New issue of ESPN The Magazine on Newsstands Friday


New issue of ESPN The Magazine on Newsstands Friday

To download cover:


  • Potential top-three NBA draft pick Lonzo Ball
  • WNBA season preview
  • Special long-form stories from KweseESPN
  • An investigative report on the Syrian national soccer team, and more

ESPN The Magazine’s new issue—on newsstands Friday— includes a special feature on projected top-three pick Lonzo Ball, and the WNBA season. The issue also features several long-form pieces covering an array of topics spanning the globe, among them an investigative report on the Syrian national soccer team and its attempt at an unlikely World Cup bid amid a civil war. In celebration of the launch of KweseESPN, which brings together the best of ESPN’s international and African storytelling and is the best place to follow Africa’s stars playing at home and abroad, the issue highlights the aftermath of an Ethiopian marathoner’s dramatic protest at the Rio Olympics and the NBA success of three Cameroonian basketball players:

  • The spotlight-loving LaVar Ball continues to make headlines—most recently by announcing that his son Lonzo’s first signature shoe under the Ball family’s Big BallerBrand will retail for $495. LaVar and Lonzo—the oldest of three basketball-playing prodigies and a projected top-3 pick in this year’s NBA draft—are revolting against the shoe-game status quo and cutting out the middle man. But at some point, Lonzo will have to back up his dad’s brash talk for the grand plan to work. Senior writer Ramona Shelburne digs deep to find out whether a reclusive Lonzo, now a marked man, can break away from his dad and survive the NBA’s best shot. (Link:
  • In collaboration with E:60 and Outside the Lines, investigative reporter Steve Fainaru shares the findings of his team’s seven-month investigation into how the ongoing civil war in Syria has affected the country’s bid to compete in the next World Cup. Embedded in Syria’s civil war is a mini civil war: a wrenching and sometimes bloody fight for the soul of the national sport. (Link:
  • With the WNBA season approaching, The Mag’s Hallie Grossman profiles Kelsey Plum, the No. 1 pick in this year’s WNBA draft. Plum, a brash and fearless star during her college days at Washington, tells The Mag she is happy to patiently wait for her turn in the spotlight with the San Antonio Stars. Also, WNBA insider Mechelle Voepel offers her take on these MVP candidates: the Los Angeles Sparks’ Nneka Ogwumike, the New York Liberty’s Tina Charles, the Seattle Storm’s Breanna Stewart, the Minnesota Lynx’s Maya Moore and the Washington Mystics’ Elena Delle Donne.
  • The launch of KweseESPN features two compelling long-form stories. In “A Runner in Exile,” senior writer Kurt Streeter tells the tale of Ethiopian marathoner Feyisa Lilesa, who, after his dramatic protest at the Rio Olympics, didn’t feel safe returning home. But even in his new life in America, he still must look over his shoulder. (Link: In “Cameroon Calling,” senior writer Jackie MacMullan chronicles the rise of Cameroonian basketball through the NBA success stories of three countrymen: Luc Mbah a Moute of the Los Angeles Clippers, Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers and Pascal Siakam of the Toronto Raptors. (Link:

Also in this issue:

  • ESPN staff writer Tom Haberstroh gets to the root of LeBron James’ sudden struggle at the free throw line, which starts well before the ball leaves his hands.
  • A striking photo act shows Maasai Cricket Warriors as agents for change, stumping for women’s rights in Kenya.
  • In the recurring series “Hang Time,” which features ESPN senior writer Sam Alipour, a pair of Indy drivers take in a race of a different color: the Kentucky Derby.
  • Senior writer Ryan McGee catches up with Alexander Rossi, who has grown into the title forever attached to his name: Indianapolis 500 winner.
  • In “The Numbers,” columnist Peter Keating writes that the Rockets, despite their recent playoff loss to the Spurs, have provided the NBA a blueprint for upsetting the Warriors with their high-risk, high-reward three-point shooting.
  • In “The Truth,” columnist Howard Bryant argues that NFL draftees should bag the bro hugs with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, who amounts to their adversary.
  • UFC champ Demetrious Johnson, perhaps the best pound-for-pound fighter alive, tees off on CM Punk, McGregor-Mayweather and MMA fans in a no-holds-barred interview with Brett Okamoto.
  • In “Ace Is Wild,” Jason Schwartz explores the fire that makes Red Sox star Chris Sale indomitable on the mound—but prone to blowups.



Jennifer Cingari Christie

Based in New York City, Jennifer Cingari Christie is a Communications Manager for ESPN Films and Original Content. Her projects include the critically-acclaimed 30 for 30 documentary series, ESPN The Magazine and The ESPYS, among others.
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