The 2014 TSL Season in Sports was another action-packed, multi-layered experience with athletics once again crossing over into national news and sparking social and political conversations on race, wealth privilege and homosexuality in pro sports. Conversations that are offspring of the emotionally-charged fabric of athletic competition and our country's dependence on it. 

Records were broken on the field and revelations were made off of it, as the changing dynamics of a far-reaching sports landscape forced Americans to look into the mirror and evaluate their own morals, beliefs and character.

Here's another TSL piece I wrote (Our Game 2 Exclusive) that I consider a must-read as we reflect on the most important sports stories that we covered with our bold, culturally unique, eloquent and impassioned flavor. 

Olympic halfpipe destroyer Angeli VanLaanen is the epitome of perseverance. She rebounded from debilitating Lyme Disease — which took her out of commission in the prime of her career —  to qualify for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Her journey is well documented and her relentless attitude embodies the Olympic spirit as well as any athlete. As luck would have it, after fighting her way back to the top of her game, she suffered another setback when she tore her right MCL during her final practice session the day before her freeskiing halfpipe Olympic debut.

Though she didn't medal, her fighting spirit was once again on full display for the world to see and her biggest accomplishment to this day is the way she has raised awareness for Lyme Disease using a film documenting her recovery, and given hope to the thousands of people in America inflicted with the disease. 





JR Gamble joined The Shadow League in 2012. The General Manager of Content & Social Media is in his 25th year of covering sports and culture professionally. He has covered a wide variety of major sports and entertainment topics across different mediums, including radio, newspapers, magazines and national TV. His passion is baseball, the culturing of baseball and preserving and documenting the historically-impactful accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans in baseball.