Categories
Sports Strength

Who Is The Current Heavyweight Champion In Boxing?

The heavyweight era in boxing from a few decades ago made the term ‘heavyweight’ synonymous with ‘best’ in any given field. Legends like Ali, Foreman, Tyson, and Frazier had that kind of effect on not just the sport, but the whole world. For a long while afterward, it was the lighter weight classes that had the shine in the sport, but in the past few years, heavyweight boxing is back on top in a big way.

With that being said, boxing can be hard to follow with its multiple different champions in each weight class and terms like ‘lineal champ,’ ‘super champ’ and ‘interim champ.’ So to make things easier for you, we’ve made a list of the current champions in heavyweight boxing across the main sanctioning bodies with information about each respective title reign.

To make things quick, there isn’t just one heavyweight champion in the sport. In fact, we’ve been in a four-belt era since 2004, and the last undisputed, unified heavyweight champion was Lennox Lewis. But right now, there are two fighters considered heavyweight champions; Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury. If and when they fight, they’ll unify their titles. What titles, you ask? Just scroll down to find out.

IBF Heavyweight Champion: Anthony Joshua (Apr 2016 – Jun 2019, Dec 2019 – Current)

The British superstar actually holds multiple of the four major sanctioning bodies’ heavyweight titles; the IBF title, the WBO title, the WBA Super title, and the IBO title. He won the first of them, the IBF title, in April of 2016 when he knocked out Charles Martin in round 2, and he has since racked up six successful title defenses against the likes of Wladimir Klitschko and Alexander Povetkin.

This puts him in tied second place for most defenses of this belt with Mike Tyson, with Klitschko actually in first place with a whopping eighteen defenses. In the summer of 2019, he lost the IBF title, along with his other three belts, to Andy Ruiz in what some people called the sport’s biggest upset since Buster Douglas beat Mike Tyson. Sticking to his guns to use his range and outbox Ruiz in December of the same year, he now once again holds the IBF title, along with the other three belts, and the fight on everyone’s mind is the unification bout against Tyson Fury.

WBA (Super) (World Boxing Association): Anthony Joshua (Apr 2017 – Jun 2019, Dec 2019 – Current)

The WBA (Super) title was made vacant after Tyson Fury tested positive for cocaine. Before that, he was scheduled to fight Klitschko once again, but instead, on April 29th, 2017, Klitschko fought Anthony Joshua in what ended up being one of the greatest heavyweight fights of all time. Joshua won and retained the title against Carlos Takam, Joseph Parker, and Alexander Povetkin before losing it in the first loss of his career against Andy Ruiz. Though it wasn’t the fun fight that fans worldwide necessarily wanted, he did what he needed to do to win it back in their rematch.

What might be confusing to people is that Manuel Charr is the regular WBA heavyweight champion, Trevor Bryan is the interim WBA heavyweight champion, and Robert Helenius is the WBA Gold heavyweight champion. This allows WBA to make extra money on other title defenses, but for all intents and purposes, Joshua is the WBA champion in the heavyweight division. Muhammad Ali holds the record for most WBA heavyweight title defenses with ten from 1974 to 1978.

WBO (World Boxing Organisation): Anthony Joshua (Mar 2018 – Jun 2019, Dec 2019 – Current)

Anthony Joshua didn’t win the WBO heavyweight title until March of 2018 when he fought Joseph Parker to a unanimous decision in Wales. Just like the WBA (Super), the IBF, and the IBO titles, the WBO title was on the line in all Joshua’s subsequent fights, meaning he defended it his first and only time against Povetkin in September of 2018, lost it to Ruiz and then won it back from Ruiz to close last year out. Joshua only has one defense of this title, putting behind Joseph Parker, Lamon Brewster, Vitali Klitschko, Herbie Hide, Henry Akinwande, and Wladimir Klitschko, who has a whopping nineteen WBO heavyweight title defenses, albeit not consecutively.

WBC (World Boxing Council): Tyson Fury (Feb 2020 – Current)

Before he walked away from the sport after testing positive for cocaine, Tyson Fury held the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, and The Ring heavyweight belts and was the reigning, undefeated king. After his long, well-documented hiatus, he beat Sefer Seferi and Francesco Pianeta to earn a shot at then-WBC champion Deontay Wilder. That fight infamously went to a draw, and it wasn’t until February of this year that he was able to compete in the rematch where he, of course, knocked Wilder out in the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

With his win of the WBC title, Fury has officially held all of the four titles at one point or another. You could look at the heavyweight title picture as Joshua holding 75 percent of it and Fury holding 25 percent of it, but unfortunately, it’s more complicated than that.

Due to the fact that Fury beat Wilder, he’s considered by many as the ‘real’ heavyweight champion. He’s also the “lineal champion,” which means as much as you want it to mean. Either way, a fight between Tyson and Anthony is long overdue, with Fury recently suggesting that Joshua should vacate any belts that might cause issues with booking the fight. If we ever get this, it’ll be one of the biggest fights of all time.

Categories
Sports Strength

The 10 Best WNBA Players Of All-Time

The WNBA is a young league, but it is by no means limited in its scope of icons. In fact, it is frustratingly difficult to put together a list of the greatest to ever do it because there are so many caveats.

For instance, Cheryl Miller could have gone down as the greatest woman player of all time, but she never had a chance to play professionally—she retired at 24 due to devastating knee injuries that would have been navigable today. There is also the matter of accounting for an ever-evolving league: play in 2020 is much different than it was in 2000, as all-around athleticism and skill are at an all-time high in a league that hoards talent.

This list, though, pays tribute to trailblazing legends, some of whom haven’t even retired yet. Greatness is changing, but we must always pay respect to our WNBA icons. In no particular order, these are the ten greatest players in WNBA history.

1. Teresa Weatherspoon

Inaugural WNBA Defensive Player of the Year. Record-holding ball burglar. Shooter of the most iconic shot in New York basketball history. Teresa Weatherspoon was a one in a million player and, undoubtedly, the greatest to ever do it in a Liberty uniform. 

Her will to win was her secret weapon. Nobody wanted it more than Spoon. In one sequence, she could defend the hell out of the opposition’s best player, shake the ball loose, run the break, and make a game-winning play. She did the dirty work and the glitzy stuff too, but her defensive plays were as electrifying as any buzzer-beater. T-Spoon on a home court like Madison Square Garden was a match made in basketball heaven.

T-Spoon led the Libs to four WNBA Finals appearances between 1997 and 2002—New York hasn’t sniffed one of these trips since. And while T-Spoon’s Libs were thwarted by the dynastic Houston Comets three times and Lisa Leslie’s Sparks on their fourth try, there is no way to write off what Teresa Weatherspoon did for the Liberty and for the league at large. After seven seasons with the Libs and a brief campaign with the Sparks, T-Spoon retired at 38, leaving behind a Hall of Fame career.

It would be another fifteen years—a decade overdue—before her Naismith enshrinement, but Teresa Weatherspoon was finally inducted in 2019 by former rivals and forever friends Cynthia Cooper, Sheryl Swoopes, and Tina Thompson. Don’t worry, though—Spoon’s still salty about those three ‘ships she gifted that trio.

Since retiring, Louisiana Tech alum Weatherspoon has been beckoned back to the bayou. Since 2019, she has been a part of the New Orleans Pelicans coaching staff as a development coach for two-way players; prior, she was head coach of the Lady Techsters from 2009 to 2014 and led her alma mater two NCAA tournament appearances. In between, Spoon was the Liberty’s Director of Player and Franchise Development.

2. Yolanda Griffith

Possibly the most underrated player on this list, picked No. 2 by the Sacramento Monarchs in 1999, Yolanda Griffith was named league MVP, Defensive Player of the Year, and Newcomer of the Year as a 29-year-old rookie. By that time, the eventual seven-time All-Star had played two years in the American Basketball League and four years in Germany and was thrilled to come home to finally play in a longstanding U.S. women’s professional league.

Huge smile, bigger heart, you couldn’t help but love Yo—until you had to defend her in the post. The tenacious offensive rebounder averaged a double-double in her first three seasons, and Dawn Staley has dubbed her the “loose ball queen.” She never took a play off. Leading a Sacramento superteam that included Kara Lawson, Ticha Penicheiro, and Rebekkah Brunson, Griffith won her coveted WNBA title in 2005 and was rewarded with a Finals MVP for her dominant underdog performance.

All at once, a superstar and a supermom, Yo’s daughter Candace was there to celebrate every one of her mom’s highlights. Yo regards her two Olympic gold medals as her greatest career accomplishment, but her 2005 WNBA championship was a different type of gratifying: “I’m no longer a Karl Malone or John Stockton!”

Yo played until she literally couldn’t; she tore her Achilles in 2009 while playing for Indiana, and decided at 39 to wrap up her historic playing career. From there, Coach Griffith made stops at Dartmouth, Lafayette College, and Albany before settling down at Boston College as an assistant to Joanna Bernabei-MacNamee.

3. Sheryl Swoopes

Only player in WNBA history to rack up a playoff triple-double. “The female Michael Jordan,” according to Nancy Lieberman. First woman to sign a major basketball shoe deal. Oh, and started her WNBA career just six weeks after giving birth. 

In January 1997, Texas native and Texas Tech alum Sheryl Swoopes was assigned to her brand-new hometown professional women’s basketball team: the Houston Comets. The 1993 Naismith College Player of the Year burst onto the mainstream scene as a member of the 1996 U.S. Women’s Basketball team that won gold in Atlanta. By that point, she had already teamed up with Nike to birth the Air Swoopes, the first (and, to date, only) signature women’s basketball shoe. To put it sweetly, Swoopes was primed for professional stardom. She was baptized into a dynasty.

Pairing iconic Trojans Cynthia Cooper and Tina Thompson was one thing, but adding Sheryl Swoopes to the mix? The rest of the league may as well have chosen load management into the next century. Literally. The Comets dynasty is akin to the contemporary Golden State empire—the most well-put-together team of all time, even if it was an accident. At any given moment, Swoopes, eventual three-time MVP and three-time Defensive Player of the Year, could be the best or third-best player on the team. Taking into account Coop’s positional dominance and Tina’s versatility, Sheryl’s defensive package was just another head on the multi-cranial monster.


