• Fabio Fognini, of Italy, reacts after taking a point from Rafael Nadal, of Spain, during the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)Fabio Fognini, of Italy, reacts after taking a point from Rafael Nadal, of Spain, during the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK – Fabio Fognini stood at the baseline and looked up. It was nearly 1:30a.m. on a relatively cool night in New York. The stadium around him was in shock.

    He, too, couldn't seem to believe what he had just done. The 28-year-old Italian knocked fan-favorite Rafael Nadal out of the U.S. Open, winning a five-setter in which Nadal had taken the first two sets. 

    Midway through the third set, it looked like Nadal would walk away with the easy win. Instead, the two-time champion is going home on the wrong side of 3-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4, upset by the No. 32 seed.

    Nadal lost in the quarterfinals at Roland Garros and the Australian Open this year. He lost in the second round at Wimbledon. He had not dropped a set coming into this third-round match. This will be the first year since 2004 that he did not win a single Grand Slam. 

    "For me [it] was amazing [to] win 10 years in a row... You can imagine how difficult [it] is [to] make that happen," he said after the match. "[I'll] accept that

    Read More »from Ciao Bella: Rafael Nadal knocked out of U.S. Open in third round
  • There was no shortage of good shots on Friday in the first round of Deutsche Bank Championship at TPC Boston in Norton, Mass.

    Here are five of the best:

    5. Zach attack

    British Open champion Zach Johnson nearly holed his third shot from 77 yards on the par-5 18th, spinning it to within 18 inches. Johnson is in the hunt after shooting a 2-under 69 in the first round.

    4. Cross-country putt

    There's a good chance Jason Kokrak won't advance beyond this week in the FedExCup playoffs. If the Deutsche Bank Championship is his last event of 2015, his putt at No. 15 is a memory he will cherish.

    3. Na, Na, Na, Na

    Kevin Na drove it in the right fairway bunker off the tee at the par-4 16th and was just off the green after his second shot. He still made birdie to get to even par, but then bogeyed 17 and finished at 1-over 72.

    2. De Jonge closes strong

    While his approach on the second hole (his back nine) was a better shot, Brendon de Jonge finished off his 6-under-par 65 in the opening round with

    Read More »from Five for Friday: Top shots from first round of Deutsche Bank Championship
  • Jurgen Klinsmann wanted his United States men's national team to make a statement in its friendly against Peru on Friday night. He wanted his players to prove a point.

    They did. Eventually. Sort of.

    In something of a schizoid performance, the Americans claimed a 2-1 come-from-behind win in Washington, D.C., courtesy of a pair of Jozy Altidore goals.

    The all-important, winner-take-all playoff with Mexico for a spot in the 2017 Confederations Cup is just over a month away and, ahead of the game, the USA had hoped to start forging some momentum and build on it against Brazil on Tuesday. "With these games, it is not the time to be patient," Klinsmann had said. "This is really now time for the guys to make a really strong impression that they understand the situation. … These games are not about developing things for the future. This is about proving a point towards the Mexico game."

    [FC Yahoo: Trying to make sense of Klinsmann's incredibly confusing interview]

    Following a six-game winning

    Read More »from USMNT comes back to beat Peru behind Altidore's two goals (Video)
  • Serena Williams reacts after winning a point against Bethanie Mattek-Sands during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)Serena Williams reacts after winning a point against Bethanie Mattek-Sands during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK – It took seven minutes for Bethanie Mattek-Sands to set the pace against Serena Williams on Friday night.

    Mattek-Sands, who earned a wildcard entry to the main draw, served first. She fought off a break point to take the 1-0 lead, then built double-break point and converted to go up 2-0. She fought off another break point to go up 3-0. All in seven minutes.

    Both players had predicted an aggressive match – and before a raucous crowd, they more than delivered. For nearly an hour, it looked like Mattek-Sands might become the villain in Serena's fairytale year. 

    Mattek-Sands took the first set and held serve through six games in the second. She broke Serena's serve as the 21-time Grand Slam champion served for the second set, bringing the set to 5-all.

    But then, like so many other potential spoilers this year, Mattek-Sands ran out of steam. Or, really, she sparked the fire that is Serena. And once that fire ignites, there's no controlling it. From 5-5, Serena won eight straight

    Read More »from Serena Williams survives third-round scare
  • There won’t be any more family game nights at the VanZant household.

    It’s not that the superstar of the family, UFC strawweight Paige VanZant, isn’t around anymore. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Despite being one of the most popular fighters in her division, the 21-year-old still makes it a point to spend ‘almost every weekend’ with her parents.

    But as much as she loves her family, that doesn’t stop Paige from flying off the rails when bragging rites are on the line.

    “I’m a naturally competitive, aggressive person,” VanZant admitted to Yahoo Sports. “We used to have family game nights, and if I lost, I would get violent and punch my brother, and I would throw the board in people’s faces…”

    Yikes.

