Shalane Flanagan Becomes First U.S. Woman To Win NYC Marathon In 40 Years

Shalane Flanagan Becomes First U.S. Woman To Win NYC Marathon In 40 Years

Flanagan dominates the field and comes out on top.

The running world just got a whole lot crazier. One of the United States most successful marathoners has made history today at the New York City Marathon. Shalane Flanagan, a four-time Olympian, flew her way through 26.2 miles in an unofficial time of 2 hours 26 minutes and 53 seconds. She was over a minute faster then the three-time defending NYC Marathon champion, Mary Keitany of Kenya, becoming the first American NYC marathon champion in 40 years.

The last time the NYC Marathon has seen an American winner was Miki Gorman, in 1977. This wasn't Flanagan's first NYC Marathon, making her first appearance here in 2010, where she finished second. Flanagan is the current American record holder in the 3,000 meter indoor and 5,000 meter indoor races, and has won a silver medal in the 10,000 meter race in the 2008 Bejing Olympic Games. Flanagan went out strong and didn't let anything get in her way of this tremendous victory. During a post race interview, Flanagan couldn't believe that this happened, she has dreamed of this moment for so long.

"This is the moment I've dreamed of since I was a little girl," said Flanagan. "It was a tough week for New Yorkers and all Americans, and I was able to come through with the best performance of my life."

This was Flanagan's first marathon since her last appearance in the 2016 Rio Olympic Summer Games, finishing 6th with a time of 2 hours 25 minutes and 6 seconds. She suffered a fracture in her back in the winter of 2016, that didn't allow her to compete or train for the 2017 Boston Marathon, forcing her to take two complete weeks off of running and regrouping. After a few months of relentless training and wanting something bigger and better, Flanagan showed the running world that one injury won't stop her from dominating the beast, the thing we all call the marathon.

"It's indescribable, it's a moment I'm trying to soak up and savor," said Flanagan on her post-race reaction on winning the NYC marathon. "I had no physical limitations today, I felt good and it was a pretty flawless race for me."

Flanagan has mentioned earlier this year that if she won the New York Marathon, she may retire from running the marathon, but she had made no remark regarding her retirement. Could we be seeing more of Flanagan in future years?

"I'll sit with my coach tonight," said Flanagan about her retirement. "I think we'll have some decisions to make."

Flanagan is the epitome of long-distance running, always putting in 110% no matter what the circumstance is. Congratulations, Shalane!

Cover Image Credit: NY Daily News

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Why I've Lost Respect For Tom Brady

It's not about being the GOAT or a competitor. It's about showings sportsmanship.

Not a day went by, from February 5th, 2017 to February 4th, 2018, where i didn't hear at least one person call Tom Brady the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time). I've heard endless stories about what an incredible human being he is and how his love for the game exceeds so many others. He is devoted in ways that so many other athletes could only dream of. His diet is extreme, and his lifestyle is even more. It is for this reason as to why I have lost so much respect for Tom Brady.

As the confetti began to fall upon the Super Bowl Champion Eagles after a hard fought 41-33 victory, reports began to flourish that Brady did not shake Nick Foles' hand when the game ended. While there isn't 100% proof that this happened, it is highly unlikely that the hundreds of cameras would not have pinpointed Foles and Brady embracing. What cameras did capture was Brady running into the locker room, being escorted by bodyguards.

Now I know what Patriot fans are getting ready to say: "But losing the Super Bowl is embarrassing. Not many players stick around to shake hands after losing the championship, in any sport." To justify this, you have to look at the circumstances.

Brady is considered the GOAT, which in football would be a huge honor because there surely have been some great Quarterbacks throughout the years. He even won MVP this year. Nick Foles was the second string QB for most of the year until Wentz got injured, and he has been doubted every week by the media and fans that he can actually lead his team to victory. Some analysts even suggested that the Eagles would have a better chance if Tony Romo would come out of retirement.

