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In the ’80s, nobody could touch the decathlete

Photo: Tony Duffy/Getty Images

You can keep your fan faves like Carl Lewis and Michael Phelps. To me, there’s only one man who embodies the Olympic spirit.

In my mind, there’s no Olympian greater than decathlete Daley Thompson. The man had the most iconic mustache in the history of the games and made short shorts incredibly masculine. And he never ever gave up.

I was seven when I first laid eyes on Thompson during the 1980 Olympics in Moscow. America called for a boycott after Russia failed to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. Iran, hostile to both superpowers, boycotted when the Islamic Conference condemned the…


The Olympics’ sexist and racist punishment of female athletes of color makes it difficult to celebrate the contests

Photo: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

I’m rooting for 18-year-old Namibian runners Christine Mboma and Beatrice Masilingi in the Olympics’ 200-meter competition not only because they’re incredible athletes but because they’ve been biologically discriminated against.

A couple of weeks ago, the two teens were banned from Tokyo’s 400-meter race because, according to the World Athletics, their testosterone levels were too high. No foreign substances or performance-enhancing chemicals were found in the bodies of these young women; their natural testosterone levels alone were the cause of their Olympic disqualification.

The only reason Mboma and Masilingi were tested in the first place is that Africans have spent all…


[This Week in Racism]

It’s an embarrassment of riches in our weekly roundup of the world’s most preventable disease!

Photo Illustration: Save As/Medium; Source: Getty Images

Death and taxes used to be the only two certainties in life. But no matter how much progress it feels like we’re making sometimes, the sad fact is you can probably slide racism into that list. Are we in a moment of uprising that feels like it has the potential to create real, systemic change? Yes. Do people and organizations still show their ass on a daily basis? Oh, most definitely. And to keep tabs on all that ass-showing, we created a weekly racism surveillance machine.

In Sunday’s European Championship soccer final, Italy rallied to beat host country England in…


This Week in Racism

It’s an embarrassment of riches in our weekly roundup of the world’s most preventable disease!

Photo Illustration: Save As/Medium; Source: Getty Images

Death and taxes used to be the only two certainties in life. But no matter how much progress it feels like we’re making sometimes, the sad fact is you can probably slide racism into that list. Are we in a moment of uprising that feels like it has the potential to create real, systemic change? Yes. Do people and organizations still show their ass on a daily basis? Oh, most definitely. And to keep tabs on all that ass-showing, we created a weekly racism surveillance machine. …


Photo Illustration: Save As/Medium; Source: Getty Images

The Official NBA Hair Power Ranking 2021

Forget the playoff race; this is the only power ranking that matters

Last July, the NBA set up shop in Orlando to close out the 2019–2020 season in an isolated zone at Walt Disney World. Within that bubble, the 22 teams competing for a championship had a wealth of amenities at their disposal, from fishing and films to bowling and boating. But while the coronavirus forced the rest of us to self-groom our quarantine hair situations, the bubble ballers enjoyed one of the most clutch perks of all: not one, not two, but three on-campus barbershops, all open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Even still, watching the tournament-style bubble games…


If we want to give players a better chance, we’ve got to stop the cycle of exploitation before it starts

If you work hard, you should get paid.

It’s an idea as simple as two-plus-two, as old as capitalism, as American as apple pie. But now that a new super league called Overtime Elite is announcing it will pay six-figure salaries to the world’s best high school basketball players, I can already tell you what’s going to happen — the old guard is gonna lose it.

Whenever anyone suggests paying young athletes, people start throwing all kinds of questions at the wall: What about amateurism? Can these players be trusted with money of their own? How much change is too…


The viral strain causes a longer period of infection, which could explain its increased transmissibility

“For this science-writing basketball fan, one of the few good things to come out of the pandemic has been the collaboration between the NBA and epidemiologists. Last summer, the league…


Just Rankin’ Sh!t

If the Washington Generals were a film festival, it’d be this quintet of losers

Source: Handout/Getty Images

5. “Eddie”

The Knicks have had their share of miracle moments (Linsanity, anyone?), but this ’90s comedy takes the cake. An unlikely series of events leads to a basketball-obsessed limousine driver (played by Whoopi Goldberg) locking down a head-coaching role and taking the hapless New York squad to the playoffs, which is just… actually, what’s Whoopi doing these days?

Love & Basketball this is not. Queen Latifah and Common have worse chemistry than the 2018 Timberwolves, and the latter’s stiff performance — both on and off the court — deserves to get this rom-com benched.

Dogs play fetch. …


I just wanna talk about ’rasslin

“These days, whenever someone asks me for TV binging recommendations, my answer is met with confusion, surprise, amusement, and intrigue. I sheepishly admit that I’ve been watching old professional wrestling…


Just Rankin’ Sh!t

Tap in for the tap out

Photo illustration; image source: Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images

5. Bobby “The Brain” Heenan

The late wrestler was smarmy and hilarious — as good a roaster as any Black person you’ve ever played the dozens with. Maybe that’s why he was so beloved. Or maybe it’s because he always knew Hulk Hogan was a POS.

This man’s whole career was goals: He beat up his boss, cursed and got drunk on the job, and wore a hoop earring and a gold chain. Plus, he rocked a baldie with a goatee and was the #1 stunner long before Birdman.

She gave an entire generation of women representation in a male-dominated industry. …

LEVEL

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