Athletes of 2022, in memoriam

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We lost some amazing athletes in 2022. RIP.

With 2022 coming to a close it’s important to remember those we’ve lost during this difficult year. The world of sports said goodbye to legends of the game, iconic broadcasters who changed our lives, and young athletes tragically taken from us far too soon.

Every one of these lives are worthy of remembrance and celebration. Today we look though 2022 at those we lost, with some stories we’ve written about these legends.

January 1: Dan Reeves, NFL player and coach

January 10: Don Maynard, Hall of Fame wide receiver

February 2: Bill Fitch, former Boston Celtics coach

February 9: Jeremy Giambi, former MLB player

March 1: Katie Meyer, Stanford women’s soccer goalie

March 4: Rod Marsh, cricketer

March 4: Shane Warne, cricketer

March 14: Scott Hall, professional wrestler

April 9: Dwayne Haskins, former Commanders and Steelers QB

April 25: Lauren Bernett, catcher, James Madison University

May 10: Bob Lanier, NBA Hall of Famer and Pistons great

June 1: Marion Barber III, former Dallas Cowboys running back

June 22: Tony Siragusa, Ravens DT and broadcaster

June 22: Jaylon Ferguson, Ravens linebacker

July 13: Spencer Webb, Oregon tight end

July 31: Bill Russell, NBA Hall of Famer

August 2: Vin Scully, MLB announcer

August 22: Gary Gaines, former coach, Permian High School

August 24: Len Dawson, Hall of Fame quarterback for the Chiefs

September 11: Elias Theodorou, MMA

October 3: Tiffany Jackson, WNBA player and Texas great

October 28: Vince Dooley, Georgia coach and AD

November 2: Mauro Forghieri, Ferrari F1 engineering legend

November 3: Ray Guy, Hall of Fame NFL punter

November 13: Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, MMA

December 1: Gaylord Perry, MLB pitcher

December 6: Mills Lane, boxing referee

December 12: Mike Leach, football coach

December 20: Franco Harris, Hall of Fame Steelers running back

December 21: Ronnie Hillman, former Broncos running back

December 29: Pele, soccer legend

Leicester City’s Wout Faes has a day he’d like to forget against Liverpool

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Faes scored not one, but two, own goals against Liverpool

Wout Faes is, by any definition of the word, an elite soccer player.

The center-back made a name for himself as the captain of one of Belgium’s youth national teams, helping the U17 win a bronze medal at the 2015 UEFA U-17 World Cup. Faes also worked his way through the Anderlecht training academy, before spending time two years each with Oostende, and Reims. He was Reims’ Player of the Year a season ago.

Faes joined Leicester City this season for a transfer fee reportedly worth £15 million. His contract is for a five-year deal.

Faes was also a member of his country’s World Cup team last month, although he did not make an appearance for Belgium during their run of play in Qatar.

Still, by any use of the word, he is an elite soccer player.

But you can bet Faes would like to forget Friday’s match against Liverpool.

In the span of just seven minutes, Faes scored not one, but two, own goals, turning a 1-0 Leicester City lead into a 2-1 deficit to Liverpool. The first came on a freakish bounce off an attempted clearance from Faes, tying the match at 1-1:

Then, just minutes later, Faes raced back to try and help as his keeper was forced to come off the line. A chip shot from Darwin Núñez outside the box was bouncing towards the net, and ricocheted off the right post.

Directly into Faes’s path:

Liverpool held on for the 2-1 victory, keeping them sixth in the EPL table. Leicester City’s loss keeps them in the bottom third, just four points clear of the drop zone.

Again, Faes is by any way you look at it an elite player.

But Friday was just not his day.

N.C. State offensive lineman admits to putting mayo on spaghetti

Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Yes, you read that right

Everyone has their strange culinary quirks. Perhaps you like to dip Doritos into salsa and/or queso. Maybe you put mayonnaise into coffee. There are some who swear by ketchup on mac-and-cheese, and others who prefer their mac-and-cheese as “crack-and-cheese,” and stuffed into a turkey leg.

