U.S. Open

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2020 U.S. Open at Winged Foot TV, live stream schedule

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The 120th U.S. Open airs live on NBC, GOLF Channel and Peacock with nearly 45 hours of live tournament coverage from Winged Foot Golf Club starting Thursday.

NBC Sports airs the U.S. Open for the first time since its 20-year run from 1995-2014. The USGA announced in June that the media rights for its championships transferred to NBC Universal through 2026, renewing a partnership that began in 1954 with the first U.S. Open to air on TV.

The field includes 48 of the top 50 male golfers in the world, led by No. 1 Dustin Johnson and including 15-time major champion Tiger Woods.

Primary live coverage will be supplemented by alternate feeds of featured groups, featured holes, aU.S. Open 360 and a U.S. Open pop-up channel on Peacock. More details are here.

There are Olympic connections: the 2020 and 2021 U.S. Opens are Olympic qualifying tournaments, where world ranking points go into determining the 60-player field for the Tokyo Games. The field will be taken from the Official World Golf Ranking immediately after the 2021 U.S. Open.

Longtime Olympic fans will recognize the musical refrain synonymous with NBC’s U.S. Open broadcasts. Yanni‘s “In Celebration of Man” was first used with the intro to the 1992 Barcelona Games preview show.

MORE: As U.S. Open starts, what U.S. Olympic golf team looks like

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2020 U.S. Open Golf TV, Live Stream Schedule

Day Time (ET) Round Channel
Thursday 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Round 1 GOLF Channel | STREAM
2-5 p.m. NBC | STREAM
5-7 p.m. Peacock | STREAM
Friday 7:30-9:30 a.m. Round 2 Peacock | STREAM
9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. GOLF Channel | STREAM
4-7 p.m. NBC | STREAM
Saturday 9-11 a.m. Round 3 Peacock | STREAM
11 a.m.-7:30 p.m. NBC | STREAM
Sunday 8-10 a.m. Round 4 Peacock | STREAM
10 a.m.-12 p.m. GOLF Channel | STREAM
12-6 p.m. NBC | STREAM

Dominic Thiem wins U.S. Open epic, buries ghosts of past Slam finals

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Seven months ago, Dominic Thiem said it would count more if he won his first Grand Slam with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic still around.

What’s the value of this one?

Thiem, the second-seeded Austrian, rallied past German Alexander Zverev 2-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (6) in the U.S. Open final to become a major champion without having to go through any of the men who have combined for 56 major titles.

“It doesn’t matter at the end who did I beat or which tournament it is,” Thiem said late Sunday night. “We both didn’t face one of the Big Three, so I guess that was in the back of the head for both of us. That’s why we were on nerves.”

If the final wasn’t always beautiful tennis, the title was still hard-earned.

Zverev, the 23-year-old face of the next generation, bullied a nervous Thiem in the first set. But he began hiccuping late in the second. Still, he broke Thiem to go up 2-1 in the third. But he allowed Thiem to break right back and work his way into a match that lasted four hours, one minute.

“I’m playing bad, I’m way too tight, legs are heavy, arms are heavy,” Thiem said. “But I always had hope and the expectation that at one point I free up. Luckily it was not too late.”

In the fifth, each man was broken while serving for the match, forcing the tiebreak.

For years, Thiem, Zverev and others battled unsuccessfully to unseat the legends. The fight extended as both men cramped. Zverev hit a 68 mile-per-hour serve, and won the point. He also double-faulted twice.

Thiem finally ended it on his third championship point, becoming the first man to win the U.S. Open final from two sets down since Pancho Gonzales in 1949. The last man to do it in any major final was Argentine Gaston Gaudio at the 2004 French Open (the last major without a Big Three member in the semifinals).

“The match was really tough, like a drama, like a movie until the end,” said Nicolas Massu, Thiem’s Chilean coach who swept singles and doubles gold medals at the 2004 Olympics.

Thiem became the first man to win his first Slam in six years and the first major champion other than Federer, Nadal and Djokovic in four years. He’s the first player born in the 1990s to win a Slam and the second Austrian, after Thomas Muster, who took the 1995 French Open.

