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Sports Then and Now



Queens of the Court: Suzanne Lenglen, An Original Diva 14

Posted on October 30, 2009 by Claudia Celestial Girl
Suzanne Lenglen paved the way for the modern "Divas".

Suzanne Lenglen won 12 Grand Slam titles.

She was called ‘La Divine.’  Some say in the 1920s Suzanne Lenglen was a bigger name in sports than that of Babe Ruth.

Between 1919 and 1926, at a time when three and not four tennis majors were played, she won twelve Grand Slam titles, on three different surfaces, and an Olympic Gold medal (Antwerp). Notably in seven of 81 singles titles she did not lose a game!

She was dominant in a way that only a handful of male stars have been since the open era of tennis.  More than that, she imposed her personality on the sport, and the entertainment world of the day.  We recognize such a personality in contemporary terms, in modern English, we might call her a diva. Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Iron Man Randy Smith
      February 2, 2019 | 5:58 pm

      Randy Smith-BravesThe Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month may have had a pretty common name, but his iron man streak as an NBA player was anything but ordinary.

      In a streak that lasted more than a decade, Randy Smith played in 906 consecutive NBA games to establish an NBA iron man record that lasted more than a decade.

      That Smith made it to the NBA at all was somewhat of an underdog story.

      A three-sport standout at Bellsport High School in Long Island (basketball, soccer and track), Smith also was a three-sport All-American at Division II Buffalo State College. He helped lead the Bengals to three straight basketball conference championships and a spot in the 1970 Division II Final Four.

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