Top 10 National Sports Stories of 2020 – Newsday

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1. COVID-19 pandemic

The virus disrupted every aspect of life on Earth, and sports was no exception, including the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021.

2. Athletes take a stand

Players from the NBA, WNBA, NHL, MLB and elsewhere in sports temporarily walked off the job in solidarity with the social justice movement.

3. Kobe Bryant’s death

Kobe Bryant, a five-time NBA champion with the Lakers died at age 41 with his daughter, Gianna, and seven others in a helicopter crash in California.

4. Kim Ng breaks MLB’s glass ceiling

Kim Ng, in baseball for more than 30 years, became the first female general manager of an MLB team when the Miami Marlins hired her.

5. Patrick Mahomes stars in Super Bowl 54

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes led Kansas City to its first Super Bowl win in 50 years, erasing a 20-10 deficit against the 49ers to win, 31-20.

6. Astros punished for cheating

MLB came down on the Astros for a sign-stealing scandal, prompting the Mets to part with new manager and former Astro Carlos Beltran.

7. Changing of the guard for the Patriots

After a playoff loss to the Titans, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady took his six Super Bowls and left for Tampa Bay as a free agent.

8. Dodgers win it all

After losing two World Series the previous three seasons, the Dodgers won the big prize for the first time since 1988 by beating the Rays in six.

9. Lakers win it all

Sixteen days before the Dodgers’ triumph, the Lakers won their 17th NBA title, beating the Heat in six. LeBron James won with his third franchise.

10. Two firsts for Sarah Fuller and Power 5

On Thanksgiving weekend, Vanderbilt’s Sarah Fuller kicked off to start the second half, making her the first female player to appear in a Power 5 football game. Two weeks later, Fuller kicked two extra points to become the first woman to score a point in a Power 5 game.

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