Friday, March 1, 2019

Crouser and Kovacs Trump Kushner and Kim

Two US Shot Putters Save the Day

by Mark Cullen

Copyright 2019. Mark Cullen/ All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday could not have been much worse.

The show stopper was Michael Cohen’s testimony in front of the US House Committee on Oversight and Reform about the sitting US president, who has a shrewd scheduler and was in Vietnam hanging out with his nuclear playpen pal.

Speaking of sitting presidents, North Korea’s Kim Jong-un unwound from his 2,000 mile, 60 hour train trip by singing, “I’d ride a million miles, for one of your smiles, my Donny.”

Speaking of tone deaf, what was the US president’s son-in-law doing in the hours just  before Cohen testified? Why, Jared Kushner was in Saudi Arabia meeting with the prince - yes, that prince. 

Track and field rode to the rescue. 

Track and field?

Wednesday's saving grace was an engaging New York Times article featuring Olympic and World shot put champions, Ryan Crouser and Joe Kovacs, by Lindsay Crouse. 

Crouser and Kovacs are two of track and field’s most accomplished competitors, and Crouse’s article captured the warmth and mutual respect of the terrific friendship these great rivals have.

When was the last time the shot put earned coverage like this? Not since the glory days of the ‘50s and ‘60s, when Parry O’Brien and Randy Matson were on the cover of Sports Illustrated - and magazines were made of a substance produced from trees.

Crouser and Kovacs have been the two best in a deep event since Kovacs won the World title in 2015 and Crouser the Olympic title – with Kovacs winning silver – the following year in Rio. 

Crouser is throwing so far so early this year – 73’ 3¼” to win the Millrose Games on February 9 – that the world record (75’ 10 ¼") seems within his reach.

On a day when the world threatened to sink even deeper into its current quagmire, two shot putters named Crouser and Kovacs trumped Kushner and Kim and restored order. Friendship, appreciation and mutual respect nudged morals, ethics and integrity to remind us of the essential goodness of our core. Together, they righted the ship.

Ryan Crouser (right) with (l-r) Allyson Felix, Jenny Simpson, Tianna Bartoletta,
Christian Coleman and Christian Taylor at the US team press conference
prior to the 2017 London World Championships

photo credit: Mark Cullen/

Joe Kovacs
after winning the shot put silver medal
at the 2017 London World Championships

photo credit: Getty Images/IAAF

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