All Things Considered

The Curse Of Lil B: Fans Blame Rapper For Houston Rockets' Bad Luck

The Houston Rockets lost their second game in the Western Conference Finals Thursday night. Many fans believe rapper Lil B placed a curse on the team's best player, James Harden.

All Things Considered

'Raising Ali' Remembers The 'Worst Mess In The History Of Sports'

NPR's Robert Siegel talks to Gary Robinov, director of Raising Ali, a film about the 50th anniversary of the heavyweight boxing match between Mohammed Ali and Sonny Liston in Lewiston, Maine.

Morning Edition

Players' Costs May Be A Factor In Why Tennis Leads Golf In Diversity

Venus and Serena Williams have inspired thousands of young African-Americans to learn and play tennis, and brought racial diversity to the sport. Has golf benefited in the same way from Tiger Woods?

All Things Considered

China Kicks Off 'Great Leap Forward' On The Soccer Field

China is rolling out an ambitious soccer program. President Xi Jinping is reported to be a big fan who wants China to win a World Cup. Critics say there's too much emphasis on quick results.

What Anti-Domestic Violence Advocates Are Saying About The WNBA Suspensions

The league handed seven-game suspensions to stars Brittney Griner and Glory Johnson after their arrests for domestic violence. The unprecedented penalties came just a week after the couple's wedding.

Domestic Violence Charges Dismissed Against The NFL's Ray Rice

A felony charge was filed after Rice struck his fiancee while they were visiting Atlantic City, N.J., in February of 2014. Last May, he entered a one-year pretrial program.

All Things Considered

For Israel, Soccer Becomes A Geopolitical Football

The head of FIFA visited Israel and the West Bank this week, where Palestinians are petitioning to expel Israel from soccer's governing body — and its biggest international tournaments.

All Things Considered

Boxing Fans File Lawsuits After Pacquiao-Mayweather Fight

More than 30 lawsuits have been filed by boxing fans, bettors and sports bars around the country, alleging that the so-called "fight of the century," between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao was a fraud. They're suing for their money back and, in some cases, damages.

Morning Edition

The Other Sacred Thing Tom Brady Squashed: Sportsmanship

Tom Brady could be guilty of one of the worst transgressions in sport — purposely defiling the part of the game that makes it fair and square.

Patriots To 'Accept Reluctantly' NFL's 'Deflategate' Punishment

The NFL fined the team $1 million and stripped it of draft picks in connection with the scandal involving underinflated footballs. Quarterback Tom Brady is appealing his four-game suspension.

Competitive Hoop Rolling: A Wellesley College Tradition

May 23, 2015
Class of 2014 seniors storm the course at the start of the race. (Arthur Pollock/Boston Herald)

Sporting traditions change over the decades. But Wellesley college grad Zoë Sobel has the story of one longstanding competition where, over the decades, the very definition of what it means to win has changed.

‘League Of Outsider Baseball’ Celebrates The Game’s Obscure And Unappreciated

May 23, 2015
League of Outsider Baseball Cover Image

Baseball has plenty of well-known heroes — guys like Ted Williams and Babe Ruth. But what about the game’s obscure and unappreciated stars? You’ll find some of them in Gary Cieradkowski’s new book, “The League of Outsider Baseball.” The author joins Bill Littlefield to share the story of two pitchers — one Japanese, one Chinese — who went head-to-head in the Pacific Coast League during the Sino-Japanese War.

‘(Dis)Honesty’ Explores Why People — And Athletes — Cheat

May 23, 2015
Tim Donaghy was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison after the 2007 NBA betting scandal. (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

A new film titled “(Dis)Honesty — The Truth About Lies” looks at why we cheat. Disgraced former NBA referee Tim Donaghy and Dan Ariely, professor of psychology and behavioral economics at Duke, join Bill Littlefield to discuss dishonesty in sports.

Sport Is Politics For 73-Year-Old FC Barcelona Fan

May 23, 2015
Paris Saint-Germain v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: First Leg

Sixty-six years ago, Marti Dalmases’ father signed him up as a member of the FC Barcelona fan club. The 73-year-old estimates he’s now seen about 2,500 matches. He talked with Only A Game’s Ian Mount about the politics of soccer in Spain, archrival Real Madrid, and next week’s Copa Del Rey Final, which Barca will be looking to win.

