Many NBA fans on Wednesday woke up to the news of the long-anticipated, yet shocking, transfer of the 27-year-old former two-time Kia Defensive Player of the Year and Finals MVP winner Kawhi Leonard to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for the Canadian team’s star guard, DeMar DeRozan.
Accompanying Leonard to the Raptors will be Spurs old-timer Danny Green, while joining the San Antonio team, along with DeRozan, are center Jakob Poeltl and a 2019 protected first-round draft pick.
Apparently, DeRozan, 28, is not thrilled about getting traded out of Toronto, as his early Wednesday morning Instagram post, just prior to the announcement, suggests.
“Be told one thing & the outcome another,” DeRozan wrote. “Can’t trust em. Ain’t no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quickly for a little bit of nothing … Soon you’ll understand. Don’t disturb.”
While DeRozan did not specifically mention the trade or anyone by name, it doesn’t, really, take a rocket scientist to understand where he’s coming from.
DeRozan, who had been with the Raptors for his entire career, spanning eight years (2010-18), proved himself as one of Raptors’ ace guards and was the key to the team’s triumph in 59 games, securing the No 1 seed for the Eastern Conference playoffs last season.
However, after a drubbing at the hands of Cleveland in the second round, the Raptors think-tank did not waste too much time in effecting sweeping changes, firing coach of the year Dwane Casey, to start with, and then going on to trade their star performer DeRozan.
The ex-Toronto player averaged 23.4 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists in the 2013-14 season and named to the All-NBA third and second team in the 71st and 72nd seasons, respectively.
DeRozan is pretty much justified, it would seem, in feeling hard done by, not only because of all his achievements and contributions to the team’s past successes but also because Raptors officials had assured him during the NBA Summer League that he would not be traded.
The Wednesday blockbuster trade announcement has drawn criticism from other NBA players, including Los Angeles Clippers player and DeRozan’s former teammate Lou Williams.
Williams wrote that he was “hurt” because DeRozan was “stabbed in the back” by an organization he dedicated his heart and soul to.
I’m hurt bro. I’m hurt. My dog gave that city and organization his heart and soul. He was loyal to the soil and got stabbed in the back.
New York Knicks center Enes Kanter was also among those who expressed their disgust at the treatment meted out to the star player, calling DeRozan a “classy player” who gave his heart to the franchise.
He said that DeRozan was being given away for nothing.
NBA senior writer for @YahooSportsNBA, Michael Lee, said that in spite of embracing “everything about being a Raptor,” his franchise is “about to drop-kick him to SAS.”
Tracy McGrady was on verge of something special, skipped to ORL. Vince Carter hurdled 7-fters, forced his way to NJN. Chris Bosh let his dreads bounce in the post, then chased rings in MIA. DeMar DeRozan embraced everything about being a Raptor; TOR about to drop-kick him to SAS
Speaking to the Associated Press, Miami Heat’s Dwayne Wade said that loyalty and sports don’t blend well and that the deal “sucks.”
“DeRozan gave everything to Toronto, everything they asked him to do from the standpoint of loyalty,” Wade said.
“That’s why I hate loyalty and sports, those two words, they shouldn’t go together. … From a player standpoint, it just sucks,” he added.
Canadian rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, actor, and entrepreneur Aubrey Drake Graham, better known as Rapper Drake – a regular at Raptors games – paid a glowing Instagram tribute to DeRozan.
“To my brother @demar_derozan I want to say 10 million thank you’s (sic) on behalf of YOUR city,” Drake wrote.
“You are a fixture in Toronto forever and you gave everything you had. Through your leadership we had the most exciting years in franchise history,” he said.
“I am grateful to have witnessed your combination of skill, persistence, and loyalty from the same seats every night. Thank you for being an incredible captain and an even better friend,” he added.
He had a few welcome words for the incoming Leonard, as well.
To Kawhi … we look forward to this new chapter and we welcome you to the most intense and supportive city in NBA basketball!!! You have always been a poised clinical warrior and I can’t wait to see how Toronto inspires your fight. Let’s Go Raptors.”
As far as Kawhi Leonard is concerned, his trade was somewhat of a foregone conclusion.
His year-long feud with SAS had reached a flashpoint when he declined a five-year, $295 million super-max extension from the franchise where he spent seven seasons of his career, averaging 16.3 points.
However, he was looking forward to playing for the Los Angeles Lakers rather than being traded to Toronto where he had “no desire to play,” according to ESPN.
While refusing to talk about his apparent feud with the player, SAS coach Gregg Povovich wished Leonard well for the future, calling him a “great teammate”
“Kawhi conducted himself wonderfully while he was here,” Popovich told reporters in San Antonio.
“We wish him well as he moves into Toronto. I think he’ll be great,” he said.
“I think this trade is going to work out great for both teams. We wish [Leonard] well, but at this point it’s time to move on. It’s time to move on,” he added.
“Kawhi is not going to stop being a great player. But we’re thrilled with DeMar. … To get back a proven NBA player and a proven All-Star, we have to be thrilled,” he said, expressing his satisfaction with Leonard’s replacement, DeMar DeRozan.
A leg injury, described as Tendinopathy of the right quadriceps, had kept Leonard out of all but nine games for the San Antonio Spurs last season, around the time when trouble started brewing between him and the franchise.
“Injury management” is what Spurs had cited as the reason for keeping him on the injury reports for much of the season.
Italian football is mourning the loss of football star David Astori who was found dead in his room at the Best Western Hotel Là di Moret in Udine, just hours before the scheduled Sunday kick-off of a ‘Serie A’ fixture between his club Florentina and Udinese.
According to Udine prosecutor Antonio De Nicolo, the 31-year-old-Fiorentina captain died as a result of a “cardio-circulatory arrest due to natural causes.” He said that Astori had not shown any “warning signs” of his illness.
“Fiorentina are profoundly shaken and forced to announce that their captain Davide Astori has died,” the club said in a statement.
“For this terrible and delicate situation, and above all out of respect for his family, we appeal to the sensitivity of the media,” added the statement.
When a usually punctual Astori did not arrive for the team breakfast at 9:30 am, his concerned teammates went looking for him; they had to break down his hotel room door to find their captain dead.
“The lad did not turn up to the team breakfast at 9.30am and he was usually the first to arrive,” Club spokesman Arturo Mastronardi said.
