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Saturday, December 6, 2008

Manny Pacquiao wins over Oscar de la Hoya

Manny Pacquiao wins over Oscar de la Hoya

Manny Pacquiao wins over Oscar de la Hoya! This will be soon, so be better watch out. If Pacquiao despite of the mismatch manage to win against the bigger Oscar de la Hoya we can say now Manny Pacquiao is the ultimate pound for pound champion. Either of the two fighter has the ability to knock out their opponents. It is just a matter of timing and execution. The fighter who has the right training and proper strategy might win the this Dream Match of the year.

Video of Manny Pacquiao and Oscar de la Hoya Fight : Trailer

FYI - Behind Sports

Friday, November 14, 2008

Andy Murray Smashing Roger Federer In Masters Cup Semis

Andy Murray Smashing Roger Federer In Masters Cup Semis

Briton Andy Murray first assignment is to stop Roger Federer and second is to beat Nikolay Davydenko before he can play in the Masters Cup finals in Shanghai. This is not easy as it can be, after beating Roger Federer with a match score of 4-6 7-6 7-5 and assure himself to be in the final four, Murray will be facing a top caliber player again against Davydenko.

Andrew "Andy" Murray was born on May 15, 1987 and classified as the number one British player and number four in the world. Murray turned pro in 2005 with a total winning cash prize of US$4,849,434 and career record of 152 wins, 64 loses and 8 titles.

FYI - Sports News

Spying Over Burn After Reading

I want to watch the movie Burn After Reading to see how those hunk performed their comedy role and also to see other co-Nuffnangers.

Spying Over Burn After Reading

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

LeBron James Dunks From Free Throw Line! Amazing Video!

LeBron James Dunks From Free Throw Line

LeBron James dunks from free throw line! LeBron James is just amazing with his dunks specially when he jumped from the free throw line. What can I say? LeBron Raymone James was born in Akron, Ohio on December 30, 1984. LeBron James is known as King James, because he is the youngest millionaire and only NBA player who was been a first overall pick that came from high school at the age of 18.

Ohio's Mr. Basketball is what they call LeBron James When he was still playing in St. Vincent - St. Mary High School.

FYI - Sports News

Monday, November 10, 2008

Antonio McDyess Back To Detroit Pistons

Antonio McDyess Back To Detroit Pistons

Denver Nuggets waived Antonio McDyess and back to Detroit Pistons along with Chauncey Billups and Cheikh Samb and a trade with guard Allen Iverson a nine-times NBA All-Star that play to Detroit.

Antonio McDyess Back To Detroit Pistons

Antonio McDyess is 34 years old and McDyess has been playing in the NBA for almost 13 years. McDyess is avering 13.4 points with 7.7 rebounds as professional NBA player. McDyess was also the second draft pick in the 1995 NBA Annual Draft.

FYI - Sports News

Juan Manuel Marquez Ring Magazine Lightweight King

Ring Magazine Lightweight King Juan Dinamita Manuel Marquez knockout El Cepillo CasamayorJuan Manuel Marquez knockout "El Cepillo" Casamayor at 2:55 minutes in the 11th scheduled by 12 round at MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Juan "Dinamita" Manuel Marquez is now the Ring Magazine lightweight champion with 49 wins 4 losses and 36 wins by knockout while Casamayor down with 36 wins 4 losses. Casamayor of Guantanamo, Cuba, was suffered a cut in the right eyebrow that causes him out of focus.

Juan Manuel Marquez scores a 31 percent throw punch about 160 out 516 while Casamayor still show his fighting power with 22 percent punch 122 over 552.

Juan "Dinamita" Manuel Marquez says he is now the best Lightweight and he wants Manny Pacquiao to be his next opponent.

FYI - Sports News

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Pinoy Fear Factor

Pinoy Fear Factor, Fear Factor Pinoy Edition will launch on November 10, 2008 in Kapamilya channel ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation. Great prize awaits the winner of Pinoy Fear Factor and will become The Ultimate ParticipantFear Factor Pinoy Edition will launch on November 10, 2008 in the Kapamilya channel ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation. Great prizes awaits the winner of Pinoy Fear Factor and will become The Ultimate Participant. Who will be the lucky winner in the 12 selected participants. Watch the Pinoy Fear Factor and be amazed with the stunts and challenges.

Pinoy Fear Factor

Related Post:
Pinoy Fear Factor complete list of participants and game details.
Pinoy Fear Factor Full Video

FYI - Sports News

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Top Gear Season 12 Episode 1 Watch Video

Top Gear Season 12 Episode 1

The show that won different awards is back with a new twist. Top Gear new series is set for all the viewers. Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May will be the host of this new series.

Top Gear Season 12 Episode 1 start on Sunday November 2. Watch Top Gear.

Here is the latest video of Top Gear Season 12 Episode 1.

FYI - Behind Sports

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Kimbo Slice versus Seth Petruzelli video fight

Kimbo Slice match against Seth Petruzelli were something to remember by the fans. Kimbo Slice did not knew what hit him. It is just a one shot before a non stop punch and it is over. Kimbo also known as the Cash Machine, who fights like the baddest man on earth.

Related News: Kimbo Slice Versus Shamrock

FYI - Sports News

Monday, September 15, 2008

Lance Armstrong Race To Colorado For Tune Up In 2009 Tour de France

Lance Armstrong

SNOWMASS VILLAGE, Colorado - Lance Armstrong only individual to win seven times at Tour de France announced recently his intention of riding in a prestige cycling event Tour de France. Armstrong 36-year-old cancer survivor is training and getting his legs to its winning form.

FYI - Behind Sports

Thursday, September 11, 2008

United States Soccer Team Nears World Cup Qualifying

Clint Dempsey United States Soccer Team World Cup

BRIDGEVIEW, Illinois – A 3-0 win over Trinidad and Tobago in World Cup qualifying, the United States assured in CONCACAF regional finals next year with an outstanding game by Clint Dempsey who scored his fourth goal in four games. While Brian Ching and Michael Bradley scored to United States and get its fifth straight win - nine points five ahead of Trinidad that firms its place at Group One in the semi-finals qualifying.

FYI - Behind Sports

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Manu Ginobili Needs Arthroscopic Surgery

Manu Ginobili needs arthroscopic surgery to repair a ligament injury to his left ankle

SAN ANTONIO - Manu Ginobili of San Antonio Spurs needs to repair a ligament injury to his left ankle through arthroscopic surgery. An MRI exam of the injury showed no improvement from a previous one, "They're going to operate on me," "It's the same as it was two months ago, when they did the first exam," he said. "It's not worse, which is important. Now, the thing is, it's not better either, and it seems like the only way to repair it completely is arthroscopic surgery."

FYI - Behind Sports

Monday, September 1, 2008

Tennis World Number 3 Novak Djokovic Prevailed

Novak Djokovic tennis world number three win over Marin Cilic in a four-hour battle

Novak Djokovic tennis world number three win over Marin Cilic in a four-hour battle, Djokovic was tested to the limit before scraping into round four of the US Open. Cilic after winning the first set and saved two match points in the fourth before losing 6-7 (7-9) 7-5 6-4 7-6 (7-0).

Former world number one Roger Federer cruised through, barely breaking sweat as he beat Radek Stepanek 6-3 6-3 6-2.

Home favorite Andy Roddick also showed something like his best form as he saw off Andreas Seppi 6-2 7-5 7-6 (7-4).

Cilic won a high-quality first set on a tie-break, bravely smacking a clean backhand winner down the line to snatch it.

Both men then fluctuated between the sublime and the distinctly average, with Djokovic allowing an early break to slip in each of the next three sets.

An inspired Cilic survived two match points before leveling at 5-5 in the fourth but he crumbled in the tie-break and Djokovic prevailed after three hours 52 minutes.

The Serbian admitted: "I was really trying to stay in the match all the time.

"It is always good in the early stages to have long matches, to hustle and stay on the court a long time. Now I'm motivated to go far.

"I always manage to get through these tough matches. If you are mentally able to play the best tennis in the most important moments you are different than the others.

"The good thing about that second set was that I stayed focused. He was stepping in and I was playing a bit too defensive.

"He didn't have much to lose as a youngster. He won at New Haven (one week before the US Open) and he won a couple of matches here and he was on the centre court for the first time.

"It was more the fight and focus I had in the end.

"I got myself together after those two match points. I was mentally strong. For me this match is extremely important mentally for me to continue going on."

Djokovic will now meet Spain's Tommy Robredo in round four.

Who Is Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic was born on May 22, 1987 in Belgrade, Serbia, Djokovic is a Serbian professional tennis player and current World No. 3.

