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Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — Venus Williams is far more than a legendary tennis champion.

The 7-time Grand Slam singles title holder spent years in her sport rallying for equal pay among both the men and women. And guess what, Williams, through her collaboration with the Women’s Tennis Association, a 2006 Op-Ed titled "Venus Williams On Equal Pay at Wimbledon," and her famed play on the court, she got tennis' biggest tournament to erase the pay gap.

In 2007, two years after Williams first solo win at the All England Club, the chairman of the tournament finally said it was time to "eliminate the difference" in pay, an unprecedented move.

That may have been almost a decade ago, but what Williams accomplished has never been more relevant. With Wimbledon underway Monday, Williams recently spoke to ABC News, reflecting on what she accomplished and how far the rest of sports still has to go.

"Tennis is definitely a star for women in sports," she said when asked about her leadership in the equal pay movement. "[But] other sports have a long way to go."

Williams, now 36, added that the "world [and sports] reflect where women are" in it, and that "there's always work to be done."

Just this past March, U.S. women's soccer filed a wage-discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The filing, obtained by ESPN, cited how much more revenue women in soccer generate than men, despite the fact they are paid "almost four times less," ESPN reported.

In spite of the large discrepancies in sports like soccer, Williams admitted there are positive things happening.

"As long as we set up equality, we'll go in the right direction," she said.

In an interview with ESPN two years ago, Williams said about her efforts a decade back, "A lot of players were not comfortable talking about equal prize money for whatever reason, or maybe weren't able to express exactly how they felt. But I was."

Williams has never been afraid to say what's on her mind and when asked by ABC News about substances, banned or legal, as they pertain to tennis, she had a simple answer.

"It's something that you just have to be aware of," she said. "Athletes like everyone else, at times take supplements, but just have to consult your doctors and work on that. It's a process but it's achievable ... it's my job to be healthy."

Williams spoke to ABC News as part of a campaign with Silk, promoting a plant-based diet, so what an athlete puts into his or her body is something she takes seriously.

Maria Sharapova was not brought up by name, but the famed tennis champion was in the news earlier this month, after receiving a two-year suspension for taking a substance that was added to the banned list in January.

When asked about the evolving and changing list, Williams said, "It's updated every year, so you have to stay abreast the best you can."

At a press conference on June 8, Sharapova said she "did not" intentionally take the banned substance.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images(SONOMA, Calif.) — With a last-lap pass, in his final year of NASCAR Spint Cup racing, Tony Stewart won on Sunday.  The veteran's victory in the Toyota-Save Mart 350 at Sonoma breaks a three-year, 84-race drought.

Stewart took the lead after a pit call and restart on Lap 91 of the 110 lap race, but, reports, Denny Hamlin was able to pass Stewart after he wheel-hoped into Turn 7.  But Stewart caught Hamlin in Turn 11, making contact with Hamlin's No. 11 Toyota and sending it into the outside wall.

Hamlin was able to hold on for a second-place finish.

The win give Stewart a good chance of qualifying for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint.  He's now 32nd and just nine point away from reaching the 30th spot and competing for a fourth Chase title.

Here are the top 10 drivers at the Toyota-Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway:

1. Tony Stewart
2. Denny Hamlin
3. Joey Logano
4. Carl Edwards
5. Marin Truex Jr.
6. Kevin Harvick
7. Kyle Busch
8. Ryan Newman
9. Kasey Kahne
10. Kurt Busch

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:


St. Louis 11, Seattle 6


Minnesota 7, N.-Y. Yankees 1
Cleveland 9, Detroit 3
Baltimore 12, Tampa Bay 5
Chi. White Sox 5, Toronto 2
Kansas City 6, Houston 1
Texas 6, Boston 2
Anaheim 7, Oakland 6


Cincinnati 3, San Diego 0
Miami 6, Chi.Cubs 1
Atlanta 2, N.-Y. Mets 2
Washington 3, Milwaukee 2
San Francisco 8, Philadelphia 7
Colorado 9, Arizona 7
Pittsburgh 4, Los Angeles 3

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Elsa/Getty Images(KNOXVILLE, Tenn.) -- The health of former Tennessee women's basketball coach Pat Summitt is declining, according to a statement.

“On behalf of Pat Summitt’s family, we acknowledge the past few days have been difficult for Pat as her early onset dementia, ‘Alzheimer’s Type,’ progresses," said spokesperson Erin Freeman. "She is surrounded by those who mean the most to her and during this time, we ask for prayers for Pat and her family and friends, as well as your utmost respect and privacy. Thank you.”

Summitt, 64, made history taking the University of Tennessee's Lady Vols to more victories than any men's or women's college basketball team coach. She coached from 1974 to 2012 and started when she was just 22 years old, claiming eight NCAA titles with the team over her career.

In 2011, she announced that she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

"It hurt me but I go, 'Well, I got to do it. I got to deal with it,'" she told ABC News' Robin Roberts at the time.

Summitt was the first N-C-A-A basketball coach, and one of only four in history, to reach 1,000 wins.  She was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2000. In 2012, President Obama awarded Summit the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(CINCINNATI) -- It was a special weekend in Cincinnati as the Reds honored the all-time hit king and one of their greatest teams.

The team celebrated the 40th anniversary of the 1976 World Series championship team and inducted Pete Rose into the team's Hall of Fame.

It's official. #14forever

— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 26, 2016

Rose delivered a speech thanking the fans for their support, Rose said he accomplished all he did for them.

"You never realized this after all these years, that I was really, you motivated me to play the way I did," he said.

As the man known as Charlie Hustle spoke, music hinting that his time was running short began to play. Rose, though, refused to be played off. "In closing, I can honestly tell you to date this is the biggest thing ever to happen to me in baseball," he concluded.

Gifts for @PeteRose_14: Custom painting by Bart Forbes and custom crystal sculpture created by Studio 11. #14forever

— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 26, 2016

On Sunday, the three-day festivities concluded with Rose's son, Pete Rose Jr. throwing the ceremonial first pitch to his father.

Today's first pitch: Pete Rose, Jr. throws to @PeteRose_14. #14forever

— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 26, 2016

Rose's induction to the team's Hall of Fame had to be approved by MLB because of his lifetime ban for betting on his team, according to ESPN.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(WHITE SUPHUR SPRINGS, W.V.) -- Devastating West Virginia flooding has forced the PGA Tour to cancel the Greenbrier Classic.

“We are heartbroken by the devastation that the residents of West Virginia are experiencing?at this time and the reports of lives lost due to the terrible flooding,” said PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem in a statement. “Cancelling ?The?Greenbrier Classic is certainly the most prudent course of action as our?foremost concern is the well-being of those who are having to live through this tragic situation.?Our thoughts and prayers are with them.”

At least 24 people have died because of the severe flooding in West Virginia.

The Greenbrier Classic was scheduled for July 7-10 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Officials said the course, the Old White TPC, "suffered extensive damage from the flooding and?is beyond reasonable repair to conduct the tournament."


Please keep everyone in your thoughts and prayers affected by these horrific flood waters. #StayStrongWV

— TheGreenbrierClassic (@GbrClassic) June 24, 2016


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Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) -- Shortstop Jose Reyes signed a minor league contract with the New York Mets Saturday after becoming a free agent earlier in the day, according to ESPN.

Reyes was originally signed by the Mets in 1999 when he was a teenager out of the Dominicatn Republic.

According to ESPN, Reyes was a member of the Mets organization for 12 years and won the National League batting title in 2011. He then left the Mets for a 6-year, $106 million contract with the Miami Marlins.

After being suspended by the MLB for violating its domestic abuse policy, Reyes appeared in nine games with Triple-A Aluquerque, and last week, the Rockies designated him for assignment, ESPN reports.

The Mets announced Saturday that Reyes will report to Class A Brooklyn and is expected to play Sunday.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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PowerFly/ YORK) -- Flyboarding, when a rider zips around on a hoverboard propelled by water, is the very latest in extreme sports with a twist of sci-fi.

And stuntwoman Gemma Weston, a 29-year-old from New Zealand, is the number one female professional flyer in the world.

“Being able to fly is to push the boundaries of what is possible ... you do literally feel like you are flying and you feel a little bit like a superhero,” she told Nightline.

The hoverboard and its rider “fly” into the air by the force of water pumped through a hose by a jet ski engine. Flyboarding was only invented in 2011 by professional French jet skier Frank Zapata, but once she saw it, Weston couldn’t resist.

