The One with the Williams at Wimbledon

Fun Fact of the Day:  Yesterday, Dominika Cibulkova lost in the Wimbledon quarterfinals, but she got the best consolation prize: she’s getting married on time this weekend!  If she had won, she would have postponed her wedding to play in the semis.  She originally scheduled the big day for July 9th because she had never made it past the 3rd round on grass courts, but this year she did way better than expected!


Today's Rundown

TENNIS 

Double trouble.  Both Serena and Venus Williams are moving on to the Wimbledon semifinals, after winning their quarterfinals matches yesterday. Serena’s probably yawning and thinking “same old, same old”, but her sister Venus hasn’t made it this far at Wimbledon since 2009, when she lost in the finals to… you guessed it: Serena. This is a happy and unexpected comeback for Venus, who was diagnosed with Sjogren’s syndrome in 2011--a disease that causes joint pain and fatigue. At age 36, she is also the oldest female player in the tournament. In the semis, she’ll be the underdog facing #4-ranked Angelique Kerber, who beat Serena to win the Australian Open earlier this year.  


Seen and Heard

MLB

Ugly allegations.  The Chicago police are investigating Pittsburgh Pirates infielder Jung Ho Kang for sexual assault. Last month when the Pirates were in Chicago playing the Cubs, Kang met a 23-year-old woman on Bumble (a dating app where only women can initiate conversations).  According to reports, she met him at his hotel room, where he offered her a drink. She suspiciously passed out 15 minutes later and Kang assaulted her. So far, charges have not been brought against Kang. Kang came over to MLB just last year, after playing in the South Korean leagues. Last season, he finished 3rd in Rookie of the Year voting but his performance has been slipping recently. 

 

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Off the field and out of court. The University of Tennessee reached a $2.5M settlement with 8 women who alleged biased procedures that favored student athletes in sexual assaults. The victims’ allegations included rape, rigged school proceedings, and one incident where a football player was beat up by his teammates with athletic coaches looking on because he helped a victim. 

 

OLYMPICS

Fall from grace.  Former South African Olympic runner and double-amputee Oscar Pistorius was sentenced to 6 years in prison for the murder of his girlfriend on Valentine’s Day 3 years ago.  They’ve been in a lengthy legal battle with many appeals, so this may not be the last you hear from Pistorius.

 

SPORTS AND MEDIA

Hubba hubba.  The ESPN Body issue is out!  Get ready to feast your eyes on the nude bodies of incredible athletes like Dwyane Wade, Jake Arrieta, and all 325 pounds of Houston Texans defensive tackle Vince Wilfork.  You’re welcome.


Spotlight on the MLB All-Star Game

Can you believe it?  We’re already halfway through baseball season! The MLB All-Star Game (aka the ‘Midsummer Classic’) is next week, and last night, the rosters for the teams were announced.  Here’s what you need to know…

The Basics.  The All-Star game is played between teams composed of the biggest stars from the National League and American League. Fans voted online for their favorite players, who will start the game. Managers and players picked the pitchers and bench players.

What do the winners get?  Unlike the other major sports’ All-Star games (which are just fun and meaningless exhibition games), the MLB All-Star game has very real stakes. The winning league gets home field advantage during the World Series!

Who got the votes?  This year, the Chicago Cubs led the NL with 7 players, including their entire infield, while the Boston Red Sox led the AL with 6 players, including a 10th All-Star game for retiring DH David “Big Papi” Ortiz.

Did the fans get it right?  The fan-voting process isn’t perfect. For example, last year MLB canceled 65 million votes after Kansas City Royals fans stuffed the ballot boxes. This year, it doesn’t look like there was voting fraud, but some people still aren’t happy that the starting lineup is picked by a popularity contest.


Hot Read

TENNIS 

Wimbledon. The men’s quarterfinals are today.  Tune in to see if Roger Federer and Andy Murray can make it to the semis!  8am-4pm on ESPN and ESPN2.

 

SOCCER 

Euros 2016.  The semifinals start tonight between Portugal and Wales at 3pm ET on ESPN.