(Coincidentally, Austria failed to win an individual Alpine skiing World Cup season title this year. The last time that happened? 1995.)

Federer (knee injury) and Nadal (travel concerns) missed the Open. Djokovic was defaulted in the fourth round last Sunday for hitting a ball that struck a linesperson in the throat.

Thiem became a co-favorite with Russian Daniil Medvedev, whom he throttled in a semifinal sweep Friday night. All week, Thiem downplayed any difference in not having the Big Three in the bubble.

“It doesn’t matter if I play one of the Big Three members or if I play somebody else,” he said before the final. “From the moment Novak was out of the tournament, it was clear that there’s going to be a new Grand Slam champion. From that moment on, that was also out of my mind.”

No doubt Thiem paid his dues.

He played three previous Grand Slam finals, losing to Nadal twice at the French Open and to Djokovic at the Australian Open in February. Nadal is a record 12-time French Open champion (going for 13 starting in two weeks). Djokovic is a record eight-time Australian Open champion.

“I really hope, also, that I win my maiden slam when they’re still around,” Thiem said after falling to Djokovic in five sets in Melbourne, “because it just counts more.”

This one counts plenty.

Thiem entered a Slam final as the favorite for the first time after dropping one set over his first six matches. He admitted afterward that the thought of losing — and dropping to 0-4 in Slam finals — was in his head.

“It’s always in your head,” he said. “Is this chance ever coming back again? This, that, all these thoughts, which are not great to play your best tennis, to play free.”

As time goes on, the details will fade. Who was there, who wasn’t. How Thiem played.

But this fact will endure: Thiem is a major champion.

“I expect that it’s going to be easier for me now in the biggest tournaments,” he said. “I had a great career so far, way better career than I could ever dreamt of, but until today there was still a big part, a big goal missing.

“I dedicated basically my whole life until this point to win one of the four majors. Now I did it.”

MORE: How Jay-Z, Beyonce helped Naomi Osaka come out of her shell

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Naomi Osaka wins U.S. Open, rallying for racial justice

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As Naomi Osaka lay on the Arthur Ashe Stadium court for 18 seconds after winning her second U.S. Open, staring into the sky, she recalled watching previous tennis greats do the same.

“I’ve always wanted to see what they saw,” she said after rallying past Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka 1-6, 6-3, 6-3.

So much else of what Osaka did on court the last two weeks was never before seen.

She walked into Ashe Stadium two Mondays ago for her first-round match wearing a black face mask. It bore the name Breonna Taylor, a Black woman who was fatally shot by police on March 13.

After Osaka’s three-set opener, she felt confident enough to declare this publicly: she brought seven different masks to the tournament, one for each round through the final, with a different name of a Black person killed in recent years.

“It’s quite sad that seven masks isn’t enough for the amount of names,” Osaka said on Sept. 1, two days after withdrawing before the Western & Southern Open final with a left hamstring injury. “So, hopefully, I’ll get to the finals, and you can see all of them.”

We did. Taylor’s name was followed by Elijah McClain, Ahmaud Arbery, Trayvon Martin, George Floyd, Philando Castile and, on Saturday, Tamir Rice.

Osaka, the pre-tournament favorite for the first U.S. Open held without ticketed fans, had an awful start to her third Grand Slam final.

Azarenka, a 31-year-old mom aiming to go a record seven years between major titles, won eight of the first nine games and was a point from going up 3-0 in the second set.

Osaka, developing a knack for clutch play in these settings, found the will that brought her back-to-back Slams at the 2018 U.S. Open and 2019 Australian Open. She won six of the next seven games to take the second set. She then handled a back-and-forth decider, breaking Azarenka and serving it out in the last two games.

“Two years ago I maybe would have folded,” said Osaka, who was marvelous in a 2018 U.S. Open final otherwise defined by Serena Williams‘ arguments with chair umpire Carlos Ramos. “I’m more of a complete player now.”

The 22-year-old with a Japanese mother and Haitian father became the first woman to win a U.S. Open final after losing the first set since Spaniard Arantxa Sanchez Vicario in 1994. She became the sixth woman to win her first three major finals in the Open Era (since 1968).