In January 2008, he won his first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open. After a straight sets win over World No. 1 and defending champion Roger Federer in the semifinals, Djokovic won the final in four sets against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. He thereby became the first player representing Serbia ever to win a Grand Slam singles title and the youngest player in the open era to have reached all four Grand Slam semifinals.

Djokovic Playing Style
Djokovic is an all-court player. His greatest strengths includes his dominant groundstrokes, especially the forehand which are powerful, deep, well angled, and hit with strong topspin, although his preferred groundstroke is the backhand. With considerable speed, his serve is one of his major weapons winning many free points from his flatter first serve and employing a sharp curving kick serve as his second serve. Djokovic, while very sound and powerful from the baseline, often finishes points by coming to the net similar to Roger Federer. He also utilizes a well-disguised backhand underspin dropshot and sliced backhand (groundstroke) in his repertoire.

Djokovic Equipments
Djokovic endorses/is sponsored by Wilson and adidas; he is currently using the Wilson [K]Blade Tour racquet strung with Wilson Champions Choice. Djokovic also wears the adidas Barricade V shoes and the adidas Edge Group clothing. Adidas allowed Djokovic to wear Nike shoes at Wimbledon in 2008.

FYI - Behind Sports

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Manny Pacquiao Will Fight Oscar De La Hoya

Oscar De la Hoya fight Manny Pacquiao

Goliath meets David in a fair and square battle. In a non-title bout on 6 December in Las Vegas, WBC lightweight world champion Manny Pacquiao will fight Six-weight division world champion Oscar de la Hoya.

The fight, which the 35-year-old De la Hoya refused to label his last, will take place at the MGM Grand.

"My focus is on my next fight. I am not going to talk about retiring," said the American, who has won 10 world titles in all.

"I am going to give 100% of my focus to this fight and then we will see."

De la Hoya had been scheduled to fight Floyd Mayweather on 20 September before his countryman announced his retirement in June this year.

De la Hoya rose to fame by winning a gold medal for the United States at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona where he earned the nickname "Golden Boy".

Since then he has won titles at six different weight classes and boasts a record of 39-5 that includes 20 knockouts. His last victory, over American Steve Forbes, came in May.

Filipino Pacquiao, 29, has built up a huge following back home and he believes he can upset his opponent by utilizing his greater speed.

"I'm faster and younger and I think I can beat him, it is going to be a great fight," he said.

FYI - Behind Sports

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

US Open 2008 Rafael Nadal Win Over Bjorn Phau

Rafael Nadal 2008 US Open

Rafael Nadal currently World number one at the US Open vanquished his German opponent Bjorn Phau 7-6 (7-4) 6-3 7-6 (7-4) and got his first-round win at Flushing Meadows. Nadal, 22, needed almost three hours to see off a determined challenge from qualifier Phau in the Arthur Ashe Stadium.

The Spaniard even double-faulted when serving for the match to hand Phau a break back, and he required a second tie-break to finally wrap things up.

Rafael Nadal goes on to face American Ryler De Heart, ranked 251, who had a surprise 7-6 (7-4) 5-7 6-4 3-6 6-4 win over Belgian Olivier Rochus.

"To win in three sets is always a good result," said Nadal. "I had some difficult moments, so that's going to help me a little bit to be prepared for the pressure moments. "I played well today when I had the pressure moments."

He added: "I am a little bit tired, yes, but it is the US Open so I have to try my best here. "The problem is playing Toronto, Cincinnati and Beijing, then coming back here. In two weeks, two times, 12 hours' jet lag. "I'm a little bit more tired than I usually am but, at the same time, I must be very happy how I did this year."

There were easy wins for fourth seed David Ferrer, who beat Martin Vassalo Arguello, and seventh seed David Nalbandian, who overcame Marcos Daniel.

But ninth seed James Blake needed five sets to overcome fellow American Donald Young 6-1 3-6 6-1 4-6 6-4.

Blake looked poised to make quick work of Young, leading two sets to one and up 2-0 in the fourth before the left-handler hit back to take the match to a deciding set.

"Donald really picked up his game and really played great toward end of the match," said Blake, who committed 50 unforced errors in the match.

Gael Monfils was an early winner on the first day's play in New York, the Frenchman crushing Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 6-4 6-4 6-1, while 10th seed Stanislas Wawrinka beat Simone Bolelli 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 6-3.

Jurgen Melzer upset 27th seed Feliciano Lopez 4-6 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 2-6 6-4, with Britain's Andy Murray a possible third-round opponent for the Austrian.

FYI - Behind Sports

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Olympic Football Gold Kicks By Argentina

Beijing Olympics – Argentina is on heat beating Nigeria 1-0 to win its second Olympic football title in a row. Angel di Maria collected a through ball from Lionel Messi in the 58th minute to give 2004 winner Argentina another gold medal and leave the Nigerians, champions in 1996, the silver. Brazil won the bronze on Friday by beating Belgium 3-0 in Shanghai.

The only football game to be played in Beijing's Olympic stadium, Saturday's match was watched by a crowd of 89,102 but hampered by very hot conditions and the referee took the rare step of twice allowing players to stop and take drinks.

Who Is Angel di Maria
Angel Fabian Di Maria was born on February 14, 1988 in Rosario, Santa Fe Province, Di Maria is an Argentine football midfielder who currently plays for S.L. Benfica and is known as "The Little Angel".

Di Maria started his professional football career in 2005, when he made his debut for Rosario Central. In January 2007 he had an opportunity to play in Russian Premier League when FC Rubin Kazan offered him a contract. At first he agreed, but soon afterward he changed his mind and turned down the offer. After putting up a remarkable performance in the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup, playing for Argentina, Di Maria caught the eye of several international teams and in the end Benfica signed him for €6m.

So highly regarded was Di Maria by Benfica that the president of the Portuguese club, Luís Filipe Vieira, when presenting the young Argentine, told the club’s supporters he had bought the perfect replacement for Benfica’s departing captain, Simao Sabrosa, a talismanic figure for Benfica for over five seasons.

During the first months of his tenure in Lisbon, Di Maria showed that he was not in the least weighed down by the expectations, and the fans quickly took to the exciting talent.

FYI - Behind Sports

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Usain Bolt Going To Racks Up The Gold Bars

Usain Bolt gold medals in Beijing fastest man

GENEVA - In anticipation of new records by the sport's newest superstar Usain Bolt the fastest man on the planet, European track meet organizers are polishing the gold bars for the Weltklasse meet in Zurich next week, where Bolt can collect a kilogram (2.2 pounds) of gold and prize money worth a combined US$93,000 (€63,000) if he breaks his 100-meter world record of 9.69 seconds.

After that, Bolt is staying in Switzerland to run the 200 at the Sept. 2 Athletissima meet in Lausanne, where he can net another gold bar worth around US$27,000 (€18,300) if he improves on his newly minted 19.30 mark.

By dominating the Olympic sprint events with devastating ease, Bolt has quickly become the new darling of international meet organizers. Aside from increased bonuses, he can also expect to receive significantly higher appearance fees.

"In the contract, with the two world records, maybe we can pay $30,000 more," Athletissima spokesman Pierre-Andre Pasche said Thursday. "For us it is very important. He is the superstar of the Olympic Games and we expect to fill all the stadium with people coming to see Usain Bolt."

Some 14,000 are expected in Lausanne for the meet, and Zurich's 25,000-seat Letzigrund stadium is sold out for Bolt's first competition after the Olympics.

Weltklasse meet director Patrick Magyar said it may not take long for Bolt to break his 100 mark — which he set in Saturday's final despite showboating for the last 20 meters.

"I still think he has the potential to improve the 100 by quite a bit to get it to the same level he is running the 200," Magyar said. "There is, of course, a very nice bonus available if you run a world record in Zurich."

Weltklasse said it is offering a US$50,000 (€34,000) record bonus on top of US$16,000 (€10,900) for winning a race. A Swiss bank sponsor has promised the gold bars.

Long recognized for fast times, the Zurich track is expected to run even quicker since being resurfaced during stadium renovations last year. The synthetic rubber surface was poured into place rather than rolled out like a carpet to ensure consistency and energy efficiency.

"I think Zurich is probably the most advanced track there is in the world," Magyar said. "It needs time to settle in so we expect the track to be in better condition for the athletes than last year."

Bolt is slated for a rematch with Olympic runner-up Richard Thompson of Trinidad and Tobago and Walter Dix of the United States, who won the bronze medal. The 100-meter record has been equaled or broken on three previous occasions at the meet.

In 1960, Armin Hary of West Germany clocked the first 10.0 time, while Carl Lewis in 1988 equaled the 9.93 mark he shared with fellow American Calvin Smith. Two years ago, Bolt's Jamaican rival Asafa Powell ran 9.77 for the third time.

