Weekend Watch List


Your weekly sports viewing guide includes the Belmont Stakes (yes, it's fun to watch even without the Triple Crown potential), a win-or-go-home Stanley Cup Final game in Nashville and the USMNT in action at Estadio Azteca.





Hugo No! French Keeper's Big Blunder


French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris made one of the worst errors you'll ever see from a keeper of his caliber. Hell, it was one of the worst errors you'll ever see from a keeper, period. And it led to a last-second, winning 50-yard goal from Sweden.





Checking in on MLB's Closer Carousel


The closer's role might be the toughest in baseball, as a few small missteps might cost you your job. With that in mind, we take a look around the Majors at the bullpens that still need some sorting out before the season's end.





Cards Still Looking For Answers


The Cardinals have been slumping lately, losing seven in a row on their recent road trip. They've been able to get back on track before (and still can), but the perennial contender still could face a dilemma around the Trade Deadline.





Penguins Have Their Way With Preds


Pittsburgh is now one win away from becoming back-to-back champions after a 6-0 blowout of Nashville on Thursday night. But the Pens will have to head to the Predators' home turf to close it out, which has been no easy task in this year's playoffs.





USMNT's Young Star Shines Again


Christian Pulisic is far and away the best American soccer player right now, and his two goals in the USMNT's 2-0 World Cup qualifier win over Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday is just another reason why. He now has four goals in as many matches for the U.S.





Ranking the Best NFL Receiving Corps


In the modern NFL, success often revolves around high-volume passing offenses. In fact, an impressive stable of wide receivers can catapult a team to the Super Bowl. Here we rank every set of receivers in the football, from best too worst





Sweet 16-0: Perfect Payback?


The Warriors are now a win away from going 16-0 in this NBA postseason. And they've gotten here thanks to some symmetry: a late run at the end of Game 3, along with a timely block that had echoes from the 2016 Finals.





Taking a break: Sherman Report on hiatus


Just wanted to let everyone know that Sherman Report is on hiatus.

My plate suddenly got very full. My duties include teaching at the content lab at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism during the winter quarter. I am very excited about that opportunity.

As a result, I don’t have the time required to maintain the site. I am not shutting down Sherman Report. Just taking a break.

I will continue to do tweets on sports media issues via my Twitter feed: @Sherman_Report.

Also, please look for my columns on sports media for the Chicago Tribune and Poynter.

Many thanks for your support through the years.

Ed… Continue Reading

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New Year’s inspiration: Kenneth Jennings pushes on 27 years after devastating football injury


Kenneth JenningsIn 1989, I did a three-part series on Kenneth Jennings, chronicling his new life after suffering a devastating football injury during a high school game. It truly was one of the highlights of my career. I never saw him down or complain about his situation.

Twenty-seven years later, he has the same approach to life. Here’s a link to my story in today’s Chicago Tribune.

Take a few moments to read the story and please share with others. There is plenty we all can learn from Mr. Jennings.

An excerpt:

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Kenneth Jennings doesn’t see any reason why he shouldn’t celebrate the day he took his final steps and moved his arms for the last time. He even has a term for it.

“I just celebrated my 27th re-birthday,” Jennings said.

On Oct. 8, 1988, Jennings, then a junior … Continue Reading

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Happy Holidays from Sherman Report: See you in 2016


Santa and golfSherman Report is taking a break for the holidays. Check back here on Monday, Jan. 4, when we’ll kick off coverage of sports media in 2016.

Sincere wishes for a terrific holiday season. And many thanks for your support of Sherman Report.… Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: One journalist’s journey from ESPN to shining shoes


Jeff BradleyAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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For the bulk of his professional life, Jeff Bradley has spent his summers at a Major League ballpark. He had high-profile beats covering baseball for ESPN The Magazine and the Newark Star-Ledger.

But last summer was different. Struggling to make ends meet ever since being let go by the Star-Ledger in January of 2013, Bradley worked as a clubhouse attendant at a country club near his home in New Jersey. He shined shoes, vacuumed the carpet and kept the bathrooms clean.

Bradley likely is the only clubhouse attendant who also has written about Derek Jeter for national publications. A few times, Bradley was mistaken for being a member. On other occasions, he ran into people who knew him … Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: What NHL announcer Mike Emrick can teach you about language and journalism


mike-emrick-h1000-headshot_standardAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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I approached Mike Emrick with a request prior to Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final at the United Center in Chicago Monday.

I told him that I thought aspiring journalists and broadcasters–and established ones for that matter–can learn quite a bit if they pay close attention to his calls of hockey games for NBC and NBCSN. I asked him to share some of his lessons and insights about the art of mastering the English language.

