Fun Fact of the Day: Venus and Serena’s combined age of 71 in the Australian Open final will be the oldest of any women’s final.
Throwback Thursday. It’s Venus v. Serena Williams in the Australian Open finals this Saturday! This will be the 9th finals matchup between the Williams sisters. While this is par for the course for Serena, who is trying to make history with her 23rd Grand Slam, this is a big deal for Venus, who was diagnosed with Sjogren’s syndrome back in 2011 (an autoimmune disease with symptoms like joint pain and fatigue). As a result, Venus hasn’t been to a final since Wimbledon in 2009, where she again… lost to her sister. Who else is embracing #tbt? On the men’s side of the court, Roger Federer has advanced to the finals! At age 35, he is the 2nd oldest man to make it to a Grand Slam final. He’ll be taking on the winner of the semifinal match between #9 Rafael Nadal and #15 Grigor Dimitrov. You can bet everyone is crossing their fingers for another epic Federer v. Nadal showdown.
All that glitters is not gold… Usain Bolt is no longer a 9x Olympic gold medalist. What do you mean? You probably remember Bolt’s perfect 100m, 200m, and 4x100m relay races from the past 3 Olympics. The International Olympic Committee went back and reanalyzed hundreds of urine samples from the past several Olympic Games and discovered that Nesta Carter (one of Bolt’s teammates in the relay) doped during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Now, the whole team has to return their medals. Is this enough motivation for Bolt to come back to compete in Tokyo 2020?
Seen and Heard
No Love lost. Rumor has it, the N.Y. Knicks offered trade their star forward Carmelo Anthony to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Kevin Love. The Cavs apparently passed on the deal because the players make for a pretty even swap and the Cavs are gelling well with Love. Some folks think that the Knicks didn’t think the trade would go through when they proposed it, but they just wanted to send Anthony a message. What do you mean? Anthony has a no-trade clause in his contract that doesn’t allow the team to trade him without his consent, but that hasn’t stopped rumors from swirling that the Knicks want him gone. This might be the team’s way of giving him yet another passive aggressive hint to get out of town.
SPORTS & POLITICS
Cruz on the court. According to Politico, Senator Ted Cruz has started a weekly basketball game to bond with his fellow Republican senators. Deadspin didn’t buy the story and demanded photographic evidence of Cruz playing b-ball. In response, Cruz tweeted a picture of Grayson Allen, his Duke basketball playing doppelganger and another pretty good clapback to Deadspin’s vulgar response. Well done, whoever is running Ted Cruz’s Twitter page.
Who’s got skills? The Pro Bowl (aka the NFL’s All-Star game) gets started tonight with the Skills Showdown. This year, the NFL is spicing things up with some pretty interesting new events like Dodgeball (yes, like middle school gym class) and a Drone Drop (apparently, where drones drop footballs from the sky). Tune in to see all the weirdness/fun. 7pm ET on ESPN