“So they went to check on him. Davide was sleeping in a room on his own. The body has been taken for an autopsy, which I think will be conducted today,” added the spokesman.
As a mark of respect for the national hero, Serie A called-off all of the seven fixtures scheduled for the day.
Italian club AC Milan said in a tweet that they were “shocked” to learn about Astori’s death and described him as “a man who loved football and who grew up as footballer with us.”
“It is with great sadness that we offer our deepest condolences to his family and closed ones and to ACF Fiorentina,” read the tweet.
A man who loved football and who grew up as footballer with us. #ACMilan are shocked by the passing of Davide #Astori. It is with great sadness that we offer our deepest condolences to his family and closed ones and to ACF Fiorentina
A.S. Roma also condoled the center-back’s death, saying that the club was “devastated” by the news of his death.
“The thoughts of everyone at AS Roma are with the player’s family, friends, and teammates at this terrible and tragic time,” said the A.S. Roma tweet.
The club is devastated to learn of the death of Davide Astori. The thoughts of everyone at AS Roma are with the player's family, friends and teammates at this terrible and tragic time. pic.twitter.com/vDlL4LIkJr
The Italian international is survived by girlfriend of long, Francesca Fioretti, and their two-year-old daughter Vittoria.
Born in Bergamo on January 7, 1987, Davide Astori started his footballing career with local club Pontisola, crossing over to AC Milan back in 2006, a stint which included loan spells with Pizzighettone and Cremonese.
The start of the 2008-09 season saw him change yet another club, this time moving over to Seria A club Cagliari, where he would gain the recognition he truly deserved.
The center-back defender made a total of 345 career appearances for various clubs, representing Cagliari on 174 occasions as well as appearing as a Calgiari-loaned player for Roma (24 appearances) and Fiorentina (33 appearances).
Astori’s sense of loyalty was such that, in 2012, he declined a €15 million ($18.4 million) offer to move to Spartak Moscow, saying that he chose to stay on with Cagliari to achieve unmet goals with the club.
He made 25 and 31 loan-appearances for Pizzighettone and Cremonese, respectively, during his contract with AC Milan.
Having played for Fiorentina as a loan-player in the past on 33 instances, as mentioned before, Astori joined the club in 2016; and before he passed away on Sunday (March 4), he had made 58 appearances on behalf of the club, as a directly contracted player.
Astori’s international career actually began in 2004 when he represented the national under-18 team, going on to play 4 games for the junior team.
It was a long wait for the defender before he got his first shot at the senior national level, in 2010, when he was included in the team for a friendly against Côte d’Ivoire.
But as fate would have it, it turned out to be an anti-climax for Astori as his skills were left un-utilized in the game by coach Cesare Prandelli.
It was on March 29, 2011, that he represented Italy in a real sense, coming on as substitute, seventeen minutes into a friendly against Ukraine, in Kiev, which Italy won 2-0.
His international career includes 14 outings on behalf of his country with one goal under his belt.
WATCH: Antonio Conte's touching tribute to Fiorentina captain, Davide Astori, who he managed when with the national team. 😪👏🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/UhYTqrV0UB
Swiss tennis star Roger Federer has replaced the legendary Andre Agassi as the oldest player in the sport to be ranked number one following his 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 quarterfinal victory over Dutchman Robin Haase at the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam.
Agassi was 33 when he last topped the rankings in September 2003.
“Getting to No. 1 and enjoying it right here at 36, almost 37 years old is an absolute dream come true,” Federer said. “I can’t believe it.”
Not only has the 36-year-old edged out the American from the record books, he has also surpassed the record in women’s tennis held by Agassi’s compatriot Serena Williams who was 35 when she was last number one in May of 2017.
Federer is also the proud holder of the longest ranked number one with 302 weeks at the tennis pinnacle under his belt, which will continue to add for as long as he holds on to his current position at the top.
His first stint at the ATP No. 1 spot was for 237 weeks – from February 2, 2004, to August 17, 2008, which is a record in itself.
He regained his top ranking on July 6, 2009, and held the position for 48 weeks until he lost it again on June 6, 2010.
His third stint at the first position lasted for 17 weeks starting July 9, 2012, and ending November 4, 2012, giving him a total of 302 weeks as the number one ranked tennis player in the world.
By regaining the top ranking after 5 years and 106 days, the 20-time Grand Slam winner has set another record – that of the longest gap between two stints at the top.
Also, the gap between his first time at the top and his latest is the longest ever, which was held by the Spaniard Rafael Nadal for sometime after he won back his top ranking in August last year, having first reached the number one spot in 2008.
Federer needed to win his quarter-final match and reach the last four in order to topple his great rival Nadal from the summit, which, as we know, he did, but not before showing some initial nerves as Haase broke him in the ninth game and followed it up with an ace to take the first set 6-4.
In a somewhat emotional tweet, Federer thanked his fans for their “love and support” which he said meant more to him than he could possibly describe. “Going to sleep well tonight,” said a relieved Federer.
Going to sleep well tonight. Thank you to everyone for the love and support. It means more than I could possible describe pic.twitter.com/8t0f38vTLB
The Swiss great, however, will have to wait until Monday morning for the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) rankings to be published before his position at the top becomes official for the fourth time in his career.
The 20-time Grand Slam winner previously achieved the feat on February 2, 2004, July 6, 2009, and July 9, 2012.
“This is an exciting challenge, I’ve struggled to try and get there. I had to win a lot of matches last year. I never imagined this after my knee surgery. Number one is a tough place to get to. I would have had great regret if I had not come here this week. I’m very excited for tomorrow’s match, I can’t wait for it to come around,” said the tennis legend before his face-off with Haase.
When Dutchman Richard Krajicek, tournament director and former Wimbledon champion, handed Federer the huge No.1 plaque after his quarterfinal triumph, he said, “Reaching number one is one of, if not the ultimate achievement in our sport.”
He went on to say that “Sometimes at the beginning you get there just because you play so well. Later, you sometimes try to fight it back and you wrest it back from somebody else who deserved to be there, and when you’re older you feel like you have to put maybe double the work in. So this one maybe means the most to me throughout my career.”
One of the first to congratulate Federer was none other than the man who lost his oldest numero uno record to the Swiss legend.
Calling it a “remarkable achievement,” Agassi wrote that Federer continued to set new standards for the game.
36 years 195 days…@RogerFederer continues to raise the bar in our sport. Congratulations on yet another remarkable achievement!!