Sheryl Swoopes made huge waves in 2005 when she came out as gay at age 34. She was no doubt the highest-profile athlete to have made such a groundbreaking announcement at that point in time and, tired of the pretense and “miserable” closeting, Swoopes was only the second active WNBA player to come out as gay. Her impact is enduring; today, a substantial percentage of active and former WNBA players openly identify as gay, lesbian, or queer. This gradual comfort in identity was made possible by courageous trailblazers like Swoopes.

4. Cynthia Cooper

Superstars seldom dim with age in the WNBA, and Cynthia Cooper is the first and finest example. The USC legend won two MVPs and four consecutive Finals MVPs from age 34 to 37 as a member of the Houston Comets, whom she led to an .803 regular season winning percentage through the WNBA’s infancy.

Signed by Houston at age 37, it’s equally bizarre and hilarious to consider how the WNBA Board of Governors let her end up on a team with Swoopes and Thompson. While she wasn’t the face of the great Trojan teams of the ‘80s (someone with the surname Miller got a lot of the attention), Cooper was no second banana. Alongside Cheryl the GOAT and the McGee twins, Coop brought historic success to USC and helped to put women’s NCAA basketball on the map. With no American professional women’s league to turn to after her amateur eligibility ran out, Cooper started her overseas hustle.

In reflecting on the accidental construction of the Comets regime, former WNBA President Val Ackerman kept it real: “None of us realized just how good Cynthia Cooper was.” Of course, Coop was earning her keep in Spain and Italy in the ‘90s B.T. (Before Twitter), and apparently no one in power was keeping tabs on her—even though she was averaging 36.7 points per game in 1987 and otherwise leading her Italian league in scoring year after year.

In addition to her seven individual MVP accolades, Cynthia Cooper led the WNBA in scoring from 1997 to 1999. She retired after winning her fourth title, but returned to the Comets in 2003 and became the first 40-year-old to play in a WNBA game.

5. Tina Thompson

Playing alongside Cynthia Cooper and Sheryl Swoopes as a 22-year-old rookie is not, at face value, conducive to making a name for yourself. But for Tina Thompson, the first ever No. 1 overall pick in WNBA history, it was actually the greatest situation imaginable for a rookie. 

Don’t let the iconic red lipstick distract you—Tina was always dressed to kill. Was there ever a smoother, more instinctive power forward? Tina’s toughness and versatility were just too much to handle; she’d wreck defenders on the block and shoot the arena lights out on back to back possessions. And with Coop and Swoopes on the other end of the plays she could make? Forget about it. 

The four-time champ, nine-time All-Star, and two-time gold medalist played for the Comets until they prematurely folded in 2008. Afterwards, Thompson played for the Sparks and the Storm. She was elite until the final buzzer, having averaged 17.7 points in her final season at age 38. Upon retirement in 2013, Thompson was the WNBA’s all-time leading scorer and third all-time rebounder. Today, Thompson runs the show for Virginia women’s basketball; she has previously coached as an associate with the Lady Longhorns in Austin.

6. Lauren Jackson

True blue WNBA heads know who the greatest Seattle basketball player of all time is. It’s not Bird, and it’s certainly not Payton. It’s four-time Olympic medalist Lauren Jackson.

The unicorn of her time, Jackson was a running, jumping contradiction; she’d pound you in the paint and devastate you from beyond the arc. Her combination of height, athleticism, and skill was simply unprecedented. With the Seattle Storm, Jackson was a seven-time All-Star, three-time WNBA MVP, and two-time league champion in 2004 and 2010. By the age of 21, LJ was by far the most famous and accomplished Australian basketball player of all time.

The sharp-tongued Opal was, at her peak, the world’s greatest—no gender disclaimer needed. Jackson was also probably the most overworked and underpaid professional athlete of the early aughts, playing year-round intercontinental stints. Her relentlessness was ultimately her undoing, as her body began to break down before the world was ready to bid her farewell.

Jackson unwittingly closed out her WNBA career in 2012. Debilitating injuries prevented a return to the Storm, but back home in Australia, Jackson made women’s sports history upon accepting a landmark contract. In exchange for a return to the Canberra Capitals, sponsors offered Jackson $1 million AUD over a three-season period.

Jackson quietly retired in 2016 and has since enjoyed motherhood and her pursuit of higher education. She continues to be outspoken about the jarring gendered horrors of global sport.

7. Lisa Leslie

The face of the league. No kid growing up in the 2000s didn’t know Lisa Leslie. 

One of the WNBA’s founding mothers, Lisa was assigned to the Los Angeles Sparks in 1997 on the heels of her memorable performance in the 1996 Olympics. It was natural and obvious for the former USC standout to be the Sparks’ inaugural player and face of the franchise; much of the league’s early player distribution was methodical, and when it came to Leslie, Swoopes, and Rebecca Lobo of the Liberty, Val Ackerman and David Stern were betting on their superstars’ ability to maintain a market-based following. 

Not to mention, Lisa was made for Hollywood. The gentle giant was everywhere in the late ‘90s, making guest appearances on Moesha, Martin, and Sister, Sister among others to promote the WNBA. Leslie helped to solidify the Sparks brand alongside the Lakers, and let her game do the rest of the talking. 

Three-time MVP, two-time Defensive Player of the Year, two-time Finals MVP, eight-time All-Star, four-time gold medalist—the accolades are numerous, but Lisa’s legend is so much more. In particular, the 2002 season was the campaign of a lifetime for Leslie: she eclipsed 3,000 total career points, led the Sparks to their second straight title, and made history as the first woman to ever dunk in a WNBA game.

Lisa retired in 2009 after passing the torch to Sparks newcomer Candace Parker. At that point, she had played two full seasons after becoming a mother and was still dominating, and posted the best field goal percentage of her career in her final season. She joined the Sparks’ ownership group two years later. Most recently, she has found success in the BIG3, where she earned Coach of the Year honors in 2019.

8. Tamika Catchings

Simultaneously the most lovable and tenacious basketball player to ever represent the state of Indiana, Tamika Catchings is an all-time, all-around great. Catch played for the Indiana Fever from 2002 until retirement in 2016, and brought them their first and only championship in 2012.

From her rookie season, Tamika imposed her will in every game, quarterly, in every statistical category. It was in her DNA: in 1997, she became the first player in recorded basketball history to record a quintuple-double! Upon retirement, Tamika was the WNBA’s second all-time leading scorer and rebounder and leader in steals made. By an astronomical amount, she is the WNBA’s all-time leader in win shares. Under Tamika’s leadership, the Fever made twelve straight postseason appearances, including eight trips to the Eastern Conference Finals.

She’s an NCAA champion, a Rookie of the Year, a five-time Defensive Player of the Year, an MVP, a four-time Olympic gold medalist. And if we’re ranking greatest people of all time, it’s a sweep for Tamika. Her huge heart and lovable persona made her one of the most difficult superstars to root against—she is humble and endearing to no end. She founded Catch the Stars in 2004, a foundation that employs basketball, fitness, and literacy as a platform for immeasurable good. Tamika has changed countless lives.

Today, Tamika is Vice President of Basketball Operations and General Manager for the Fever. In April 2020, it was announced that she will be inducted to the Naismith Hall of Fame.

9. Maya Moore

One of the greatest champions of all time, and she’s not done. We hope.

Do people understand that Maya Moore had a 125-3 record in high school in addition to three championships?! Two NCAA championships and two Euroleague championships?! Four WNBA championships and four gold medals?! Her individual awards and honors are so numerous, it would take 3,000 more words to just make a dent in her résumé. That Maya is so often left out of the conversation of greatest of all time is criminal.

When Maya walked away from the WNBA in 2019, it was startling, but not entirely surprising to those paying attention. Astute fans could see she just did not look comfortable or at ease in 2018. Playing at the highest level, year-round, in the prime of your life takes its toll—Maya no doubt needed rest. Over eight WNBA seasons, she only ever missed one game.

Her announcement that she would shift energy from sport to criminal justice brought national attention to the story of Jonathan Irons. Irons, a family friend, was wrongfully convicted on charges of burglary and assault in spite of a brazen lack of evidence. Maya’s dedication to Jonathan never wavered and her status helped focus millions of eyes on the case. Finally, in March of this year, the conviction was overturned and in July, Irons was freed.

That particular case may be closed, but WNBA fans may have to wait a year or two to win Maya back. She’s taking well-deserved time off to celebrate Jonathan’s long-awaited release—and her subsequent marriage to him! In the meantime, we can look forward to the Robin Roberts-produced documentary on the past few years of Maya’s life, her faith-based mission, and her commitments to love and justice.

10. Diana Taurasi

We’ve known for quite some time that Diana is the G.O.A.T., but she wouldn’t let us forget even if we wanted to. The WNBA’s all-time leading scorer is still breaking records at 38. It’s already been three years since Taurasi eclipsed Tina Thompson on the all-time leaderboard and, despite missing most of the 2019 season, DT has added more than 1,000 to her total.

Three NCAA titles, four Olympic gold medals, three WNBA titles. Not to mention, six Euroleague titles and a slew of other overseas championships. She’s an MVP and a two-time Finals MVP, and before the age of 30 was already voted one of the 15 greatest WNBA players ever.


To date, Taurasi is 14-1 in postseason elimination games, a stat that the Washington Mystics most recently fell on the wayside of. She’s a professional scorer, a dynamite trash-talker, and an undeniable historic champion. Let us pray for a few more years in the tank.

Categories
Gaming New Releases

15 Games Like ‘Firewatch’

Back in 2016, Campo Santo released a story-driven adventure game called Firewatch

Fans and critics alike responded to it in kind thanks to its strong narrative, likable characters, realistic dialogue, and unique art style. For those of you who got to the bottom of the mystery at the heart of Henry’s strange tenure as a fire lookout at Shoshone National Forest, you’re most likely on the lookout for games that are similar to what Firewatch has to offer.

There are 15 games in particular that offer the same type of fulfilling and emotionally affecting experience that Firewatch provides. These titles offer a mix of all the elements Camp Santo’s classic thrives by or just a few of them to a satisfying degree. If you’re desperate for another adventure game that knows how to tug at the heartstrings, offers a compelling narrative, and deals with earnest or melancholy themes, then you should seek out the games listed below.