Bolt ran the 200 at Weltklasse last year, clocking 20.19 to finish second behind Xavier Carter of the United States.

He was also beaten at the 2007 Athletissima, where his 20.11 run trailed far behind American Tyson Gay's time of 19.78.

Pasche said Bolt has missed the meet just once since debuting in 2003 but has never won there. World record or not, that streak seems sure to end.

FYI - Behind Sports

P1 Billion For Manny Pacquiao If He Fights Oscar De La Hoya

Manny Pacquiao Oscar De La Hoya Fight

P990 million for an ordinary people is too much, but Manny Pacquiao apparently stands to make that much if he decides to soften up on his previous demand. Pacquiao insisted that the prize money should be split 60-40. De la Hoya was adamant about a 70-30 cut. Talks have bogged down since no one refused to give way, although the handlers of both fighters continued to express interest in making the bout possible.

If he accepts Oscar de la Hoya’s offer, Pacquiao could earn a staggering $22 million or roughly P990 million, trainer and confidante Freddie Roach said.

“Oscar is a big draw. He draws millions of pay-per-view buys. And Manny is bigger than Floyd Mayweather Jr. I think Manny will break records and I think he and Oscar will make 200 million buys. If Manny does that at 70-30, Manny will get over $22 million (P990 million)," Roach told Sports Radio personality Dennis Principe.

Roach also confirmed in the radio interview Friday that the negotiations for the blockbuster meeting is apparently not yet over.

“The negotiations are not dead yet," Pacquiao’s trainer said. “I’ve talked to Bob Arum and Michael Koncz and we feel the fight is not dead yet."

Talks for a Pacquiao-Oscar de la Hoya megabuck fight broke off last week when both fighters stuck to their pay-cut demands: 60-40 for Pacquiao and 70-30 to de la Hoya.

On Monday, two US-based media outfits reported that the major players involved are still moving to make the megabuck fight scheduled on December a possibility.

“I think Oscar wants to go against a big name and wants to make a big event … and certainly Pacquiao is one of those names," Richard Schaefer, Golden Boy Promotions CEO, said on the Sports Illustrated web site Monday.

Arum, Pacquiao’s promoter, told the Los Angeles Times that Pacquiao “remained adamant about receiving more than 30-percent share of the purse"

“There’s still the possibility of meeting somewhere in the middle," Arum said.

Schaefer also told the LA Times that he had heard Pacquiao was softening up on his previous demand.

“He sort of realized that 30 percent of the big pie is better than 100 percent of the small pie," Schaefer said of Pacquiao. Last week, Pacquiao said he wanted to “move on" and had instructed Arum to look for “another opponent". Roach believes Pacquiao’s decision was not final.

“We’re going to try and make this deal happen. It’s not yet a final decision of Manny."

FYI - Behind Sports

Sailors Iain Percy And Andrew Simpson Sail GB Fourth Gold Medal

Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson Olympic gold sailing

Great Britain's fourth gold won by sailors Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson in a thrilling climax to the Star class event in Qingdao. Percy and Simpson started the medal race in second place and had to fight tooth and claw with Sweden before getting to the line just ahead of them.

The gold provided the perfect finish to Britain's most successful ever regatta.

Brazil's Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada took silver, and Sweden's Fredrik Loof and Anders Ekstrom claimed the bronze.

Britain finished on 45 points, eight in front of the Brazilians and Swedes. The South Americans took silver by virtue of their better result in the medal race.

Percy and Simpson added another gold medal to Britain's tally in Qingdao, following in the wake of Ben Ainslie, Paul Goodison and the Yngling crew of Sarah Ayton, Sarah Webb and Pippa Wilson.

"It's unbelievable and it's so special to do it with this fella (Simpson)," said Percy, after claiming the second Olympic gold of his career.

"I knew we weren't going to bottle it, and we didn't."

Simpson, who took gold in his first ever Olympics, added: "I'm just shocked. To do this after this week and this year we've had is unbelievable.

"There are no words to describe how happy we are.

"Since last year, everything focused on this week. We've worked really hard for the last 12 months.

"We had to pull it back from the brink. It was a tough race and we just did enough."

Britain eventually finished fifth in the medal race, behind race winners Poland, but the crucial factor was that they finished ahead of Sweden.

The two boats were neck-and-neck for much of the race but Percy and Simpson, who started the race two points behind Sweden, did just enough to keep their noses in front as the pressure increased in the closing stages.

FYI - Behind Sports

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Usain Bolt The Fastest Man On The Planet

Jamaica's Usain Bolt sprints to victory and rise to stardom in the Beijing Olympics 100 metre race and sets a new world record of 9.69 seconds. With world champion Tyson Gay out in the semifinals, the 21-year-old Jamaican seemingly only had Asafa Powell to beat, but when he looked around and realized he was all clear with 30 metres to go.

Well behind, Richard Thompson of Trinidad and Tobago took the silver medal in 9.89, and Walter Dix of the United States was third in 9.91.

Powell again crumbled under the pressure of a big competition and finished fifth.

"Usain was spectacular," Powell said. "He was definitely untouchable."

Who Is Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt was born on August 21, 1986, Bolt is a Jamaican sprinter. He is the reigning Olympic champion over 100 meters and holds both world and Olympic 100 meters records with a time of 9.69 seconds. Bolt is also the world junior record holder in the 200 meters (19.93 seconds), and Jamaican national record holder in the 200 meters (19.67 seconds). His name and achievements in sprinting have earned him the media nickname "Lightning Bolt."

Bolt was born in Trelawny, Jamaica, to Jennifer and Wellesley Bolt. As a child he was successful in the annual, national primary schools' meeting for his parish, and enjoyed playing cricket, specializing in fast bowling. Upon his entry to William Knibb Memorial High School, his cricket coach noticed Bolt's speed on the pitch and urged him to try track and field events. Pablo McNeil and Dwayne Barrett coached Usain Bolt Fastest Man On The PlanetBolt, encouraging him to focus his energy on improving his athletic abilities. The school had a history of athletic success with past students including Michael Green. Bolt won his first annual high school championships medal in 2001, attaining the silver medal in the 200 meters with a time of 22.04 seconds.

Performing in his first Caribbean national event, Bolt clocked a personal best of 48.28 seconds in the 400 meters in the 2001 CARIFTA games, earning himself a silver medal. The 200 meters also yielded a silver as Bolt finished in 21.81 seconds. He made his first appearance on the world stage at the 2001 IAAF World Youth Championships in Debrecen, Hungary. Running in the 200 meters event, he failed to qualify for the finals but he still set a new personal best of 21.73 seconds. In 2002 Bolt won both the 200 and 400 meters events in the High School Championships, CARIFTA Games and Central American and Caribbean Junior Championships. He set championship records for both 200 and 400 meters in the 2002 CARIFTA games with 21.12 seconds and 47.33 seconds respectively. He continued to set records, with 20.61 seconds and 47.12 seconds finishes at the CAC Junior Championships.

Bolt grew up in Trelawny, Jamaica, with his parents, Jennifer and Wellesley Bolt, and his sister Sherine. Bolt expresses a love for dancing and his character is frequently described as laid-back and relaxed. The first sport to interest him was cricket and he said if he wasn't a sprinter he would be a fast bowler instead. Bolt's Jamaican track and field idols include Herb McKenley and, former Jamaican 200 meters record holder, Don Quarrie. Michael Johnson, the 200 meters world and Olympic record holder, is also held in high esteem by Bolt.

After winning the 200 meters title in the 2002 World Junior Championships in Kingston, Jamaica, Bolt signed a sponsorship deal with Puma. To promote Bolt's chase for Olympic glory in the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China, Puma released a series of videos including Bolt's then-world-record-setting run in Icahn Stadium and his Olympic preparations. During the Beijing 2008 100 meters final, Bolt wore golden Puma spikes that had "Beijing 100m Gold" emblazoned across them.

FYI - Behind Sports

Top Seed Rafael Nadal Aiming A Grand Slam At Us Open

Rafael Nadal top seed US Open

Following his elevation to world number one, Rafael Nadal will be the top seed at a Grand Slam for the first time in his career at next week's US Open. Followed by Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, with Scot Andy Murray seeded sixth while ex-world number one Lleyton Hewitt has pulled out with injury.

Ana Ivanovic is women's top seed, with Jelena Jankovic, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Serena Williams next.

The singles draws for the tournament will be announced on Thursday.

Nadal officially became the new world number one on Monday, ending Federer's record reign of 237 successive weeks. Federer was the top seed at the last 18 majors.

Murray will be looking to overcome his disappointing early exit from the Beijing Olympics and rediscover the form that took him to success at the Cincinnati Masters.

The British number one's best effort in New York was in 2006 when he reached the fourth round.

