Publish date:

Leading Off




Help Me, Ronda! Cat Zingano (in blue) came out flying in her UFC 184 bantamweight title fight against Ronda Rousey, launching a right knee at the reigning champion, but was quickly grounded. Rousey easily evaded the attack, flipped the previously undefeated Zingano on her head and put the challenger in a decisive straight armlock. In just 14 seconds—a UFC record—the bout was over. The victory, Rousey's 11th without defeat, means that her last three wins required a total of 1:36.



Minnie Mi√±oso 1925--2015 Perhaps as much as his 1,963 hits, his 1,023 RBIs and his 205 stolen bases, Mi√±oso, who died on Sunday of a tear in his pulmonary artery, will be remembered for the figure he didn't produce so easily: his age. The White Sox, with whom Mi√±oso spent 12 of his 17 major league seasons, put his age at 89, but Mi√±oso himself was coy on the subject. Then again, Mi√±oso seemed timeless. At age 23, the Afro-Cuban outfielder jumped from the Negro leagues to the Indians, in 1949, two years after Jackie Robinson broke baseball's color line. Two years after that, he was traded to Chicago, becoming the White Sox' first black player. Pictured here during spring training 1956, Mi√±oso played in big league games across five decades (even though his appearances in 1976 and '80, at ages 50 and 54, were little more than publicity stunts), was a nine-time All-Star, and all his life was a smiling, laughing kid at heart. Along with the Cubs' Ernie Banks (who died in January), Mi√±oso became an unlikely icon in one of the country's most segregated cities. Like Banks, he never reached the postseason, and like Banks, he remained ever optimistic. Mi√±oso retired with a .298 career average and three Gold Gloves, but he failed in 18 attempts to gain entry into the Hall of Fame, his case damaged by the gimmicky plate appearances he made for the White Sox later in life. A quarter-century after his last swing, he saw Chicago win the 2005 World Series, and he was gifted the ring that he missed out on when the Go-Go Sox won the 1959 pennant, two years after he had been traded to Cleveland. The ring—won by a team run by a Venezuelan-born skipper, assembled by a black general manager and adored by Barack Obama—was more than a reminder of a one-off championship. It was a testament to the impact Mi√±oso had on the franchise as a player and as a trailblazer. ‚ÄìAndrew Lawrence


Paint-by-Blunders SI last week dispatched watercolor artist Elisha Cooper to England to depict the first legs of two high-powered Champions League matchups: Barcelona at Manchester City (top) and Monaco at Arsenal (bottom). In the former, on Feb. 24, Barca's Lionel Messi, wearing his vomit-yellow third kit, played casually with the ball, as if taking it for a walk—but when a defender tried to steal it, Messi was gone in a flash. City was outclassed 2--1. Messi's miss of a last-minute penalty suggested he is, against all evidence, human. The following night, at Emirates Stadium in London, Arsenal showed it too was human, eschewing defense, missing open shots and, ultimately, punching the turf in frustration after a 3--1 upset loss. Return legs will be played on March 17 and 18.