Beats Andy Roddick in the semis and Mark Philippoussis in the finals to win his first Grand Slam at Wimbledon
Wins the Australian Open and becomes world number one for the first time after beating Marat Safin in the finals
Wins his second Wimbledon title with victory over Andy Roddick
Wins his first US Open title beating Lleyton Hewitt
Wins third Wimbledon title, once again beating Andy Roddick in the final
Beats Andre Agassi in the American’s last major final to take home the US Open title
Defeats Nadal to win fourth Wimbledon crown
Wins second Australian Open title after victory over Marcos Baghdatis
Wins second US Open title by beating Roddick
Registers third Australian Open win without dropping a set, beating Fernando González in the final
Again defeats Nadal in the final to record his fifth consecutive Wimbledon win
Beats Djokovic in the final to win his fourth US Open title
Successfully defends his US Open title for the fourth time, beating Andy Murray in the final
Wins the French Open for the first time, defeating Söderling with a straight-sets victory
Wins Wimbledon for the sixth year running, defeating Andy Roddick in the final
Defeats Andy Murray to win his fourth Australian Open crown
Defeats Andy Murray in four sets in the 2012 Wimbledon final to take home the grass-court title for the seventh time
Triumphs over Rafael Nadal to win his fifth Australian Open title
Defeats Marin Cilic in straight sets to win a record-breaking eighth Wimbledon title
Reaches the Australian Open final without dropping a set to beat Marin Čilić in a five-set final and take home the title for the sixth time. This also made him the first man to win 20 Grand Slam titles
Eighty-nine victims of Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse came forward in the first week of his sentencing hearing to testify against the former US Gymnastics national team doctor who is accused of sexual crimes against, at least, 140 women gymnasts under his care.
It appears that the 54-year-old disgraced doctor, who was sentenced to sixty years federal imprisonment last month in a separate case involving child abuse imagery, will spend the rest of his life and, perhaps, another lifetime – or two – behind bars, once he is sentenced in the other cases he is involved in.
While sentencing the monster, U.S. district judge Janet Neff said she was following the government’s recommendation that he “should never again have access to children.”
She also said that Nassar’s federal sentence will start after he has completed his sentences for sexual assault, which will be pronounced next week after the remainder of the accusers have finished testifying in the ongoing hearing.
After the allegations against the despicable doctor became public in September 2016, more than 140 women, including Olympic gold medalists McKayla Maroney, Gabby Douglas and Aly Raisman as well as other US gymnasts have bravely come forward to openly speak about their harrowing ordeals.
Here’s a look at some of the highlights of the four days of the first week of Nassar’s hearing in which 89 gymnasts delivered impact statements.
Tuesday (Jan. 16): Day One
The first victim to confront her tormentor on day one of the hearing was Kyle Stephens who delivered an emotionally charged impact statement.
The formerly anonymous Stephens, who was known simply as “Victim ZA” until she revealed herself on Tuesday, said that she had been sexually violated by Nassar for six years, starting when she was only six years old.
“You used my body for six years for your own sexual gratification. That is unforgivable.”
Stephens said that the former team doctor convinced her parents that her accusations were not true, and when her father finally did believe her, he committed suicide.
“After my parents confronted you, they brought you back to my house to speak with me. Sitting on my living room couch I listened to you tell me that no one should ever do that, and if they do, you should tell someone,” she said. “Well Larry, I’m here. Not to tell someone, but to tell everyone.”
“You convinced my parents that you didn’t pull my feet into your lap, unzip your pants, and rub your erect penis against my bare skin. But I still flinch when my feet are near someone’s lap,” Stephens said.
“I have been coming for you for a long time. I’ve told counselors your name in hopes they would report you. I’ve told your name to Child Protective Services twice. I gave a testament to get your medical license revoked. You were first arrested on my charges. And now as the only nonmedical victim to come forward, I testify to let the world know you are a repulsive liar.”
Throughout her delivery, the disgraced doctor hid his face and sobbed.
Here’s the video clip of her impact statement
Another victim of the disgusting doctor’s sexual advances, Chelsea Markham, is not alive to tell her story but her mother Donna Markham did appear in court on her behalf on Tuesday.
The tearful mother told the court that her daughter brought to her notice when she was twelve, that Nasser had “put his fingers in me and they weren’t gloved.”
The trauma drove Chelsea to a life of drugs until she ended her life at the age of twenty-three.
“In 2009, she took her own life because she couldn’t deal with the pain anymore,” said the weeping mother. “She was twenty-three years old. She would have been thirty-three now,” she added.
“Every day I miss her. Every day. And it all started with him. It all started with him, and it just became worse as the years went by until she just couldn’t deal with it anymore,” Markham said.
Donna Markham, with a picture of her daughter Chelsea Markham behind her. Donna Markham became visibly emotional throughout her statement. pic.twitter.com/TwBwlFy1yu
In all, twenty-nine impact statements were read out in front of Judge Rosemarie Aquilina on Tuesday, with a majority of the victims recommending the maximum sentence to the judge.
While most of them chose to be identified, others chose anonymity.
Some of the victims had their statements read out by loved ones or others, while the rest faced the man in person and delivered their impact statement.
All through the hearing, Nassar avoided eye contact with the victims or their representatives.
Wednesday (Jan. 17): Day Two
Day two was no less emotional, as more victims came forward to talk about how Nassar’s 20-year history of abusing young athletes at Michigan State University’s Sports Medicine Clinic, and during the course of his work with USA Gymnastics, had impacted their lives and about the sufferings and trauma he had caused over the years.
Not only did the victims speak out but their supporters also got a chance to address the court.
The day’s court proceedings began with national team member Maggie Nichol’s mother reading her daughter’s impact statement. She also had a few powerful words of her own to deliver.
Here’s the video clip of what she said.
Amanda Thomashow, who had gone to see Nassar at the MSU Sports Medicine Clinic in 2014 for a hip injury, was subjected to a breast and vaginal massage, which Nassar continued with even after she told him to stop, she claims in her lawsuit. The lawsuit also claims that she had to forcibly remove his hands from her body and she noticed he had an erection
While Nassar was put under suspension following her complaint to MSU, the Title IX investigation was “brief and sloppy,” resulting in Nassar’s reinstatement within three months after his colleagues at the clinic vouched for him.