    “Yeah, so we canceled family game night.”

    It might all seem a little extreme, getting that worked up over a harmless board game.

    But then again, when you’re a professional fighter, what’s extreme?Paige VanZant is only 21, but she's considered one of the UFC's top rising stars. (Getty)Paige VanZant is only 21, but she's considered one of the UFC's top rising stars. (Getty)

    Plus, it’s not like Paige is still that way. She is reformed. She has matured. She is wiser.

    Read More »from UFC strawweight Paige VanZant on cusp of superstardom ahead of UFC 191
  • USMNT and El Tri Live: USA vs. Peru, Mexico vs. Trinidad and Tobago

    The men's national teams of the United States and Mexico both played friendlies on Friday, but the matches were more than exhibitions. They were the beginning of the teams' preparation for the Oct. 10 playoff that will determine CONCACAF's representative for the 2017 Confederations Cup, the tuneup tournament for the 2018 World Cup.

    The U.S. came back to beat Peru 2-1 in Washington D.C. thanks to Jozy Altidore's two second-half goals. El Tri needed Hector Herrera's golazo in the 85th minute to draw 3-3 with Trinidad and Tobago in Sandy, Utah.

    Follow the action as it happened with the Scribble Live stream below.

    A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.

  • NEW YORK – Venus Williams advanced to the fourth round of the U.S. Open on Friday with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over higher-seeded Belinda Bencic. Venus won 83 percent of her first-serve points and 18 of 22 attempts at the net. It was a solid performance.

    Most fans were impressed. Most, but not her mom. As No. 12 Bencic broke Venus's serve at 4-1 in the second set, Oracene was at her best. 

    Venus played two three-setters to get to the third round. Her mother clearly had no interest in watchng another third set. Venus must've heard her. That was Bencic's only break of the game as Venus closed out the set and the straight-set win. 

    She's now one step closer to a potential quarterfinal match with younger sister Serena Williams, who plays in the final match on Friday night. 

    Read More »from Not impressed: Venus moves on, but not smoothly enough for Oracene's taste
  • As we continue to work our way through the endless summer between the Finals and Opening Night, we'll pause each Friday to briefly consider and count down some NBA-related topic of note. We like starting lineups and round numbers, so we'll run through a handful of items each week. With a nod to our friends at Dr. Saturday, welcome to Ball Don't Five.

    This week's installment: The Top Five Retired Players That Never Made an All-Star Team.

    5. Lamar Odom. It’s arguable that Odom never truly had an All-Star season, so his placement on this list is more of a career honor than a knock at, say, the assistant coaches in the East during the 2003-04 season. Those coaches were likely still considering Odom, who averaged more than 17 points, nearly 10 rebounds, 4.1 assists and a block per game with the playoff-bound Miami Heat that year, a flighty ne’er-do-well who hadn’t paid his dues. In opposition to, say, Jamaal Magliore – who made the damned All-Star team that season.

    [Follow Dunks Don't Lie

    Read More »from Ball Don't Five: The Top Five Retired Players That Never Made an All-Star Team
  • Some memes burn like bright stars and then fade out quickly, never to be heard from again. (Harlem Shake, anyone?) But some live on in their own enduring, peculiar ways, and that's why we were so happy when we watched the TCU-Minnesota game last night. You see, Minnesota continues to use the dramatic chipmunk to distract opposing kickers, an ingenious move two years ago, and one we still think is just as great today. We could watch that video on loop for hours and never get tired of it. It unfortunately didn't do enough to derail the Horned Frogs, as they beat the Golden Gophers 23-17, but we'll always think it's worth the effort by Minnesota.

    What's the greatest gift you ever got for your birthday? We're guessing it wasn't a portrait of yourself, done by a famous artist, and one that is automatically valued at upwards of $20,000. That's why it's good to be John Wall (amongst many other obvious reasons). Artist Madsteez gave Wall a huge mural, and

    Read More »from Mad Dash: Minnesota still using dramatic chipmunk to distract opponents
  • As the summer wears on, with training camps and preseason play still off in (what feels like) the distant future, we turn our attention to the past. Join us as we while away a few late-summer moments recalling some of the most scintillating slams of yesteryear, the most thunderous throwdowns ever to sear themselves into our memories. This is Dunk History.

    Today, Paul Palladino remembers how Dwyane Wade went up, over and straight through Anderson Varejao during a 2009-10 meeting between the Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers.

    As members of the historic 2003 draft class, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James quickly developed a close friendship. They also spent significant time playing together for Team USA during the NBA offseason. They took home bronze medals from the 2004 Summer Olympics and 2006 FIBA World Championship before breaking through and winning gold during the 2008 Summer Games as part of the “Redeem Team.” Their on-court matchups were must-see television, as each upped their game

    Read More »from Dunk History: Dwyane Wade welcomes Anderson Varejao to his ‘Kodak moment’

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