1. ‘Gone Home’

Gone Home incorporates all of the themes Firewatch lives by – it plays from a first-person perspective, is all about adventuring within a mysterious location, and has an enticing mystery as its central storyline hook. The house you explore within this title exposes you to the struggle of a family and the outcome of a heartwarming love story. Plus it takes place in the golden era of the ‘90s, so there are a lot of thematic nuances to appreciate as you venture through Gone Home.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/232430/Gone_Home/
2. ‘What Remains of Edith Finch’

Edith Finch is on a quest to find out why she’s the last remaining living member of her family. And to do that, she travels back to her main family household and lives out the final day of several members of the Finch Clan. The gameplay sequences and story setups for each flashback moment is enticing as it pulls you into the Finch family’s unfortunate string of bad luck. What Remains of Edith Finch is bound to make you feel a wealth of emotions as you get to the bottom of its intriguing tale.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/501300/What_Remains_of_Edith_Finch/
3. ‘The Vanishing of Ethan Carter’

This next pick on our list adopts a horror theme that’s effective in its delivery of revelations about the plot being told throughout it. The Vanishing of Ethan Carter follows an occult-minded detective who’s hot on the trail of a boy named Ethan Carter. After receiving a letter from him that clearly reads like a cry for help, you step into the detective’s shoes and attempt to find out why Ethan’s disappeared. As you make your way through Red Creek Valley, you’ll come across a string of criminal investigations and use your ability to talk to the dead to piece together the tragic tale behind Ethan Carter’s fate.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/258520/The_Vanishing_of_Ethan_Carter/
4. ‘The Long Dark’

The fear of being alone in a frigid environment is replicated perfectly within Hinterland Studio Inc.’s The Long Dark. You’ll need to get familiar with the game’s snow-filled locale as you hope to survive Mother Nature’s most dangerous hazards after surviving a plane crash. The Long Dark gives you the option to make your way through it via a structured story mode or an equally enthralling survival mode that allows for a freer from approach to progression. Navigating a digital version of the Northern Canadian wilderness is a challenge, but thankfully it’s an enjoyable one.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/305620/The_Long_Dark/
5. ‘Tacoma’

If you’re in the market for a science-fiction take on Firewatch’s gameplay formula, then Tacoma should be right up your alley. The abandoned space station you’ll explore within this first-person adventure was once home to a crew that lived and worked together. You’ll need to rely on the station’s digital surveillance system to watch 3D recordings of the crew and wrap your head around the events that led to their disappearance. Tacoma comes from the brilliant minds behind Gone Home, so you know it’s definitely worth a look.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/343860/Tacoma/
6. ‘Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture’

Navigating the once-bustling town of Yaughton Valley, Shropshire is what makes up the majority of your time spent with Everybody’s Gone to Rapture.  The detailed open-world within this title offers up a mystery that you’ll surely go to great lengths to solve. Investigating the final days of the denizens of Yaughton Valley means you’ll be putting all the puzzle pieces together that push you ever so closer to the apocalypse that impacted their lives. Everybody’s Gone to Rapture’s mysterious nature will pull you in for the long haul.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/417880/Everybodys_Gone_to_the_Rapture/
7. ‘Dear Esther’

What was once a free-to-play Source game engine modded experience has now become full-fledged remake that everyone should seek out. Dear Esther places you on a desolate island located in Hebrides, Scotland, which is where you’ll traverse all the while as you try to figure out the cause of death behind a troubled man’s deceased wife. As you reach new areas on the island, different letters come into your possession and are played out via audio fragments that open up more of the game’s intriguing narrative. Those pieces of audio are randomly generated during each playthrough, which helps Dear Esther give players more of a reason to return to its vast island.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/203810/Dear_Esther/
8. ‘Kona’

Just like The Long Dark, Kona’s gameplay loop takes place within a cold environment that tests the main character’s survival skills. That character is a private detective named Carl Faubert, who becomes trapped up in Northern Canada. While enduring the hazardous blizzard attacking Atamipek Lake, you’ll control Carl as you look into the mysterious events that disturbed the small town. That mission is a tough one since the hazardous weather and other elements of nature itself can be overwhelming. Kona’s surreal world and gripping tale are worth diving into.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/365160/Kona/
9. ‘Homesick’

Homesick places you in an abandoned building that’s full of puzzles to solve, clues to gather, and plenty of hallways to traverse. In the daytime, you’ll handle most of those aforementioned activities with ease. But once you close your eyes and enter a traumatic dream state, Homesick gets a lot tenser as you look to escape the looming darkness that chases you relentlessly. While this game may just take place within a single building, you’ll also get to explore the dark corners of your mind and come ever so closer to escaping your nightmares.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/244910/Homesick/
10. ‘Ether One’

Ether One delivers its adventure via two methods that appeal to two types of gamers – one path that’s all about throwing complex puzzles at players to wrap their heads around and another path that’s free of those same puzzles. That second approach to exploring Ether One’s world is perfect for those who want to walk around the town of Pinwheel without having to trouble themselves with brainteasers. But for those of you who want a bit of an extra challenge, the first gameplay style is quite inviting and harkens back to the glory days of puzzle-filled adventure games such as Myst.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/265950/Ether_One/
11. ‘Scanner Sombre’

Finding oneself within the confines of a vast cave can be quite the fear-inducing endeavor. Scanner Sombre puts you in the role of someone who’s forced to deal with that exact scenario. What makes your on-foot adventure through the massive cave system in this game is the unique way in which it appears to you. The LIDAR scanner and helmet you don presents you with a stunning colorful outlook on your cave exploration trial, which makes Scanner Sombre one of the more visually striking picks on this list.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/475190/Scanner_Sombre/
12. ‘The Fidelio Incident’

There sure are a lot of so-called “walking simulators” that take place within an extremely cold environment. The Fidelio Incident is another one of those types of games and since it’s on this list, it’s definitely worth a recommendation. The dangerous trek you’ll embark upon in this game takes place off the coast of Iceland. After surviving a plane crash, you take control of a man named Stanley who’s on the lookout for his wife Leonore. During that same quest, you’ll need to help Stanley cover up his and his wife’s problematic past before their rescuers arrive.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/632070/The_Fidelio_Incident/
13. ‘INFRA’

INFRA’s main gameplay mechanic relies on your use of an in-game camera. As a structural engineer tasked with inspecting damaged infrastructure, you’ll need to take photos of those harmful areas and solve a slew of puzzles along the way. Your work will expose you to the origins behind Stalburg and its people, plus you’ll slowly uncover a major conspiracy that goes hand in hand with the city’s structural issues. INFRA’s premise starts out simple enough, but it quickly grows in complexity and keeps you enthralled the more you delve into it.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/251110/INFRA/
14. ‘Oxenfree’

Oxenfree’s supernatural theme is the main hook that will bring you in. But thanks to the game’s strong narrative about a boy named Alex and his time spent with his stepbrother Jonas on a military island, you’ll stay along for the full ride this game has to offer. The presence of ghosts comes into play at some point during your time spent in Oxenfree. Your conversational choices with friends/spirits and discoveries of the island itself go a long way towards how you’ll deal with your ghostly troubles. Oxenfree’s wealth of mysteries to solve and interesting plot threads will push you to get to the bottom of it all.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/388880/Oxenfree/
15. ‘The Witness’

Inspired by another classic puzzle-filled adventure game known as Myst, The Witness pushes its players to traverse a mysterious island and regain their memories along the way. Accomplishing that goal means you’ll need to walk in every direction possible and complete a collection of grid-based puzzles that lead to surprising results. Each puzzle adds a new wrinkle to the mix and keeps things fresh during your lengthy stay on The Witness’ mysterious island. Oh and if you need even more of a reason to check this game out, here you go – its lead designer is Jonathan Blow, who’s also responsible for producing another classic game called Braid.

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https://store.steampowered.com/app/210970/The_Witness/
Categories
Culture News

The 14 Cannabis Companies You Should Know

Whether it be in the form of flower, oil or serums, the legal marijuana industry is going to blow up. We’re betting that the industry will totally eclipse a slew of other vice industries in years to come. Like with any burgeoning field, it’s often difficult to determine who we’ll be talking about in ten years and who’s just saturating the market. So Rama Mayo—the president of Green Street—and I rounded up the top Cannabis companies to keep an eye on in 2020.

1. Pure Beauty

The appeal is in the name. Pure Beauty is doing something unique in the cannabis space by emphasizing the aesthetic of both their online user experience and their product design. They’re still pretty early in their entry into the space, but their beautiful visual style and commitment to ethically growing their product make Pure Beauty an absolutely necessary cannabis company to keep an eye on.

2. Alien Labs

If you could get free weed forever, Alien Labs is where you should go. The brand’s flower is absolutely legendary; it’s the Don Perignon of weed. Of course, the best comes at a price, but the hefty price tag is absolutely appropriate. With some of the best cultivators in the game, Alien Labs is an absolute must-try brand for real flower aficionados.

3. Jungle Boys

Jungle Boys is a unique brand because of their position as both an incredible cultivator and a destination for buying. They have their own retail locations, their own cultivation and a pretty sick merch line. Jungle Boys represents a growing trend in the cannabis space: the conflation between weed companies and lifestyle brands. They don’t do any shows or expos, and sell all of their product themselves. The LA brand has been around since 2006, and will likely be one of the biggest companies in cannabis as we continue to watch the industry explode.

4. Cannacraft

Cannacraft is different from some of the aforementioned brands because of their emphasis on oil. They do huge outdoor grows which are processed for oil, and are fast becoming one of the most revolutionary brands in cannabis. During the raging California fires of 2017, the Cannacraft owners let the Red Cross set up in their facilities. The brand is really the poster child of how to be a cannabis company that gives back, while simultaneously making huge strides in the production of weed products.

We also have to mention the breakout product of 2020, Cannacraft’s collab with brewery Lagunitas (a subsidiary of Heineken): Hi Fi Hops. The beer replacement contains 0 calories and 0 sugar, but still gives drinkers the refreshing buzz of a traditional beer. It’s an absolute game changer for not just the cannabis industry, but the beverage industry generally.

