Compassionate athletes have given these inspiring youngsters something extra to be grateful for this season.
Savion Allmond and the McCourty Brothers
When he was six months old, Savion was diagnosed with sickle cell disease, a hereditary blood disorder that can cause severe pain and organ damage. He has been hospitalized at least 100 times, has had his spleen removed, and now receives monthly blood transfusions. A couple of years ago, he met twin NFL defensive backs Jason McCourty (Tennessee Titans, below right) and Devin McCourty (New England Patriots, below left), who have fought the disease through their foundation, Tackle Sickle Cell, which supports blood drives and aims to raise money and awareness. Savion, 13, keeps in touch with the brothers several times a year at fund-raising walks and other events. "It feels like there are actually people out there listening to our prayers," says Savion. "It's very awe-inspiring to see that people this famous are supporting what I am going through." The twins have several family members who have struggled with the disease. "When I see Savion, he always has a smile on his face," says Jason. "It puts life in perspective."
Thanksgiving means turkey, pie, family — and football. Gathering around the TV to watch the Detroit Lions or Dallas Cowboys play on Turkey Day is a tradition for countless sports fans. Here are some of the most memorable (and notorious) moments from the NFL's annual Thanksgiving games.
Brazil hosted the 2014 World Cup this summer, but the country's not done with major international sporting events. The 2016 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games will be held in Rio, and earlier this week the Rio 2016 committee unveiled the mascots for the Summer Games and Paralympics.
The AFC North and NFC South are polar opposite divisions, and not only because of their cardinal directions and conference affiliations. Heading into Week 12, all four teams in the AFC North were over .500. Meanwhile, every NFC South team was at least two games under .500, presenting the very real possibility of a division winner with fewer than eight wins. Those two divisions have met all season in inter-conference play, and, even if you don’t already know, you can probably guess how those games have gone. Through 11 weeks, the AFC North was 9-1-1 against the NFC South. Perhaps the most surprising element about all of this is that the only win was by the Buccaneers over the Steelers in Pittsburgh.
Two of those teams met each other on Sunday, with the last-place 6-4 Browns visiting the first-place 4-6 Falcons. Brian Hoyer threw three interceptions, but led the Browns on a successful two-minute drill, setting Billy Cundiff up for a game-winning 37-yard field goal in Cleveland’s 26-24 victory. However, we’re much more interested in the fantasy implications in this space, and there were a few big ones on the Cleveland side of the ball.
Lionel Messi might have come up just short in getting his Argentinian squad a World Cup star this summer. But he picked up a nice consolation prize over the weekend.
After putting up a hat trick against Sevilla on Saturday, Messi is now the leading scorer in La Liga history with 253 goals. (La Liga is the top pro division in Spanish football.) And considering he’s only 27, the Barcelona forward should add quite a bit of padding to that record.
Here’s Messi’s record-breaker: