Sports Illustrated doesn’t give out praise lightly which means that the honor is always well-deserved! Having defeated Tampa Bay Lightning, Chicago Sky, and the Milwaukee Bucks, the Atlanta Braves were named Sports Illustrated’s team of the year. This may come as no surprise to the team and their fans who have been cheering them on tirelessly.
Atlanta Braves Recent Victories
For the first time in more than two decades, the Atlanta Braves won the World Series title in November. They defeated the Astros in game six in Houston, making them the only Major League Baseball team that won the series in three different home cities. After the win in November, Freddie Freeman was asked how it feels that no one will be able to ask them about the Atlanta sports narrative again, to which he replied gleefully that they killed the narrative for a long time. After the World Series win, Swanson shared his joy saying that no better story could be written than God bringing them back to Houston to win the World Series and how everything comes full circle.
A Well-Deserved Win
After the team won the award, Sports Illustrated wrote that few teams truly capture the heart of their city on the way to a long-awaited championship the way that the Atlanta Braves did in 2021, and that this is the reason why they took the Sports Illustrated Team of the Year Award. Many will agree that this win was truly well-deserved by the hardworking team.
Other 2021 Sports Illustrated Awards Winners
Alongside the Braves, many other notable athletes received this year’s Sports Illustrated awards. Breakthrough Athlete of the Year went to LaMelo Ball. The Muhammad Ali Legacy Award was earned by Billie Jean King. Tom Brady was given the award for Sportsperson of the Year. It’s certainly been an exciting season and an overall interesting year for sports fans and athletes alike.
The Oldest Living Olympic Gymnastics Champion Recently Turned 100
The winner of 10 Olympic medals in gymnastics and Holocaust survivor, Agnes Keleti, celebrated her 100th birthday in her native Budapest, punctuating a life of adventure, tragedy, achievement, and perseverance which, she says, passed by in a flash. She says that these 100 years felt to her like they were 60.
Going through a copy of a new book about Agnes’ life, The Queen of Gymnastics: 100 Years of Agnes Keleti, her trademark modesty was on full display. She thinks that the name of the book is an exaggeration.
Keleti’s Incredible Life in Gymnastics
Keleti was born Agnes Klein back in 1921. She had her wonderful career interrupted by World War II and the subsequent cancellation of the 1940 and 1944 Olympics. This forced her off her gymnastics team in 1941 because of her Jewish ancestry. Agnes Keleti went into hiding in the Hungarian countryside where she managed to survive the Holocaust by assuming a false identity and working as a maid.
Her sister and mother survived the armed conflict with the help of the famed Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, however. Her father and other relatives perished at Auschwitz, among more than half a million Jews from Hungaria killed in Nazi death camps and or by Hungarian Nazis.
Keleti then decided to resume her career after the war. She set to compete at the 1948 London Olympics, but an injury dashed her hopes. She made her official debut at the age of 31 at the 1952 Helsinki Games, winning a gold medal in the floor exercise as well as two bronzes and a silver.
When she was 35, she became the oldest gold medalist in gymnastics history in Melbourne. At the same time, the Soviet Union attacked Hungary following an unsuccessful Anti-Soviet uprising. She then immigrated to Israel and worked as a trainer and a coach of the Israeli Olympic gymnastics team until the 1990s.
Keleti was awarded the Israel Prize in 2017. It is the highest possible cultural honor, and she is a recipient of other awards, including being named one of Hungary’s “Athletes of the Nation.”
Agnes Keleti’s Life Today
Today, Keleti follows her doctor’s advice to avoid performing full leg splits. Her infectious laughter and near-perpetual smile are reminders that even in times of great hardship, there remains a huge potential for perseverance and joy in life.