U.S. Olympic Delegation To Visit IOC Next Week For Talks On Boston Bid

May 22, 2015
Seen here in a 2010 file photo, Bain Capital executive and Celtics co-owner Steve Pagliuca was named chair of Boston 2024 on Thursday. (Richard Drew/AP)

Boston and U.S. Olympic leaders will travel to Switzerland next week to sound out the IOC about their struggling candidacy for the 2024 Summer Games.

Slumping Red Sox Fall To Rangers, Rodriguez 3-1

May 22, 2015
Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts tries unsuccessfully to make a play on a single by Texas Rangers' Adam Rosales in the eighth inning of a game at Fenway, Thursday, May 21, 2015. (Charles Krupa/AP)

The Red Sox fell to the Rangers 3-1 last night at Fenway. The Sox face the Angels tonight for a 3-game series.

NFL Owners Vote To Move Back Extra Point

May 21, 2015
Denver Broncos kicker Connor Barth doesn't think moving the extra point back will make much of a difference. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

NFL owners have voted to move extra points back 13 yards. The point after, which has become almost automatic, might get a tad harder — and some kickers don’t seem to like the change.

Extra Point Was Extra Easy, So NFL Moves To Make It Harder

May 21, 2015
Kicker Caleb Sturgis #9 of the Miami Dolphins kicks an extra point as punter Brandon Fields holds during a game against the Minnesota Vikings at Sun Life Stadium on December 21, 2014 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

The National Football Leage and owners agreed to make the play a little more dramatic, moving it from the 2-yard line to the 15-yard line.

Klein Wins 1st Major League Start, Rangers Top Red Sox

May 21, 2015
Texas Rangers' Leonys Martin slides into third base as Boston Red Sox third baseman Brock Holt attempts a tag during the seventh inning at Fenway Park on Wednesday, May 20, 2015. (Elise Amendola/Associated Press)

The Red Sox lost 2-1 to the Rangers in a pitchers duel last night at Fenway. They wrap up their series tonight.

Commentary: Taking All The Air Out Of Deflate-Gate

May 20, 2015
Why are we talking about football in May? The NHL and NBA playoffs are taking place, baseball is in full swing, and everyone is talking football. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Why is America abuzz with the NFL’s Deflate-Gate news when three other major sports are in full swing? Bill Littlefield offers one theory…

Littlefield On Sports: Robert Kraft, Bruins GM, New England Revolution

May 20, 2015
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft speaks at the NFL owners meetings in San Francisco May 19. (NFL via AP)

He said his team did nothing wrong. He said he believed his star quarterback. He issued a 20,000 word rebuttal and demanded the NFL apologize. He was full of righteous indignation and fighting mad — but this week, Robert Kraft surrendered.

Man To Swim Across Pacific For A Cause

May 20, 2015
French swimmer Benoit "Ben" Lecomte (right) is greeted on September 25, 1998, on the beach of Port-Maria in Quiberon by his girlfriend Tinny (center) and his mother Liliane (left), after swimming across the Atlantic, from the United States to France. (Marcel Mochet/AFP/Getty Images)

Ben Lecomte, 47, estimates his swim across the Pacific Ocean will take five months, 8 hours a day, from Tokyo to San Francisco.

Bruins Elevate Don Sweeney To General Manager

May 20, 2015
Don Sweeney speaks in Boston Wednesday after being elevated to general manager for the Bruins, taking over for his former boss, Peter Chiarelli, who was fired in April after the team missed the playoffs for the first time in eight years. (Bill Sikes/AP)

Sweeney has spent the past six seasons as the assistant general manager and takes over for his former boss, Peter Chiarelli.

Pats Owner Kraft Wants ‘Deflate-Gate’ Debate To End

May 20, 2015

ESPN Boston writer Mike Reiss discusses the latest developments in the Patriots so-called “Deflate-Gate” scandal.

Ortiz, Napoli Homer As Red Sox Top Rangers 4-3

May 20, 2015
Boston Red Sox's Hanley Ramirez breaks his bat as he makes contact with the ball in the first inning of a baseball game against the Texas Rangers at Fenway Park in Boston, Tuesday May 19, 2015. (Elise Amendola/AP)

The Red Sox beat the Rangers 4-3 at Fenway last night, with home runs from David Ortiz and Mike Napoli.

After USOC Comments, Selection Process 101 With Olympic Historian

May 19, 2015
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is presented with a tee shirt by Ralph Cox, an organizer who pursued the Olympics bid. (AP)

If you’re a bit confused about Boston’s Olympic bid, you’re not alone. So were we! Especially after we heard from a U.S. Olympic Committee and International Olympics Committee board member Monday.

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