“When Larry Nassar assaulted me and MSU covered for him, it changed the trajectory of my life,” she said on Wednesday. “Someday I will be whole again,” she said with conviction.
Addressing Nassar she said: “You didn’t realize that you were building an army of survivors, an army of female warriors.”
Victim Gwen Anderson, who is a middle school teacher said that she was at first reluctant to reveal her name as she didn’t want her to students to see her as a victim.
“I didn’t want to go public because I was scared that my students would see me at my weakest moments, that they’d see me as a victim,” she said.
“Then I realized, this moment is not my weakest moment. This is my moment of strength. I want my (sons) to see me stand up for what is right, and for my students to see what I always encourage them to do, which is to be the change we want to see in the world.”
On seeing Nassar hiding his face as a tearful Anderson was reading her statement, former gymnastics coach Thomas Brennan could not control himself and erupted in a fit of rage.
“Look at her!” he yelled. “For the record, go to hell,” he said and proceeded towards his seat along with Anderson, whom he had come to support.
He was then called back by Judge Aquilinia who offered him a chance to speak.
“I’m allowing you an opportunity. You seem to have a few things you would like to say that I think the world probably wants to hear. So do I,” said the Judge.
Making the most of the opportunity granted, Brennan delivered a powerful impact statement of his own.
“I have a different relationship with Larry from the standpoint that I was a coach for many years. I’m also an exercise physiologist,” revealed Brennan.
“When I graduated from grad school, he was an advisor of mine, he’s been a mentor of mine. I’ve done clinics with him for years in the past. And I’ve probably sent well over 100 kids to him over the years. So the guilt I feel for that is hard to fathom,” said the former coach.
“So, he didn’t only deceive these girls, which is honest to god, that’s the worst of the worst, is what he did to these girls, so they have the voice. But what you did to everybody else who trusted you and sent girls your way is disgusting. Reprehensible. Unforgivable. That’s all I’ve got to say,” concluded Brennan.
Watch Thomas Brennan’s speech here.
Another victim of the deranged doctor, Madeline Jones, reminded Nassar how – blocked from her mother’s view – he had sexually abused her while talking to her mother about his religious beliefs.
“Remember that?” she asked Nassar.
Thursday (Jan. 18): Day Three
One of Nassar’s early victims when she joined the national team at the age of 12, Olympic bronze medallist Jamie Dantzscher was the first to deliver her impact statement on Thursday.
She refrained from talking about her abuse to her parents or anyone else at the time because she was made to believe that Nassar could be trusted, and also because he pretended to be a “good cop” against the rough behavior of her coaches.
“You saw all the physical and emotional abuse and you pretended to be our side,” she said. “But instead of protecting us and reporting the abuse, you used your power to abuse us as well.”
“I remember your obnoxious laugh and how you would slurp the drool off your lip,” recalled the Bronze-medalist with disgust. “I don’t see you laughing now.”
She said she was not going to say everything Nassar did to her because he was a “sick bastard” and would “enjoy hearing it.”
Speaking about the mental and physical toll his actions took on her, she said: “I struggled with anorexia, bulimia, and depression so severe that I was hospitalized for attempting suicide.”
She vented out by saying, “How f***ing dare you say “sorry” for all you’ve done. We all see through your bulls*** now. You’re a pathetic monster who’s only sorry he got caught.”
Addressing the judge earlier she had said that when she first went public about the abuse in 2016, she was “attacked on social media” and instead of believing her people believed Nassar.
“They called me a liar. A whore. Accused me of making this up to get attention,” she said.
“But instead of backing down, I continued to speak my truth,” Dantzscher said. “I found out I wasn’t alone. I later learned he did this for many years to many, many girls, and their stories were shockingly similar to mine.”
Gold medallist McKayla Maroney was not present at the hearing and her statement was read out by Assistant Attorney General Angela Povilaitis.
In addition to what she wrote about her ordeal, Maroney made it a point to mention that a lot of all the abuse that happened could have been prevented if the concerned people had not allowed it to continue for as long as it did.
“A simple fact is this. If Michigan State University, USA Gymnastics and the US Olympic Committee had paid attention to any of the red flags in Larry Nassar’s behavior I never would have met him, I never would have been “treated” by him, and I never would have been abused by him,” wrote Maroney.
Appealing for accountability she wrote that the “leadership of Michigan State University, USA Gymnastics and the United States Olympic Committee should be held “accountable for allowing and in some cases enabling his crimes,” adding that “our silence has given the wrong people power for too long, and it’s time to take our power back.”
“It all started when I was 13 or 14 years old, at one of my first National Team training camps, in Texas, and it didn’t end until I left the sport,” Povilaitis read from the champion gymnast’s written statement.
“It seemed whenever and wherever this man could find the chance, I was “treated.” It happened in London before my team and I won the Gold medal, and it happened before I won my Silver Medal,” Maroney’s statement said.
“For me, the scariest night of my life happened when I was 15 years old. I had flown all day and night with the team to get to Tokyo,” the statement continued. “He’d given me a sleeping pill for the flight, and the next thing I know, I was all alone with him in his hotel room getting a “treatment.” I thought I was going to die that night.”
Friday (Jan. 19): Day Four
The last business day of the first week of the sentencing saw the surprise entry of six-time Olympic gold medallist Aly Raisman along with Fierce Five teammate Jordyn Wieber just before the start of proceedings.
“I am here to face you, Larry, so you can see I’ve regained my strength,” she said when it was time for her to speak to her tormentor. “That I am no longer a victim. I am a survivor.”
Raisman, who was not expected to be there as she had earlier announced that her statement would be made via a DA office representative, said:
“I didn’t think I would be here today,” adding that initially, she was “scared and nervous” but after having watched “the other brave survivors” she realized she should be there in person.
Without going into any details, she said that the abuse started when they were in Australia and that she was led to believe that the doctor’s actions were part of her treatment.
“I’m no longer that little girl you met in Australia, where you first began grooming and manipulating me,” said a confident Raisman.
“You never healed me. You took advantage of our passions and our dreams,” she said.
“Imagine feeling like you have no power, and no voice. Well you know what Larry, I have my power and my voice, and I will use them.”
Referring to a letter Nassar wrote to the judge earlier in the Week, in which he had complained that his mental well-being was being affected by all the impact statements the judge was allowing, she said:
“You are pathetic to think that anyone would have any sympathy for you. You think this is hard for you? Imagine how all of us feel.”