Her intrinsic thrill-seeking spirit led her to a career as a stuntwoman. She has appeared in The Hobbit trilogy, Spartacus and Pete’s Dragon.

Weston can perform twists, dives and backflips as she zips over the open water. She entered the 2015 World Cup in Dubai as an unknown, and she crushed it, taking first place.

“My best trick I would say is one that I am not sure many people can do,” she said. “It’s basically a kind of side flip. I kind of go down and compress my body to the side and let my knees rise up over my body and kind of rotate so it’s kind of a forward moving side flip.”

After her World Cup win, she had two goals: winning big again this year and bringing Flyboarding to the masses.

Weston and her brother Beau Weston, also a Flyboarder, train in Melbourne, Florida, with Mark Baxter’s Powerfly Team.

“Gemma, she is something,” Baxter said. “She has a very natural talent for Flyboarding. When she came, it was actually a year ago, and here she is, the world champion.”

Baxter says the equipment is evolving as quickly as the sport. Already the best Flyboarders can control both board and jet ski at the same time by remote control, and Zapata is now developing a new futuristic-looking hoverboard that could remove the hose and jet ski attachment.

The Westons are one of the only brother-sister duos competing in extreme sports today, and the two competed at the 2016 Flyboarding European Championship in France earlier this month. Beau placed sixth, but his sister Gemma again placed first.

“New Zealanders are called ‘kiwis’ because that is our national bird, but it’s a flightless bird, so they can’t fly, but we’re proving Kiwis can fly,” Gemma Weston said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Allen Kee / ESPN Images(OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.) -- After their NBA finals defeat, the Golden State Warriors are going to continue with their plans to pursue Kevin Durant in free agency, league sources told ESPN.

According to those sources, Durant is not the Warriors' only option in free agency. However, they stressed that Durant will be the Warrior's top target at the opening of the offseason marketplace on July 1.

ESPN reports Golden State and the San Antonio Spurs are considered the NBA's top two threats to Oklahoma City's efforts to keep Durant for the duration of the summer.

Sources told ESPN that the Warriors and Spurs are in the small list of teams that are planning to secure a meeting with Durant in person after he selects the teams he wants to court him at the start of the free agency.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Joe Faraoni / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) -- New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple may have made it to the big leagues, but he's not too big of a star to deny his mother the pleasure of driving him to his first day of practice as an NFL player.

Early Thursday morning, Apple's mom, Annie Apple, posted a video to Twitter of her driving up to the training facility at MetLife Stadium. She's been driving Apple to football practice since he was a kid, she wrote, and couldn't pass up the chance to drop him off at training camp.

"It's Eli's first day," Annie says, with her excitement clear in her voice.

"Oh, we gotta go," Eli responds, adding that he needs to "get to the bus." His mother, however, ignores him and says, "Look at Eli's little security man," as the two pass a security guard standing at the front of the facility.

The proud mother then posted a video of her 20-year-old son walking toward the bus, narrating his every move, with the hashtag #MommyCam.

"Look at Eli," Annie says, almost in disbelief. "Aw, he's putting in his bag in the bus with other grown people."

"This is so cool, dude," Eli's sister replies, before scolding her mother.

"Oh my god, Mom," she says.

As Apple was directed by Giants staff on where to go, his mother didn't seem to mind that someone else was telling her son what to do.

"Aw, he's getting told what to do," she says sentimentally. Apple then walks away and out of sight, careful not to acknowledge his mother's antics at his new place of work.

Responding to a follower who asked why Apple couldn't go to training camp alone, Annie had a brilliant response.

"We enjoy these important life moments as a family," she wrote. "You only get one first day of OTAs."

Annie Apple is a social media star in her own right, tweeting dozens of times a day to her nearly 22,000 followers. ESPN even called the newly minted Sunday NFL Countdown contributor the "Giants' biggest social media star right now."

The football mom's tweets vary on the topics of family, politics and even the recent NBA Finals. She even occasionally live-tweets during The Bachelor. Apple said he doesn't expect his mother to change, ESPN reported.

On Friday, Annie's Twitter feed was filled with birthday wishes for the now 42-year-old.

Apple was the 10th overall pick in the NFL draft in April. The New Jersey native played for Ohio State University, winning the CFP National Championship in 2014.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



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