Fun Fact of the Day: Get ready for a close Super Bowl this weekend. The last 6 times the New England Patriots have made it to the Super Bowl, the games have been decided by 4 or fewer points. Close games are pretty unique to the Pats—only 7 of the other 44 Super Bowls have been decided by 4 or fewer points.
Golden Oldies. This weekend some familiar faces made their way back to the Australian Open winner circle: Serena Williams and Roger Federer. Serena defeated her big sis Venus in 2 straight sets to win her 23rd Grand Slam title, beating out Steffi Graf for the most major tournament wins in the Open Era. To make the win even sweeter, Serena also reclaimed the #1 ranking in the world. On the men’s court, Federer collected his 18th Grand Slam title by beating longtime rival Rafael Nadal in an epic 5-set grudge match. It was a pleasant surprise just to see the 2 tennis greats back in a major tournament, after both battled serious injuries last year. Fans shelled out some serious ca$h money to see the archrivals go head-to-head in their first major final in 6 years, with the most expensive courtside seats going for $26,000 a pop.
Qualifications, shmalifications. At the end of another losing regular season, the San Francisco 49ers cleaned house by firing their old head coach and GM. This weekend the team surprised everyone by announcing that they’ve decided to hire John Lynch as their next GM. Lynch was a former NFL safety, who had a long and successful career, including winning a Super Bowl with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2002. So why the big surprise? He’s literally never worked in a NFL front office before, so he could be in over his head. Lynch was only considered for the role in the first place, because he recommended himself for the job.
An A for Effort. The AFC beat the NFC 20-13 to win this year’s Pro Bowl (the NFL’s All-Star game). Usually the game is pretty unwatchable because the players don’t take it seriously and they barely play any defense. But this year both teams stepped up their D and it showed, including a late interception that prevented the NFC from tying up the game.
The beginning of a beautiful friendship. This weekend was also chock-full of the NHL’s All-Star events. The Metropolitan Division took home the big 3-on-3 tournament, thanks to enemies turned besties, Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Alex Ovechkin (Washington Capitals). The sudden bromance surprised everyone because the 2 have been competitors on the ice for a long time, but they put their differences aside to be All-Star teammates this weekend. Another highlight? Popstar Justin Bieber played in the All-Star Celebrity Shootout and got slammed up against the glass.
Seen and Heard
SPORTS & POLITICS
What happens now? Many athletes were affected by President Donald Trump’s executive order suspending immigration and visas from predominantly Muslim countries. The NBA wrote to the State Department to clarify whether players with South Sudanese dual-citizenship would be allowed back into the U.S. if they traveled with their teams out of the country to games in Toronto, Canada. Meanwhile sports stars like Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr, US men’s national soccer team captain Michael Bradley, and Olympic runner Mo Farah used their platforms to speak out against the policies as “shocking,” “embarrassing” and “deeply troubling.”