After Raisman was done, Judge Aquilina complimented her, saying she was an “unstoppable force.”
“You are unstoppable. You are part of an unstoppable growing force, an unstoppable, strong, loud voice. The effects of your voice are far-reaching. It’s not just in this courtroom, but worldwide,” said the judge.
Jordyn Wieber said in her impact statement that the most difficult thing she ever had to do was “process” that she was a “victim of Larry Nassar.”
“It has caused me to feel shame and confusion,” she said.
Speaking about how naive she was to have been misled by Nassar, she said:
“I have spent months trying to think back on my experience and wonder how I didn’t know what was happening to me and how I became so brainwashed by Larry Nassar and everyone at USA Gymnastics.”
Like many before her, Wieber also called for accountability of all those who turn a blind eye to all that was happening around them.
“Larry Nassar is accountable. USA Gymnastics is accountable. The U.S. Olympic Committee is accountable,” she stressed.
“My teammates and friends have been through enough and now it’s time for change. The current gymnasts should not have to live in anxiety and fear as I did.”
The youngest victim to make a statement at the sentencing was 15-year-old Chelsea who was sexually molested by the dirty doctor three years ago.
“It’s so sickening that he did that to me,” said young Chelsea.
Calling him a “monster” she said that because of Nassar she had almost lost her interest in gymnastics for good.
“This is all your fault, we wouldn’t be here in the first place if it wasn’t for you,” said Chelsea.
“I am a survivor. Here I am today, facing my abuser. I’m finally being heard. I’m no longer hiding my story,” she said before she finished, appealing to Judge Aquilina for maximum punishment for Nassar.
At the end of the first week, eighty-nine victims had read their impact statements, themselves or through a loved one or an official from the DA’s office.
More victims are due to speak on Monday and, expectedly, by Tuesday the judge should be able to pronounce the sentence.
The inaugural season of the Overwatch League officially kicked off on Wednesday and is scheduled to last until June 16 this year.
For those of you not familiar with this so-called revolutionary version of esports league, let’s first try to answer some basic questions as we go along.
What is Overwatch League?
Blizzard Entertainment, the developers of the video game Overwatch, announced the Overwatch League at BlizzCon 2016 with claims of revolutionizing professional esports.
The league is based more on the way traditional sports are modeled in North America, rather than how other esports leagues operate using the “promotion and relegation” method, which basically means that teams can be promoted or demoted to other divisions based on the previous season’s performance.
What is the League Format?
Overwatch League will follow the tried and trusted format of the country’s conventional sports circuit, where they adhere to a regular season-play with a permanent set of teams that are owned and backed by individual team franchises.
Each franchise guarantees its players a pre-agreed annual salary, perks, and a portion of winnings and performance-based revenue-sharing.
What are the names of the Overwatch League franchises?
Within a year of the November 2016 launch, twelve franchises – one each from Boston, Dallas, Florida, Houston, London (UK), New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seoul (S. Korea), Shanghai (China) and two from Los Angeles – were announced featuring hundreds of players from around the world.
Here’s the list of the 12 franchises competing for the inaugural season’s pool prizes.
Boston Uprising – owned by Robert and Jonathan Kraft of the Kraft Group
Dallas Fuel – owned by Team Envy
Florida Mayhem – owned by Misfits
Houston Outlaws – owned by OpTic Gaming
London Spitfire – owned by Cloud9
Los Angeles Gladiators – owned by father-son pair of Stan and Josh Kroenke
Los Angeles Valiant – owned by Immortals
New York Excelsior – owned by Sterling VC
Philadelphia Fusion – owned by Comcast Spectator
San Francisco Shock – owned by NRG esports
Seoul Dynasty – owned by NRG esports
Shanghai Dragons – owned by NetEase
How is the current season structured?
The current season, which commenced on Wednesday (Jan. 10), will be played over four stages of five weeks each with a break of two weeks between stages, the last closing on June 16.
The end of the regular season will be followed by a post-season play starting July 11 and ending on July 18, after which an all-star weekend has been scheduled for Aug.10 to Aug. 12.
The twelve teams have been split into two divisions of six teams each, with Boston Uprising, Florida Mayhem, Houston Outlaws, London Spitfire, New York Excelsior and Philadelphia Fusion finding themselves in the Atlantic Division, while Dallas Fuel, Los Angeles Gladiators, Los Angeles Valiant, San Francisco Shock, Seoul Dynasty and Shanghai Dragons have been allocated to the Pacific Division.
What are the prizes on offer for the teams?
At the end of each stage, a prize pool of $125,000 will be awarded to the winners of that stage, while the Overwatch League champion will receive $1,000,000 at the end of the season, making up an aggregate prize pool of 3.5 million.
Where is the tournament being held?
All the Overwatch League matches will be played at Blizzard’s new state-of-the-art facility in Burbank, California, featuring multiple sound stages for live as well as broadcast audiences, merchandise stores, guest lounges and a seating capacity of 450 at the theater-like arena.
The company describes the Blizzard Arena as a “cutting-edge live-event destination for pro players, esports fans, and everyone else who loves premier competition.”
Here are some pics of this amazing esports facility.
What are the ticket prices and where can I get them?
Half-day weekday events starting at 4 p.m. are priced at $20 each.
Full-day weekend events starting at 11 p.m. are priced at $30 each.
Here, https://overwatchleague.com you can watch live-streamed matches and even past matches archived under the site’s Videos tab Speaking to Game Spot ahead of the League’s Wednesday kick-off Blizzard Entertainment’s Vice President Jeff Kaplan said:
“With everything that we’ve done with Overwatch from the game itself to the league, there’s always been a desire to be as inclusive with as many people as possible. We try to make things approachable both in the game and in the league structure so that somebody who’s not necessarily familiar with Overwatch or Overwatch League immediately feels welcome. That’s always the goal. It’s kind of a Blizzard goal with all of the things that we do is to speak to as many people as possible,” said Kaplan.
“The Blizzard approach is not to make everything casual. The Blizzard approach is to find what we think is amazing as hardcore fans ourselves or hardcore players in games and then how do you bring that to as many people as possible and not be off-putting like some hardcore content and features can sometimes be,” he added.
In a move seen by many as ordained, NBC News Chairman Andy Lack announced in a Tuesday morning memo that Hoda Kotb’s makeshift assignment as co-anchor of The Today Show alongside Savannah Guthrie, is now confirmed permanent.