“Well, I’d certainly like to try,” said Emrick, who is his working his 14th Stanley Cup Final with the Chicago-Tampa Bay series.

Emrick has more than a passing interest in teaching.  He got his nickname, “Doc,” for receiving his Ph.D in communications … Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: Outside the Lines celebrates 25 years of hard-hitting journalism


Bob Ley and OTLAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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Bob Ley boils down the essence of “Outside The Lines.”

“Let’s go commit some journalism,” Ley said.

There isn’t another show on sports television — and few others in television, period — that can match ESPN’s crown jewel when it comes to committing quality journalism on a regular basis. “Outside the Lines,” also known as OTL, will celebrate its 25th anniversary Tuesday with a one-hour special on ESPN at 7 p.m. ET.

Ley, who was the anchor for the first OTL on May 7, 1990, admits the landmark anniversary caught him by surprise.

“A bunch of us were sitting around and we went, ‘Holy crap, we’ve been doing this for 25 years,’” Ley said. “They cleared out an … Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: Former White House communications director on similarities, differences of covering sports and politics


P092206ED-1215.jpgAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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Kevin Sullivan’s vast career in public relations has taken him from the NBA to NBC to the White House. Sports always have been a focal point, even for the most important job interview of his life.

In 2006, Sullivan was recommended to serve as the communications director for George Bush. However, he still had to pass the test in meeting the president.

Sullivan knew Bush, a former owner of the Texas Rangers, was a big sports fan. So he was ready when the president asked, “Where are you from?”

“Chicago, sir. White Sox, not Cubs,” said Sullivan, a native of Chicago’s South Side.

Sullivan obviously had the credentials, but the sports connection helped seal the deal. He then … Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: The slow death of boxscores in newspapers


Baseball box scoreAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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Forget “Dick and Jane.” I learned to read by studying the baseball box scores in the newspaper. Many of you probably did the same if sports dominated your early years.

Once you deciphered the code, the box score provided almost everything you needed to know about a game. It told you that Mickey Mantle went 1 for 3 with a run scored as the result of his 36th homer of the season. Or that Sandy Koufax recorded 13 strikeouts in shutting out the Giants.

The box score has been a staple of newspapers since the 1800s. Yet like everything else in the ever changing world of media, its future is precarious in print editions, as sports editors wrestle … Continue Reading

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Favorite posts from 2015: The lost art of using the phone


phoneAs we conclude 2015, I am reposting (is that a word?) some of my favorite sports journalism columns for Poynter.

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At the dawn of 2015, I made a New Year’s resolution. I vowed to try to rely less on email and actually use the good old-fashioned phone to reach out to public relations people on my various beats. Even if I didn’t have anything on the agenda, I planned to dial someone’s number just to see what was going on.

You know, how’s the family? What’s the latest at your place?

Of course, New Year’s resolutions never stick. So along with my vow to read more and eat less, I haven’t come close to calling PR folks as much as I had hoped.

I make that admission to show that I am just as guilty as anyone in … Continue Reading

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Sports Media Friday: Is ESPN winning or losing? PR post cites ratings wins in primetime; Bloomberg story paints different picture


Koufax SISpanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sports media:

There have many stories of late about ESPN losing subscribers. So the PR machine tried to reverse the spin and tell the other side of the story. It did a post on its Front Row blog noting sports’ dominance in ratings during prime time.

ESPN’s Dave Nagle writes:

ESPN’s marquee programming – including the NFL, highlighted by cable’s first playoff game; college football, including last January’s debut of the College Football playoff; the NBA, notably the NBA Finals on ABC which has won the night among all viewers 48 consecutive games; Major League Baseball; college basketball; and the ESPYS – drove viewership to new heights in the 52 weeks ending Monday, Dec. 14.

Demonstrating the “DVR-proof” nature of major live events – as well as the enduring appeal

Continue Reading

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Year-in-review requires perspective listening to 2013 Simmons podcast with Whitlock


Jason Whitlockbill-simmonsAn excerpt from my latest column for Poynter:

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To gain perspective on the two biggest stories in sports journalism in 2015, you need to dial up a podcast from two years ago.

On Aug. 15, 2013, Jason Whitlock was Bill Simmons’ guest on his “BS Report” podcast for Grantland. Yes, it can be found, and in light of what happened this year, the interview sounds laughable and more than a touch ironic.

Back then, Whitlock was beaming in rejoining ESPN after leaving in 2006. “This is one of the greatest days of my life,” he said.