“All the credit to Naomi,” said Azarenka, the 2012 and 2013 Australian Open winner who made it past the fourth round of a Slam for the first time since having son Leo in December 2016 and beat Williams in the semifinals. “She’s a champion.”

Osaka has matured through struggle in the public eye as tennis’ first new global star in many years. And the first on the women’s side since Maria Sharapova emerged 16 years ago at the dawn of the social-media age (the Williams sisters already established by then).

At last year’s U.S. Open, Kobe Bryant and Colin Kaepernick were in her player box. She then moved to California, reportedly after buying Nick Jonas‘ Beverly Hills mansion for $6.9 million.

“I sort of forced myself to grow up a little bit,” Osaka said on ESPN on Saturday, “like doing my own laundry.”

Then in May, Forbes reported that Osaka supplanted Williams as the world’s highest-paid female athlete, racking up $37.4 million in prize money and endorsements in the last year.

But it had not been a particularly strong stretch on court. After winning the 2019 Australian Open and becoming world No. 1, Osaka parted with coach Sascha Bajin, attributing the move to putting happiness before success.

She didn’t make it past the fourth round of her next four Slams and was open about nerves and the weight of the top ranking. After losing in the first round of 2019 Wimbledon, her press conference ended like this:

Q. Has it been difficult to get used to the new level of fame that you have? You’ve pretty much become a global superstar over the past few months.
Osaka: Can I leave? I feel like I’m about to cry.

In her last tournaments before the pandemic, Osaka said she had “quite a few mental breakdowns” in the tour’s January swing in Australia. She was swept by then-15-year-old Coco Gauff in the third round in her Australian Open title defense.

Then everything stopped. No tennis tournaments for five months.

“It’s been an important few months,” Osaka said. “My life was always go, go tennis-wise, especially after the previous U.S. Open that I won. It definitely accelerated things, and I’ve never had a chance to slow down. The quarantine definitely gave me a chance to think a lot about things, what I want to accomplish, what I want people to remember me by.”

In May, three weeks before Floyd’s death led to renewed calls for change and protests, Osaka tweeted that she “was done being shy.” That sentiment was sparked by an encounter with Jay-Z and Beyonce in the offseason when she was unable to put sentences together.

“I have a lot of regrets before I go to sleep, and most of the regrets is due to, like, I don’t speak out about what I’m thinking,” Osaka said in a CNN interview on May 5.

Weeks later, after Floyd’s death, Osaka came out of her shell in other ways. She flew to Minneapolis with her boyfriend, rapper Cordae, to have her voice heard on the streets in peaceful protest.

“We grieved,” Osaka wrote in Esquire. “When I came back to Los Angeles, I signed petitions, I protested, and I donated, like many of us. But I kept asking myself what can I do to make this world a better place for my children? I decided it was time to speak up about systemic racism and police brutality.”

That article was published July 1. On Aug. 26, Osaka made perhaps the biggest statement of her tennis career by choosing not to play.

“Before I am an athlete, I am a black woman,” was posted on her social media, announcing she would not play the following day’s scheduled Western & Southern Open semifinal. She called for racial justice, which led to support from other players and the event stopping altogether for a day.

“There are more important matters at hand that need immediate attention,” Osaka posted. “I don’t expect anything drastic to happen with me not playing, but if I can get a conversation started in a majority white sport I consider that a step in the right direction.”

At the U.S. Open, Osaka was a primary player at a major tournament without Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, without Novak Djokovic for the second week and without Williams on the final weekend.

After outlasting American Jennifer Brady in a three-set semifinal, she drove through New York streets on Friday crying. Osaka, born in Japan, spent early childhood years on Long Island.

“I remember everything my mom sacrificed when I was younger, and she couldn’t even watch my matches,” she said. “I have so many memories of her waking up at 4 in the morning, catching the bus, catching the train. I know all the sacrifices she made. Hopefully I can repay her one day.”

On Saturday afternoon, Osaka walked into Ashe Stadium like she did two Mondays ago, wearing a mask to raise awareness. She delivered for a championship unlike any other, even if she thought of others while lying on the court.

Minutes later, ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi asked Osaka what message she wanted to send these last two weeks.

“What was the message that you got?” Osaka answered on live TV to a global audience. “The point is to make people start talking.”

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