Kotb had been filling in for Matt Lauer, and doing a good job at that, since he got the boot in November, amid allegations of sexual impropriety.
“Over the past several weeks, Hoda has seamlessly stepped into the co-anchor role alongside Savannah, and the two have quickly hit the ground running,” read the NBC chairman’s memo, circulated among the NBC staff just before showtime. “They have an undeniable connection with each other and most importantly, with viewers, the hallmark of ‘Today’,” the memo said.
He also called her the “center” of the show’s family and said, “she’s been a rock for our organization in tough times, and we are grateful.”
“It’s 2018 and we are kicking off the year right because Hoda is officially the co-anchor of Today. Let’s give her a round of applause,” said Savannah Guthrie, making her co-host’s promotion public at the start of yesterday’s edition of the show.
And, as the studio staff and a few spectators looking in through the glass from outside clapped, Guthrie added, clapping herself, “This has to be the most popular decision NBC News has ever made, and I am so thrilled.”
“I’m pinching myself,” gushed an apparently surprised Kotb. “I think that we should send some medics to Alexandria, Virginia, where my mom has likely fainted after hearing the opening of that show,” she joked.
“It’s so exciting, Hoda, you are a partner and a friend and a sister and I am so happy to be doing this,” Guthrie gushed back.
“Well, there’s no one I’d rather be sitting next to in 2018,” Kotb said, holding her co-host’s hand and raising it for all to see.
The announcement attracted a slew of tweeted congratulations from her NBC colleagues and others.
In light of the recent ouster of Lauer amid allegations of sexual harassment at the workplace, the network’s decision, though a shift from the conventional male-female pairing, appears to be a prudent one indeed, as CNN’s Ben Stellar has rightly observed.
The axe fell swiftly and suddenly on the 59-year-old NBC anchor of twenty years, at a time when sexual misconduct allegations against known personalities were flying thick and fast.
The news of his firing was announced by Savannah Guthrie and his replacement Hoda Kotb on the Nov. 29 show, shocking viewers across the nation.
Even the announcers had not been aware of the decision, having received Chairman Lack’s memo minutes before the show went on air.
“On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standards. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment,” Lack wrote in the memo.
Justifying the termination of services, the memo had gone on to note that NBC had “reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.”
“Our highest priority is to create a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected, and to ensure that any actions that run counter to our core values are met with consequences, no matter who the offender.”
CBS anchor Charlie Rose had got the boot for similar offenses just over a week before Lauer’s and so had Bill O’Reilly of Fox News, in April last year.
Before joining NBC in 1998, Kotb had been working as an anchor and reporter for WWL-TV in New Orleans, Louisiana.
In her nineteen years with NBC, Kotb has served in different capacities, including that of co-host with Kathie Lee Gifford on the fourth hour of “The Today Show” since 2008 and since 1998 as a correspondent of “Dateline NBC.”
There is no denying the fact that nothing in the world unifies people the way sports does.
Few social activities, if any at all, have the capacity to reach out to people in such large numbers, bring them together on to one unifying platform and fill them with so much passion and enjoyment, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity or religion.
While the happenings on the field of play elicit so much fervor and excitement and emotion, a good venue adds to all of that in a big way.
Just entering a good sports venue lifts the spirit and the excitement level even before the play gets underway.
Here, we have attempted to take a look at ten of the most amazing sporting venues from across the world.
With hundreds of fabulous stadia in the world, if not more, it was indeed a difficult task to narrow them down to just ten.
So, if your favorite stadium does not appear in the list below, please understand that we’re spoilt for choice.
AAMI Park, Melbourne, Australia
Also referred to as the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, the AAMI Park was built at a cost of AUD268 million (approximately USD202 million).
Built by Cox Architects and Planners, work on the stadium started in 2007 and it was opened to the public in 2010.
A property of the Government of Victoria, AAMI Park is operated by Melbourne & Olympic Parks Trust.
It hosted the Rugby League Four Nations, a biennial tournament, in 2010 as well as 2014.
It was the joint host along with New Zealand and Papua New Guinea to the recently concluded 2017 Rugby League World Cup, which was won by Australia for the eleventh time.
Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany
Home to the Bayern Munich Football Club, the Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany, is the first stadium in the world with an exterior that can change colors to match the colors of the playing teams.
While the stadium is capable of displaying multicolors and alternating lighting schemes, the Munich Police recommends a single color only, as the changing display has caused several accidents in the past by distracting motorists.
Owned and operated by Allianz Arena München Stadion GmbH, construction on the stadium started in October 2002 and it opened to the public on May 30, 2005.
Designed by architects Herzog & de Meuron ArupSport, the stadium was built at a cost of €340 million (over USD 400 million).
AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas, USA
Home to the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League (NFL), the AT&T Stadium is the largest domed structure in the world and boasts the world’s fourth-largest high-definition display screen.
Built at a cost of $1.3 billion, it is one of the costliest stadiums in the world.
Owned by the City of Arlington and operated by the Dallas Cowboys, it is a multi-purpose stadium.
Apart from football, it is used for several other activities, including basketball games, college, and high school football games, soccer matches, and concerts, among others.
Beijing National Aquatics Centre, Beijing, China
Also referred to as the Water Cube, the Beijing National Aquatics Centre was host to the aquatic events of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, where Michael Phelps won eight gold medals for the United States and overall, 25 world swimming records were broken.
Built at a cost of ￥940 million (USD 140 million) by Architects PTW, CSCEC, CCDI, and Arup, construction of Water Cube started in 2004 and opened to the public in 2008 for the Olympics aquatic events.
The exterior of the Cube comprises 4000 pillow segments made from ETFE, a polymer that transmits more light than glass. The end result speaks for itself.
Beijing National Stadium, Beijing, China
Popularly known as the Bird’s Nest, the Beijing National Stadium is made up of two separate structures, the inner bowl with an 80,000 seating capacity and the outer steel shell giving it the appearance of a bird’s nest – hence the nickname.
Designed by Herzog & de Meuron and built at a cost of nearly $300 million, the BNS is located at the Olympic Green Village in the Chaoyang District of Beijing City.
Built for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, the stadium opened to the public as a tourist attraction soon after the Olympics ended in October 2008.
Presently, it’s the center for international and domestic sports competition and recreational activities.
It will be used for the opening and closing ceremonies of 2022 Winter Olympic Games.
