Articles

Todd Haley has the misfortune of looking like a huge asshole. Fleece vests, intermittent shitty beard, jocko-dickwad sunglasses, things dangling on a lanyard, golf visors (the worst), even right down to being named Todd—a first name that’s been repurposed as a common noun meaning “alpha douche.” I hate dudes like Todd Haley, and that reflects poorly on me.  But Todd Haley also has the misfortune of acting like a huge asshole. While dressed in fleece vest, shitty beard, golf visors, right on down the line, which amplifies everything. His sideline demeanor as a coach was like a composite sketch of the worst possible Little League dad.

In January of 2010, Neil Chamberlain left Brooklyn for a three-month tour of Muay Thai boxing camps in Thailand. While abroad he kept an online chronicle of his experiences that was followed voraciously by his family and friends. Neil returned from Thailand in early April; less than two weeks later he was dead at age twenty-eight, killed by a hit-and-run driver. It’s a great cliché to describe prose as “alive," but it’s a privilege to say it now, and to share Neil’s words and travels here. 

The WWE's early-'00s hardcore moment was riotously fun while simultaneously being sickening. The matches themselves are deeply satisfying as spectacle; they move fast, tell big stories, and give Jim Ross chances to air out his most gleefully horrified commentary: "Broken bodies everywhere, King!" But they also function as pro wrestling's Faces of Death. Even as I enjoy the living hell out of the carnage, a voice in my soul keeps asking if this is the chairshot that sent Matt Hardy into a permanent painkiller-induced K-hole. Is there a include such insane action without permanently damaging the talent?

Take two athletes. Good ones, real specimens. Been told their whole lives how awesome they are, how capable. Now pit them against one another. But let’s say one can reach into that soft place where the other keeps all the happy horseshit people fed him over the years, his mojo, his metaphorical heart. That one can rip that out and squoosh it. Why, then the aggressor can do pretty much whatever he wants. For such a powerful force in sport, it’s downright bizarre we don’t have a word for what’s happening there. 

To appreciate Devin Hester is to be dazzled, shocked, exhilarated, to speak in tongues as if being touched by the divine, or to roll around on the floor uncontrollably like a seizure victim. He evokes otherworldly reactions because, simply, he is capable of otherworldly actions.

A decade ago, New Jersey's Gill St. Bernard's was a school with a fancy name, a leafy campus, and a nondescript basketball team. The name and campus haven't changed. The team really, really has.

Everyone knows about the slow-motion tragedy of concussions in sports. But no one, including the players who suffer, seems to know how to talk about it—which is a big reason why this particular epidemic isn't going away anytime soon.

In world soccer, stereotypes of national style serve as crutches for casual observers. The Germans were long considered to be masters of joyless, mechanical soccer, with function not just dominating form, but leaving it for dead. Yet watching them over the last 18 months has been a revelation as they’ve lately, and quietly, broken with their mold. “Classic" Germany is dead, and pleasingly so

It was half past nine on Monday of the Thanksgiving week and Frazil had just finished galloping a mile and a half, something that he had done almost every day of the last year, on the tracks at the 430-acre complex at Belmont Park. The park is like a world unto itself. Birds of different colors and varieties, ranging from the Red-bellied Woodpecker to the Yellow-rumped Warbler swoop over even as grooms and jockeys go about their daily routines.

I am as surprised as anyone that I have become an avid fisherman. As I sit on my couch and write these words, I can look out the window to my left and see a long slice of the Hudson River, as gray and motionless as the cement that spans the distance between it and me. In theory, I suppose I could fish the Hudson, though I also suppose I’d be as likely to catch a box of hypodermic needles as I would a fish worth crowing about.