The departure of a generation of players has left Cuba’s talent pool uncharacteristically shallow. But as two unlikely foes clash, the thirst for a title remains strong.
How does a nation with a tiny population and a frigid climate compete against the soccer superpowers? By cultivating its natural resources.
Racing bareback horses is a centuries old Native American tradition. Now, marketed as “America’s first extreme sport,” it’s reaching new audiences.
The Vegas Golden Knights were supposed to be the league's worst team. Instead, they're in the playoffs, with cast-off goalie Marc-Andre Fleury leading the way.
Super Bowl LII was as good as football gets. And that's because we may never stop talking about it.
Meek Mill's "Dreams and Nightmares" has galvanized the Eagles and their city. But the rapper, currently incarcerated, may not even be watching.
When the Giants benched Manning, it was a reminder that all quarterbacks are mortal, writes David Roth.
Tony Romo isn't afraid to get it wrong. And in the NFL, this makes him stand out.
2 Chainz isn't the first rapper to mention bowling in his lyrics. But in his case, it's a perfect fit.
A wiseguy’s son steps out of his father’s shadow—and into the boxing ring. But the legacy of organized crime isn’t so easy to leave behind.
David Roth on how the Philadelphia 76ers and their fans learned to win by losing.
Ray Schoenke started campaigning for George McGovern in 1971 because he wanted to make a difference. The experience ended up changing his life.
Dr. Harry Edwards' sociology of sports has defined and fiercely guarded the terms of "fair play" in America.
Joe Caldwell was a star at the dawn of the modern NBA. Then the sport took everything from him.
This World Series has been baseball at its best, says David Roth. It also shows us everything baseball could be going forward
Rooting for the Clippers always ends in disappointment. But maybe that’s the point.
Grandson of a Marlboro man, Kameron Kelsey moves his herd of horses up and down the Rockies the old cowboy way.
The Warriors are already the NBA's next great dynasty. What's left for them to accomplish?
Watch the real-life inspiration for Argentinian artist Martin Gordopelota's football fantasies.
David Roth on why we need the NBA more than ever right now.
Josh Allen showed up in Laramie an unheralded quarterback prospect. Now he’s garnered national attention for making plays no one else can.
How one high school team put a nation on the map.
David Roth on Shohei Ohtani, the Japanese phenom who could redefine baseball.
When the Falcons played their last game in the Georgia Dome, the parking lot was a party for the ages.
David Roth on what the NFL has to offer and what it really stands for.
For months, a group of local Cleveland activists fought the city's plan. What changed?
Chloé Cooper Jones on what a US Open win would mean for Venus and the sport she’s shaped.
Mayweather's self-appointed nickname speaks volumes about the values of the man.
Filming Speed Week on the transcendent space-time plane of Utah’s Salt Flats.
David Roth on Jay Cutler's return to the NFL, the dog days of summer, and sports at the end of the world.
The grandchild of the self-described "photo-storyteller" Lucien Aigner looks back at his pioneering career in photojournalism.
Born cycling royalty, Ignazio Moser walked away from the sport three years ago. Now he's back on his bike in Red Hook.
The life, times, and art of Mark Mulroney's autograph chase.
For these world-class competitors, it's all checkers, no chess.
Vladimir Putin has quietly taken control of the beautiful game using every trick and tactic in his locker, and World Cup 2018 will be his greatest work of political propaganda ever.
Argentine artist Martin Gordopelota's vision of fútbol celebrates the idiosyncratic neighborhood traditions of the beautiful game.
Whether it's new players starting their careers or familiar faces in new places, the NBA Draft is never low on action.
Inside Ghana's mythological boxing kingdom of Bukom with Malik “Bukom Snake” Jabir.
As we look forward to the Women's Rugby World Cup this summer, a look back at intimate portraits of the Brown University Bears all their rugged glory.
The ways of an increasingly rare American species, the cowboy, are carefully maintained by the traditions of the Kelsey family dude ranch.
LeBron wasn't at his L.A. home when it was defaced with a racial slur this week. And the reality is, no level of achievement is enough to make people of color feel at home in America.
Anthony Joshua is a survivor, and because of that, the young boxer is now the undisputed World Heavyweight Champion.