Ericsson Globe, Stockholm, Sweden
The largest hemispherical building in the world, the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm, represents the Sun in the Sweden Solar System and serves as the country’s national indoor arena.
Designed by architects Svante Berg and Vretblad, work on the Ericsson Globe started in 1986 and was completed in 1989.
It opened to the public on February 19, 1989, and its first major event was the 1989 World Ice Hockey Championships.
It has hosted a variety of events ranging from Ice Hockey World Championships to UFC fights as well as a Britney Spears concert.
FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa
Also known as the Calabash, which means an African pot on an open fire, the FNB Stadium, short for First National Bank Stadium, was built at a cost of $440 million.
Also referred to as Soccer City, the stadium has the distinction of hosting Africa’s first major global sporting event – the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The stadium is also famous for being the venue where the great Nelson Mandela made his last public appearance.
HPCA Stadium, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, India
Located at an altitude of over 4,100 feet, the picture-perfect HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala, India, is the highest cricket stadium in the world, which has so far hosted one test, three ODI, and eight T20 matches.
Olympic Stadium, Montreal, Canada
Built for the 1976 Summer Olympics, the Olympic Stadium in Montreal is Canada’s largest stadium and is also known as “The Big O” because of its doughnut-shaped roof.
Once referred to as a “masterpiece of organic modern architecture,” the stadium got into so many financial issues that it started being referred to as “The Big Owe” by the time it was finally completed.
Designed by architect Roger Taillibert, the stadium which was estimated to cost Can$770 million ended up costing Can$1.47 billion due to additional costs, interest and repairs.
Universiade Sports Centre, Shenzhen, China
Located in the Longgang District of the city of Shenzhen in the Guangdong province of China, the Universiade Sports Centre opened to the public in 2011 for the 2011 Summer Universiade, the global inter-university sports meet.
Designed by architects Gerkan, Marg and Partners, the Universiade Sports Centre has a crystalline outer structure made up of triangular panels of laminated safety glass and slabs of polycarbonate that look even more spectacular when lit up after dark.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has levied its toughest ever doping penalty on Russia by banning it from the 2018 Winter Olympics, commencing on February 9, in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
In his Tuesday statement, IOC President Thomas Bach accused Russia of blatantly flouting the anti-doping rules put in place by the committee, calling it an “unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport.”
However, any clean athlete from the country will be allowed to compete in the games as an “Olympic Athlete from Russia” (OAR) without the Russian flag or anthem.
“The country’s government officials are forbidden to attend, its flag will not be displayed at the opening ceremony and its anthem will not sound,” The New York Times reported from the venue of Tuesday’s IOC meeting in Switzerland. “Any athletes from Russia who receive special dispensation to compete will do so as individuals wearing a neutral uniform, and the official record books will forever show that Russia won zero medals.”
“The IOC, at its absolute discretion, will ultimately determine the athletes to be invited from the list,” the IOC said in a statement.
The country can go ahead and boycott the games altogether as Russian president Vladimir Putin had earlier said that it would be degrading for the country to participate without its national symbols.
“An Olympic boycott has never achieved anything,” IOC president Thomas Bach said during a media conference.
“Secondly, I don’t see any reason for a boycott by the Russian athletes because we allow the clean athletes there to participate,” he added.
The committee has also imposed a life ban on Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Vitaly Mutko, for his hand in the state-backed doping program, and has suspended Russia Olympic Committee (ROC) president Alexander Zhukov as an IOC member.
Additionally, a $15 million fine has been imposed on the ROC to pay for expenses incurred for the doping investigations and for future anti-doping work. The decision, however, can be contested at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
“As a former athlete I am feeling very sorry for all the clean athletes who are suffering from this manipulation,” Bach said.
The sanctions have come on the back of a damaging report by the World Anti-doping Agency or WADA and two follow-up IOC investigations confirming Russian involvement in an elaborate drug-cheating program which spiked in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
“We accept and respect the decisions of the IOC Executive Board that Russia may compete under a neutral flag,” the PyeongChang 2018 organizing committee said on Wednesday.
“We will work with the IOC and all other relevant stakeholders accordingly to ensure that all the athletes and officials attending the Games as part of this team are given the best experience possible,” the Pyeongchang committee added.
“There were no perfect options, but this decision will clearly make it less likely that this ever happens again,” the US Olympic Committee said about the IOC announcement, calling it a “strong and principled decision.”
The head of the German Olympic Sports Confederation, Alfons Hoermann, said the decision was “historic.”
Russia´s Bobsleigh Federation, Alexander Zubkov said on Russian television, “This is humiliation. This is a punch in the stomach.”
To add to Russia’s Olympic woes, 11 of the 33 medals it won in Sochi have been declared invalid, effectively meaning that Norway has replaced Russia at the top of the medals table.
In a conference call with reporters, Jim Walden, a lawyer representing Grigory Rodchenkov – former Russian laboratory chief and whistleblower responsible for revealing the country’s drug-cheating program – said:
“It was the most elaborate and sophisticated doping system in the history of sports. If it did not carry the most significant sanction it would simply have emboldened Russia and other countries who don’t respect the rules.”
Australia’s 2018 Olympic team chef de mission Ian Chesterman welcomed the IOC decision.
“The culprits, the corrupt, have been dealt with,” Chesterman said in a statement. “Russia, and all involved with Sochi 2014 had a responsibility to nurture the Olympic Games and respect the athletes competing by providing a fair competition,” he said. “Clearly, across so many levels, that trust was abused.”
Here are some reactions on social media.
The IOC banning Russia from the 2018 Olympic Games is not the first time IOC has banned a nation–South Africa was banned for its apartheid policy and Afghanistan was banned for discrimination against women–but reason for ban here is more about allegations of sports corruption. https://t.co/cIjiAyMkrE
Such a sad news that #RussiaBannedFromOlympics It was what #USA and some other countries were hoping for.This turned out to be more of a political that sporting issues.There were a few discrepancies pointed out in the #McLaren report, but neither the he or the #IOC addressed them
A history of sorts was created when Palestine’s national football team surpassed arch-enemy Israel in FIFA rankings released on Thursday, moving up to 82nd place – its best ever.
Israel, on the other hand, plummeted 16 places to the 98th position, its worst-ever FIFA ranking, after a dismal performance in the World Cup qualifiers.