Hewitt will miss the rest of the season after having arthroscopic surgery on a long-term hip problem.

"Surgery was always the last resort, but unfortunately that's what it came down to," the 27-year-old Australian said.

"I am also shattered that I can't lead the Australian Davis Cup team in Chile (in Santiago from 19-21 September) in our bid to rejoin the world group, and hope that the boys can still come through with a great win.

"I am looking forward to playing again in January in my home country, and using that as a springboard to compete at my best again on the world stage for at least a couple of more years."

The most notable absence on the women's side is world number six and 2006 champion Maria Sharapova, who announced earlier this month that she is missing the event to recover from a shoulder injury.

Who Is Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal Parera was born on June 3, 1986 in Manacor, Majorca, Nadal is a Spanish professional tennis player who has been ranked World No. 1 since 18 August 2008.

Nadal has won five Grand Slam singles titles and the 2008 Olympic gold medal. He captured four consecutive French Opens from 2005 through 2008 and Wimbledon in 2008. He is the only man other than Bjorn Borg to have won four consecutive French Open titles, one of only three men in the open era who won both the French Open and Wimbledon in the same calendar year, only the second male Spaniard to have won Wimbledon, and the only man who entered the Olympics ranked in the top five to win the gold medal.

For much of his career, Nadal has had a rivalry with Roger Federer. He was ranked World No. 2 behind Federer for a record 160 weeks before earning the top spot. Nadal has won 12 of their 18 singles matches, including four of their six Grand Slam finals.

Nadal's tennis success has been especially pronounced on clay courts. Some tennis critics and top players regard Nadal as the greatest clay-court player ever. He has a 22–1 record in clay court tournament finals and is undefeated in over 40 best-of-five-set matches on clay. In each of the last four years, he has won both the French Open and two of the three clay court Masters Series tournaments. He also owns the longest single-surface winning streak in the open era, having won 81 consecutive matches on clay from April 2005 to May 2007.

Family And Early Life
Rafael Nadal was born in Manacor, Majorca to Sebastián Nadal and Ana María Parera. He has a younger sister named María Isabel. His uncle, Miguel Ángel, is a retired professional football player, having played for RCD Mallorca, FC Barcelona, and the Spanish national team. He is an avid supporter of Real Madrid. His other uncle, Toni, himself a professional tennis player, introduced Rafael to tennis as a 3 year-old boy and has been coaching him ever since. Toni has also stated that Rafael had a natural talent playing tennis while preferring to play football. By the time Rafael was five, he was going to the tennis club twice a week to play and at eight years of age, also a promising striker in the local football team, he won the regional tennis championships for under-12s. By the time Rafael was 12 he had won the Spanish and European tennis titles in his age group and was playing either tennis or football all the time. Then in stepped the third of the three brothers, Rafael's father, Sebastian. He forced Rafael to choose between football and tennis so that his school work would not suffer. When Rafael was 14 years old, the Spanish tennis federation requested that he leave Majorca and move to Barcelona to continue his tennis progression and training. Rafael's parents and uncles turned down these requests, which resulted in Rafael receiving less financial support to aid his development. Sebastian covered these costs himself. By the age of 16, Rafael was ranked in the world's top 50 players.

While Rafael's upbringing and early years are largely kept private, he has stated growing up his passions were football, tennis, and fishing.

Nadal has been dating María Francesca "Xisca" Perello, also from Majorca, for three years as of 2008.

FYI - Behind Sports

Monday, August 18, 2008

US Team Crushed Germany 106-57 Finish Top Of Group B

Dwight Howard Olympics basketball

Dwight Howard scored 22 points, LeBron James added 18 points for USA, was two of five players to score in double figures as the US team crushed and eliminated Germany 106-57 to finish top of Group B. Team USA have averaged a 32-point win in their five group games and are strong favorites for the gold.

The Redeem Team, as they have become known, will now face Australia in Wednesday's basketball quarter-finals.

Australia won 106-75 against Lithuania, who had already secured top spot in Group A and a tie with China.

Greece beat China 91-77 and will face Argentina, while Croatia earned a tie with Spain by beating Iran 91-57.

Andrew Bogut led Australia with 23 points against Lithuania, while Greece's heroes against China were Ioannis Bouroussis and Vassilis Spanoulis, who scored 19 points each. Local hero Yao Ming played only 18 minutes in China's defeat and reacted angrily when benched by China's Lithuanian coach Jonas Kazlauskas.

"If we'd been closer to Greece he'd have played longer minutes," said Kazlauskas after Yao had stormed off after the final buzzer. "But he's a player, I'm the coach. I make the decisions."

Spain recovered from their hammering by the US two days ago with an easy 98-50 win over Angola. LA Lakers centre Pau Gasol led the Spaniards with 31 points, despite playing just 24 minutes.

Croatia, too, had an easy time in their final group game after restricting Iran to just 16 first-half points. Marin Rozic and Marko Tomas scored 16 points each for Croatia.

Defending Olympic champions Argentina, watched by football legend Diego Maradona, beat Russia 91-79 as forward Luis Scola scored 37 points.

Russia, the reigning European champions, went out of the tournament with only a single win to their names.

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Philadelphia 76ers Andre Iguodala Signs $80 Million Contract

PHILADELPHIA – Philadelphia 76ers Andre Iguodala was rewarded with a six-year contract worth $80 million, who helped the Philadelphia 76ers reach the NBA playoffs for the first time in three years. Iguodala was the ninth overall pick in the 2004 draft. He averaged 19.9 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 2.1 steals in 82 games last season. But he struggled against the Detroit Pistons in the first round of the playoffs, averaging only 13.2 points and 4.8 rebounds per game as the Sixers were eliminated in six games.

"We felt like he had a very good track record to warrant a contract like that," Sixers president Ed Stefanski said. "We think he's got the upside to become an even better player than he is today."

The 24-year-old swingman could have played this season under the terms of a one-year, $3.8 million (€2.6 million) qualifying offer and become an unrestricted free agent next year. When Philadelphia signed forward Elton Brand away from the Los Angeles Clippers, it became evident that keeping Iguodala was vital.

"We clearly wanted Andre in a Sixers uniform," Stefanski said.

Over his four-year career, Iguodala has been quite durable, playing in 322 of 328 games while averaging 14.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists.

"I think a lot of guys kind of relax when they get their money," Iguodala said. "They're like, 'I got my money. Maybe I don't have to be as hungry.' My mind-set is to work just as hard as I always have if not harder every day to prove myself."

Who Is Andre Iguodala
Andre Tyler Iguodala was born on January 28, 1984, Iguodala is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Philadelphia 76ers of the National Basketball Association.

Iguodala was born in Springfield, Illinois to Linda Shanklin and Frank Iguodala, who was of Igbo Nigerian descent. His older brother, Frank, played for the University of Dayton and is currently a free agent.

Highschool And College Career
Iguodala attended high school at Lanphier High School in Springfield. During the summer of 2001, he grabbed the attention of coaches around the nation as he was named the AAU national tournament Most Valuable Player after hitting the game-winning shot at the final buzzer to give his team the 17-and-under national title. As a senior at Lanphier in 2002, he averaged 23.5 points, 7.9 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game, helping lead his team to the state championship game. He was named Chicago Sun-Times Player of the Year.

Iguodala initially signed a National Letter of Intent to play at the University of Arkansas. However, after their coach, Nolan Richardson, was fired that year, Iguodala decided to go the University of Arizona instead to play for Lute Olson. He would be named to the Pac-10 All-Freshmen team for 2002-2003. In the 2003-2004 season, Iguodala would be named team MVP after leading his team in rebounds, assists and steals. He also made the All- Pac 10 team and was named Honorable Mention All-America by The Associated Press. He collected three triple-doubles that season, joining Jason Kidd as the only two players in Pac-10 history to post two or more triple-doubles in a season. After posting career totals of 594 points (9.6 ppg), 409 rebounds (6.6 rpg) and 95 steals (1.53 spg) in 62 games (34 starts).

2007 - 2008 Season
Iguodala came into the 2007-2008 season under much controversy. Iguodala was offered a 57 million dollar deal and denied, which left some to believe he wants "out" of Philadelphia. Iguodala got off to a slow start to the season, at one point leading the league in turnovers. He began to step up his game as the season went on, leading the 76ers to a playoff berth. The 76ers finished the season at 40-42, winning 22 of their last 29 games and earning a playoff spot with a victory over the Atlanta Hawks on April 4th. Iguodala averaged 19.9 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game through 82 games. In the playoffs the 76ers lost in the first round to the Pistons in 6 games after leading the series at one point 2-1. On August 12, 2008 Andre Iguodala reportedly agreed to a six-year, $80 million contract. He officially signed on August 17, 2008. The contract has $5 million in bonuses and a player option for the sixth year.