Every July, men and women come to a small town in the Chequamegon National Forest toting their handsaws, axes, chainsaws, and climbing spurs in search of glory at the lumberjack world championships.
On the eve of the 121st Boston Marathon, Kenyan Emmanuel Mutai sat alone in his hotel room and quietly prepared to race the greatest marathoners in the world. That included himself.
After over a decade, Venezia FC are back in Serie B, Italy's second division. Their return has not been easy, but it has been spectacular, strange, and fascinating to watch.
Using film and a 4x5 view camera, photographer Andrew Dolgin points his lens at empty high school tracks that were once home to American Olympic gold medalists and world record holders in their format
Yes, baseball is the slow sport. And its future depends on playing the long game.
The USWNT has scored an historic victory for hockey. We should all be grateful they did.
How a scrappy, independent label's posters changed the way we looked at sports forever.
In the mid-2000s, director Nick Strini and Victory EIC Chris Eisenberg documented rising boxing star Danny Jacobs, "The Miracle Man."
When James Canty enters the McDonald’s on Chicago’s South Side, nobody takes notice. But the Master chess player is there on a mission.
Artist and filmmaker Azod Abedikichi introduces us to the weird, wild, and psychedelic world of sports claymation.
Photographer Geoff Winningham documents the heady days of pro-wrestling on the local circuit.
The weird, true story of how writer Dave Tompkins inadvertently created his own version of fantasy football.
Eddy Merckx, "the Cannibal," is one of the greatest cyclists in history. He's also muse to two masters of cycling cinema. Here is their story.
How an Olympian’s experience exposes the fragility of American immigration policy.
Kyle Lowry's weaponization of words in Trump's America.
What is the legacy of an Olympics? What happens after it's gone? Photographers Jon Pack and Gary Hustwit document the cities and towns as they adapt to the aftermath.
Nathaniel Friedman unpacks Russell Westbrook's complicated character.
What does Raymond Pettibon's sports art tell us about the American dream?
Spencer Seabrooke wanted to break a slacklining record. The only problem was that if he failed, he'd die.
Filled with idiosyncratic traditions and patriotism, the Indy 500 is one of the greatest spectacles in American motorsports. Antonio Santos photographed the massive raceway's most iconic moments.
Watching the Houston Rockets this year, it’s easy to forget how narrowly Mike D’Antoni avoided coaching perdition.
Atletico Nacional and Chapecoense were to play the Copa Sudamericana final today. Instead they're united by tragedy.
Once of interest only inside the country's borders, Muay Thai, the centuries-old martial art-cum-national pastime of Thailand is changing along with the global landscape.
Trump is trying to ruin soccer, but soccer is used to his brand of ruin.
Betting, boxing, and boozing: the weird, true story of the writer rivalry between Norman Mailer and James Toback.
Cleon Peterson makes confrontational art that picks apart the power structures of violence, tapping into centuries of competitive combat, even as it looks at the world of today.
How did Joe Montana help Tiger Balm become a household name in the United States? Writer Benjamin Meadows-Ingram explores the history of the cult sports ointment and its most prominent champion.
Soccer is a way of life in the tiny town of San Marino. Big things are in their grasp, and each year is another chance to get closer to their dreams of succeeding on a national level.
Last year, Long Island's beloved Islanders made a controversial move to Brooklyn, but would their fans remain loyal? Photographer Nils Ericson was there to document their early days at Barclays.
October 1986: the New York Mets beat the Houston Astros in the NLCS, in one of the most dramatic series ever. What happened after was a mind-boggling display of debauchery.
Every year, New Yorkers flock to Madison Square Garden for the most unexpected spectacle: a gritty rodeo in the heart of Manhattan.
Finnish artist Riikka Hyvönen unlocks the secret language of roller derby bruises, and the stories they tell.
Writer Nathaniel Friedman dissects LeBron James' complicated relationship with America.
Clay County, Kentucky's illustrious basketball program has a first family: the Farmers—but can they step out of the shadow of long gestating turmoil and controversy?
Photographer Daniel Arnold explores the unique relationship between the Green Bay Packers and their biggest fans—who also happen to own part of the team.
Bali's annual buffalo race celebrates the end of the rice harvest with specially bred, colorfully dressed buffalos and their jockeys careening around a dirt track.
