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ESPN The Magazine May 2019

ESPN The Magazine is for the NEXT generation of sports fans who want to stay on top of the athletes, teams, topics and upcoming events in their own sports world. The Magazine celebrates not only sports, but the cultures and lifestyles that are an integral part of them - all with ESPN's unique personality and authority.

Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
ESPN Magazine LLC
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IN THIS ISSUE

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full speed ahead

“Come at me, bro.” I uttered those words to Nick Bosa on a beach in Florida, after I told him to tackle my camera. Yep, you heard that right. I asked Nick Bosa to tackle my camera. His first response: “You want me to do what?” But I didn’t want him to just tackle my camera for the fun of it. I wanted him to charge my camera with the intensity that he would charge an opponent in a game. It’s rare for a reader or viewer to see an athlete in that position. And Bosa went for it. After we established that level of trust—and he knew I was serious - he fully committed. And I’m so glad he did. MORE ON PAGE 38 Copyright © 2019 ESPN. All rights…

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what i learned while reporting on a really, really famous horse

“Until I visited Zion’s high school, I didn’t understand how small it was—not to mention how unusual it is for a prospect like him to spend all four years there.”SENIOR WRITER MINA KIMES ON ZION WILLIAMSON’S SMALL START 1. During my visit to Santa Anita, I met a horse who must be tied up so he doesn’t pace in his stall all night and not sleep. Another defecates in her food bowl if left to her own devices. Compared to those goofballs, Game Winner has the bearing of Queen Elizabeth. 2. Everyone is scared of PETA. When I called a farrier who had worked with Game Winner and asked him what the horse felt when he was shod, the farrier became convinced I was a PETA plant and hung up on me.…

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the numbers

Baseball’s analytics revolution is giving us the Incredible Shrinking Manager. Efficiency-minded, value-seeking front offices are hiring pliable, if not disposable, underlings in place of forceful field generals. As a result, a third of teams now have skippers with two years of experience or less. I understand why GMs might think a manager’s most important job is simply to stay out of the way of big data. Sabermetrics showed a long time ago that one-run strategies tend to hurt offenses. Research has debunked the idea that we can predict clutch performance. And now Statcast can analyze every batted ball. To the modern eye, tactics such as bunting, playing the “hot hand” and positioning fielders by instinct are just counterproductive meddling. But today’s baseball experts are making the classic mistake of overvaluing what they…

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the truth

When there is chaos in the NFL, or at least drama, the Oakland/Los Angeles/Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders are a decent guess to be the culprits. When it comes to losing players, the Browns could traditionally be counted on to watch their best play better for someone else. These negative characteristics have rarely been associated with Pittsburgh, a franchise that has won six Super Bowls and has had three coaches since the Vietnam War ended. From players to coaches to ownership—the Rooney family has owned the team since its inception in 1933—the Steelers have been the haven of stability. They’ve been the rock, the family business that appeared to settle issues the old-fashioned way, with common sense, dignity to both parties and a handshake. Not anymore. Today’s Steelers are defined by grudge and…

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1 jokic is … no joke

STATISTICAL NUGGETS! 3.6 Jokic moves like a highlight reel at half-speed. But don’t be fooled—that slow-moving planet is the nexus of the Nuggets’ universe. Per Second Spectrum, Jokic handles the ball 3.6 mpg, 25 percent more than any other center. 54% The percentage of Nuggets FGs for which Jokic is responsible—his own and those he assists. That’s fifth in the NBA, just behind LeBron James, and by far the highest among centers. 7.4 Jokic’s assists per game this season, the most of any center since Chamberlain in 1967-68—the season he won his fourth MVP. Will Denver unseat Golden State? The playoffs begin April 13.…

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4. protect that zero

ANONYMOUS TRAINER Sometimes he goes out there and knocks guys out. Sometimes he goes out there and uses his speed and his legs when he needs to and outboxes them. His No. 1 strength is adaptability. He’s a complete fighter. CRAWFORD I was naturally gifted with an ability to move, but my coaches brought it out of me as an amateur. The power came a bit later. A complete fighter can fight going forward or backward, counter, move well and take a punch. I put in a lot of work to learn multiple styles. TRAINER The guy is really good at being as comfortable as a southpaw as he is orthodox, and that’s very difficult. CRAWFORD I’m comfortable with either hand. I think all the practice that I had as an amateur going…

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