FYI - Behind Sports

Friday, August 15, 2008

Michael Phelps Even Mark Spitz's Seven Golds

Michael Phelps winning the men 100m butterfly 2008 Beijing OlympicsUS Swimming superstar Michael Phelps winning the men's 100m butterfly take his seven gold medals and matched Mark Spitz's 1972 Munich Games record.

"I'm speechless," said Phelps. "I really don't now what to say. I guess I've had the perfect situations all week. "I just have one race left, the relay, and then it's done. He added: "Tying Spitz's record is pretty cool. It's great to be a part of all of this."

The American was not in the top three at the turn but fought back and just managed to take the gold by a hundredth of a second in a time of 50.58 seconds.

Phelps, 23, goes in the final of the 4x100m medley on Sunday looking to win his eighth gold.

Serbia's Milorad Cavic won silver and Australia's Andrew Lauterstein bronze.

Phelps had previously won the 400m medley, 200m freestyle, 200m butterfly, 4x100m free relay, 4x200m free relay and the 200m medley, all in world record time.

And while his victory in the 100m fly wasn't a world record the US swimmer did set an Olympic record narrowly edging out Cavic in a thrilling race.

Phelps trailed Cavic with 10m to go and it looked as if his record bid was over, but the American turned on the style and snatched the victory by just one-hundredth of a second.

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Great Britain's Track Cycling Trio Take Gold

Great Britain team cycling<br />Jamie Staff Jason Kenny Chris Hoy

Great Britain's men's team sprint trio Jamie Staff, Jason Kenny and Chris Hoy defeated France with a winning time of 43.128 seconds to win GB's third gold of the Games in the first track cycling final in Beijing.

They had finished second to France at the World Championships earlier this year but always looked in control to win the Olympic final by 0.523secs.

Germany defeated Australia by 0.008secs to take the bronze medal.

The team sprint medal is GB's eighth of the Games and never looked in doubt as the sprint trio dominated the competition.

They opened with a ride of 42.950secs, an unofficial record on a 750m track, with Staff riding the opening leg in 17.19secs.

There is no world record for the team sprint because the event is held over three laps regardless of the size of the track.

"We had no idea what we could do really," said Kenny, who came into the team in place of Ross Edgar.

"When I saw the time for the first ride on the board I thought I must have read it wrong."

GB then secured their place in the final with a time of 43.034.

The gold is the second of Hoy's Olympic career after he won the 1km time trial four years ago.

"To win as part of a team is a totally different feeling from the 1km time trial in Athens," said Hoy.

"Our friendship has been so dominant in the last few years. As part of a team, you can't let anyone down.

"To beat them by half a second made it that exciting. Honestly, it took every inch of effort in beating the French who have been invincible.

"The French have been so dominant. We have really put all the pieces of the jigsaw together. We really focused on the details. To stick half a second into them, it's amazing."

Scot Hoy, hoping to win three golds in Beijing, is also competing in the keirin and the men's sprint.

He told BBC Sport: "There's still plenty in the tank. At the end of the week, if I get three, I'll do a dance for you and that's a promise."

Staff was a member of the team that finished fifth in the event in Athens.

"It hasn't sunk in yet, it's weird, but mostly exciting," he said.

"We were very disappointed after Athens. I've given absolutely everything I could into it and it paid off.

"We've got a fantastically strong team, we showed everyone at the worlds how strong we are."

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US Softball Team Aiming For Olympic Gold

US Softball Team 2008 Beijing Olympics

The 18 winning streak in Olympic is an amazing achievement, that is why the US softball team is aiming for the Olympic gold in Beijing. The US softball team scored four unearned runs in the sixth inning to beat Canada 8-1.

The United States women's national softball team is the national softball team of the United States. It is governed by the United States' Amateur Softball Association and takes part in international softball competitions. The US team has been dominant in international play, taking the gold medal in three straight Olympics and six straight world championships. They will go for their fourth consecutive gold medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. In the 2004 Olympics the team held its opponents to one run scored in 7 games. The lone run came in a 5-1 victory over the Australian team. It was the first run scored by an opponent against the US softball team in 9 games.

On March 26, 2008, the United States Olympic softball team had their 185 game winning streak snapped in a no-hitter thrown by Virginia Tech's Angela Tincher, who struck out 10 batters in a 1-0 exhibition win for the Hokies. The no-hit win proved something extra special in this case, as Tincher had previously tried out and failed to make the 2008 US Olympic softball team.

Winning Result
* Olympics: Gold Medal - 2004, 2000, 1996
* ISF Women's World Championship: Gold Medal - 2006, 2002, 1998, 1994, 1990, 1986, 1978, 1974; Silver Medal - 1970, 1965
* World Cup of Softball: 1st (2007), 1st (2006), 2nd (2005)
* 2006 Japan Softball Cup: 1st

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Teddy Riner Gold Medal Favorite Lost In Judo Quarterfinals

Teddy Riner 2008 Beijing Olympics Olympic judo gold

BEIJING – In the men's Judo at over 100-kilogram division, Teddy Riner a French teenage world champion was lost his chances at an Olympic judo gold by loosing a close overtime bout in the quarterfinals.

Riner, a judo sensation since he took the world championship last year at age 18, started off cautiously, winning his opening bout on points. He blasted through his second match, flipping Kazakhstan's Yeldos Ikhsangaliyev shortly after their bout began.

But he slowed down again in the quarters, going into the final minute at 1-1 with Uzbekistan's Abdullo Tangriev. The two then went into overtime, and again neither was able to find an opening.

Tangriev was declared the winner on a penalty against Riner for passivity just before time ran out.

Russia's Tamerian Tmenov — who lost to Riner in the world championship final — took an early lead in his first bout over Athens bronze medalist Dennis van der Geest, but the match never turned into much of a rivalry because the Dutchman hurt his right arm and spent most of the second half on the defensive.

Tmenov then scored two waza ari on China's Pan Song to make the quarterfinal against Japan's Satoshi Ishii, who is making his Olympic debut after coming out of the shadow of longtime champion Kosei Inoue.

Ishii won that bout on a yuko point, sending Tmenov into the loser's bracket. Ishii meets Georgia's Gujejiani and Tangriev fights Cuba's Oscar Brayson.

In the women's 78-kg, China's heavyweight judo champion, Tong Wen, breezed into the semifinals.

A three-time world champion, she flipped her first opponent and pinned her second and third to make the semifinal, where she will fight Cuba's Idalys Ortiz.

Athens gold medalist Maki Tsukada fell behind to France's Anne-Sophie Mondiere, who is ranked second in the world, on a koka point, but came back with an ippon to clear her first fight. She pinned Mexico's Vanessa Zambotti for her semifinal berth.

In the semifinals, she will meet Slovenia's Lucija Polavder, who is ranked fifth in the world.

FYI - Behind Sports

Sunday, August 10, 2008

First Gold Of Great Britain Sprinted By Nicole Cooke

Nicole Cooke finished first in a women's cycling road race for Great Britain's first gold medal of the Beijing Olympics. Having finished a disappointing fifth at the Athens Olympics in 2004, her delight as she crossed the line first was obvious as she leap off her bike and whooped with delight, racing to hug her team-mates.

"We did it, it was perfect. It's a dream come true," said Cooke, who became the first Welsh person to win Olympic gold for 36 years.

"I came over the line and there was so much - I was just so happy and there were so many emotions that were coming out all at once. I made so much noise because I guess that's just the person I am.

"I want to thank all the people who have been there from the start. I have worked so hard, I am so happy.

"I don't think it has sunk in yet. I still feel like the normal Nicole from before the race. But it's just so exciting."

Cooke clocked of three hours, 32 minutes and 24 seconds gives her finish to perfection, powering off the front and away from Emma Johansson and Tatiana Guderzo in the sprint to the line.

Who Is Nicole Cooke
Nicole Cooke was born on April 13, 1983, Cooke is a Welsh road bicycle racer and Olympic gold medalist. Cooke was born in Swansea and grew up in Wick, Vale of Glamorgan. She began cycling at the age of 11. At 16 she won her first senior national title, youngest rider to take the senior women's title at the British National Road Race Championships. In 2001 she was awarded the Bidlake Memorial Prize, given for outstanding performance or contribution to the betterment of cycling. She also won four junior world titles including 2001 held in Portugal.

Cooke represented Great Britain at the 2008 Summer Olympics in the Women's Road Race event where she won the gold medal; this was also the 200th gold medal for Great Britain in the history of the Modern Olympic Games.

Related News
Nicole Cooke Rides Great Britain First Gold

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Olympic Basketball Opener US Outplayed China 101-70

US beats China Beijing Olympics sports update

Beijing Olympics - The U.S. basketball team outplayed the host country beating China 101-70 at the Olympics. Thrilling the billions crowd to a game to remember at Beijing's basketball arena.

