US Open Tennis Tournament 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament 2018
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5 Fast Facts About Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams' US Open Finals Competition

The 20-year-old will play her idol for a chance at a Grand Slam title.

Serena Williams is just a match away from winning her first Gram Slam singles title since giving birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia. The final round of the 2018 US Open takes place Saturday (Sept. 8), and her chances look strong. However, her competition is fierce.

Naomi Osaka will play against Williams in the finals. The US Open is Osaka's first Grand Slam finals appearance. At just 20 years old, she is the first Japanese woman to go this far in this particular competition. This is also the second US Open finals in a row that's featured two black women facing each other in the final round.

Read on to discover a little bit more about the young woman duking it out against the greatest athlete of all time later today at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

The 20-Year-Old Is Haitian And Japanese

Naomi's father, Leonard Francois, was born in Haiti and her mother, Tamaki Osaka, is Japanese. As a result of their interracial relationship, Tamaki Osaka did not have contact with her family for over 10 years. As a matter of convenience due to being raised in Japan for a few years, all of Naomi's siblings took their mother's last name. However, they have U.S. citizenship and reside in Florida, and Naomi isn't entirely fluent in Japanese.

 

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Played escape room with the family today. Everyone was exactly how I expected them to be 😩😂

A post shared by Naomi Osaka 大坂なおみ (@naomiosakatennis) on

Her Sister Mari Osaka Is Also A Professional Tennis Player

The 22-year-old and her younger sister are already being compared to Venus and Serena Williams, However, Mari's rise has been plagued by injury during the early years of her career.

Their father reportedly taught the girls to play tennis, and used the Williams' sisters' father Richard as a blueprint for how to teach them the sport. "The blueprint was already there,” Francois told The New York Times. “I just had to follow it.”

 

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Happy birthday to my sister/best friend/worst enemy 😩❤️🎂🎉🎊 @mari.osaka @ctrlsaregone you’re old now

A post shared by Naomi Osaka 大坂なおみ (@naomiosakatennis) on

Naomi Began To Represent Japan In Competition At Age 13

According to reports, The United States Tennis Association had "little interest" in the Osaka sisters, since neither had a junior ranking or much experience on the competitive front. When Naomi was 13, her father decided to have his daughters represent the country they left when the tennis phenom was three.

This decision has affected how Naomi is perceived both in Japan and the U.S., however, she feels that she's closer to Japan than America. “I don’t necessarily feel like I’m American," she told the Times. "I wouldn’t know what that feels like.”

"Though some in the tennis world wondered whether the decision was influenced by commercial prospects...the family insists that the girls were too young and unproven for that to be a factor."

Keeping With Japanese Custom, Naomi Bows To The Crowd

To show her support for her fans at the Australian Open in 2016, Naomi bowed to the audience after her winning match against Elina Svitolina. She continued the custom as her appearances and wins amplified.

"Yeah, it's the only part of my Japanese side," she said of the gesture. “Kind of because there were a lot of people cheering for me, and I kind of wanted to show how grateful I was. I always think that they're surprised that I'm Japanese. So the fact that there was like Japanese flags and stuff, it was, like, really touching."

 

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Wow.

A post shared by Naomi Osaka 大坂なおみ (@naomiosakatennis) on

She Loves Serena Williams

I mean...who doesn't? But during an interview after her victory over Madison Keys in Thursday's semi-final (Sept. 6), Osaka was asked if she had any words for Ms. Williams before their big square-off on Saturday. Simply and adorably put, Naomi said she "loves" Serena.

Additionally, when asked about her driving influence behind the win? "This is gonna sound really bad, but I was just thinking I really want to play Serena," she told reporters with a smile.

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Russell Wilson Buys Amazon Stock For Select Teammates

Russell Wilson recently made history as the National Football League's (NFL) highest paid player. To celebrate this wealth, the Seattle Seahawks quarterback purchased Amazon stock worth $12,000 apiece for 13 of the team's offensive linesmen, TMZ reports.

The premise behind the gesture is to help set the players on a lucrative path post-NFL. "We all have dreams of what we can build and accomplish off the field," he wrote in a memo. "One important lesson I have learned thus far in my career: The memories on the field will last forever, but we have to constantly prepare for life after football."

