Tom Goldman

Tom Goldman is NPR's sports correspondent. His reports can be heard throughout NPR's news programming, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and NPR.org.

With a beat covering the entire world of professional sports, both in and outside of the United States, Goldman reporting covers the broad spectrum of athletics from the people to the business of athletics.

During his more than 20 years with NPR, Goldman has covered every major athletic competition including the Super Bowl, the World Series, the NBA Finals, golf and tennis championships, and the Olympic Games.

His pieces are diverse and include both perspective and context. Goldman often explores people's motivations for doing what they do, whether it's solo sailing around the world or pursuing a gold medal. In his reporting, Goldman searches for the stories about the inspirational and relatable amateur and professional athletes.

Goldman contributed to NPR's 2009 Edward R. Murrow award for his coverage of the 2008 Beijing Olympics and to a 2010 Murrow award for contribution to a series on high school football, "Friday Night Lives." Earlier in his career, Goldman's piece about Native American basketball players earned a 2004 Dick Schaap Excellence in Sports Journalism Award from the Center for the Study of Sport in Society at Northeastern University and a 2004 Unity Award from the Radio-Television News Directors Association.

In January 1990, Goldman came to NPR to work as an associate producer for sports with Morning Edition. For the next seven years he reported, edited and produced stories and programs. In June 1997, he became NPR's first full time sports correspondent.

For five years before NPR, Goldman worked as a news reporter and then news director in local public radio. In 1984, he spent a year living on an Israeli kibbutz. Two years prior he took his first professional job in radio in Anchorage, Alaska, at the Alaska Public Radio Network.

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Sports
5:03 pm
Thu October 17, 2013

NFL Fans Weigh Impact Of Players' Head Injuries

Fans cheer wildly with a Kansas City Chiefs player at an NFL game against the Oakland Raiders. For many fans, the risky side of football doesn't quell their love of the sport.
Ed Zurga AP

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 5:35 pm

The NFL season is in high gear — a fact that pleases the roughly 64 percent of Americans who watch football. The season rolls on despite the now constant news about concussions in the sport.

The recent TV documentary League of Denial and the book by the same name claim that for years the NFL had denied and covered up evidence linking football and brain damage. Is the concussion conversation challenging this country's deep love for the game?

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Sports
5:06 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Doping Scandals Cast Pall Over Cycling Group's Election

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 6:17 am

Cycling's international governing body, the UCI, will hold a presidential election in Florence, Italy, on Friday. It comes at a time when cycling is still trying to recover from the admissions of Lance Armstrong and the ever-present cloud of doping.

Sports
3:59 am
Thu September 19, 2013

WNBA's Elena Della Donne Thrives In Chicago

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 9:44 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

All right. In this country, women's pro basketball playoffs begin tonight. The contenders seeking a win of intergalactic proportions, as you said a moment ago, Renee, include the Chicago Sky. They've never made the WNBA playoffs before.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Well, a big reason for their success is six foot five inch rookie Elena Della Donne. She's been famous for a while. She was once known as the player who walked away from the best team in women's college basketball.

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NPR Story
4:26 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

Broncos, Ravens Pick Up Where They Left Off In NFL Opener

Originally published on Thu September 5, 2013 6:10 pm

The NFL season kicks off Thursday night, with reigning champs the Baltimore Ravens taking on the Denver Broncos. Pro football has some new rules and the league just settled a multi-million dollar class action lawsuit with players.

Sports
4:46 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Concussion Suits: NFL, Retirees Reach $765 Million Deal

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 9:51 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

A dark cloud hanging over the National Football League is a bit lighter today. There is a proposed settlement in a huge concussion lawsuit, brought by over 4,000 former players. The agreement was reached and announced yesterday, a week before the start of the new NFL season. If approved, the league will pay out $765 million to as many as 18,000 former players. NPR's Tom Goldman reports.

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The Two-Way
6:38 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

USA Swimming Faces Lingering Doubts Over Sexual Abuse

Attorney Robert Allard, seen here with former swimmer Jancy Thompson in 2010, says USA Swimming still needs to improve its handling of sexual abuse claims. The organization is also facing congressional scrutiny.
Ben Margot AP

There's concern the sport of swimming still may be dealing with a sexual abuse problem in the United States.

It's been three years since revelations emerged in the media. A number of in-depth reports in 2010 likened the situation in swimming to the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal: Coaches molesting under-age female swimmers; some of the abuse continuing for years without punishment.

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Sports
5:02 am
Tue August 27, 2013

USA Swimming To Review Sexual Misconduct Prevention Program

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 5:13 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The sport of swimming is back in the news, with new questions being raised about whether swimming has effectively confronted a sexual abuse problem, a problem that's been revealed in recent years. USA Swimming - the sport's governing body in this country - announced an independent review of Safe Sport, their organization's program to protect athletes from sexual abuse. NPR's Tom Goldman reports.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: In the spring of 2010, swimming's secrets emerged in a flurry of media reports.

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The Two-Way
5:16 am
Sun August 4, 2013

U.S. Men's Soccer Is On A Roll — All The Way To Rio?

Members of the U.S. men's soccer team take a lap around the field after beating Panama 1-0 to capture the CONCACAF Gold Cup on Sunday in Chicago.
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 2:55 pm

At the beginning of 2013 — with only a year before soccer's crown jewel event, the World Cup in Brazil — all was not rosy with the U.S. Men's National Soccer Team. There was that 0-0 tie with Canada, and then a 2-1 loss to Honduras in a World Cup qualifier.

But now, the cry is, "Break up the Americans!"