Thanks to the Duke’s May Bowl, we now know what strange culinary quirk N.C. State offensive lineman Bryson Speas has.

And it has us all troubled.

As part of the Duke’s Mayo Bowl, each player was asked to talk about the egg-based condiment during their introductory videos. Some talked about how they like putting it on sandwiches, others sheepishly admitted they did not care for mayo, and then there is what Speas shared with the world.

That he likes to put it on spaghetti:

That is certainly a choice.

We are left wanting some answers. Now does one come up with the idea to try this for the first time? Is this a “mayo on plain pasta” situation or is this a “mayo on sauced pasta” situation? Maybe that would make this more of a cream-based sauce situation, which, while unorthodox, could make some sense. Is this only on spaghetti, or is there a penne a la mayo in the rotation as well? Are meatballs in this mix, or is this a non-meat situation? We need to know more.

And you can tell from how he reacts after the admission that Speas knows the internet is going to have thoughts on his culinary confession. He might not want to check his phone for a few days.

Now, we here at SB Nation remain dismayed at some of the choices that the Duke’s Mayo Bowl has made in recent weeks. Remember, our dear friend James Dator had a lifelong dream of being one of the official Mayo Dumpers, but those hopes and dreams were dashed by this pillar of the condiment industry.

Still, between this clip, and the images of Jay Arnold — the Duke’s Mayo Bowl Millionth Fan — eating mayo right from the jar, the content has been good.

We can admit that.

Now let James dump the mayo next year.

Soccer legend Pelé dies at 82

Photo by NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP via Getty Images

World football says goodbye to one of its icons.

Brazilian footballing legend Pelé has passed away at the age of 82 on Thursday, his agent confirmed to the Associated Press.

Pelé is one of the world’s most famous athletes of all-time and an iconic Brazilian soccer player, defining the “beautiful game” during his illustrious career that included three World Cup titles.

Pelé was born on Oct. 23, 1940 in Três Corações in Brazil.

Pelé helped Brazil win the country’s first three World Cups in 1958, 1962, 1970 and is the only player in history to win the World Cup on three separate occasions. Until Kylian Mbappe scored in the 2018 World Cup final against Croatia, Pelé was the only teenager in history to score in a World Cup final. He was also the record holder for most goals by a player in the men’s World Cup before 24, which Mbappe also recently surpassed.

During the 1958 World Cup, he scored six goals to become the joint second-leading goalscorer at the age of 17. This included two goals in the final against Sweden.

In 1962, Pelé didn’t play as large of a role for Brazil. He scored and assisted in the opening match against Mexico, but he sustained an injury in the second match. He missed the rest of the tournament.

In his third and final World Cup win, Pelé scored four goals, including the opening goal in the final.

Pelé made his club debut for Brazilian side Santos at the age of 15 in 1956. He played there for 18 years and scored 643 goals in 659 appearances across all competitions. He then moved to the United States in 1975 to play for the New York Cosmos until 1977. Pelé scored 66 goals in 107 during his time in the states.

Upon his retirement in 1977, Pelé remained in the public eye and was still involved in the game. His on-field success has lasted and echoed around the world since his playing days came to a finish. Pelé and the late Diego Maradona were named joint winners of the FIFA Player of the Century award in 2000. Pelé was also award the first Balloon D’or Prix d’Honneur for his services to football. He was ineligible to win the award during his playing days due to France Football’s rule of only awarding to the Ballon D’or to European players.

Pelé was appointed a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in 1994 and was appointed to the Extraordinary Minister for Sport by Brazilian President Fernando Henrique Cardoso. Pelé is also credited with proposing laws to address corruption in Brazilian soccer, later known as the Pelé law.

Health issues have arisen for Pelé in recent years. It was reported that Pelé was unable to walk in February 2020 due to a hip operation he underwent in 2012. Towards the end of this past November, news broke that Pelé had been taken to a hospital in Brazil.