Every winter, the crown jewel of the competitive dog circuit, the Westminster Dog Show comes to Madison Square Garden, giving the most well trained canines a chance to strut their stuff.
Paul Pogba can be the best player of his generation and bring titles back to Manchester United. This breaks writer Peter Macia's heart.
At the 2012 Olympics, Claressa Shields did what no one had ever done before: she became the first US woman to win a gold medal in boxing. Now, with everyone watching, she has to try to do it again.
Teddy Riner is a charismatic judoka. He's also an Olympian and a French icon. But how does a man that big move that gracefully? And what does it mean to carry the weight of a country on your back?
New Zealand's All Blacks can't stop winning, but why and how are they so good? Writer Phil Lutton and photographer Derek Henderson take a look at the U20 team that has come to define Rugby greatness.
Writer Nathaniel Friedman examines what might have compelled Russell Westbrook to stick with Oklahoma City for another season.
What does it really mean to be an Olympic alternate? Writer Tim Struby explores the hidden lives of the greatest athletes who might never compete for their country.
The Thai sport of takraw crams the motions of soccer, the format of volleyball, and the scrappiness of hacky sack into a court the size of a motel swimming pool.
Writer Carrie Battan explores how Misty Copeland is pushing the art of ballet and the human body into the future.
Each year, competitive eaters descend on Coney Island to do the unthinkable: eat as many hot dogs—and their accompanying buns—as humanly possible in just a few short minutes.
Iconic moments in Muhammad Ali's life told through the quotes that made him a legend.
Syrian Jewish tennis player David Mizrahi has a promising career ahead of him, but first he must decide between his chosen sport and religion.
In the Adirondack Mountains, a group of brave ski jumpers spend their summers perfecting their craft, launching off staggering jumps onto the grass and dirt below.
Writer Brendan O'Connor profiles John Ahearn, the New York-based artist whose sculptures found their way to a wall in Caguas, Puerto Rico.
David Mellor's Major League Baseball dreams were crushed on one unfortunate day. Then he found an innovative new way to change the game.
By the early '70s, Elvis Presley’s constant touring, hard living, and penchant for overeating had taken their toll. His personal doctor came up with the perfect solution: Take up racquetball.
Two photographers search for the beating heart of Cuban baseball, and come back with new perspectives on an old tradition.
After working with Jim Henson, Bonnie Erickson entered into an unexpected career in professional sports: creator of some of the most iconic mascots of all time.
The Boat Race between Oxford and Cambridge is one of England's most storied competitions, and it's gone largely unchanged for 186 years–until now.
Thon Maker, the 7'1" Sudanese-Australian center, has been honing his basketball skills in snowy Orangeville, Ontario–with a promising future in the NBA all but guaranteed, his path is still uncertain.
A city is never one thing. It can be good or bad, right or wrong. It changes from day to day and year to year, but in Chicago the consistency of failure is historic.A city is never one thing.
Abelardo Olguín Cuevas still practices the brutal pastime of cockfighting that his grandfather taught him, as growing controversy and declining interest threatens to make the sport he loves extinct.
Huntington Beach High School's surf team is focused. They begin practice at dawn, and keep fine-tuning their technique until just before the first school bell rings.
From his home in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans, artist Bruce Davenport Jr constructs a vibrant, dense world of boxing matches and marching bands.
After losing everything to Hurricane Katrina, Warren Easton's Fighting Eagles entered the Louisiana Superdome for the second time, gunning for their first state title since World War II.
Fifty miles north of New York City, along the banks of the Hudson River, future US Army officers dedicate what little free time they have to rigorous varsity sports.
Chicago's inner city baseball team Jackie Robinson West won the most heavily covered Little League World Series in years—and then it all started to fall apart.
The Bronx's Wings Academy reached New York's PSAL semifinals five times in its short history, but always fell short of a big win. In 2015, they made it for the sixth time.
Leon Lawson III is on his way to becoming a world class boxer, but first he has to manage the expectations of his family of fighters as he gears up to represent the USA in the Junior Men's WC.
FC Shakhtar Donetsk is one of the most successful football clubs in Europe—its youth academy among the finest in the world. But Shakhtar’s very existence and identity has been ripped apart...
