The news can be depressing at times. Thankfully, the sports world usually isn’t.
Yahoo Sports is taking a weekly look at the true spirit of sport — the highlights that will warm your heart and the acts of kindness that go beyond the game.
Come on. Let’s take a load off together.
Another soccer statue leaves fans confused
Former England soccer captain David Beckham changed the landscape of North American sports when he took his talents to Los Angeles to join the Galaxy in 2007.
One of the world’s most popular footballers chose to make the upstart MLS his new home, and that boosted the league’s reputation by finally giving it a marquee player.
Beckham not only made a splash with his five year, USD$250-million contract, but also for his play on the pitch. And for that, he was honoured by the club this week for being a “trailblazer” in the sport.
Like other famous soccer faces, Beckham was honoured with a statue in California. Who can forget the statue of Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo that was unveiled at Madeira airport in 2017? Sculptor Emanuel Santos was given a second chance to recreate the star striker’s likeness after it was mocked around the world.
And it seems the critics have returned with commentary on Beckham’s nine-foot statue. Some people online are saying the statue looks more like celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay than it looks like Beckham.
Tell me why it looks like David Beckham is standing in front of his dad Gordon Ramsay’s statue https://t.co/8Hc1drt9IX
— Jesus Luis-Mendez (@jluismen13) March 3, 2019
Would have been better if it actually looked like Becks. But at least better than Ronaldo’s.
— Sue Iwin (@smsirwin) March 3, 2019
This doesn't even look like the man
— 𝐂𝐡𝐮𝐝𝐢 (@RealChudi) March 3, 2019
While both were born in the U.K., and both grew up playing soccer, only one of these men could bend it like Beckham. The other is better known for bending over plates and criticizing anything short of sheer perfection in the kitchen.
The two have been compared for looking similar in the past, so it makes sense that the statue would strike some people as looking more like Ramsay than Beckham. Have a look at the statue for yourself and share your thoughts in the comment section below.
Habs goalie melts hearts with kind gesture
Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price isn’t the most vocal player in the NHL. The 31-year-old Canadian usually lets his play on the ice do the talking for him. That’s been a pretty successful strategy for Montreal’s all-time leader in wins who also owns an Olympic gold medal.
Recently, the 2015 Hart Trophy winner grabbed headlines for his actions off of the ice.
Ahead of Montreal’s clash with the Toronto Maple Leafs on Feb. 23, Price met 11-year-old Anderson Whitehead of Brantford, Ont., during the morning skate. CBC News reported that while Anderson’s mother was dying of cancer, she promised her son that she would do everything in her power to make sure he met his favourite hockey player, and that came true.
Sadly, McKay passed in November and wasn’t able to see the powerful moment. Not only did the boy meet his idol, he also got a big hug from the Habs star and broke down in tears.
“I didn’t think somebody like that would sign my stick,” Anderson told CBC News. “I didn’t think he would have time for me.”
After his aunt posted the video to Facebook, it went viral and has been viewed millions of times online.
This is everything — this young fan, Anderson, met his idol @CP0031, after his mother passed away due to cancer. She had promised him that she would do everything in her power to help the two meet and it happened. This right here is hockey. #OurGreatGame
(🎥 FB/ Tammy Whitehead) pic.twitter.com/ww6jLM2yoF
— NHL (@NHL) March 1, 2019
Unlikely hero emerges in NCAA hoops game
In an NCAA basketball game between the Cal State Fullerton Titans and the Cal Poly Mustangs on Feb. 28, Titans head coach Dedrique Taylor made a decision that led to a rare moment.
With his side holding onto a comfortable lead, he decided to get Sammy Jones into the game. Jones isn’t your average college basketball player — he’s the team’s senior basketball manager.
After receiving clearance, he suited up for the squad and quickly got his hands on the ball. Jones showed off some dribbling skills before driving to the basket and draining a shot in the final seconds of the contest.
The reaction of his teammates really says it all. Jones would go on to hit the free throw to put a nice bow on his squad’s 86-75 win at home.
“What we witnessed there at the end, that’s what it’s about,” said Taylor after the game. “That will be something that our program will never forget.”
We have a feeling Jones won’t be forgetting that moment, either.
A post shared by espn (@espn) on Mar 1, 2019 at 7:44am PST
Iginla’s children hit the ice with NHL stars
There are a few perks that come your way when your father is Jarome Iginla, the long-time captain of the Calgary Flames who recently had his No. 12 jersey retired by the organization. Apparently, hitting the ice with the franchise’s current squad is one of them.
Ahead of Calgary’s clash with the Minnesota Wild at the Scotiabank Saddledome last Saturday, Iginla’s sons Tij and Joe joined the Flames for their morning skate. The youngsters wore their father’s familiar No. 12 as they posed for a photo with Flames star forwards Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk.
That was just the start of a special day for the Iginla family that involved touching speeches, an epic video tribute, $50,000 donated to a local charity in Jarome’s name and much more.
These are the kinds of moments that create memories, and maybe one day, Tij and Joe will be the ones in the NHL posing for photos with children.
A post shared by Calgary Flames (@nhlflames) on Mar 2, 2019 at 2:07pm PST
Young NBA fan not impressed by contest win
We may have caught a glimpse of a future NBA star on Sunday.
With the Washington Wizards celebrating Kids Day against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Capital One Arena, one lucky fan had the opportunity to participate in a shooting competition during a break in the action.
The child’s shooting performance was pretty impressive, but it’s his reaction to draining a shot and being held by Wizards mascot G-Wiz that is making people laugh. The youngster’s stare-down expression never breaks, and he acts like he just won a prize to do more homework.
Wonder if he got ejected like @TheTraeYoung for that stare-down 😉
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) March 4, 2019
Well, now that we have those warm and fuzzy stories out of the way, let’s go back to reading about absurd hockey brawls involving players, officials and trainers, the alarming rate horses are dying at one of America’s most popular race tracks and the allegations of lewd conduct facing a former NFLer, shall we?