The upgrade in FIFA rankings also saw Coach Abdel Nasser Barakat’s team rise two spots to the 11the position, missing Asia’s top 10 by a single spot.
Palestine has had a dream Asian Cup 2019 Qualifiers in Group D with five wins to their credit, including a 10-0 thrashing of Bhutan, with one qualifying match still to play before the Finals in the UAE in January, next year.
According to a FIFA brief, the Palestinian team’s rise has been increasingly impressive ever since its historic 2015 debut in the Asian Football Confederation Asia cup.
“It’s a great performance by Palestine, but we need to back it up by continuing to work. We want to end the Asian Cup qualifiers as we started. It’s important for the team before the draw for the finals,” the 41-year-old coach told FIFA.
The announcement comes as music to Palestinian ears as the country’s football association continues its campaign against several Israeli clubs that are located in occupied West Bank settlements, urging FIFA to take action against the Israeli Football Association. It must be mentioned that settlements are deemed illegal under the international law.
FIFA’s refusal to intervene in the matter last month has attracted much criticism from the Palestinians who have accused the Federation of relenting under Israeli pressure.
Speaking to AFP on Thursday, Head of the Palestine Olympic Committee and the Palestinian Football Association, Jibril Rajoub, said that the Palestine football team’s improved FIFA ranking is a “historic achievement” despite Israeli interference and restrictions in the occupied territories.
“With this classification, we have defeated the occupation’s measures and its daily harassment, from preventing the freedom of movement of athletes through to all measures that impede Palestinian sport,” he stated.
Meanwhile, according to the Israeli Football Association, the country’s sports minister has ordered the formation of a committee to examine the reasons for Israel’s disastrous World Cup qualification campaign.
“We wish the Palestinians all the best as always,” said a magnanimous IFA spokesman.
He also said that Israel was willing to play a friendly match against the Palestinian team anytime. “May the best team win,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Islamic Republic of Iran maintains its top position in the Asian rankings as they move up two places to the 32nd spot.
By virtue of its FIFA World Cup 2018 Play-off wins over Syria and Honduras, Australia has improved its ranking from 43rd to the 39th spot.
While Japan is the third highest ranked team in Asia, it has dropped 11 places to the 55th position in the FIFA rankings.
South Korea moves up three places to stand at the 59th spot, while their northern enemy, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea moves up 18 places to reach number 114 in the rankings.
China slides down three places to number 60 from its previously held 57th position; Saudi Arabia holds on to its 63rd position; and at the 135th spot, Chinese Taipei is the second Asian team to achieve its best-ever FIFA ranking.
Lebanon has been ranked 87th – up by 13 places and Indonesia at number 154 has improved upon its previous ranking by 11.
The top five teams in the latest FIFA rankings area:
Teams that have qualified for the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018
43-year-old Terry Glenn, former wide receiver for New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers, and Dallas Cowboys died early Monday morning in a single-vehicle rollover road accident in Irving, Texas, near Dallas.
His fiancée, who survived the crash, is reportedly being treated in the Intensive Care Unit of a local hospital. While the extent and severity of her injuries are not yet known, some sources have said that they are minor and not life-threatening.
According to the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s office, Glenn succumbed to his injuries at the Parkland Memorial Hospital at 12:52 am, reports THE ASSOCIATED PRESS. The crash had occurred at 12:18 am local time per the Irving Police Department.
Glenn, who was driving in the eastbound lane of Highway 114 at the 700 block, was ejected from his car when he crashed into the barrier between the express lane and the local lanes.
The football community is shocked at the news of the former pro footballer’s death expressing their grief on social media. Several rising stars, who were kids when Glenn was at his professional prime, have also paid their respects to the former player.
Super Bowl Champ, Packers’ All-Time Receiver, 2012 DWTS Champ, and GBP Hall of Famer, Donald Driver, tweeted that his “heart is hurting to hear about the passing of my good friend and teammate T.G aka Terry Glenn. Prayers go out to his family. #RIPBigHomieTGlenn.”
His former team, New England Patriots, which he played for from 1996 until 2001, said on their official Twitter account, “We are deeply saddened to learn of the loss of Terry Glenn. Our thoughts & prayers are with his family, friends & former teammates.”
Michael Thomas, who currently plays for New Orleans Saints, said he used to see Glenn’s face every day in the college halls, “especially on the Biletnikoff Award list from Ohio State I wanted to be you RIP!”
Damn terrible news about Buckeye Great and NFL Legend Terry Glenn I used to see your face everyday in the halls in college especially on the Biletnikoff Award list from Ohio State I wanted to be you RIP!
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback, Cardale Jones, said that Glenn was one of the few players he held in high esteem growing up. “Wow, Terry Glenn, 1 of the few players I looked up to growing up. To the Glenn family, Buckeye Nations is here for you. Terry, you will be missed,” he tweeted.
Wow, Terry Glenn?, 1 of the few players I looked up to growing up. To the Glenn family, Buckeye Nations is here for you. Terry, you will be missed.
Born in Columbus, Ohio, Glenn graduated from Brookhaven High School, Columbus, in 1992.
After playing college football for the Ohio State University he signed a six-year, $12 million contract with the New England Patriots in 1996. In his rookie season itself, Glenn achieved 90 receptions – a single-season NFL rookie record at the time – and six touchdowns.
After a four-year lean patch due to issues at the personal front and the resultant inconsistency, he returned to form with a bang in 1999 and 2000, becoming the leading receiver for the Patriots.
Prior to the 2002 season, he was traded to Green Bay Packers which, in turn, traded him to the Dallas Cowboys before the 2003 season got underway.
His 63 receptions for 1,136 yards and 7 touchdowns in the 2005 season earned him a five-year, $20 million contract extension with the team. He did well for the Cowboys in 2006, which turned out to be another 1,000-yard season for him, with six touchdowns to his name.
An arthroscopic knee surgery kept him out of the first fifteen games of the 2007 season. Although he returned for practice in December that year, he could not play against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 15 of the season nor did he travel to Carolina for the Week 16 game. He did, however, play against the Washington Redskins in Week 17.
Because of a bad right knee and no injury clause in his contract, Dallas Cowboys released him in July 2008, which spelled the end of his NFL career.
Glenn’s NFL career stats boast a total of 137 games with 593 receptions for 8,823 yards as well as 44 touchdowns.
The former NFL pro is survived by his fiancée and five children.