5. Henry’s Original

Part of what makes Henry’s so great is their commitment to farming and growing good outdoor flower. They’re mostly known for their pre-rolls, filled with weed grown in Mendocino County on the company’s property. Henry’s is farmer owned and operated, and is culturally a bit similar to many of the Northern California wineries, emphasizing a commitment to agriculture and building a beautiful space to grow. You can check out this Forbes article about their amazing fundraising efforts as well.

6. Apothecanna

Apothecanna is the number one topical brand on the planet, period. It is truly medicine. They’re celebrating their 10 year anniversary this year, and their longevity can be traced back to the incredible product. One of the founders previously worked for Aveda, which is part of why the brand feels like a true skincare/beauty brand. There is really no brand like Apothecanna. A friend we spoke to for this article told us that, after 20 years of pain had prevented her from doing so, Apothecanna products allowed his mother to get back on her hands and knees gardening again. Apothecanna is medicine, that’s all there is to it.

7. Cookies / Lemonnade

Cookies is the closest thing the Cannabis Industry has to a titan like Nike. Helmed by legendary recording artist and entrepreneur Berner, Cookies aims to embody what makes California unique, through fashion, cannabis, sports and music. The clothing line alone records profits which dwarf that of a lot of other cannabis competitors. Berner was originally a cultivator, but now partners with farms and other cultivators to create Cookies dispensaries. You can’t talk about Cannabis in 2020 without mentioning Cookies.

We’d also like to address Cookies’ sister company, Lemonnade. Founded in 2015 by Berner and Brett Wilson, Lemonnade is known for its amazing Sativa flower and beautiful aesthetic. They’ve collabed with artists like Rick Ross, Michael Corleone, and Run The Jewels, and their overall vertical integration (they use a seed-to-sale business model) gives them total control over their customers’ smoking and buying experience. If you’re a saitva-head, then Lemonnade might just be your brand.

8. The Cannabis Brothers

The Cannabis Brothers is a family Cannabis company. Their flower is on the level of Alien Labs and Jungle Boys; their mission is truly just to grow amazing flower. It’s a 100% family business, helmed by two brothers. The owners are some of the nicest dudes you could possibly meet (The Cannabis Gardener and Payaso Grow are the OG brands, named after brother master growers Terence and Philip) in cannabis or any space, and their flower lives up to their standards.

9. The Originals / The Cure Company

The Originals and the Cure Company are an example of two brands working side by side in cannabis. The two brands are run by two iconoclasts; they work together to sell from their own dispensaries and also sell directly to other businesses. In addition to growing their own line of signature strains, The Originals grows select flower for Mike Tyson’s brand and Shavo’s brand 22Red. The Cure Company is partnered with the late great Nipsey Hussle on his Marathon OG strain. These two brands are the operation behind a lot of the biggest name releases in cannabis in the past few years.

10. Cream of the Crop

Cream of the Crop grows crazy flower, but unlike some of these other flower-first brands, they also have their own line of full spectrum oils. The brand’s commitment to healthy living manifests in their “Rest” line, which contains cannabis and other essential ingredients (including Coconut Flour, Beeswax, FSO, and their REST Terpene Blend, Melatonin, Valerian Root, and Ginkgo Biloba) to create a true rest-aid for cannabis users and non-users alike.

11. Trees By Game

As you may have guessed, Trees By Game is the cannabis brand brought to you by west coast hip hop icon, the Game. The flower is “hand picked” by the rapper, and the brand’s stated mission is to “deliver CA’s highest quality flower to ‘the real smokers.'” Like some of the other brands on this list, Trees By Game is a great brand for real flower aficionados looking for that upscale, premium bud. 

These next three brands are all affiliated with the Green Street, which has deep ties to Gary Vee. Rama Mayo, the President of Green Street, helped co-author this article. However, regardless of any affiliation between Green Street and ONE37pm, these brands would make our list of companies to look out for because of the incredible work they are doing in the space.

12. Gas

When you think about celebrities surrounding cannabis, one of the first people you think of should be 2 Chainz. Gas is majority owned by the rapper; he chose the name, the strains, and he chooses all the products. He is truly a weed aficionado and arguably knows cannabis better than any artist in the world. The brand sells multiple tiers of weed (something unique compared to some of these other brands), and funny enough, their best sellers are their highest end pre rolls and then their more affordable eighths of flower.

13. Vacation

Vacation is fun. Their goal is to help you get in that Vacation mindset no matter if that means chilling with friends at a BBQ, watching a movie or sitting on the beach doing absolutely nothing. The company is a joint venture (pun intended) between Sho Labs and Green Street, and their weed is “grown by the best northern california stoners we could find.” The burgeoning company also boasts a great lineup of eye-popping accessories and a laid-back visual style.

14. Asterisk*

Asterisk is going to be the Avengers of the Cannabis space. Gary Vee and Juicy J are already among the investors in the brand, and they brought on legendary designer Cody Hudson to create the merch. Weed is merely one of many avenues Asterisk aims to capitalize on. Between their merch and high-profile investors, Asterisk is set to be a true lifestyle brand.

Categories
Careers Grind

Meet Khristina Williams: Founder and CEO of Girls Talks Sports TV

The WNBA has seen numerous advancements over the past few years. Part of that is thanks to the many media outlets and individuals who have dedicated themselves to covering the game 24/7. With the WNBA Finals scheduled to start October 2nd, ONE37pm’s Jael Rucker spoke with Girls Talk Sports TV founder and CEO Khristina Williams about her journey of growing women’s sports, and how she has become a staple of WNBA Coverage.

Khristina Williams

Jael Rucker: You’re the creator of Girls Talk Sports TV, how did that come about?

Khristina Williams: Girls Talk Sports TV is a new digital platform focused on women’s sports—specifically the WNBA. We do sports news, interviews and updates. I started this platform because I wanted to marry my two platforms (sports and journalism) together, and I wanted to give women’s sports visibility and value in the sports industry.

Recognizing how hard it is to break into the industry the “traditional way,” William’s was determined to create a safe space for female journalists to tell the story of female athletes in a unique and creative manner.

Jael: What advice would you give to young women who are looking to break into covering sports non-traditionally?

Khristina: The way that things are happening are changing. Just put out the work. It doesn’t have to be all together, it doesn’t have to be perfect. When I started Girls Talk Sports TV, it wasn’t perfect at all. It still isn’t, every day I’m learning, but for me it was about taking that first step on faith.

In her journey, Williams has encountered obstacles as a young, female entrepreneur. Through it all, she’s been able to overcome those tough roadblocks that stood in her way. 

Jael: What are some of the challenges you have faced in this industry?

Khristina: Well as a woman— an African-American woman coming into the sports world, you’re gonna have strikes against you. I learned in this business it’s all about building relationships. People connect with a person before they connect with a brand. I consider myself a person that connects with people, and that’s what has helped me grow and get into those big rooms.

Now just a few short years later, Girls Talk Sports TV has reached over 12,000 followers on Instagram, and in addition to being one of the leading voices of WNBA coverage, Khristina has created a new digital series titled Kickin it with Khristina. The show has featured superstar names such as Tasha Cloud and Sue Bird.

Jael: Yourself along with people like Arielle Chambers (Producer/Talent at Bleacher Report and House of Highlights—founder and CEO of HighlightHER) have really helped to grow the game and bring more eyes onto the WNBA. How important is that to you?

Khristina: First of all, shoutout to Arielle! As far as growing the game, as a journalist and media member, that’s my responsibility to amplify the game. I think it’s important to continue to tell these stories. We’ve seen that when people cover the game, ESPN will add more games, ABC will add more games. In order to embrace the WNBA, you have to see the games. In order to see the games, the media has to do their part with increasing visibility.

With more eyes than ever watching the WNBA, more eyes are also on Khristina as she continues to be a trailblazer through her various platforms.

Jael: You’ve become known as being one of the news breakers for the W. Would you consider yourself a “WNBA Insider?”

Khristina: I’m not sure if I consider myself an insider, but I’ll take it;— I work hard! It goes back to what I said earlier about building those real and authentic relationships. By building those relationships, by putting out that consistent work, you build your contacts and your sources. That’s how you get to the next level.

Not bad for a girl who started Girls Talk Sports TV in her bedroom.

Categories
Sports Strength

UPNXT: Best Week 3 NFL Waiver Wire Pickups and Trading Card Moves

Injuries. Undoubtedly, the worst thing that can happen to an athlete. The effects of which can be directly felt by the team, and likewise, the hardcore fans who are giddy to don their favorite player or team’s jersey, and root for them on game day. Although we talk a lot about fantasy in this weekly column, injuries are a sad reality of sport. It robs the player, the team, the fans, and the sport, of what could have been.

When the NFL’s brightest stars such as Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Nick Bosa, and Courtland Sutton (to name a few) go down with injuries, some of which are season ending, it is a gut punch to everyone connected to football. We know it’s not fun to talk about, but we would be remiss if we didn’t mention the most unfortunate and glaring theme of week two. We wish everyone who suffered an injury a full and speedy recovery, and we can’t wait to see you back on the field!

With that being said, it wasn’t all bad news this week! We had one of the most entertaining games of the young season between the Atlanta Falcons and Dallas Cowboys, which saw Dallas come from behind to win, as Atlanta’s special teams unit botched their onside kick coverage, allowing Dallas to recover the ball. We also witnessed an overtime nail biter that featured Kansas City Chiefs’ kicker Harrison Butker, effortlessly convert back-to-back-to-back 50+ yard field goals, to finally sealing the deal on his third try. 

And who could forget the most impressive individual performance of Sunday? Green Bay Packers’ running back Aaron Jones went off for 236 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns, eviscerating his division foe Detroit Lions. Yes, week two certainly had its ups and downs, but nevertheless, we still have work to do! Maybe we can find some solid replacements for someone you lost to an injury last week.

Let’s jump into who’s UPNXT for week three!

BONUS: Hang around until the end for a quick recap of our week two picks!

Joe Burrow, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Usually, we wouldn’t bother writing up a current number one overall draft pick due to the implied talent, but Joe Burrow is an exception to the rule. Although he’s a rookie, he looked to be nothing short of a bonafide star in week two. He might’ve come up short versus the Browns on Thursday night, but Burrow attempted a staggering 61 pass attempts for over 300 yards and 3 TDs, while tacking on seven carries for 19 yards. 

