Sports

Sports
7:02 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Fitness Trainer Shaun T: 'I Understand Why You Feel Weak'

Shaun Blokker, known as Shaun T, is the man behind the fitness programs Hip Hop Abs and Insanity.
Derek Baron

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 2:43 pm

As part of a series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

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Sports
11:15 am
Mon July 21, 2014

What It Takes To Be A Champion

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 11:45 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The Olympic motto is faster, higher, stronger. And year after year, athletes seem to live up to those words, but how?

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

DAVID EPSTEIN: We definitely are better. Although, it sort of depends how you look at the question because in some ways, we might not be as much better as we like to believe.

SIMON: David Epstein writes about sports science. He spoke to Guy Raz at the Ted Radio Hour.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

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Sports
8:44 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Remembering How The Great War Changed U.S. Sports

Charles Dillon Stengel had been known as Dutch — derived from the German Deutsch. Only after the U.S. went to war was Casey Stengel born.
AP

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 11:00 am

When America entered the Great War in 1917 — a war that began 100 years ago this summer — Major League Baseball faced a special problem: It had a hefty German heritage. Its best-known team, the New York Giants under John McGraw, was even sometimes called "McGraw's Prussians" for its tough, fighting spirit. Obviously, just as sauerkraut became "liberty cabbage," that had to go, too.

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Sports
7:53 am
Wed July 2, 2014

The Time Of Our Sports Lives: How Europe's Games Neglect The Clock

In sports, Americans only dilly-dally for crucial, life-affirming reasons: to allow commercials.
L.G. Patterson AP

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 8:58 am

Why is it that Europeans don't pay as much attention to time in sports as we do?

You American novices to soccer, who climbed on the World Cup bandwagon this summer –– you must have been completely baffled by how soccer has a thing called "stoppage time." That means that the game goes on after regulation time is up for an undisclosed period that only the referee knows.

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Sports
12:22 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

U.S. Advances In World Cup Despite 1-0 Loss To Germany

Rain-soaked fans wait for the start of the group G World Cup soccer match between the United States and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, on Thursday.
Julio Cortez AP

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 3:36 pm

The U.S. men's soccer team has finished second in its World Cup group, after a 1-0 loss to Germany on Thursday. The Americans will advance after Portugal beat Ghana 2-1.

"This is a huge, huge step, and now we can't wait until round of 16," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said afterward, according to ESPN. "Everyone said we had no chance. We took the chance and move on. And now we really want to prove a point."

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Sports
12:00 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

'Shop' Guys On The World Cup: Can The U.S. Come Out On Top?

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

I'm Audie Cornish, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Now it's time for the weekly visit to the Barbershop, where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds. Sitting in the chairs for a shapeup this week are writer Jimi Izrael, with us from Cleveland. Hey there, Jimi.

JIMI IZRAEL: Hey A.C.. What took you so long, sister?

(LAUGHTER)

IZRAEL: I'm sorry, go ahead with your intro. Go with your intro, my bad. Go ahead.

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11:48 am
Thu June 19, 2014

New Hall Of Fame Exhibit Honors 100th Anniversary Of Babe Ruth’s MLB Debut

Lead in text: 
In anticipation of the 100th anniversary of Babe Ruth’s first appearance in Major League Baseball, the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown opened a new exhibit this week, “Babe Ruth, His Life and Legend.” The Hall of Fame is also celebrating its 75th Anniversary. Bill Littlefield has more on the story...
The Baseball Hall of Fame opened a new exhibit on Babe Ruth in honor of the 100th anniversary of his MLB debut. Baseball Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson joins Bill Littlefield to talk about the Babe and preview what the Hall has in store for its own anniversary.
Sports
7:47 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Dodgers' Ace Kershaw Notches His First No-Hitter

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (left) celebrates his no-hitter with his teammates after striking out 15 Colorado Rockies batters.
Chris Carlson AP

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 11:41 am

The no-hitters just keep coming. That's the case for the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the team's pitchers have thrown two games without giving up a hit in less than a month. Clayton Kershaw used 15 strikeouts to complete the feat Wednesday, matching teammate Josh Beckett's May 25 effort.

Getting the no-hitter was "pretty cool," Kershaw said after throwing 107 pitches in the game.

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Sports
4:32 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

Ruling On Redskins' Trademarks Carries Symbolic Weight

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 7:08 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has canceled six trademark registrations held by the Washington Redskins. Today's ruling determined the football teams trademark name is disparaging to Native Americans and unfit for federal registration. But as Hansi Lo Wang of NPR's Code Switch team reports, the team still owns the Redskins name and can continue to use it.

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Sports
2:55 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

What Does Body Ink Say About NBA Players' Pain And Personalities?

Wilson Chandler of the Denver Nuggets has cartoons all over his legs.
Jack Dempsey AP

Ethan Swan, who runs an art gallery in downtown Los Angeles, believes that "so much of art is about the creation of meaning through image." He also believes that "tattoos are a great way to mark pain."

So Swan is naturally interested in how body ink plays out for others. It's become what he admits is a quest.

As the founder of the blog NBA Tattoos, Swan tells NPR's Michel Martin that in 2010, he got a new cable package and started watching a lot of basketball.

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Sports
3:26 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Deford: How To Host A Sports Extravaganza That Won't Break The Bank

Remodeling the National Stadium Mane Garrincha in Brasilia, Brazil, for the FIFA World Cup cost the Brazilian government $900 million.
Eraldo Peres AP

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 10:22 am

You know, it is the 21st century, and it is possible to acknowledge that and make both the World Cup and the Olympics more affordable. The current waste and opulence simply aren't defensible anymore.