Whitlock discussed how he “fell in love” with ESPN president John Skipper. Skipper wanted Whitlock to oversee a new ESPN aimed at African-Americans. Whitlock called it “the black Grantland.”

“Skipper carved out a vision for me,” Whitlock said. “It was like he talked … Continue Reading

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Talking a lot, saying little: ASAP Sports has transcribed 1,364 interviews with Tiger Woods


Mercer Baggs of GolfChannel.com has a good piece on Tiger Woods turning 40 on Dec. 30. He notes that after all these years, we still don’t really know who Woods is.

However, it isn’t as if Woods hasn’t talked. From the column:

Tiger’s talked a lot over the last two decades. Did you know he has 1,364 transcripts on asapsports.com since 1996? That’s about 72 transcribed interviews a year during that span. Well more – over 200 more – than Phil Mickelson has given in a greater time frame. And that only counts when a stenographer was around.

Also, I had forgotten about this:

Back in the day, the early professional days, Tiger regularly came into Golf Channel studios. He did interviews. He even viewed tape. We could peek into the window of the library screening room and watch him

Continue Reading

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‘The Vertical’: Adrian Wojnarowski set to launch NBA site on Yahoo


AdrianFollowing the lead of Peter King with MMQB, NBA writer Adrian Wojnarowski will get similar treatment with his new deal from Yahoo! Sports.

Here’s the official announcement from Yahoo:

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Yahoo Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, the most dominant force in NBA reporting, is debuting his new weekly podcast called “The Vertical Podcast with Woj.” The audio series, launching today, will begin with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver as the first guest, and will publish new episodes each Wednesday, along with regular breaking news reports throughout the year.

And this is just the beginning as Woj is launching a new basketball site, “The Vertical,” as a part of Yahoo Sports in early 2016, bringing together an elite group of NBA journalists, insiders and experts to create the internet’s hub of basketball information and storytelling.

The site will feature Michael Lee, one of the … Continue Reading

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Terrific news: Mark Rolfing feeling ‘great’ after cancer treatments; set to work Kapalua tournament


Everyone who knowsMark_Rolfing_Bio_Photo Mark Rolfing will be thrilled to hear this news. He is returning to his duties as a golf analyst.

Rolfing missed the last part of the season while undergoing treatment for cancer. However, he said in a text to me last week that he is feeling “great” and looking forward to getting back to reporting on golf.

Here is the official release from the Golf Channel:

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Longtime Golf Channel / NBC Sports golf analyst Mark Rolfing is set to return to the broadcast team at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii, Thursday-Sunday, Jan. 7-10. In August, Rolfing was diagnosed with a rare form of salivary gland cancer and took a leave of absence following the PGA Championship for surgery and treatment.

Rolfing, who lives in Maui, will serve as a tower analyst for … Continue Reading

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Former LA Times sports editor Bill Dwyre reflects on past, future of business


DwyreExcerpts from my latest column for Poynter.

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You will be hard pressed to find anyone with a more unique perspective on the epic shifts in sports journalism than Bill Dwyre.

After 25 years as sports editor of the Los Angeles Times, Dwyre sought a change in 2006. He wanted to spend the final years of his career writing as a columnist.

In hindsight, Dwyre says it was the right decision. The view he got during the last 9 ½ years was much different than if he stayed in “my glass office.”

“I’m happy that I did get both looks [as an editor and writer],” Dwyre said.

Even though he says he isn’t retiring from writing, Dwyre recently bid farewell to the Los Angeles Times. He didn’t necessarily want to leave, but he says if somebody “offers you a buyout … Continue Reading

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A pro’s pro: ESPN’s Chris LaPlaca inducted into PR Hall of Fame


Congratulations to Chris LaPlaca, one of ESPN’s originals from the launch in 1979.

Katina Arnold writes in ESPN Front Row:

WASHINGTON — ESPN Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications,Chris LaPlaca was inducted into the “PR People Hall of Fame” at the PR News PR People Awards Luncheon. Hosted at the National Press Club, this event celebrates individuals who set benchmarks of excellence in public relations. Along with LaPlaca, Karen van Bergen (Porter Novelli), Margery Kraus (APCO Worldwide) and Bob Pearson (W20 Group) were also inducted.

In his acceptance speech, LaPlaca emphasized the need for “professional curiosity,” a message he conveys to people he mentors as well as colleagues in the media industry.

“Chris is the consummate communications professional, always on the cutting edge of communications strategies during his remarkable 35-plus-year career,” said ESPN Executive Vice President, Administration, Ed

Continue Reading

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Sportsperson of the Year: Serena opts for provocative pose for Sports Illustrated cover


Serena

As always, there will be plenty of debate for Sports Illustrated’s choice of Sportsperson of the Year. I think I would have gone with Steph Curry, considering how he is tearing apart the NBA.