More than most competitions, Formula I stands outside of time. David Rathman's watercolors of the 2013 Montreal race are testament, at once intensely focused and yet innocently pastoral.
The most prestigious weekend in European thoroughbred racing takes place in early October, on the banks of the Seine.
Handball was in Jerome Liebling's blood. The legendary photographer spent much of his life documenting its practitioners, from Brooklyn to Miami Beach.
The final night of baseball's 2013 season was emotional for the city of Boston. There wasn't just a World Series to be won, but ghosts to be buried.
The NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships is more heartland soul than big-ratings dance. In March 2014, photographer Nils Ericson went to Oklahoma City to witness the American gladiators firsthand.
One of 20th-century America’s best-known painters was also an incredible sketch artist and sports journalist.
In September of 2014, NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series brought the world’s best drivers to Delaware’s legendary Monster Mile.
Everton v. Liverpool is one of the oldest local rivalries in organized sports, and a hallmark of the English Premier League's season.
NFL Films is pro football’s id. It helped create the sport’s heroes, and popularized them. It also kept one of everything.
Look up! The skies above Rocinha, Rio de Janeiro’s largest favela, are teeming with pipa battles. Filmmakers Guilherme Tensol and Leandro HBL explored Brasil’s other great sporting culture.
The same late-April weekend that the NFL holds its annual college draft, the Dolphins pick the women who will be the team’s cheerleaders for the upcoming season.
Warren Easton is the oldest public high school in New Orleans. In the fall of 2014, its football team was in the midst of a renaissance when photographer Christaan Felber came to document the squa
Wrestler Ann Casey's life is the stuff of pulp dreams. She broke cultural barriers, kissed Elvis, was shot by drug dealers and came back to win The Belt.
Hope rarely shines in Bronx high-school basketball. Yet filmmaker Will Robson-Scott found a ray at Wings Academy, an unlikely contender for the PSAL crown.
The University of Michigan Wolverines vs. the Ohio State University Buckeyes. On November 30, 2013 their story took yet another turn.
The world's oldest horse race takes place on the Piazza del Campo in Siena, twice a summer. Alessandro Simonetti photographed the pageantry, intrigue and violence; Bud Schmeling added the words.
In May 2014, guard Tyrese Rice led Maccabi Electra of Tel Aviv to an astronomical 51st Ligat HaAl crown, and to upset wins over CSKA Moscow and Real Madrid in the Euroleague Final Four.
A short film by Mickey Duzyj about Rick Baird, who achieved a sporting feat more rare than pitching a perfect game in the Majors: shooting 18 in putt-putt.
The brand that immortalized the canarinho kit of Brasil's national futebol team famous stands silent, filled with evidence of beautiful games and memories it inspired.
“The Great Escape!” The amazing (and true) story of how pitcher Orlando Hernandez defected from Cuba, before becoming a World Series hero.
Basketball's evolution, from all-white to African-American-dominated, coincided with the Civil Rights struggle; and art has quietly documented that historical occurrence, then and now.
Transplanted New Yorkers find a fountain of youth on the handball courts of Flamingo Park, Miami Beach. This rediscovered short doc brings us deep into the universe glimpsed in
In 1966 and again in 1970, photographer Thomas Hoepker was granted almost-unprecedented access to Muhammad Ali.The results are a full-bodied portrait of one of the 20th Century's most iconic athletes.
January 1976. Philadelphia Flyers v. CSKA Moscow. The Cold War. The soul of hockey at stake. Story by Dave Hollander, drawings by Stephen Halker.
Jimmy Snuka was a Fijian prince who in the 1980s became one of wrestling’s most admired stars, Superfly.
Deep in the heart of Lone Star, Friday night’s gridiron lights burn brightly—even amid the quietude of desolate places.
Is the future of African basketball being sown at a non-profit academy in a small Senegalese town? Photographer Alessandro Simonetti documented West African hoop dreams and realities.
November 2012, the month that big-time basketball finally came to Kings County. Anthony Blasko’s camera documented the Nets, as the team made a new home at the corner of Atlant
The Mediterranean town of Sète is the de facto capital of maritime jousting, a sporting tradition that dates back to the 15th century. Photographer Christopher Anderson infiltrated th