LeBron James and Dwyane Wade soared for dunks. Wade scored 19 points and James had 18 for the Americans in one of the most highly anticipated events of the Summer Games.

USA Basketball officials were told the game could draw the largest viewing audience ever for a sporting event.

Houston Rockets All-Star Yao Ming scored 13 points for the Chinese, who played over their heads for more than 15 minutes, forcing the Americans to raise their level of play for the lopsided final score.

FYI - Behind Sports

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Chinese Weightlifter Chen Xiexia Olympic Gold

weightlifter Chen Xiexia first gold 2008 Beijing Olympic

2008 Beijing Olympic on the opening day in Weightlifting, China won their first gold medal through the power of Chinese weightlifter Chen Xiexia who also set an Olympic record.

"I have been thinking of winning a medal but never thought it would turn out to be the first gold medal for China,"I'm very happy and think I did a good job." said Chen Xiexia.

Who Is Chen Xiexia
Chen Xiexia was born on August 1, 1983, in Panyu, Guangdong province, Chen Xiexia is a Chinese weightlifter. She won three golds at the 2007 World Weightlifting Championships, and the first gold medal for China in the 2008 Summer Olympics in the 48kg class, setting an Olympic Record by lifting 212kg.

She also won 3 golds in 2007 Asian Championships, and made world record of 120 kg. clean and jerk, created in 2007 Asian Championships. At the Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics Gymnasium on Day 1 of the Olympic Games, 152cm Xiexia, 25, yelled "jia you!" (come on!), and succeeded on all six attempts (snatch: 95kg; clean and jerk: 117kg).

FYI - Behind Sports

Katerina Emmons First Gold Medal For Czech Republic

Katerina Emmons 2008 Beijing Olympic

Czech Republic get their first gold medal of the Beijing Olympics in the women's 10m air rifle event through the steady pulse of Katerina Emmons. While Lioubov Galkina of Russia claimed the silver, and Snjezana Pejcic of Croatia took bronze.

There was disappointment for the home fans as China's defending champion Du Li failed to get amongst the medals.

Emmons capped her win by setting an Olympic record of 503.5 points, after shooting a perfect 400 in qualifying.

The 24-year-old Czech wife of American shooter Matt Emmons shot a near flawless 103.5 in the final to take the gold.

She revealed afterwards how she overcame nerves and a splitting headache to become Olympic champion.

"Thank God it's over because I was so nervous," she said. "I had a headache this morning. I felt so terrible that I did not know how I would shoot. "So to win the first gold medal of this Olympics is pretty amazing."

Emmons' win at the the Beijing Shooting Range Hall marks a big improvement on four years ago, where she finished with bronze behind Li and Galkina.

Russian shooter Galkina finished just a point behind the champion to claim silver once more.

International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge was among the crowd of 5,000 to present the first medals of the Games.

Who Is Katerina Emmons
Katerina Emmons was born on November 17 1983 in Plzeň, Emmons named Kateřina Kůrková before she married USA Olympic rifle shooter Matt Emmons in 2007, is a female Czech sports shooter who competed in the 2008 Summer Olympics, where she won her first gold medal in the women's 10 metre air rifle competition.

Katerina Emmons, a bronze medalist at the Athens Olympics, equaled the world record of 504.9 points. She totaled an Olympic record 503.5 points and became the first in the Games' history to record a score of 10 on all 40 of her qualifying air rifle shots: “Just because I won here today doesn’t mean I can win an Olympic medal.” Emmons crushed China's hopes of sport dominion, with China's defending Olympic champion Du Li finishing 5th.

FYI - Behind Sports

Friday, August 8, 2008

Brazil Football Nike Jersey Uniform Change For Olympics

Brazilian Nike Jersey 2008 Beijing Olympic

SHENYANG, China - The country's football confederation said that in the remainder of the Olympic tournament, Brazil should not wear its regular official Nike Jersey uniform because of concerns it could affect Rio de Janeiro's bid for the 2016 Games.

Rules of the International Olympic Committee say that nations should not wear confederations' emblems on uniforms during the games, and Brazil's Nike jersey has the football confederation badge on it.

"The president of the Brazilian football confederation, Ricardo Teixeira, accepted the Brazilian Olympic Committee's request that the Olympic team did not wear the official jersey because it would blemish Brazil's bid to host the 2016 Olympics," the confederation said in a statement.

Rio de Janeiro is a finalist to host the games along with Chicago, Tokyo and Madrid, Spain. The IOC will select the host city in October 2009.

Brazil will still wear a Nike jersey, but without the confederation's badge.

"Teixeira decided to accept the committee's request to avoid any embarrassment or inconveniences to the city's bid for 2016," the confederation statement said.

Brazil's national teams are sponsored by Nike, but the Brazilian Olympic delegation is sponsored by Olympikus, which was not happy that the football squads used uniforms from one of its competitors.

The Brazilian committee had said before the Beijing Games that it would not be in the nation's best interest to have one of its Olympic teams wearing different uniforms.

The Brazilian women's team will be the first to drop the official jersey for its match against North Korea on Saturday at the Shenyang Olympic Stadium. The men's team will do the same against New Zealand on Sunday, also in Shenyang.

Neither squad has ever won the Olympic gold medal for Brazil in football.

The Brazilian women lost the final of the 2004 Olympics in Athens to the United States. It also was fourth in Sydney in 2000 and in Atlanta in 1996, when women's football began at the Olympics.

The men's team won the silver medal twice, in 1984 in Los Angeles and 1988 in Seoul. It won the bronze in 1996 in Atlanta.

"All the players and the Brazilian people are proud of the jersey with the five stars on it," said Ronaldinho, referring to the uniform's emblem which reflects the team's five world titles in men's football. "We could still wear it, but if it gets in the way of Brazil's bid to host the 2016 Olympics, we have to understand it and accept it."

Brazil will host the 2014 World Cup.

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

French Cyclist Jeannie Longo Take Her Seventh Olympics

French cyclist Jeannie Longo Beijing Olympics London 2012"Beijing Olympics may not be my last ride," said French cyclist Jeannie Longo who is taking part in her seventh Olympics in Beijing. Longo started her Olympic career in Los Angeles in 1984 is stretching her record to eight appearances at London 2012.

The 49-year-old ex-Olympic champion says she bids farewell to the Games every four years.

"I'm not a liar, but every time, the urge comes back and I resume training and I feel fine," she said.

"This season I told myself 'why not give it another try?' and the training went well."

A road race Olympic champion in 1996 and a time-trial silver medallist in 1988 and 1996, Longo returned once again this season to win three French titles to add to her previous 52 and earn Olympic qualification.

She will not, however, be seen at the Olympic Stadium on Friday, having never taken part in an opening ceremony.

"Road cycling races usually take place early in the Olympic programme and it's nonsense spending three hours standings in a stadium on the eve of competition," she said.

The Los Angeles Olympics in 1984, where she made her debut, was the first year women cyclists were allowed to compete.

Following Beijing, she may consider competing in London almost 30 years after her first Games.

"London could be fun," she said, "and it's not far from home."

The overall record for the number of appearances at an Olympics is held by sailor Hubert Raudaschl of Austria, who competed in nine Games.

Who Is Jeannie Longo
Jeannie Longo was born on October 31, 1958, Longo is a female French racing cyclist, multiple (55 times) French and world champion. Longo is still active in cycling as of 2008 and is widely considered the greatest female cyclist of all time. She is famous for her competitive nature and her longevity in a sport where some of her competitors were not yet born during her first Olympic competition in 1984. She has been selected to compete for France in the 2008 Olympics, her seventh Olympic Games. She has stated that this will be her final participation in the Olympics.

Longo was born in Annecy, in the Haute-Savoie region of the French Alps where she began her athletic career as a downhill skier. After winning the French schools' ski championship and three university skiing championships, she switched to cycling at the urging of her coach (and later husband) Patrice Ciprelli. Within a few months, Longo won the French road race Championship. She was 21.

In addition to her sport , Longo distinguished herself in the academic field. She has been awarded academic degrees in Mathematics (B.S.), an MBA, and a doctorate in sports management.

She competes both in road and track bicycle racing events, and is an Olympic gold-medalist and twelve-time world champion.