To me, this signals that Joe Burrow is, in fact, the Tiger King. The Bengals’ coaching staff is showing a tremendous amount of trust in their young signal caller, something you love to see from a fantasy perspective. While I don’t expect 60+ passing attempts to be the norm, he’s getting the kind of volume that can lead to many more monster performances this year, especially if the Bengals continue to play from behind.

DFS: (DraftKings: $6,200, FanDuel: $7,400) @ Eagles Week three sees Burrow facing a desperate Philadelphia Eagles team who is looking for their first win. The Eagles allowed Jared Goff an efficient 23.98 fantasy points this past week, so Burrow is in play given the volume we’ve seen him have in his first two games. With an implied game total of 46, and the Eagles opening as -6.5 favorites, this should be a favorable game script for Burrow to put up another solid stat line. Consider him a tournament play this week.

Fantasy Ownership: We mentioned earlier that we normally wouldn’t take the time writing up a first overall draft pick, because he’s supposed to be good, right? Typically, it takes a year or two for QBs to pan out in the pros, but Burrow has already shown the mettle of a veteran just two games into his rookie year. Not only is Burrow talented, but he’s also widely available in most fantasy leagues. That’s right, the top pick from this year’s draft is only 45% owned at the time of this article being written. If you’re looking for a little insurance at the QB position, or if you’re in a league where you can start two QBs, Joe Burrow is the cat that you want.

Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Card Market Rating: Buy. Burrow’s PSA 10 Silver Prizm rookie cards have more than doubled since June but have remained relatively flat for the past month. If Burrow continues to play well and can translate his impressive stat lines into wins, and eventually into a Rookie of the Year award, I expect his cards to continue on an upward trajectory.

Dion Lewis, RB, New York Giants
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

As we touched on briefly above, the Giants, (and football fans everywhere), suffered a huge blow with the news of Saquon Barkley going down for the season with a torn ACL. Enter Dion Lewis. Known mostly for his productive years with the New England Patriots as Tom Brady’s preferred passing option out of the backfield, Lewis suddenly finds himself as the next man up in the Giants’ running back stable. Sure, Wayne Gallman (1% owned) is still around, but for us, Dion Lewis is the guy to roster. Why? Well, the Giants’ defense has been abysmal this year, which means they’ll likely be playing from behind and passing more often than not. Lewis has proven capable as a featured back in the right situation, while Gallman wasn’t even active for New York in week two.

Keep your eye on former Falcons’ RB Devonta Freeman (7.5% owned) as well. Freeman has been making the rounds in free agency looking for a team to sign with. The Eagles and Giants are expected to have Freeman in for a visit this week, so he is someone worth monitoring, as he has proven to be a stud in the past, despite his struggles in more recent years. If the Giants ink Freeman to a deal, he would vault himself ahead of both Lewis and Gallman on the depth chart.

DFS: (DraftKings: $5,300, FanDuel: $5,500) vs. 49ers Although Lewis is projected to be the top RB for the Gaints for now, is he daily fantasy relevant this week? The answer is maybe. The 49ers have recently lost three quality guys from their defense, which softens the matchup for Lewis this week. The implied game total is 40.5 with the Niners still favored by 4, so for now, this is probably nothing more than a dart throw play in tournaments. He could be a way to save some salary if you want to gamble this weekend.

Fantasy Ownership: Lewis is about 1% owned in fantasy leagues, which isn’t much of a surprise. When you invest a high draft pick on a guy like Barkley, you tend to take for granted his health and availability. It seems as if most Barkley owners didn’t take Lewis as a late round handcuff this year, making him available in virtually all fantasy leagues. If you think more highly of Gallman, he’s available everywhere as well. I expect a committee approach going forward.

Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Card Market Rating:  Sell. There is not much activity on the Dion Lewis card market. If you are a collector or a Giants fan who wants to buy some of his rookie cards just to have, they are extremely cheap and you can probably have some fun with it. The most expensive Dion Lewis card that sold on ebay in the last 3 months was a Topps Chrome gold refractor rookie auto /10. However, Lewis is in his 9th year in the league, and is only playing significant time because of injury. Do not buy his cards as an investment. 

Mike Davis, RB, Carolina Panthers
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Opportunity knocks, as another franchise RB will miss significant time this season. Christian McCaffrey’s initial timetable for return is 4-6 weeks with an ankle injury, meaning veteran RB Mike Davis will step into the starting role for the Panthers. While Davis may not be a household name, he does have some big-time games under his belt. We have to go all the way back to 2018 to find the last time he was relevant, but Sunday showed that he still has some gas left in the tank. With CMC out, Davis hauled in all eight of his targets for 74 yards in garbage time versus the Bucs. In Davis, we might have a potential three-down back on our hands for at least the next several weeks.

DFS: (DraftKings: $5,100, FanDuel: $6,000) @ Chargers  Add Mike Davis to the list of potential salary savers in your DFS lineups this week. With no other noteworthy RBs behind him, Davis has a direct path to more carries and more receptions versus the Chargers this week. Do we love the matchup? Not one bit. What we do love is the potential upside as a pass catcher for Teddy Bridgewater to check down to if Carolina finds themselves trailing like last week. The implied total is 43.5 and the Chargers are a -7 favorite, so we can consider Davis as a value play for tournaments only.

Fantasy Ownership: As you might expect, Mike Davis is almost completely unowned in fantasy leagues right now. Head coach Matt Rhule expressed confidence in Davis after Sunday’s game, which should leave league managers feeling confident in adding him to their rosters this week. If you find yourself at the top of the waiver wire order, consider Davis as the top running back available. He should be found in over 90% of fantasy leagues and makes for a solid RB3/FLEX play while CMC is out.

Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Card Market Rating: Sell. As is this case with Dion Lewis, Mike Davis’ cards had very little movement prior to McCaffrey’s injury on Sunday. Here again, sales began to pick up once news broke that CMC would miss time. If you’ve been holding on to your Mike Davis cards, it may be time to strike while the iron is hot. I can respect a quick flip approach on his cards, but I also don’t mind a wait-and-see approach either. If Davis excels in his expanded role, you might be able to maximize your profits by holding them for a couple of weeks before selling. A PSA 10 National Treasures Rookie Patch Auto /20 sold on 9/21 for a “best offer” of $65. Not a terrible return if you were holding on to this card that previously had very little interest in the market. 

Week 2 Recap

Nyheim Hines, RB, Indianapolis Colts

THE LINE: Rushing: 0 CAR, 0 YDS. Receiving: 1 TGTS, 1 REC, 4 YDS.

THE SCOOP: Quite simply, this game was all about Jonathan Taylor. Hines provided one touch and wasn’t a factor in the game plan. In fact, third string RB Jordan Wilkins was second amongst the Colts’ running backs with nine touches on the day. Keep Hines on your bench for now.

UPNXT: vs. Jets. We can’t suggest playing Hines until we know if week two was an anomaly, or a sign of things to come.

Dallas Goedert, TE, Philadelphia Eagles

THE LINE: Receiving: 8 TGTS, 4 REC, 30 YDS.

THE SCOOP: Another week, another game where Goedert topped incumbent TE1 Zach Ertz for targets. While you love to see Goedert finish second among Eagles’ receivers in targets, you wish more of those opportunities were converted into big plays.

UPNXT: vs. Bengals. In what feels like a must win for Philly, expect more of the same from Goedert. If Wentz can improve his shaky play, Goedert is sure to much better days ahead. He’s worthy of a start as a TE1 based on matchup and volume in week three.

Anthony Miller, WR, Chicago Bears

THE LINE: Receiving: 3 TGTS, 0 REC, 0 YDS.

THE SCOOP: Miller is an example of a good WR being held back by bad QB play. In contrast to week one, Trubisky played well in the first half, but failed to put together any scoring drives in the second half. Trubisky connected on passes to a whopping 12 different receivers Sunday. The Bears got the win, but they might consider a change at QB if Trubisky continues to struggle.

UPNXT: @ Falcons. I expect the Falcons to play with extra motivation after losing a game they should’ve won versus the Cowboys. The Falcons’ defense is allowing a whopping 39 points per game on average, so this makes for a fantastic bounce back spot for Miller. We say start him, knowing there is some risk of subpar QB play.

Categories
Culture Movies/TV

The 25 Best Documentaries on Netflix

Welcome to what feels like day 932729292 of quarantine/social distancing/slowly unraveling in our apartments and parents’ homes! Whether your body has melted into the couch and now you are living as one entity or you’ve avoided the TV to do more active things (you weirdos), this is your reminder that there are a million great documentaries still waiting for you on Netflix!  Many of these were just released this year so put your food order into UberEats, put on your learning pants, and let’s go! 

1. ‘Immigration Nation’

Trump’s 2016 campaign promise hinged around the construction of a wall on the border of the United States and Mexico, quickly catapulting the issue of immigration into the forefront of the news, yet the actual duties and responsibilities of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have remained shadowy, at best. The directors, Christina Clusiau and Shaul Schwarz used their prior relationship with an ICE spokesperson to give us inside access into the world of assaults and attacks on undocumented immigrants, from enforcement techniques, filling arrest quotas, racial profiling, and (sometimes) illegal tactics that ICE officers employ. Immigration Nation reveals a heart-wrenching look at families who have experienced trauma and loss at the hands of some of the cruelest policies that the U.S. has in place. 

2. ‘Fear City: New York vs. The Mafia’

Told through a multitude of interviews, Fear City examines the five major New York crime families during the 70s and 80s (Genovese, Gambino, Bonanno, Lucchese, and Colombo) but with a major focus on the FBI agents who sought to remove them from power. If you’re looking for a sexy and glamorized view of the mafia, Sopranos-style, you won’t find it here. The focal point of this documentary is the minutiae of police work, from painstaking research to setting up wiretaps to unpacking surveillance transcripts.  It all leads up to the Mafia Commission Trial, the 1985-1986 trial that brought down the heads of these ruling families, and referred to as the “Case of All Cases”.

3. ‘Love on the Spectrum’

If you’re tired of shows like Love is Blind and Too Hot to Handle, let me introduce you to a much kinder Love on the Spectrum. Exploring the world of dating and love for adults with autism, viewers get to experience first dates and relationships that celebrate love and acceptance. It doesn’t do much to educate the watcher on autism, nor does it feature a particularly diverse cast (it’s super white, but does have one queer relationship), but it is free of the snark and condescending comments that usually accompany reality dating shows. 

