The Trouble With Floyd Mayweather

Last week, Floyd Mayweather announced that he will fight a rematch with Marcos Maidana on Sept. 13. Their first fight, two months ago, was Mayweather's closest challenge in years, with many in the boxing media believing that Maidana had earned the decision. And while that bout may have failed to meet expectations at… » 7/17/14 1:15pm 7/17/14 1:15pm

Prince Fielder's Naked ESPN Cover Is Sexy As Hell

One of the most beloved tropes in sports lore is the Triumph of the Unexpected Body. When I think about those stories, I think about cheering on Muggsy Bogues from my friend's living room when I was eight or nine. I knew nothing about basketball, but seeing that small man dart around the court alongside NBA giants… » 7/11/14 11:11am 7/11/14 11:11am

Baseline Bathroom Standards: Let's Do This

The rise of AirBnB—and the existence of Airpnp, which allows you to tap-tap-tap on your tiny computer telephones and find a friendly bathroom in which to take a whiz when no acceptable public option is available—makes necessary a conversation about what amenities a bathroom should feature, and what constitutes a… » 4/10/14 12:29pm 4/10/14 12:29pm

When A Famed Nike Coach Tried To Steal A Race, A Track Protest Was Born

The scene was unprecedented: seven runners walking off the track hand in hand, in quiet protest against their own governing body. The women had just run the 1,500-meter race at the U.S. indoor national championships on Feb. 23 in Albuquerque. The day before, the winner of the 3,000-meter race, Gabe Grunewald, had been… » 3/07/14 5:43pm 3/07/14 5:43pm

Title IX's Other Effects: Do Sports Make Women Less Religious?

How does playing a sport in high school affect a woman after she has graduated? We know from Betsey Stevenson's 2010 study in The Review of Economics and Statistics that female former high school athletes tend to go further in school and make more money. But what about the effects on a woman's social life? Does she… » 3/04/14 3:30pm 3/04/14 3:30pm

The Coach Who Doesn't Care: How One Man Turns Skaters Into Champions

Gracie Gold was having a bad night. The 18-year-old figure skater was about a minute and a half into her free skate at the U.S. International Classic in September when she singled a double axel. It was a significant mistake—a loss of a couple of points—but for a disciplined skater, that kind of error shouldn't have… » 2/19/14 6:45pm 2/19/14 6:45pm

Why Does Every Olympian Skate To Les Misérables?

There are still two days left of Olympic figure skating, and I have officially maxed out my lifetime tolerance for the Les Misérables soundtrack, something not even Russell Crowe could do to me. Same goes for the score from the 1968 movie adaptation of Romeo and Juliet: I have never seen this film, but in the last… » 2/18/14 1:59pm 2/18/14 1:59pm

Why It Took 90 Years For Women's Ski Jumping To Make The Olympics

The first measured ski jump was explicitly a show of manhood. In 1809, the story goes, a lieutenant in the Norwegian military launched himself 9.5 meters through the air "to show his soldiers what a courageous fellow he was." The sport that grew out of that jump was likewise a test of manliness—far too dangerous, it… » 2/11/14 12:18pm 2/11/14 12:18pm

Meet The Underdogs Of The U.S. Figure Skating Team

The figure skating competition is already underway in Sochi, and I have to break the bad news to you: For the first time in years, no American man or woman is expected to seriously vie for an individual gold medal. Which doesn't mean this won't still be the most fascinating, nerve-wracking competition in the games, or… » 2/06/14 5:28pm 2/06/14 5:28pm

Confessions Of A Tonya Harding Apologist

I was 5 years old when I fell in love with Tonya Harding. The year was 1988, and I had just taken up figure skating. My favorite aunt, Julie, had recently moved from my Maryland neighborhood to Portland, Ore., and I was determined to find something to like about the state. Tonya, a scrappy Oregonian underdog, was the… » 1/17/14 12:49pm 1/17/14 12:49pm

The Real Reason Ashley Wagner Made The U.S. Olympic Figure Skating Team

On Sunday, U.S. Figure Skating gave the final spot on its three-member women's Olympic team to Ashley Wagner, even though she had fallen twice the previous day during an "embarrassing" skate at the national championships in Boston. The other selections were Gracie Gold, the newly crowned national champion who gave… » 1/16/14 6:58pm 1/16/14 6:58pm

Return Of The Meme: McKayla Maroney Vaults Again

One year and three leg surgeries after London, McKayla Maroney has returned to competition on the vault. And from a performance standpoint, not much has changed. She does the two-and-a-half twister that made her famous (before the meme made her even more famous) just as well as she did at the Olympics. She even… » 10/04/13 5:46pm 10/04/13 5:46pm