Her impressive records include:
1. Olympic Games road race: Gold Medal/Champion (1996); Silver Medal (1992)
2. Olympic Games time trial: Silver Medal (1996); Bronze Medal (2000)
3. 5x UCI Road Race World Championship: Gold Medal/Champion (1985, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1995)
4. 4x UCI Time Trial World Championship: Gold Medal/Champion (1995, 1996, 1997, 2001)
5. 4x UCI Track World Championship:
* Points Race: Gold Medal/Champion (1989)
* 3 km Pursuit: Gold Medal/Champion (1986, 1988, 1989); Silver Medal (1984, 1985, 1987); Bronze Medal (1981, 1982, 1983)
6. UCI Mountain Bike Championship: Silver Medal (1993)
7. 15x French Road Race Champion: 1979 to 1989, 1992, 1995, 2006, 2008
8. 7x French Time Trial Champion: 1995, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2008
9. 3x Tour Cycliste Feminin / Grande Boucle: 1987, 1988, 1989
10. 2x Women's Challenge: 1991, 1999
11. Set Hour Record (45.094 km/hr) in 2000 in Mexico City (14 years after setting the best hour performance record)

FYI - Behind Sports

American Players Heading To Europe To Play NBA Basketball

LeBron James American players heading to Europe

Stay in Cleveland? Leave for New York? or Accept a deal for $50 million a year to play in Italy? LeBron James is trying to decide for the summer of 2010. Far-fetched? Impossible? Perhaps, but the steady stream this summer of American players heading to Europe, where the euro dwarfs the dollar, the salary cap doesn't apply and the game is rapidly improving, has changed the dynamic of player movement in the NBA.

"The European market has been growing year by year and it's certainly been a hope of ours that it would become a viable alternative for players," agent Mark Bartelstein said Wednesday. "The luxury tax in the NBA has put a crimp on what teams can spend, so players are looking for alternatives."

Josh Childress started the trend last month, when the restricted free agent grew tired of Atlanta's bargaining and signed a three-year deal with Greek club Olympiakos worth about $20 million after taxes. Because the NBA's collective bargaining agreement only applies to the league's teams, the Hawks couldn't match the offer. Atlanta lost its sixth man from last season and got nothing in return.

Since then Earl Boykins, Carlos Arroyo, Nenad Krstic, Carlos Delfino and Jorge Garbajosa have left the NBA for European teams. The 5-foot-5 Boykins, who played for the NBA minimum last season in Charlotte, signed a one-year, $3.5 million deal with Virtus Bologna of the Italian league Tuesday.

"We're not terribly concerned," said Joel Litvin, the NBA's president of league and basketball operations. "In fact, we see this as a positive indication of how popular the sport of basketball is on a global basis."

But the league would sure be alarmed if Kobe Bryant wasn't joking when he told reporters after a pre-Olympic exhibition game: "Italy, Greece, Russia, $40 million a year? Yeah, I'm there, as simple as that." reported this week that an unidentified person close to James said the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar would consider playing in Europe for $50 million a year when he's eligible to opt out of his contract after the 2009-10 season.

"If it happens, it happens. I'd be surprised if it did with players of that caliber," Litvin said. "But certainly we would deal with it if it happened and I continue to think that the NBA will be the gold standard for the top players in the world for a long time to come."

Under the collective bargaining agreement, James couldn't make more than $20 million a year in the NBA. Plus, league teams face a dollar-for-dollar tax once they reach $71.15 million in total payroll.

European leagues face no salary cap and many are awash in cash because of the sinking dollar, which earlier this year reached a historic low against the euro. A euro was worth $1.54 Wednesday.

Throw in some creative tax loopholes and maybe James wearing a CSKA Moscow uniform isn't an outrageous prospect.

"It just shows you what a global game basketball is that there are good leagues and leagues that are willing to pay for high caliber talent," Charlotte Bobcats general manager Rod Higgins said. "But the NBA is the best."

While the quality of play in European leagues continues to improve, the NBA remains superior. The influx of European players to the NBA, started many years ago, leaves the league with a stockpile of talent.

So NBA players will want to stay stateside for the competition, right?

"Ultimately, it's about money," Hawks GM Rick Sund said after losing Childress. "The more money they get the better they feel about the commitment."

Bartelstein, who represents players in the NBA and overseas, believes European leagues could eventually be an option for the likes of James, Bryant, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh once the issue of guaranteed contracts is cleared up. Bartelstein said he's had to go to court in the past to get teams to pay the full amount of deals to his clients.

"Without there being a players association and a collective bargaining agreement in Europe, there's nothing behind the contract to enforce them other than to go to court," Bartelstein said. "For Europe to truly get to the point where they can compete with the NBA for all kinds of players, they're going to have to implement a system where there's a lot more comfort that the contracts are truly guaranteed. Once that happens then I think you'll truly see great competition for players."

Higgins believes the European option will put extra pressure on NBA teams to lock up players before their four-year rookie contracts expire. The Bobcats had to wait before finally re-signing restricted free-agent Emeka Okafor to a six-year, $72 million last week, a year after he turned down a similar deal.

"We could have came to an agreement last year, so I think that's the window of opportunity for a lot of teams," Higgins said.

While Okafor said playing in Europe "never crossed my mind," Bryant has at least thought about what trading in Los Angeles for a $40 million payday overseas would feel like.

"You cut the check," Bryant said, "and I will bring my Nike checks."

FYI - Behind Sports

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

World Champion Tyson Gay Fit For 100m

For the hotly anticipated 100m showdown at the Olympics, "I am Fit", Gay said. World champion Tyson Gay has dismissed any concerns over his fitness as he suffered a strained hamstring at the US trials in July.

But he said in a statement: "When I step on the line in Beijing, don't worry, I'll be ready to go."

World record holder Usain Bolt, fellow Jamaican Asafa Powell and Gay are expected to challenge for the gold medal in the final on 16 August.

Qualifying begins the day before.

American 200m star Wallace Spearmon believes all three sprinters could run under 9.70 seconds.

"I honestly think Bolt can run 9.6 seconds, Asafa can run 9.6 and a healthy Tyson can run 9.6," he said.

"Four athletes ran faster than 9.90 seconds in 2004 but that might be like sixth place here."

Gay, who turns 26 on Saturday, opted out of the US track team's training camp in Dalian in favor of completing his preparations in Munich.

He arrived in Beijing on Tuesday in time to attend Friday's opening ceremony.

Who Is Tyson Gay
Tyson Gay was born on August 9, 1982, Gay is an American sprinter who won gold medals at the 100 metres, 200 metres and 4 x 100 m at the 2007 World Championships in Athletics in Osaka, Japan.

Gay attended Lafayette Senior High School in Lexington, Kentucky where he was an outstanding sprint athlete, winning several state titles. He competed collegiately at Barton Community College and the University of Arkansas and in 2004 he won the 100 metres event at the NCAA Outdoor Championships as well as achieving a time of 10.06 seconds in June.

FYI - Behind Sports

Friday, August 1, 2008

Swimmer Jessica Hardy Positive For Banned Substance

Swimmer Jessica Positive For Banned Substance 2008 Beijing Olympic

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado - Swimmer Jessica Hardy after testing positive for a banned substance at the Olympic trials, withdrew from the U.S. Olympic team. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said that "she did so" used a banned substance.

The 21-year-old from Long Beach, California, could have contested the drug test results before the American Arbitration Association and potentially filed an appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which would have kept her first Olympic berth in doubt until the eve of the games that open Aug. 8.

"While some might have chosen to exhaust their legal options to try to force their way into the games, Jessica instead chose to put her team's interests ahead of her own," said Travis Tygart, chief executive officer of USADA.

Hardy tested positive for a low level of clenbuterol, a prohibited anabolic agent, at the trials on July 4. Hardy said in a July 25 interview that she was innocent and said she had no idea how she tested positive for clenbuterol.

"I had never even heard of this drug," she said. "I've never wanted to do anything remotely close to doping. It's never, ever crossed my mind. I've never been approached about doing it. It's never been an issue my entire career. It's the last thing I would ever do."

The U.S. swim team was training in Singapore on Friday and leaves Monday for Beijing. Hardy qualified for the Olympics in two individual events — the 100-meter breaststroke and 50 freestyle — and the 400 free relay. She was a strong contender to medal in her specialty, the breaststroke.

Hardy's withdrawal allows USA Swimming to place swimmers already on the team in her open events, according to executive director Chuck Wielgus.

Olympic rookie Rebecca Soni, who trained with Hardy at Southern California, will swim the 100 breast and Kara Lynn Joyce will swim the 50 free, he said.

It's the second lucky break Joyce has gotten since the trials.

The 22-year-old Georgia swimmer was initially added to the team as an alternate on the 400 free relay after Dara Torres withdrew from the 100 free.

Joyce finished third in the 50 free at the trials — one spot out of making the team. She was seventh in the 100 free at the trials — one spot out of making the team, which left her in tears afterward. She earned two silver medals in Athens, in the 400 free and 400 medley relays.

The 100 breast will be Soni's second individual event; she had qualified in the 200 breast.