4. ‘Unwell’

I’ve never met a health and wellness trend I didn’t love.  Okay, that’s not entirely true, but I’ve never met a health and wellness trend that didn’t at least interest me.  CBD, air purifying devices, collagen powders, crystals…all of it is my jam.  The global wellness industry is currently valued at $4.5 trillion so it seems as if it’s many people’s jams. (Un)well was an immediate must-watch for me but should come with a warning: while the task of the documentary is to investigate wellness trends and debunk misleading claims, we don’t walk away exactly clear on where we stand. It does cover some pretty interesting subjects like intermittent fasting and essential oils so if you have even a passing interest in wellness, it’s an engaging watch.

5. ‘Athlete A’

For over 20 years, there have been hundreds upon hundreds of allegations of sexual abuse in gymnastic programs across the United States. The IndyStar has reported that ‘at least 368 child gymnasts have alleged sexual assault by gym owners, coaches, and staff working for gymnastics programs across the country’ which has been a ‘rate of one every 20 days.’  This gut-wrenching documentary explores the USA Gymnastics sexual abuse scandal, concentrating on Larry Nassar, the team doctor that was named in hundreds of lawsuits. Athlete A applauds the countless brave women who spoke out and brings the focus on the culture that allowed this abuse to remain unchecked for years.

6. ‘The Last Dance’

You’ve most likely heard of this sports documentary that recounts Michael Jordan’s time with the Chicago Bulls and their final championship during the ‘97-’98 NBA season. There are interviews with over 100 people connected to the team (including many notable basketball players) and never-before-aired footage, making it an enjoyable and captivating watch. The best interviews are the ones with Jordan himself; his sheer willpower and dedication to winning are on display, but it’s the transparency and honesty in his answers that make this a must-watch.

7. ‘The Speed Cuber’

The Rubik’s Cube is a surprisingly newer toy; it was released on the market in 1980, with the World Cube Organization forming over 20 years later, in 2004. Sue Kim, the director of The Speed Cuber wasn’t even aware of this world until her son picked one up a few years ago and was instantly obsessed. A fun and surprisingly emotional film, we are even introduced to Feliks Zemdegs and Max Park, the “Michael Jordan of cubers…[with the later] possibly the Lebron James.”

8. ‘Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich’

Do you ever feel like it’s too late in the game to ask a question about something that you feel like you should know already? That exact sentiment is what led me to watch this documentary on Jeffrey Epstein. I knew he was a rich sex offender who had a reportedly suspicious death while in jail, but that was about the extent of my knowledge. The real story is so much worse.  We meet some of his victims and hear the truly heinous acts of this well-connected yet almost untouchable man. Although the story is highly captivating, expect to leave with a million more questions and a nauseous feeling in your stomach.

9. ‘High Score’

If you played video games growing as a kid (or even now) High Score feels like an addicting hit of nostalgia. Narrated by Charles Martinet, the voice behind Nintendo’s Mario, we explore the history of video games; from the visionaries and designers who conceived some of the most loved games like Pacman, Mortal Kombat, and Sonic to the designers who treat each visual and audio element as a work of art. Witnessing the beginning of this multi-billion dollar industry and seeing how video games have evolved over the years is a colorful adventure in storytelling. 

10. ‘Holy Hell’

I am fascinated by cults.  Not in a creepy “will-join-once-I-find-one-that- ”feels right” type deal, but I’ve always been curious about how sane and logical people decide to give up everything to follow leaders that I, personally, never found too charismatic. Holy Hell investigates the Buddafield cult, which started in Hollywood in the 19080’s, led by “a vaguely Ramon Novarro-Esque failed actor named Michel”. What’s most unique about this documentary is that the director, Will Allen, is uniquely situated to do this exposé, as he was a member of the cult for over 20 years, and can offer an insider’s look.

11. ‘Connected: The Hidden Science of Everything’

If you’re a fan of passionate storytelling (possibly on subjects you don’t know too much about), science journalist Latif Nasser has got a show for you. Exploring the connections of a vast array of subjects to each other and the universe, Nasser’s infectious enthusiasm and goal to be a lifelong learner makes complex subjects downright enjoyable.

12. ‘Lil Peep: Everybody’s Everything”

The rise of singer/rapper Gustav Elijah Åhr, more commonly known as “Lil Peep” was cut short due to a tragic accidental overdose in 2017 on his tour bus. Everybody’s Everything recounts the life of Lil Peep, as he made his way from Long Beach, NY to Hollywood. This is a heartbreaking look at a young artist who was so much more than a “SoundCloud rapper” whose music connected with so many people across the globe.

13. ‘Knock Down the House’

If you were wondering where the political documentaries were, here’s the only one you need to watch this year. Knock Down the House chronicles Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s journey from the Bronx to politics. The hardworking and charismatic AOC isn’t the only woman featured; we also meet three other Democratic mainstays: Missouri’s Cori Bush, Nevada’s Amy Vilela, and West Virginia’s Paula Jean Sweareng. 

14. ‘Becoming’

Based on the bestselling memoir of the same title, Becoming follows former First Lady Michelle Obama on her 34-day city book tour.  Through her warm demeanor, genuine interactions with others, and stories about her first date with Barack or her “high school guidance counselor who didn’t think she was Princeton University material”, it’s hard not to fangirl Michelle Obama.  She’s motivational, a strong champion of women, and just a lady I’d like to grab drinks with. 

15. ‘Night on Earth’

Narrated by Samira Wiley, Night on Earth uses state-of-the-art new technology to follow nocturnal animals around in their natural habitat. You get to see some unique creatures and learn interesting tidbits, but what’s truly astonishing is the beautiful footage. It’s nature porn in all its glory, and sometimes real porn, with clips of animals mating and ya know, sometimes killing each other. Watch for the visuals alone.

16. ‘Rise of Empires: Ottoman’

For any history buffs out there, Rise of Empires: Ottoman unpacks the Ottoman Empire’s rise to power with a documentary-meet-over-the-top-reenactment lens. Tywin Lannister does the narration (I mean, actor Charles Dance) as we follow Mehmed II, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, engage in some cool kickass battles. I’m not sure how true to history this doc remains, but I’m half Turkish (Turkey = modern-day Ottoman Empire) so I’m a little biased. Okay, a lot biased. ​​​​​

17. ’20 Feet from Stardom’

20 Feet from Stardom won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature and currently has a 99% on Rotten Tomatoes, and for good reason: the background singers featured are all phenomenal. Singing backup for some of the most influential musical legends in history, these (mostly) women all deserves to be known and celebrated. Full of intimate interviews, we learn about their lives and careers and amazing vocal abilities through raw and enthusiastic storytelling. You can’t help but root for each and every one of them. 

18. ‘Rotten’

The description Netflix put out for Rotten is pretty intense for a show about food supply and production: “Local farming is fading as profit margins decide what food makes it to our plates. The new Netflix documentary series Rotten exposes the fraud, corruption, and the consequences on our health of today’s global food industry. Nobody’s hands are clean.” Each episode focuses on a different food industry issue with the main takeaway being that everything is corrupt. If you want to know more about the secret dangers of chicken harvesting and bee pollination, this is a good place to start.

19. ‘A Secret Love’

How long could you keep your relationship a secret? For Terry Donahue and Pat Henschel, try 7 decades. After meeting in 1947, these two ladies met and fell in love in Chicago, where Donahue played catcher for the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League…yup, the same team that was the inspiration for the movie A League of Their Own. What followed was a 72-year love story, with neither of their families knowing a thing until both women were in their 80’s.  A super sweet and heartfelt relationship will make you smile and bring you hope (and can’t we all use some more of that right now?) 

20. ‘Brené Brown: The Call to Courage’

Are we still obsessed with TED Talks?  I hope so because The Call to Courage which depicts Brené Brown’s work on vulnerability and shame should be mandatory watching.  A research professor in social work at the University of Houston, Brown shares what she’s learned about relationships, difficult and uncomfortable situations, and bridging the divide and why being vulnerable is the bravest thing we can do and why we should choose courage over comfort.  

21. ‘Senna’

This eight-episode series is a poignant documentary focusing on the life and death of Aryton Senna. Senna covers the time period from the beginning of Artyon’s racing career, all the way up to his tragic death in a 1994 crash at the San Marino Grand Prix in Italy. Senna’s family was heavily involved in the production of the mini-series, giving it that authentic feeling (nobody knows you better than your family). The documentary also gives a deeper look into Senna’s life and career, showing us that while some people are only here for a short time, what they accomplish in those few years are worth a lifetime.

22. ‘Miss Americana’

When you think of Taylor Swift, your brain automatically goes to her career as a singer. So it would be natural to assume that a music documentary about her would be like a lot of the other music documentaries we’ve seen over the years. Except it’s not. Produced by Swift herself, Miss Americana is actually focused more-so on the singer’s life as opposed to her music career. The documentary includes Swift’s journey of growth, self-reflection, and her decision to publicly express her political opinions. Miss Americana shows Swift in a different light, allowing viewers to connect to Taylor Swift the person and not the “brand.”

23. ‘American Factory’

The first production under Higher Ground (a production company formed by Barack and Michelle Obama), American Factory gives a look at the cold hard truth of the factory industry. The documentary focuses specifically on the now-defunct General Motors plant in Dayton, Ohio. The film walks viewers through the manual labor and working conditions required of employees, and details how workers often fell victim to the rich and powerful in hopes of achieving “The American Dream.” The documentary also covers the transition of General Motors, as a Chinese billionaire went through the process of personally investing in it for his company Fuyao. If you ever wanted to learn more about the factory industry during that time period, this is the film for you.

24. ‘Abducted in Plain Sight’

Abducted in Plain Sight is a documentary based on the real-life story of the Broberg family, whose daughter, Jan, was abducted twice by their neighbor Robert Berchtold. Director Skye Borgman tells the disturbing story of how Berchtold single-handedly disrupted the Broberg family in the attempt to kidnap Jan not once, but twice. Borgman goes into each specific abduction detailing the sick and twisted methods used by Berchtold in both kidnappings. It’s rare that you hear the story of somebody getting abducted by the same person twice, and while the documentary is indeed dark, it’s certainly an informative piece one should watch. 

