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September 3rd, 2013
05:51 AM ET

Fifth Try The Charm For Swimmer Diana Nyad

Five turns out to be a very lucky number for swimmer Diana Nyad.

The 64-year-old athlete navigated the waters between Havana, Cuba, and Key West, Florida, on Monday, after five tries over three decades. CNN's Karin Caifa reports.

Nyad started on Saturday and swam over 100 miles without a protective shark cage or flippers, though she battled jelly fish with a protective mask.

It reportedly took a team of 35 people to help monitor her progress and clear her path of danger.

After reaching Florida, Nyad was taken to the hospital for observation but not before she acknowledged her fans.

The dreamer said: "We should never ever give up, you never are too old to chase your dreams."

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Filed under: Inspirational story • Sports • Uncategorized
June 11th, 2013
06:21 AM ET

Fmr. NFL star Chad Johnson gets 30 days jail time for butt slapping his attorney in court – Pam Brown reports


After he was asked if he was pleased with his attorney, the former wide receiver once known as "Chad Ochocinco" gave his lawyer, Adam Swickle, a gentle pat on the rear.

McHugh was furious when people in the audience laughed.

"There's nothing funny about what's going on here today," she told Johnson.

Johnson, 35, replied that he wasn't laughing.

Then McHugh said, "I don't think anything's funny about it, Mr. Johnson. This isn't a joke."

Johnson said he didn't do it as a joke.

Swickle agreed, saying: "I don't think it was done as any disrespect to the court. I don't think he meant to get a reaction from the court room, judge."

The judge told Johnson she wouldn't accept a plea deal that involved only community service and more anger management counseling. Instead, she sentenced him to 30 days in jail and tacked three months onto his one-year probation, which would have ended in September.

READ MORE: Butt pat lands former NFL star Chad Johnson in jail

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Filed under: Law enforcement • NFL • Sports
February 6th, 2013
07:25 AM ET

Ski champ Lindsey Vonn tears ACL, MCL in race crash – BleacherReport.com's Jared Greenberg on her condition


(CNN) - Olympic champion Lindsey Vonn suffered a "complex knee injury" when she crashed during the opening day super-G at the Alpine Ski World Championships in Austria on Tuesday, doctors said.

The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association said the four-time Alpine World Cup champion was airlifted from the race course in Schladming, Austria, to a hospital. She was evaluated and released, according to the U.S. Ski Team.

Vonn, 28, does not need immediate surgery on the "complex torn ligament" in her right knee, said Dr. Christian Kaulfersch, who is treating her at the Schladming Hospital.

U.S. team officials are considering whether she should fly back to the United States or remain in Europe for treatment, he said.

This morning on "Early Start," BleacherReport.com's Jared Greenberg reports on the latest in Vonn's condition.

READ MORE: Ski champ Lindsey Vonn injures knee in race crash

Filed under: Injury • Sports
January 30th, 2013
07:06 AM ET

Tennis phenom Sloane Stephens on besting Serena Williams in Australian Open: I don't know how I did it, but I did

No one seemed more stunned then Sloane Stephens when she beat tennis great Serena Williams in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open. It was a moment suddenly everyone was buzzing about, including celebrities who tweeted out to the 19-year-old phenom who grew up with a Serena Williams poster on her bedroom wall. Stephens talks about what it was like going up against her idol with John Berman on “Early Start” this morning.

Stephens says her goal is to rank in the top ten by the end of the summer. “So hopefully,” Stephens says, “I can get to that goal and then at the end of the year, get a little bit higher.” One thing that’s definitely is her number of Twitter followers, reaching 60,000 as of last night, including Shaquille O'Neal. “That is unbelievable,” the young tennis star says. “I mean like Shaq tweeted me. That's insane.”

Most impressive of all is of course the reason for the tweet, the quarter final match where she defeated Serena Williams. “I don't know how I did it, but I did,” Stephens said. “I was so excited. It was so much fun. And like the energy and all the people that were there cheering. It was such a good atmosphere and I just loved being out there. I wish I could do it again.”

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Filed under: Sports • Tennis
January 29th, 2013
07:07 AM ET

CNN Trends: Man's fast food funeral, and Lebron goes to the White House

Trending on the web this morning: One man's final wish to have a fast food funeral is granted, and President Obama welcomes Lebron James & the Miami Heat to the White House.