However, it is hard to argue with Serena Williams. She had a truly dominant year.

However, this isn’t the conventional cover for the winners of this award. Why the provocative pose?

It was her idea according to SI’s Christian Stone:

She was a difference-maker in other areas, speaking out against bodyshamers in both words and actions, posing for the Annie Leibovitz–shot Pirelli calendar in only a bikini bottom. The cover shot of this issue? Her idea, intended, like the Pirelli shots, to express her own ideal of femininity, strength, power.

Surely, there will be critics who contend there are other ways to express femininity, strength … Continue Reading

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RIP Phil Pepe: Long-time baseball writer for New York Daily News


Phil Pepe had quite a career. From the New York Daily News obit:

Pepe covered the Yankees for The News from 1968-1981 and wrote the lead game story for every World Series from 1969-81. In 1982, he succeeded Dick Young as The News’ sports columnist.

He left the paper in 1989 for WCBS radio, where he did morning sports — including his signature “Pep Talk” — for more than 15 years. He was also the director of broadcasting/radio analyst for the Class-A New Jersey Cardinals of the New York-Penn League for 12 seasons from 1994-2005.

He was the executive director of the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America for the past 21 years, having also served as the chapter’s chairman in 1975 and 1976. He attended every BBWAA awards dinner since 1962 and ran the event

Continue Reading

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Players are real losers with dwindling media access in college football


IvanExcerpts from my latest column for Poynter:

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Access, or a lack thereof, continues to be a major problem for college football reporters. And that goes for the reporters from the biggest outlets in the business.

“What I got [in terms of access] as a national guy 25 years ago for the Dallas Morning News was much better than I get now writing for the biggest website in the country,” said Ivan Maisel of ESPN.com. “I bet the guys at Sports Illustrated say the same thing.”

Billy Watkins of the Clarion-Ledger vented about his frustrations in a column about covering college football in Mississippi. In an email to me, Watkins wrote:

“I’m doing a big profile of a player at Navy. He is a senior from Mississippi. They have bent over backward getting me anything and everything I need for … Continue Reading

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Sports Illustrated’s greatest Super Bowl story that never appeared in the magazine


All I can really say is read this story by Sports Illustrated’s Chris Ballard. I don’t even know where to begin in terms of describing what it is about.

Just set aside a few minutes to read this wild and highly entertaining tale. You will be glad you did.

An excerpt:

When you begin working at a new job you’re bound to hear certain tales, perhaps apocryphal, perhaps embellished. For those of us who arrived at SI around the turn of the millennium, such was the story of Rick Telander and the Super Bowl hobo. The tale usually came out over beers at some dive bar, late on a hazy New York City night when the magazine had been put to bed but we were still wired. Inevitably, someone would bring up the story about the time that Telander, the

Continue Reading

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Blades of Glory


Rolling logs, swinging axes, saws aplenty, and even an appearance by the Musky Queen: welcome to the Lumberjack World Championships in Hayward, Wisconsin.





Russell, the Creator


The numbers show that Russell Westbrook became one of the NBA's most efficient assist men last season. Now that Kevin Durant is back healthy, the Thunder could be better than ever.





30 for 30 Shorts: Every Day


Our latest film, directed by Gabe Spitzer, tells the story of how the journey to a million steps starts with taking one at a time.





The 15 Biggest Plays in Baseball History


Which plays caused the widest swings in a team’s numerical chances at winning the World Series?





The Laughs, Pathos, and Overwhelming Talent of Jan Hooks


An intimate portrait of the former ‘Saturday Night Live’ star’s career and life, one year after she was laid to rest.





Ball in the Family


How Austin Rivers, coached by his father on the Los Angeles Clippers, turned around his NBA career.





After the Rupture


The Dallas Mavericks opened the vault for Wesley Matthews in free agency, but before the shooting guard can prove his worth, he must battle back from a torn Achilles.





30 for 30 Shorts: #BringBackSungWoo


Our latest film, directed by Josh Swade and Josh Shelov, tells the story of the Kansas City Royals’ frenzied fan base and, more importantly, its biggest fan of all.





Schoolboy


Why rising USMNT striker Jordan Morris chose college soccer over the pros.





The Most Important Hip-Hop Song of 2004


In an exclusive excerpt from ‘The Rap Year Book,’ Grantland’s Shea Serrano breaks down ‘Still Tippin’’ by Mike Jones.