25. ‘Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness’

Whether you’ve watched Tiger King or not, chances are you have at least heard of this popular documentary. Tiger King was the talk of “early quarantine,” and now interest has surged again with the recent appearance of Carole Baskin (another “character” in this story) on Dancing with the Stars. The seven-episode series follows the strange and crazy tale of Joe Exotic as his zookeeper job somehow leads him into a whirlwind life full of crime, and well, more crime. Murder, Mayhem, and Madness are definitely the right words to describe Tiger King, and viewers should check it out if they haven’t already had the chance.

Categories
Culture Music

Monday to Monday Spotlight: Souly Had

Meet Souly Had, the soulful R&B singer and rapper who has been gaining traction and making a name for himself over these last couple of years. Known for his ability to blend two different genres of music together, the 23 year-old from Capital Region just recently signed his first major label deal with Island Records. It’s been a long time coming for the musician who was previously a server at Olive Garden, and the singer/rapper spoke with ONE37pm’s Jael Rucker about his journey so far.

Souly Had

Born Harrison McQueeny, Souly Had, always knew that music was engrained in his blood. In fact it goes all the way back to the Walkman. 

“The full credit for my love of music goes to my mom. When I was a kid, she gave me a Walkman, and it had all different types of music from Slim Shady to Bob Marley to Pink. I was listening to old school music in the 7th and 8th grade.”

That passion led to Had discovering his own love for music. 

“I started rapping and singing when I was 9 or 10-years-old. I would put my songs on YouTube, but I wasn’t that talented back then. I kept working, and then I hit a transitional period where I had about four or five songs that blew up. I was eventually able to get signed to a major label (Island Records), and that’s been a learning experience as well. I’ve gotten a chance to work with other artists, which is something I have never done before.”

It’s been a whirlwind year for the artist, and he keeps regular reminders about his humble beginnings.

“I was a host at Olive Garden, and I worked at a bunch of different restaurants for a couple of years. I actually have two or three different journals full of goals and stuff that I wrote when I was working those jobs. I wouldn’t have made it without my humble beginnings.”

Had’s early grind and personal experiences are what gives his music depth. In order to have soul, you have to have experiences—laughter, pain, and everything in between.

“Sometimes I use a certain subject, and sometimes I use personal experiences. For example, I might make one song about a girl which is a personal experience, but then my next song might be about three girls that I have no personal connection to. Sometimes my songs even come from random inspirations. When I made “LEAP!,” I just randomly saw a tire that had the word leap on it.”

With songs like “LEAP!,” “Crush,” and “Goner,” fans have been wondering when they will get an official EP or album. The artist says that for now, he’s “going with the flow.”

I’m not in a rush. I’m just going with the flow. When it comes to experiences, the stuff people connect with, you gotta live to make it real. So for a while it’ll probably just be singles, but the EP will come one day.

In the meantime, Souly Had will not only be creating music,  he’ll also be working on expanding his career to become a multifaceted entertainer.

“Five years from now I will definitely still be doing music, but I’m looking to branch out as well. I’m into fashion and movies— I love to act. So I’m going to be taking some classes.”

One thing is for sure, the future for Souly Had is bright.

Categories
Sports Strength

The 21 Best Tennis Players of All Time

Featuring some of the greatest athletes in the world, tennis is known for requiring a combination of precision, focus, hand-eye coordination and power to excel. The heated one on one battles in tennis history make the sport one of the most compelling to watch. 

The sport also has some of the greatest characters. There’s the “passionate” John McEnroe, the consistent Steffi Graf, and the great Rafael Nadal who dominated the sport and are considered some of the best of all-time. Here’s a look at the best the sport of tennis has to offer.

1. Roger Federer

Nationality: Swiss

A living legend in tennis, Roger Federer has won an incredible 1,242 singles matches in a 22-year pro career. He has the most Grand Slam singles titles (20) in history for a male player. Federer’s consistency is special. From the 2005 Wimbledon tournament to the 2007 US Open, Federer was either the winner or runner-up. 

Federer’s versatility might be what stands out most in his career. A great server and returner, Federer could beat opponents from either an offensive or defensive position on the court. He’s also amassed quite the collection of prize money, taking home $129,946,683 over his career. That’s the second most all-time.

2. Steffi Graf

Nationality: German

Steffi Graf does have one achievement that separates her from the pack. In 1988, she became the only tennis player to complete the Golden Slam, winning all four Open tournaments and an Olympic gold medal in the same year. In 1988, Graf also became just the third woman to complete the Grand Slam.

A tennis pro at the young age of 13, Graf is the only tennis player to win each major Grand Slam tournament at least four times. There weren’t many players better than Graf, who was ranked number one by the Women’s Tennis Association for an astounding 377 weeks. Let’s calculate it. There’s 52 weeks in a year. That’s more than seven years of elite play.

3. Martina Navratilova

Nationality: Czechoslovakian (1956-1975), American (1975-Present)

Navratilova was ranked number one in the world for 332 weeks in singles and 237 weeks in doubles. She’s the only player to ever be ranked at the pole position for more than 200 weeks in both fields.

Since the Open Era began in 1968, there are no other players with as many match wins as Navratilova (2,189). A left-handed wizard with a racquet, Navratilova has 18 Grand Slam singles titles. This includes nine Wimbledon Finals victories. From 1978-1990, Navratilova only lost four times in the London-based tournament.

4. Pete Sampras

Nationality: American

Arguably the greatest tennis player of the 1990s, Pete Sampras was a winner through and through. He won 14 Grand Slam singles titles. Wimbledon was Sampras’ most dominant tournament, where he won seven of eight titles from 1993-2000. He has 64 total titles which ranks sixth in the Open Era. Nicknamed “Pistol Pete,” Sampras was named to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2007.

Sampras’ on-court duels with Andre Agassi were a joy to watch. These were battles for the ages. The crown jewel of their 34 matches was the 2001 US Open quarterfinals where Sampras defeated Agassi in a closely contested four-set contest.

5. Novak Djokovic

Nationality: Serbian

Another tennis legend, Novak Djokovic is sure to go down as one of the most dominant tennis players of all-time, possibly the GOAT. The 33-year-old from Serbia has 17 Grand Slam titles to his name with eight from the Australian Open, five from Wimbledon, three from the U.S.Open, and one from the French Open. 

Djokovic has been known for both his efficiency on the court and his iconic showdowns with some of the other tennis legends on this list including Rafael Nadel and Roger Federer. Djokovic has represented Serbia well becoming the first male Serbian player to win a Grand Slam singles title, and the first to earn a number one ranking from the ATP. Djokovic has held that ranking for 287 straight weeks, making him second all-time. The tennis star is estimated to be worth $220 million, and his $144 million in prize money is the highest of all time.

6. Rod Laver

Nationality: Australian

Arguably the best player in tennis during the late 1960s, Rod Laver amassed 11 Grand Slam singles titles in his career. In 1962 and 1969 Laver won the Grand Slam. He’s the only player to do that more than once. Laver won four Wimbledon tournaments and also captured two US Open titles. 

Laver was known for his rivalry with fellow Aussie Ken Rosewall. The two battled in 164 total matches. Laver managed to have the upper hand in the head to head record, going 89-75 against Rosewall. Laver’s accomplishments are everlasting, with both a cup and an arena named after him.

7. Björn Borg

Nationality: Swedish

Along with Roger Federer, Borg is one of two men in tennis to appear in four consecutive French Open and Wimbledon Finals. A 10-year pro, Borg got his start at a young age and had become a phenom in his teenage years. He was the number one player in tennis from 1977-1980. The Barry Sanders of his sport, Borg retired at just 26 years old.


Borg was also a fashion icon unlike any other player in tennis. His style off and on the court stuck out, so much that he started his own fashion brand in 1984.

8. Rafael Nadal

Nationality: Spanish

From Mallorca, Spain, “Rafa” is still active, but he could retire with a pretty good career. A young prodigy, Nadal started playing the sport along with soccer, but he eventually chose tennis as his main priority. Nadal definitely made the right decision. He has won 19 Grand Slam singles titles. That’s the second most for a male tennis player. 

Twelve of Nadal’s 19 Grand Slam titles have come at the French Open. Nadal has been ranked number one in the world for 209 weeks. This includes being ranked at the top of the tennis world five different years. His battles with Roger Federer are classics. Nadal owns the head-to-head with a 24-16 record against Federer.

9. Margaret Court

Nationality: Australian

At only eighteen years old when she began her pro career, Margaret Court is a legend and pioneer in the sport. She still holds the record for major titles for any tennis player. In 1970, Court won the Grand Slam. This made her the first woman in history to accomplish that feat. Court had a record 64 major titles and her career 91.68 winning percentage is one of the greatest of all time.

A dominating presence in the sport during both the 1960s and 1970s, Court’s 24 Grand Slam titles are still unrivaled, though Serena Williams is nipping at Court’s heels.

10. Billie Jean King

Nationality: American

A Hall of Famer in tennis, Billie Jean King played 31 years as a pro. She has 12 career Grand Slam singles titles. With 129 career titles, King ranks as one of the top women to play the sport ever. King’s impact on sports off the field is just as important as her on field success. She fought for gender equality in sports, successfully campaigning for equal pay for women and men in tennis. King also famously defeated Bobby Riggs in the Battle of the Sexes match.

11. Serena Williams

Nationality: American

A modern day GOAT in sports, Serena Williams has been a fixture in the sport since she went pro at the age of 14. She got off to a great start early, winning her first Grand Slam singles title in 1999 with a US Open win over Martina Hingis. With 73 career singles titles and 842 career wins, it’s hard to top what Serena Williams has done in her career.

After her recent loss to Victoria Azarenka in the Quarterfinals of the 2020 US Open, Williams is still closing in on tying Margaret Court for most Grand Slam singles titles (24). She’s just one Grand Slam Finals win away from reaching tennis legend territory.

12. Chris Evert

Nationality: American

An 18-time grand slam singles title winner, Evert was dominant. Known for her impact on the sports as a baseline-exclusive player, Evert revolutionized the way the sport was played in the 1970s. She turned pro in 1972 and immediately ascended to the top of the sport. Evert was named the world’s number one singles player seven out of eight years from 1974-1981. 