For the soccer pooh-bahs to demand that Brazil build new stadiums, costing billions of dollars, is unconscionable. How much more logical to utilize existing stadiums in neighboring countries, in large cities like Buenos Aires, Montevideo and Santiago.

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Sports
8:33 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Do Soaring World Cup Ratings Mark A Foothold For Soccer In U.S.?

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Every World Cup, we ask the same question in our editorial meeting - has soccer finally turned the corner and become mainstream here in the U.S.? Well, if you go by the television ratings, the answer this year is a definite maybe. And for more on this, we turn to Brian Steinberg. He's the senior TV editor at Variety and he's been tracking the ratings. Welcome to the program once again.

BRIAN STEINBERG: Thank you very much.

SIEGEL: What numbers jump out at you in the first few days of the World Cup?

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Sports
11:28 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Tony Gwynn, San Diego Padres Hall Of Famer, Dies

Tony Gwynn in 1998.
Jeff Haynes AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 2:51 pm

Hall of famer Tony Gwynn, who spent 20 years playing for the San Diego Padres, has died.

The team announced his death on Twitter, saying it was "terribly sad to say goodbye to our teammate, our friend and a legend."

Gwynn, known as "Mr. Padre," flirted with a .400 batting average in 1994. By the end of the season, his batting average was .394. Gwynn earned eight National League batting titles and had 3,141 career hits, as well as an impressive .338 batting average overall.

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Sports
4:32 pm
Sat June 14, 2014

Chuck Noll, Who Led Steelers To 4 Super Bowl Titles, Dies

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Chuck Noll shown in 1974 watching his team in action on the sidelines.
AP

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 11:02 am

Chuck Noll, the only NFL coach to lead a team to four Super Bowl titles, died on Friday at age 82.

Liz Reid, from NPR member station WESA in Pittsburgh, reports the Steelers coach was considered one of the greatest. She filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"Noll took the head coaching job in Pittsburgh in 1969, after Penn State's Joe Paterno turned it down.

"The Steelers won a single game that season, but under Noll's guidance, they steadily improved their record until clinching their first Super Bowl victory in January 1975.

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Sports
10:37 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Remembering Payne Stewart

It's hard for golf fans, even casual ones, to not think about Payne Stewart as the US Open returns to Pinehurst this week. 

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Sports
10:06 am
Mon June 9, 2014

Baseball Has An Elbow Problem: More Pros Getting Ligament Surgery

After this pitch on May 27, Los Angeles Angels pitcher Sean Burnett left the game with a torn elbow ligament. Friday, he became the latest pro to undergo "Tommy John" surgery.
Elaine Thompson AP

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 3:13 pm

On Friday, Los Angeles Angels pitcher Sean Burnett became the latest player this season to undergo "Tommy John" surgery. In this weekend's MLB draft, at least four players selected had already had the infamous elbow surgery as amateurs.

The operation is named after the first player to undergo the procedure to fix an injured elbow ligament, in 1974. Pitchers are particularly vulnerable to this injury.

The procedure involves taking a tendon from somewhere else in the body — or from a cadaver — and grafting it into place. Pitchers get it most often.

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Sports
3:35 pm
Thu June 5, 2014

For Jockey Donna Barton Brothers, Horse Racing Runs In The Family

Brothers rides down the front stretch before the 88th Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 18, 2012, in Baltimore.
Matthew Stockman Getty Images

When the thoroughbreds burst out of the starting gate at the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, fans will have their eyes on California Chrome as a potential Triple Crown winner. And there to interview the winner on horseback will be Donna Barton Brothers, an analyst for NBC Sports.

Before she was an analyst, Brothers had a distinguished career as a jockey, winning more than 1,100 races before retiring in 1998. When she retired, Brothers tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies, she knew it was time to get out in part because it started to feel dangerous.

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Sports
12:33 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

LeBron James And Lance Stephenson Share Odd And Quiet Moment In NBA Game

Lance Stephenson blows into Lebron James' ear during their playoff game Wednesday night.
YouTube

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 3:05 pm

There are many ways to psych out an opponent. The Indiana Pacers' Lance Stephenson went the unconventional route last night, softly blowing into LeBron James' ear during a pause late in their playoff game.

"He didn't just do that," James' face seems to say.

"Yes I did," Stephenson's expression answers.

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Sports
3:36 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Don't Overlook The Unsung Umpire; Referees Can Be Pretty, Too

Referee Mendy Rudolph officiates a Knicks-Pistons game in 1971. Refs often say it's best to go unnoticed, but an official who "makes a call with vigor and elan is really a beautiful part of the game," says Frank Deford.
AP

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 12:57 pm

Not so long ago, while enjoying a libation in a decorous saloon, the proprietor — who happened to hail from the fabled Windy City — suddenly jarred the genteel assembled by turning on the Cubs game. Just at that moment, a Cubby was heading toward the plate when the throw came in, and the runner (spoiler alert!), being a Cub, was tagged out.

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Sports
12:15 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

Javon Francis, Jamaica's Next Big Running Star

Javon Francis takes the baton in the men's 4x400 relay heats during the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Moscow in August.
Ian Walton Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 13, 2014 6:48 am

The stadium was quiet as eight schoolboys settled into the blocks for the start of the 400-meter finals at Jamaica's annual Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association Boys and Girls Athletic Championships earlier this year — "Champs for short. The favorite? Nineteen-year-old Javon Francis. Case closed. Spectators sat in their seats munching on food and chatting with friends when the starter gun went off.

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