Is pro wrestling a sport, pantomime or some mixture of the two? It’s a question Barry Blaustein’s documentary about the lives of colourfully clad wrestlers in the WWE (then WWF) seeks to answer. Their matches may be scripted but certainly these performers sweat, toil and bleed: we see it happen. They take tremendous risks, too. In one of Beyond the Mat’s fascinating behind-the-curtain scenes – rare enough, in a fiercely secretive industry – a newly employed recruit, Darren Drozdov, sits down with his chiefs to discuss what sort of wrestler he might be. Perhaps he could be a fun character called Puke...? Drozdov, within months, would be involved in an in-ring accident and paralysed. … [Read more...] about The 10 best sports documentaries
Best young players
The song, when it comes, is a moment of understanding between the game and the player. You’re not just a participant any more. You’re a creator. “This is a moment,” it tells you. “Don’t let go of it”. It’s a progression of the form, it’s a masterpiece of expressionist narrative and – without exaggeration – it is my favourite single moment from any piece of culture that I have ever experienced. If Red Dead Redemption 2 can top that – if it can even come close – I’ll be astounded. … [Read more...] about Do we need Red Dead Redemption 2 when the first provided gaming’s best moment?
Dropping back to help his defence after half an hour, Deisler was responsible for an even bigger gaffe when he passed back to Kahn. The goalkeeper was forced to pick up the ball because the pass was underhit and Owen was bearing down upon him, but with all 11 German players standing on their own line England were unable to profit from a free-kick from 10 yards out. Beckham's venomous shot inevitably hit the wall, and Neville's follow-up effort from the edge of the area sailed over the bar. … [Read more...] about Owen puts England in World Cup dreamland
Leon Draisaitl: From German prodigy to NHL top scorer Top of the pile Leon Draisaitl scored 43 goals and added 67 assists for 110 points in 71 games – the most of any player in the coronavirus-shortened 2019-20 season. No German previously has won a scoring title in any of the major sports in North America. With the regular season cut short, this year's Stanley Cup playoffs are to be expanded from 16 to 24 teams. … [Read more...] about NHL star Leon Draisaitl on being leading scorer: ‘Something you dream of’
Very quickly, Wembley’s goodbye party became more akin to a wake. England were turgid – “a performance as grey and soggy as the shocking weather” according to the Guardian’s report – while Hamann and co saw out the game with a show of unfussy keep-ball. To paraphrase Gary Lineker, 11 men chased a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans won. “Faulty towers for England” was the headline in the Express, which on the morning of the game had announced that “only one thing matters – one last goal before we say a sad goodbye: to overcome the Germans”. … [Read more...] about Golden Goal: Dietmar Hamann for Germany v England (2000)