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Filed under: NBA • President Barack Obama • Sports • Trending
January 29th, 2013
06:12 AM ET

Ravens, 49ers meet for media day in New Orleans – Carlos Diaz shares Super Bowl prep details

Forget "Fat Tuesday" - It's Super Tuesday in New Orleans! Also known as...media day at the Super Bowl.

The Baltimore Ravens arrived last night, one day after their Super Bowl 47 opponent, the San Francisco 49ers, touched down.

In a few hours, players from the Ravens and the 49ers will be getting hit from all sides...with questions!

This morning on "Early Start," HLN's Carlos Diaz shares the latest on the preps for the big game.

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Filed under: NFL • Social media • Sports • Super Bowl
January 24th, 2013
06:57 AM ET

Notre Dame football player Manti Te'o speaks out on girlfriend hoax – George Howell reports


(CNN) - Notre Dame star linebacker Manti Te'o has again admitted to lying, marking at least the second time he has acknowledged knowingly spreading falsities in the saga of his fake dead girlfriend.

In an interview with ABC News' Katie Couric set to air Thursday evening, the Heisman Trophy runner-up says he fibbed to the media - albeit briefly - after learning that the death of supposed girlfriend Lennay Kekua was a hoax.

Te'o said he believed Kekua, whom he thought was his girlfriend despite never meeting her face to face, had died of leukemia on September 12 after a car accident left her hospitalized. But he received a call December 6 from the woman he thought was Kekua, and she said she was alive, he has said.

Te'o told ABC he felt he had no choice but to continue the ruse.

Today on "Early Start," CNN's George Howell reports on the latest in the Manti Te'o story.

READ MORE: In ABC interview, Te'o admits, again, to lying about fake girlfriend

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Filed under: Football • Sports
January 18th, 2013
09:31 AM ET

Cycling analyst Eustice weighs in on Armstrong-Oprah interview part one: ‘a brave first step’

For years Lance Armstrong cheated. For years Lance Armstrong lied.  But the first time he came clean was in an interview with Oprah Winfrey  broadcast on Thursday night. In the first of his two-part interview the disgraced cycling legend told Oprah that he was indeed involved in a sophisticated doping program where he had multiple blood transfusions in addition to using a “cocktail” of drugs, including testosterone, cortisone, human growth hormone and the blood booster EPO.

Armstrong, who was recently asked to return his bronze medal from the Olympics, was also stripped of his seven Tour de France titles after the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency raised accusations against him last October. This morning two-time U.S. professional cycling champion, cycling coach and analyst John Eustice weighs in on the first 90-minute interview and what we can expect to learn from the second installment set to be broadcast on Friday night.

Eustice comments on Armstrong’s responses and attitude during the first part of the interview with Oprah. According to Eustice’s knowledge of Armstrong, he will never express “weepy, I’m sorry emotion,” because he’s naturally a “tough, hard guy.” “For Lance, that was pretty good,” he says about how Armstrong came across to viewers. “But I think he made his best efforts to put the truth out there.”

Eustice considers this interview Armstrong’s coming to terms with his life after the fallout. “He tried to explain and admitted his own doping. He tried to explain the doping culture of, not only cycling, but I’d like to say for, professional sports. And I think it’s not what everybody wants, but it’s was a very, very good, and a fairly brave first step for him.”

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Filed under: Cycling • Doping • Lance Armstrong • Sports
January 18th, 2013
06:54 AM ET

CNN Trends: Te'oing is the new Tebowing

Manti Te'o girlfriend hoax has inspires a new meme: Photos of people posing with an arm around an invisible girlfriend explodes on the web.

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Filed under: College • Football • Meme • Sports • Trending
January 16th, 2013
07:29 AM ET

Yacht racer Alex Thomson on final stretch of Vendee Globe: 'It’s still on and anything can happen'

The Mount Everest of yacht racing is in its final leg. It's called the Vendee Globe, a grueling three-month race where competitors sail solo around the world. Harsh elements, loneliness and even possible death are some of the challenges they face in this 23,000 mile, non-stop race. Last summer, “Early Start” introduced you to one of the racers, Alex Thomson.

Today, we speak to him again live from from the Hugo Boss Racing Yacht in Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brazil. Making his third attempt, Thomson is currently in fourth place in the last stretch of the race.

Sailing in the trade winds about 100 miles off the coast of Brazil, Thomson says he feels great and he can’t believe it’s already been 60 days into the race. “I’ve had a good race so far and I’m in the final stages,” he says. “The boat’s a little bit tired, I’m a little bit tired, but it’s still on, and anything can happen.”

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Filed under: Sailing • Sports
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