A panel from the American Arbitration Association issued a decision Friday that was jointly agreed to by Hardy and USADA after Hardy had a full opportunity to review the laboratory test results and to have those results analyzed by independent experts.

Hardy did not contest the laboratory findings and was granted additional time by the arbitration panel to investigate possible causes of her positive drug test.

The decision allows for a two-year period of ineligibility but allows Hardy to come back to the panel to present evidence that could reduce her period of ineligibility.

Hardy was tested three times during the trials in Omaha, Neb. The results were negative for the samples taken on July 1, after she won the 100 breaststroke, and on July 6, shortly after she finished second in the 50 free.

But Hardy's "A" and backup "B" samples both came back positive from the test on July 4, when she finished fourth in the 100 free.

Who Is Jessica Hardy
Jessica Hardy was born on March 12, 1987, Hardy is an American swimmer from Long Beach, California. After setting the world record in the 100 m breaststroke as a high school senior, she competed for two years at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was a four-time NCAA Champion. She gave up her eligibility and turned professional in 2007, and returned to train with her age group coach Dave Salo for Trojan Swim Club out of the University of Southern California. She currently holds the 50 m breaststroke (short course) world record after winning the 2008 FINA Short Course World Championships final in a time of 29.58 seconds on April 12, 2008.

On July 23, 2008, an anonymous person told the Associated Press that Hardy's "A" sample tested positive for a banned stimulant. Her attorney has since confirmed that her "A" and "B" samples from a test administered on July 4th were positive for clenbuterol, a banned stimulant. It has been noted that the positive test was sandwiched by two negative tests, each within a few days of the positive result. It should also be noted that clenbuterol has a rapid half-life and is usually non-detectable by urine test 72 hours after use. Proceedings to determine her eligibility for the 2008 olympic games have been launched.

August 1,2008: "US swimmer Jessica Hardy tested positive for the prohibited substance clenbuterol at the US Olympic trials on July 4, 2008 and has agreed to withdraw from the 2008 United States Olympic Team in the best interests of the team," USADA said in a statement Friday.

Jessica's future plans beyond swimming include designing her own line of swim wear for European beach goers.

FYI - Behind Sports

US Olympic Basketball Team Win Over Lithuania

Kobe Bryant US Olympic Basketball Team

MACAU - U.S. Olympic basketball team roll to a 120-84 exhibition victory over Lithuania on Friday night. Kobe Bryant harassed longtime nemesis Sarunas Jasikevicius into a miserable night and helped the U.S. Olympic basketball team win.

Dwyane Wade scored 19 points, Dwight Howard had 17 and LeBron James 15 for the Americans, who raced to a big early lead, then pulled away again after Lithuania got within single digits early in the second half. Bryant finished with 13 points, nine during the big U.S. first quarter.

The Americans, who shot 64 percent, swept two games here and leave Saturday for Shanghai, where they will play European champion Russia and Australia.

Michael Redd finished with 16 points and Carmelo Anthony added 11 in a rematch of the bronze-medal game from four years ago.

Jasikevicius was just 2-of-8 from the field for nine points, with three turnovers. Rimantas Kaukenas led Lithuania with 17 points.

The United States needed a quarter to warm up in its first two games, but was sharp right from the start this time. Howard had three consecutive baskets, James dunked twice, and the Americans were already up by double digits barely 2 1/2 minutes into the game. Minutes later, Bryant had two jumpers and a 3-pointer in a quick flurry that made it 24-5.

Howard had 10 points and Bryant nine in the first 10 minutes, with the Americans opening a 31-15 lead.

Lithuania kept the deficit in the teens from there, then opened the second half with a flurry of 3-pointers to make it a game. Jasikevicius had a rare open look and hit the final one to cut the U.S. lead to 61-52 with 7:10 remaining in the third quarter, but the Americans immediately blew it open again.

Anthony, Howard and James combined for the next 12 U.S. points, everything coming from inside, to make it 73-55, and Lithuania was never close again. Wade took over at the end of the period and early in the fourth, bringing the fans to their feet with a double-pump dunk on an alley-oop pass from Chris Paul.

Wade was 7-of-9 from the floor and Paul had seven assists. Every U.S. player scored.

The teams split two meetings in the 2004 Olympics, with the United States winning the second one to claim the bronze medal. Jasikevicius scored 28 points, hitting seven 3-pointers, in Lithuania's 94-90 victory in pool play.

He nearly led Lithuania to a stunning victory four years earlier in Sydney, missing a 3-pointer in the closing seconds of a semifinal game as the Americans held on for an 85-83 win.

Taking the challenge of defending the opponents' best player, as he frequently did last summer in the Olympic qualifier, Bryant never gave Jasikevicius a chance to get going. The former Indiana and Golden State point guard found little room to dribble or shoot when Bryant was near him.

He missed both shots and had a turnover in the first quarter and was still frustrated long after Bryant had checked out for good, screaming at the referee after throwing up an air ball on a 3 with about 4 1/2 minutes left.

Lithuania plays Turkey here Saturday and opens the Olympics against defending gold medalist Argentina on Aug. 10.

FYI - Behind Sports

Thursday, July 31, 2008

£40m Chicago Contract For British Star Luol Deng

Position: Small forward
Height: 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
Weight: 220 lb (99.8 kg)
League: NBA
Team: Chicago Bulls
Jersey: #9
Born: April 16, 1985 Wau, Sudan
Nationality: England
College: Duke
Draft: 7th overall, 2004 Phoenix Suns
Pro career: 2004–present
Awards: 2004-05 NBA All-Rookie First Team, 2007 NBA Sportsmanship Award

A new six-year deal contract for the 23-year-old South Londoner is worth a guaranteed $71m (approx £36m), with incentives taking its possible worth to $80m (£40m). Great Britain will not be competing at the Beijing Olympics but hope to qualify for the London Games in 2012. Deng hopes to be a star at the 2012 Olympics with Team Great Britain.

Deng had rejected a five-year deal but his impressive displays in the team's miserable 2007-08 season ensured they were keen to find a way to keep him.

He represented England at under-16 and under-19 level with basketball's authorities recognising his status as a refugee, but his entry into the Great Britain set-up was delayed by his lack of a British passport, even though most of his family had them.

In 2006, lobbying by British Basketball and the London 2012 Olympic officials helped him gain the passport he needed.

Who Is Luol Deng
Luol Deng was born on April 16, 1985 in Wau, Sudan, Deng is a British professional basketball player for the National Basketball Association's Chicago Bulls, where he plays small forward.

When he was young, his father Aldo, a member of the Sudanese parliament, moved the family to Egypt to escape the Second Sudanese Civil War. In Egypt, they met former NBA center Manute Bol, another Dinka, who taught Deng's older brother, Deng Deng, how to play basketball. Manute also served as a mentor for Luol himself. When they were granted political asylum, his family emigrated to South Norwood in London, England. Deng developed an interest in association football and basketball, and was invited to join England's 15-and-under teams in both sports. During this time, he began his career at Brixton Topcats. At the age of 13, he played for England's squad in the European Junior Men's Qualifying Tournament, averaging 40 points and 14 rebounds. He was named the MVP of the tournament. Next, he led England to the finals of the European Junior National Tournament, where he averaged 34 points and earned another MVP award. He counts himself a fan of Arsenal F.C.

At the age of 14, Luol moved to the United States to play basketball at Blair Academy in New Jersey, where one of his teammates was future NBA player Charlie Villanueva. Deng was also named a Tri-Captain at Blair along with Charlie Villanueva. During his senior year, Deng was considered the second most promising high school senior in America after LeBron James. He was named First Team All-America by Parade Magazine and USA Today, and was selected to play in the McDonald's High School All-America game, in which he performed at a very high standard and impressed many top NBA players. After graduation, he decided to attend Duke University. In one season at Duke, he appeared in 37 games and made 32 starts. He averaged 30.1 minutes and scored 15.1 points per game en route to a berth in the 2004 Final Four. He is only the 10th freshman in ACC history to lead all rookies in scoring, rebounding, and field goal percentage.

Luol Deng Citizenship
Since his birth in Sudan, Deng has lived in Egypt, the United Kingdom, Russia, and the United States. Deng represented England at Under-16 and Under-19 level, and is an ambassador for the London 2012 Olympic Games. In October 2006, Deng became a naturalized British citizen in a ceremony in Croydon and was called up to play in European competition for the Great Britain team. He made his debut against Georgia in Pau, France on August 9 2007, scoring 19 points. In his first competitive qualifying game repesenting Great Britain Deng scored (32 Pts, 16 Rbs, 11 Asts, 8 Stls & 2 Blks) against Slovakia, at Birmingham's National Indoor Arena on 21 August 2007.

FYI - Behind Sports