Our expert NFL picks for Week 17 of 2022

Here’s who we’re picking to close out 2022.

We have just two weeks left in the regular season and everything remains up in the air. Every single game more or less has playoff ramifications for somebody, especially in the NFC South where these final weeks could decide who wins the division, who picks in the Top 10, and potentially even two teams making the playoffs if something weird happens.

Before we get to the picks we need to discuss last week. As you may have seen, RJ Ochoa’s life was turned upside down thanks to David Fucillo and his tweet punishment which went viral for suggesting the Cowboys trade Micah Parsons for Nick Bosa. Well, the worm turned and RJ won the week with Fooch losing.

We expected absolute fire and brimstone, but RJ was extremely generous to Fooch when the dust settled.

Okay, so Fooch had to rank Dak Prescott above Brock Purdy — but that’s not exactly a hot take. Especially not one that will net you a ton of hatred. So, kudos to RJ for being kind and taking it easy on a coworker to close out 2022. That’s good karma.

Now onto our picks for the week.

Luka Doncic’s historic triple-double is unbelievable even to the NBA’s greatest players

Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images

Everyone agrees Luka is on another level.

The NBA season can be a long, arduous journey. You play back-to-back often, four games in five nights occasionally, and once in a while, only have eight to nine players available for a game. Most games come and go, and fans don’t give it a second thought. Tuesday’s matchup between the New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks was not any ordinary old night.

The Knicks led most of the game over the Mavs by 10 heading into the fourth quarter. Luka Doncic was still doing Luka things well on his way to another triple-double, but nothing earth-shattering, at least when it comes to Luka’s standards. The Knicks seem to have the game well in hand with an insurmountable nine-point lead with only 33.2 seconds left. Teams were 0-13,884 in the last 20 seasons, trailing by nine points with 35 seconds or less remaining. That was until Tuesday night when Luka and the Mavericks pulled off one of the biggest comebacks in the history of the NBA.

With four seconds left, the Knicks intentionally fouled Luka to prevent him from possibly tying the game with a three. Nine times out of ten, this is the right move. In this case, it was the right move, but there was a problem. The Knicks forgot you do have to rebound the ball on missed free throws. So Luka purposely missed the second free throw. It bounced around and somehow ended up in Luka’s hand, and of course, he nailed an 11-footer to send the game to overtime miraculously.

Luka Doncic would score seven points and two rebounds in overtime and finish with 60 points, 20 rebounds, and ten assists! Yes, those are real numbers, not video game numbers. We had seen a 60-point triple-double before this game. James Harden had the first such game in 2018 vs. the Magic. Harden put up 60 points, 11 assists, and 10 rebounds, which at the time seemed to be stats that would never be duplicated. Well, not only did Luka become the second player to join the 60-point triple-double club, but he actually surpassed Harden’s remarkable feet. Luka finished with 60 points, 21 rebounds, and 10 assists.

We see remarkable things as fans all the time in sports and the NBA, but some games are so impressive that even fellow NBA players are amazed. When some of the best athletes in the world are shocked and amazed at a performance, you know it is special. Here are some of the reactions to last night’s historical performance.

Kevin Garnett thinks the Mavericks will unveil another statue next to the newly unveiled Dirk statue.

Kevin Durant points out how absurd those numbers were.

Paul Pierce took it a step further, proclaiming Luka the best offensive player in the league today.

Professional players aren’t known to heap this type of praise on other players for a game in December, but as you can see, this was no ordinary game. When you factor in, it was at Madison Square Garden, which added to the night’s historic nature. If you take any of those numbers, especially the rebounding and scoring, and look at them separately, that is still a great game, but all of them together is truly remarkable.

Everyone around the sports world was in awe of Luka night except one person. Here is Luka after the game.

After last night’s performance, I think it’s safe to say he earned that beer.

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