Friday, June 25, 2010

Has there been a bigger comeback week in sports in recent memory?

USA soccer scores in the 92nd (injury minutes are tacked on to the basic 90 minute game time) minute to advance in the World Cup. After the last rites had been given multiple times by ESPN commentators.

John Isner and Nicholas Mahut keep coming back, point after point, game after game, to complete their epic, heroic five set match over three days at Wimbledon. In doing so, they set numerous records for length of play, aces, games in a row without being broken, you name it. This was once in a lifetime -- we will never see this again. Period.

Most importantly, these great soccer and tennis athletes imprint some of their spirit on our hearts and minds, our consciousness, the message, always being the same: never quit, never, never, never quit. When you make that resolve, you permit great things to come your way.

Great things came all our ways -- this very special week.

On a personal note, we got to see Johnny Isner play up close and personal at the 2009 Winnetka Challenger (Chicago). He was coming off mononucleosis, and wasn't 100%. He was eliminated in the second round. I remember him looking a little lost, a little spent, late the night of his defeat, as he walked off into the darkness.

Out of that darkness, was to come great things.

One year later: ranked no. 19 in the world, he made tennis history, and made the name "Isner" (and "Mahut") synonymous with an almost unimaginable level of exertion, commitment, and ultimately in the case of our hometown hero, victory.

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