She didn’t take many losses in her career. Evert won 89.97 percent of her matches which is the highest win percentage of any pro tennis player ever. She ended her career with 157 singles and 32 doubles championships in total.

13. Don Budge

Nationality: American

The first player to win all the Grand Slam tournaments in a single year, Don Budge made a major impact in the tennis world. Armed with a fierce backhand, Budge was dominant especially in the years 1937 and 1938. He won all three Wimbledon championships. When Budge won in 1938 he won without losing a single set. 

Considered the complete package with his skillset, Budge had 43 career titles. He played 17 years as a professional. Budge had six total Grand Slam singles titles.

14. John McEnroe

Nationality: American

Maybe the most fiery competitor on this list, McEnroe built up his own compilation of meltdowns in the sport. Even with his tantrums, McEnroe’s success in tennis is undeniable. McEnroe has seven Grand Slam singles championships, including four title wins at the US Open. 1984 was a special year for McEnroe. He had an 82-3 match record and was ranked number one in tennis that year. McEnroe ended his singles career in 1994 and finished with 77 career titles and 881 wins.

15. Andre Agassi

Nationality: American

Whether he had long, flowing hair or rocked a baldie, Andre Agassi was a dynamic player in the sport of tennis. Like his hair, Agassi’s game evolved throughout his career. Known for his first-strike style of play, Agassi eventually morphed his game with consistency and accuracy. 

An olympic gold medalist, Agassi has eight grand slam titles. This includes four Australian Open titles and two Finals wins at the US Open. A career grand slam winner, Agassi breathes rarefied air in the sport of tennis. With 60 overall titles in his 20-year career, Agassi ranks as one of the best of all time.

16. Roy Emerson

Nationality: Australian

Emerson set a lot of records during his playing days in the 1960s. He was the first player to win 12 majors in tennis history. Emerson is the only male tennis player to complete a career Grand Slam in both singles and doubles tournaments.

Ranked number one in the sport in 1964, Emerson finished his career with 1325 wins. He was named to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1982. There aren’t many players with Emerson’s collection of accomplishments in tennis.

17. Bill Tilden

Nationality: American

Nicknamed “Big Bill,” Tilden was a pioneer in tennis. He was the first American to ever win Wimbledon. A loner by nature, Tilden would make the simplest match a challenge on purpose to test himself. He would lose sets on purpose to dig himself out of a hole and play to the style of his opponents to see if he could win at a disadvantage. That must’ve helped since Tilden managed to win 138 career titles. This includes 10 Grand Slam singles titles. Tilden won the US Open six consecutive years from 1920-1925.

18. Jimmy Connors

Nationality: American

The rare southpaw on this list, Connors’ longevity is unique to the game. He was a pro for 24 years. What stands out is how elite Connors was. He was ranked top 10 in the worldwide rankings of tennis for 16 straight years. Connor’s list of feats and stats are pretty strong. He’s the all-time leader in titles (109), matches played (1,557), and wins (1,274). 1974 was a magical year for Connors, who won the Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open all in that year. Connors was the number one player in the sport in 1974, 1976 and 1982.

19. Monica Seles

Nationality: Yugoslavian (1988-1992), FR Yugoslavian (1992-1994), American (1994-Present)

Seles is one of the biggest what if stories in sports history. At the top of the sports world, Seles was stabbed in a game in Hamburg, Germany by a crazed fan of competitor Steffi Graf. The incident caused Seles to retire from the sport for two years.

An aggressive baseline player, Seles had won eight Grand Slam singles titles by the time she turned 20 years old. She had been ranked number one in the sport in both 1992 and 1993. After the incident, she won just one title, the Australian Open in 1996. Still, Seles’ career was remarkable. She racked up 53 singles titles over her 14 years as a pro.

20. Ivan Lendl

Nationality: Czechoslovakian (1960-1992), American (1975-Present)

The ultimate finalist, Lendl was a major title runner-up a record 11 times. A player with a strong forehand and elite topspin, Lendl won eight Grand Slam titles including three US Open championships and three French Open title wins. 

Nicknamed “the Terminator,” Lendl had an 11-year stretch from 1981 to 1991 where he made at least one Grand Slam final every year. Lendl has found a new life as a tennis coach of pro tennis players. He helped Andy Murray to three titles and coached recent US Open runner up Alexander Zverev from 2018 to 2019.

21. Venus Williams

Nationality: American

The other half of arguably the best sibling duo in sports history, Venus Williams was a phenom from a young age. A pro at the age of 14, Williams has seven grand slam championships. Five of her seven titles come from Wimbledon. She has also won 14 Doubles titles, all with her sister.

An Olympic gold medalist three times (twice in doubles and once in singles), Williams established herself as a powerful server and a quality athlete in the sport. Though her performance and accolades have slowed down the past decade, there’s no doubt that her success early on in her career earns her a spot on our list. 

Categories
Sports Strength

Against The Spread: Sheasby’s Week 2 NFL Best Bets

The main slate of Week 2 NFL games is finally almost here! After two long days without football, fans were treated to the most exciting Bengals vs. Browns game in a decade on Thursday night as Baker Mayfield, Odell Beckham Jr, Nick Chubb and company outlasted the Bengals 35-30.

The pre-game chatter was centered around the possibility of Baker being benched if the Browns somehow lost the game, but Mayfield silenced his critics (for now). Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt combined for 210 yards on the ground, proving to be quite the 1-2 punch. It will be interesting to see how the Browns come out next week with a few extra days to prepare, coming off such a fantastic offensive performance.   

With Sunday fast approaching – let’s take a look at three games that I love from a betting perspective. 

LA Rams +1.5 @ Philadelphia Eagles
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

Let’s state the obvious: this is the trap line of the YEAR so far, but I get it, as we have a west coast team coming to the east coast for an early game. That being said, here’s an interesting tidbit for you: from 2003-2012, West Coast teams covered rarely: 57-71-3. However, Vegas adjusted, since 2013 (through 2019), West Coast teams coming to the east coast have done well, 45-34-3. How interesting. 

Trap line continued: the Rams are coming off a great win against the Cowboys while the Eagles lost to one of the worst teams in the league, the Washington Football Team. 

Sure, this Eagles team that should be motivated after said loss, but still, how are they favored?

As of this writing only 26% of bets are on Philadelphia, and as such, I’m taking the trap, I’m siding with Joe Public. 

This is a Rams team that was Super Bowl bound only two years ago, and had a down year last year.

I loved what I saw against a very strong Cowboys team last week, and think their 20th ranked defense (in terms of defensive efficiency) should only increase (towards their 9th ranked defense last year). 

Philadelphia on the other hand still has zero WRs worth naming (perhaps Reagor, but he’s a deep threat), they are banged up at RB (Sanders/Scott both questionable, leaving them with Clement), and they allowed 8 week one sacks. Look out for Aaron Donald – he should feast this week.

The Philadelphia defense looked fine, but that again was against the Washington Football team. 

I’m buying HIGH on the Rams, siding with Joe Public, and going with Rams +1.5

Tampa Bay Bucs -8.5 vs Carolina Panthers
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

First let’s start with Carolina: they looked pretty good in Week 1 against the Las Vegas Raiders. Teddy Bridgewater made some great throws, Christian McCaffrey once again showed he’s one of the best RB’s in the league and did CMC things, Robby Anderson proved that the Jets, not himself, were the problem (114 yards & 1 TD). All positives!

However, this was against a mediocre Raiders defense, ranked 23rd this year in defensive efficiency, and 31st last year in defensive efficiency. If the Panthers didn’t put up points, I’d be far more surprised.

That brings us to the Bucs defense: 1st in the league against the rush last year, 3rd this year. The Bucs defense looked FIERCE against the high-octane Saints offense, and while they did allow some points, Tom Brady turnovers didn’t help their cause.

And of course, that brings us to Tom Brady – new offense, new coach, and a bit of a rough day. Arians is already riding him to play better. He has a 59% career cover rate. He has the best weapons he’s ever had with Evans, Godwin, Gronk, Howard, Fournette/RJIII, Scotty Miller (the new Edelman), and gets to face a Carolina defense that just gave up 34 points to the Raiders. 

If there’s ever a “get-right” spot, it’s this one, and I love the public’s overreaction to TB’s woes/Carolina’s upswing.

This should be 70% of bets on TB, but it’s only 55%, and the line is moving in our favor. Take the Bucs -8.5.

Tennessee Titans -9 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jason Koeppel // ONE37pm

This is also a PRIME overreaction on both fronts. Tennessee is somehow only getting 17% of the bets here, which is comedy. 

Here we have a Tennessee team that ‘struggled’ on the road in Denver (altitude, historically a tough place to play) with an atrocious no cover. Of course, kicker Stephen Gostkowski played his worst game since his freshman year of high school, missing 3 field goals and 1 extra point for the Titans to NOT cover -3. 

Enter Jacksonville. Of course I love the “mustache madness” of Gardner Minshew III (19/20 for 173 yards & 3 TDs), but this team way overachieved in week 1. As it stands, they’re ranked 4th in offensive efficiency, 3rd in passing offense efficiency. Riiiighhhttt. 

The Jags played well (give credit where credit is due), but the Colts started a new QB in a new system AND lost their starting RB after 4 carries (in which he was AVG 6.5 YPC). The Colts love to run the ball, and yet Rivers threw the ball 46 times, as rookie RB Jonathan Taylor couldn’t get it going on the ground (9 carries for 22 yards). 

If Marlon Mack averaged 6.5 yards per carry against the Jags, what is Derrick Henry going to do? He’ll run wild, that’s what! Henry ran for 116 yards on 31 carries in Week 1, and I’d expect his workload to be equally as high.

In other news, Corey Davis remembered that he too is a wide receiver who gets paid to catch the ball (and is in a contract year), topping 100 yards for the first time in what feels like forever.

The rest of the Titans receiving core should also be feared (even with AJ Brown ruled out with a knee injury), at least physically. In addition to the aforementioned Corey Davis, Jonnu Smith is fast and strong, and even Julian-Edelman-Lite Adam Humphries will get involved. 

Unless lightning strikes twice (Gostkowski misses another 4 kicks), the Titans should cruise through this one.