Yet, Foles won the Super Bowl and had a outstanding game. Foles went 28 for 43 on completions, threw for 373 yards and 3 touchdowns, in addition to catching a pass for a touchdown on a crucial trick play. It is for this reason why he was named MVP. It should be noted that he did throw one interception, but that was off the hands of Alshon Jeffery so the blame shouldn't be put on him.

With next to no analysts predicting the Eagles to take down the mighty Patriots, the story was certainly one that will go down in history. With all this being said, Brady should have shaken his hand. Brady should honestly have congratulated the entire team. This isn't about him already having 5 Super Bowl rings, though that can get thrown in for good measure. This is about Brady, the face of a franchise and the leader of the team, showing sportsmanship to the underdog team that rightfully won that game.

You can Google images of past Super Bowl QB's shaking hands after the game because that is what you do when you are the leader of the team. You show respect to the others who beat you fair and square. Peyton Manning shook Russell Wilson's hand after getting destroyed in Super Bowl 48. Cam Newton shook Manning's hand after playing terribly in Super Bowl 50. To make matters worse, Brady can be seen shaking the hand of the losing team in Super Bowl 49 and 51.

Brady is not the only athlete to do this. Other star athletes have been seen running off the field or court after a loss whom another article could be written about.

As fans, we should demand sportsmanship between teams, especially their leaders. You cannot show "sportsmanship" when you win one game but not when you lose. It's about showing respect for the players that bested you. It's about saying, "you know this hurts that we lost, but that was a great game." We should demand better of our athletes, especially if they have already stamped their ticket into their respected Hall of Fame.

Tom Brady certainly is one of the greatest to ever do it, no question about that. He truly is an incredible athlete with his own underdog story. But after the events of Super Bowl 52, I will never be able to look at Brady in the same way.

Cover Image Credit: Sports Illustrated

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Can Matt Harvey Bounce Back In 2018?

Will the Dark Knight ever return to form?

For Matt Harvey, 2018 has to be more than just a bounce-back year. It needs to be the year where he defines his entire career.

It seems like an eternity ago, but at one point, Matt Harvey seemed like the future of the Mets. Before Jacob DeGrom and Noah Syndergaard even joined the team, Harvey was there, breaking records and starting All-Star Games. Typical rookie stuff. In 2015, when the Mets reached the World Series, Harvey’s dominant 8+ inning performance in Game 5 came crashing to a halt after walking Lorenzo Cain and giving up a subsequent RBI double to Eric Hosmer. Harvey was removed from the game, and the Mets would lose the series later that night.

Since then, Harvey has never been the same pitcher he once was. Over the past two seasons, he’s gone 9-17 while posting a staggering ERA of 5.78. He wasn’t able to finish either season due to injury.

However, 2018 will be a year where the Mets can only go up, and in a contract year, Harvey has the chance to prove he can be a dynamic part of the team’s rotation. With Manager Mickey Callaway at the reins of a complete turnaround for the Mets after an abysmal 2017, it would only make sense that Matt Harvey could completely turn his career around.

During his tenure as pitching coach for Cleveland, Callaway was responsible for the evolution and domination of both Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco, pitchers who led the Indians to back to back playoff appearances over the past 2 years. With the Mets, Callaway believes he can do the same, and that the talent is inherent for the team. “The amount of very good arms and quality stuff we have in this Mets organization, I promise you nobody else has that,” Callaway said on Tuesday.

Of course, in order for the talent to shine, the Mets need to overcome their greatest weakness and stay healthy. In 2017, four out of the five probable starters for the Mets all served lengthy stints on the disabled list, while DeGrom was the only SP to have an effective season. While Callaway danced around the idea of limiting pitchers’ innings, he put an immense emphasis on health, a topic that Harvey has struggled with immensely.

After undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome in 2016, and in 2017, Harvey received more surgery to repair his left shoulder blade. While there are still plenty of questions regarding his health, and if he could possibly return to form in 2018, Callaway has put his faith into not only Harvey, but the entire Mets pitching staff. “There are smiles on everyone’s faces because they’re coming in healthy and what I’ve seen so far has kind of blown me away”

Cover Image Credit: WikimediaCommons

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