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Sports
4:52 pm
Wed July 31, 2013

For One Seniors Basketball Team, The Game Never Gets Old

She-Ca-Go's Leona Cochran attempts to block Jo Cahill's shot during the team's game against the Colorado Combos at the National Senior Games in Cleveland on Monday.
Benjamin Morris for NPR

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 6:05 pm

As athletes age, participation in team sports seems to fall by the wayside in favor of more low-impact activities like swimming and walking. But that's not for everyone. The National Senior Games finishes a two-week run in Cleveland on Thursday. The players for She-Ca-Go, a women's basketball team in the 75-to-79 age division, are still in it for the camaraderie and competition.

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Sports
7:07 am
Sun July 28, 2013

Athletic Glory At An Advanced Age

Originally published on Sun July 28, 2013 12:31 pm

Transcript

SUSAN STAMBERG, HOST:

The Olympic motto - Faster, Higher, Stronger - has always applied to an ideal: a young, supremely fit athlete, performing wondrous tasks. The motto means something different for athletes over 50. Thousands of them are in Cleveland for the National Senior Games. These games may be lacking in youth and buff physiques, but NPR's Tom Goldman reports the event still has great significance for those are competing and watching.

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Sports
4:32 am
Wed July 10, 2013

L.A. Embraces Dodger Rookie Yasiel Puig

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 8:03 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In baseball, the summer of Yasiel Puig goes on. The breakout star for the Los Angeles Dodgers is a mere five weeks into his major league career. And in that short time he is set hitting records and also helping turn around a struggling Dodgers team. Puig is a 22-year-old Cuban defector. His past remains a bit of a mystery, but that doesn't seem to bother the fans caught up in Puig-mania.

Here's NPR's Tom Goldman.

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Sports
5:28 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Game 4 Of The NBA Finals A Moment Of Truth For Lebron James

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 6:35 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Conventional wisdom holds that LeBron James of the Miami Heat is the best basketball player on the planet. But despite all that talent, he's had some struggles on the court, most notably now in the NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs. James has failed to crack 20 points in any of the three games so far and at times he's looked indecisive against a very good Spurs defense.

As NPR's Tom Goldman reports, tonight's game is a moment of truth, as LeBron James and the Heat try to even the series.

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Sports
5:19 am
Thu June 6, 2013

NBA Purists Swoon Over Spurs' Style Of Play

Originally published on Thu June 6, 2013 6:02 am

The NBA Finals begin Thursday night in Miami. Though they haven't won a championship since 2007, the San Antonio Spurs have remained in the hunt because of their style of team play. The Spurs will face the Miami Heat.

NPR Story
4:13 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

Olympian Bestowed 9-Year-Old Gold Medal

Originally published on Fri May 31, 2013 9:23 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Nearly nine years after the Athens Summer Olympic Games, American shot putter Adam Nelson has been declared a winner at those games. NPR's Tom Goldman has the story of an Olympic dream come true at last.

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Sports
4:42 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Australian Adam Scott Wins Golf's Masters

Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 1:28 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Australia is celebrating its first Masters champion. Hard to believe, but the great Australian golfer Greg Norman never did this. Adam Scott did, yesterday. He's 32 and outlasted both the field and the weather to win a playoff against the 2009 Masters winner Angel Cabrera.

NPR's Tom Goldman reports.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: You know those classic, gorgeous scenes, late on a final round Sunday at Augusta? Sun low in the sky, shadows reaching across the 18th green? Yesterday was just like, except for the shadows and sun.

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Sports
6:47 am
Sun April 14, 2013

A Controversial Drop Puts Woods Behind On Final Day Of Masters

Originally published on Sun April 14, 2013 11:04 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

It is the final round of The Masters today. American Brandt Snedeker and Argentine Angel Cabrera share the lead at 7 under par. Pre-tournament favorite Tiger Woods is four shots behind, which isn't bad considering what he went through yesterday. From Augusta, Georgia, NPR's Tom Goldman reports on how golf's greatest major almost lost its greatest player.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Fore, please. Tiger Woods now driving.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)

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Sports
5:02 pm
Sat April 13, 2013

Down To The Putt: Golf Analytics Gain Traction

Originally published on Sat April 13, 2013 6:09 pm

Numbers crunching has become a big deal in sports. Analytics have been slower to take hold in the tradition-bound game of golf, but it is happening. NPR's Tom Goldman reports on the phenomenon from the tournament most steeped in tradition, the Masters.

Sports
5:01 am
Wed April 10, 2013

UConn Wins 8th National Championship Over Louisville

Originally published on Wed April 10, 2013 7:20 am

The University of Connecticut has won the women's NCAA basketball championship, beating Louisville 93-60. Louisville was trying to become just the second school to win both the men's and women's titles. But the Cards couldn't duplicate the Louisville men's championship from Monday night.

The Two-Way
2:44 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

Giant-Killing Louisville Women Look To Keep Charmed Run Alive

Head coach Jeff Walz of the Louisville Cardinals talks to his team during a timeout in the game against the Maryland Terrapins in the second round of the NCAA women's basketball tournament.
G. Flume Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 7:34 pm

Tonight, there's a chance for a rare double in NCAA Division I college basketball.

As we reported earlier, if the University of Louisville scores a victory in the women's championship game, it will be only the second school to capture both the men's and women's titles in the same year.

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NPR Story
5:01 am
Mon April 8, 2013

Women's NCAA Championship Game Is Set

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 10:09 am

Transcript

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: And this is Tom Goldman in New Orleans where the Louisville women's team continued its surprising run through the tournament. It followed up stunners over Baylor and Tennessee with a 64 to 57 come-from-behind semi-final win over California last night. Louisville guard Antonita Slaughter made six out of 10 three-point shots and head coach Jeff Walz was left to explain, again, how the Cards are doing it.

JEFF WALZ: And we're figuring out a way to pull them out and win and play well at the right time.

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