In the letter that was sent to his teammates, Wilson said he was indecisive on what to give them as a sign of his appreciation for their protection on the field. "Some were flashy, some were cool, but I wanted to give you something that had a lasting impact," he said. "Something that would affect the lives of you, your family, and your children." According to CNBC, each linesmen's stock could be worth $270,000 in the next 10 years if Amazon's shares continue to result in a return of 2,200 percent.

Earlier this month, Wilson signed a $140 million contract. He'll suit up with the Seahawks for the next four years. The re-signing follows a previous four-year agreement the 30-year-old athlete made with the team.

 

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SEATTLE. Let’s get it. @Seahawks #GoHawks

A post shared by Russell Wilson (@dangerusswilson) on Apr 16, 2019 at 12:43am PDT

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Russell Wilson Reportedly Becomes Highest-Paid NFL Player

At the end of the NFL's season earlier this year, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson expressed his desire to remain in the Rain City but only if his deal could be renegotiated. As of April 15, it appears that Wilson, with the help of his agent Mark Rodgers, received exactly what he asked for.

According to ESPN, Wilson and his team of seven years signed an agreement of a $140 million extension, plus an added $65 million signing bonus, currently making the 30-year-old the highest paid player in the NFL.

With this renegotiation, Wilson not only takes the spot as the richest athlete in the league from Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, but he also set a record with his signing bonus being the highest ever.

Wilson took to his Instagram page to announce the good news with a video featuring his wife, R&B singer Ciara. "Hey Seattle, we got a deal," he said in the clip while lying in bed with Ciara. "Go Hawks. But I'mma see y'all in the morning. Time for y'all to go to bed."

 

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SEATTLE. Let’s get it. @Seahawks #GoHawks

A post shared by Russell Wilson (@dangerusswilson) on Apr 16, 2019 at 12:43am PDT

News of Wilson's deal comes after four days of negotiating between the quarterback's agent and the Seahawks. Wilson and Rodgers had a deadline for midnight for the Seahawks to make a suitable decision. On Tuesday (April 16), prior to the negotiation being set in stone, Rodgers stated that "at the end of the day my guy wants to live, work, thrive in Seattle. Loves this town and its fans. He compromised to stay here. I respect that."

Wilson's move was welcomed with open arms from Ciara, who took to his Instagram comments to say "So proud of you baby! God is so good! #GoHawks."

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Mike Ehrmann

Tiger Woods Wins The 2019 Masters

Sunday afternoon (April 14) Tiger Woods has won the Masters tournament, his first major win in 11 years. The win marks an official comeback for the athlete after more than a decade of scandals and career lows.

The 43-year-old golf pro walked up to the 18th hole as the crowd cheered, reminiscent of years prior when Woods dominated the sport.

After clinching the title, Tiger smiled and threw his fist in the air. He then hugged his son in the same place he once hugged his father after a Masters win.

WATCH: The moment Tiger Woods makes a historic 11-year comeback as he wins #TheMasters 2019 pic.twitter.com/YlqYRcSwyw

— The Speaker (@TweetTheSpeaker) April 14, 2019

Shortly after his win, Twitter erupted.

“Tiger Woods’ playing career is over. He will never win another major. It’s dead. Bury it.”

Tiger Woods at the 2019 Masters: pic.twitter.com/8AmFPxJ6RV

— NOTSportsCenter (@NOTSportsCenter) April 14, 2019

https://twitter.com/JamalJimoh/status/1117495211737796608

Congratulations, Tiger! To come back and win the Masters after all the highs and lows is a testament to excellence, grit, and determination.

— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) April 14, 2019

However, Tiger's win was also met with mixed reviews by those who remember the player's past offenses, comments, and association.

nothing displays america’s collective ability to compartmentalize quite like a tiger woods victory. we don’t even really like this dude but this feels amazing.

— Bomani Jones (@bomani_jones) April 14, 2019

Caniblasian golfers winning today. This y’all mans? #TheMasters pic.twitter.com/TQniFveUPD

— Alvin aqua Blanco (@Aqua174) April 14, 2019

Trump gonna tweet congrats to Tiger and the whole TL gonna be like pic.twitter.com/PBIfrFvkuJ

— Justin Tinsley (@JustinTinsley) April 14, 2019

This is Tiger Woods' fifth Masters and after the game, he briefly spoke about the importance of the moment 22 years after his first win.

“It’s come full circle,” Woods said after the win. “It’s a special feeling.”

Congrats to Tiger Woods.

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