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May 5, 2021

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Ryan Lochte’s Last Try

Chest heaving in the water, Ryan Lochte peers at the whiteboard above him and despairs. It is mid-February, and the 36-year-old has already devoted four hours to pulling himself through the pool, another exhausting day in an unrelenting string of them. Now, instructions scrawled in black dry-erase marker demand he......

MMQB: Inside the Biggest Stories on Draft Night

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Albert Breer Matt Nagy and Ryan Day have a lot of history with each other—and it goes back to well before either guy had a whistle around his neck. Both came to the Atlantic 10 in 1997, and by the......

The Derby, the Sheikh and the Missing Princess: A Troubling Mix

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Pat Forde The select yearling sale at Keeneland Race Course in Lexington, Ky., is where the world’s big players converge each year to throw staggering sums of money at thoroughbred racing dreams. Much of the most expensive horseflesh on the......

In the Shadow of Tom Brady: What It Means to Be Pick 199

Sports Illustrated
http://www.si.com/.image/c_limit%2Ccs_srgb%2Cfl_progressive%2Ch_1200%2Cq_auto:good%2Cw_1200/MTgwNjYxMDgwNjM1MjIxMDgw/dcovpick199_hz.jpg Greg Bishop and Jenny Vrentas One random Halloween afternoon a million years ago, two forgettable Big Ten football programs clashed in Minneapolis. The 15–10 barnburner would all but vanish from memory, lost to the far reaches of football history—except to one Minnesota lineman, Adam Haayer, and Michigan’s starting quarterback,......

Meet Prospect X, the NFL Draft’s Deepest Sleeper

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Kalyn Kahler Prospect X sits at the desk in his college apartment bedroom and nods quietly as the coach leading the Zoom call explains the defense’s terminology. “50 Weak Squat out of nickel,” the coach says. “All that means is......

Mets Analytics Wiz Has All the Answers—At the Oscars

Sports Illustrated
Ben Zauzmer is the Mets’ director of baseball analytics. He won a World Series ring with the Dodgers last year. But when strangers recognize him, they do not cite his day job. “Oh,” they say. “You’re the Oscars guy.” Zauzmer’s first love is baseball. His second is movies. And when......

Alex Smith Healed Enough to Walk Away

Sports Illustrated
Alex Smith could stand right there forever, toes spoiled by the plush strip of emerald green underfoot at his Hawaiian hideaway. “Some of the best grass in the world,” he says, awestruck, like he’s walking on cashmere covered in talc. His eyes scan the tropical paradise spread before him, all......

This Basketball Season is Missing One Thing: Prince

Sports Illustrated
http://www.si.com/.image/c_limit%2Ccs_srgb%2Cfl_progressive%2Ch_1200%2Cq_auto:good%2Cw_1200/MTgwNDM3Mjg1MTkwMjQ4MzAw/dcovprincehz.jpg Jon Wertheim You can keep your ticker-tape parades, your detours for Vegas debauchery, your drunken laterals of the Lombardi Trophy. If there were championships for celebrating championships, the Minnesota Lynx wouldn’t just win—they’d retire the trophy. In the fall of 2015, the Lynx played in the WNBA Finals for......

Four Players Have Already Walked Away From Baseball in 2020. Why?

Sports Illustrated
Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Ryan Sherriff knew something was not right. He felt it as soon as he stepped on the mound to protect a 2–0 lead in the seventh inning against the Marlins in Miami in the second game of this season. Manager Kevin Cash had gone to......

The Many Shining Disparities Between Men’s and Women’s College Basketball

Sports Illustrated
If the men’s college basketball season technically ends with the final buzzer of the national championship, it does not spiritually end until the final chords of “One Shining Moment,” in all their schmaltzy glory. But women’s college basketball used “One Shining Moment” not to signal the ending of a season......

Living Nonbinary in a Binary Sports World

Sports Illustrated
It was in the WNBA bubble—the Wubble—that New York Liberty guard Layshia Clarendon made the decision. The Wubble was a stressful experience for Clarendon. For one, they were living through a pandemic. For another, life at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., was very small. Clarendon shuffled among their villa,......

The Faults in Our Tiny, Little Stars

Sports Illustrated
http://www.si.com/.image/c_limit%2Ccs_srgb%2Cfl_progressive%2Ch_1200%2Cq_auto:good%2Cw_1200/MTgwMzE5MzcxNDI2OTMyNTg4/dcovasterisk_hz.jpg Steve Rushin An asterisk is a small star; it shares a root with asteroid, astronomy and—to the delight of T-shirt makers—the Houston Astros. On the 1955 Major League Baseball schedule, in newspapers, an asterisk was affixed to the date of each night game, all those little stars evoking an......

Trevor Lawrence Is Out to Prove Absolutely Nothing

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Michael Rosenberg The sun is setting in Laguna Beach, Calif., and Trevor Lawrence wants to enjoy it. He opens the blinds so the light can stream in. His fiancé, Marissa Mowry, sits with a glass of red wine. They met......

The Trade That Might Have Saved Caris LeVert

Sports Illustrated
http://www.si.com/.image/c_limit%2Ccs_srgb%2Cfl_progressive%2Ch_1200%2Cq_auto:good%2Cw_1200/MTgwMjgwNDE5Mjk0Mzg5Mzk4/dcovlevert_hz.jpg Rohan Nadkarni Caris LeVert remembers thinking he had been waiting a lot longer than usual for the results of a routine medical exam. It was Friday, Jan. 15, and LeVert had just been traded to the Pacers in a landscape-altering move that sent former MVP James Harden to Brooklyn.......

The Year of the Opt-Out Prospect

Sports Illustrated
So far Gregory Rousseau has interviewed with more than 20 NFL teams in the lead-up to this month’s draft, and so far each video call has followed a similar line of inquiry. “Just different voices every time,” the former Miami Hurricanes defensive end says, “but it’s the same stuff.” First......

Resilient Cardinal Shaped by a Season on the Road

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Emma Baccellieri As Aari McDonald released her final shot—a last-second, potential championship-winning prayer of a three-pointer—Tara VanDerveer flashed back. The Stanford coach did not think of her wait, denied a national title for almost three decades; she did not think......

Asian American Runners Fight to Reclaim a Refuge

Sports Illustrated
Martha Hao took up running five years ago, coaxed by a friend who was prepping for the New York City Marathon and wanted a training partner. She eased in slowly but got hooked before long, entering races hosted by New York Road Runners; completing the 2019 New York City Marathon......

Remembering the Best (and Worst) of Pitchers at the Plate

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Steve Rushin In the grillroom of McArthur Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Fla., this winter, two retired pitchers were talking baseball. Jim Kaat pitched 25 seasons in the big leagues, in four decades, for six teams, while one-time Phillies prospect......

Inside a Secret Alumni Tradition at Gonzaga

Sports Illustrated
SI – For more and to sign up click here Greg Bishop The first rule* of Sunday Ball is to never speak publicly about Sunday Ball. *That’s actually not a real rule, but it can feel that way to the pickup basketball participants in Spokane, Wash., those lucky few who......

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