Top 10 Most Dominating Athletes in the Past 20 Years


A few days ago, Colin Cowherd gave us his list for top ten most dominant athletes in the last 10 years. His influence came from ESPN the magazine when they decided to list their most dominant athletes in the past 20 years to celebrate their 20 year anniversary. His list consists of Floyd Mayweather, Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps, Serena Williams, Roger Federer, Tiger Woods, LeBron James, Lionel Messi, Tom Brady, and Barry Bonds. I respect Colin’s list but I don’t agree with it. Ultimately, his list influenced me to create my own with the assistance of my good friend D.Reed. The list is completely unbiased and each ranking is based on accolades during their dominance in this 20-year window. Some of the athletes that didn’t crack the top ten include Kobe Bryant, Derek Jeter, Sidney Crosby, Cristiano Ronaldo, and Peyton Manning. Let’s take a look.

10) Maya Moore

  • WNBA champion (2011, 2013, 2015, 2017)
  • NCAA champion (2009 and 2010)
  • WNBA Finals MVP (2013)
  • WNBA MVP (2014)

9) Jimmie Johnson

  • Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Champion (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2016)

8) Roger Federer

  • 97 Career wins, 20 Grand Slam wins
  • Australian Open champion (2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2017, 2018)
  • French Open champion (2009)
  • Wimbledon champion (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2017)
  • US Open champion (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008)

7) LeBron James

  • NBA champion (2012, 2013, 2016)
  • NBA Finals MVP (2012, 2013, 2016)
  • NBA Most Valuable Player (2009, 2010, 2012, 2013)
  • 7 Straight Trips to the NBA Finals (2011-2017)

6) Tom Brady

  • Super Bowl champion (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX, XLIX, LI)
  • Super Bowl MVP (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XLIX, LI)
  • NFL Most Valuable Player (2007, 2010, 2017)

5) Floyd Mayweather

  • 50-0 record (27 KO)
  • Boxing Writers Association of America Fighter of the Year award (2007, 2013, and 2015)

4) Michael Phelps

  • 28 Olympic Medals (23 gold)
  • 8 in Athens (2004), 8 in Beijing (2008), 6 in London (2012), 6 in Rio (2016)

3) Usain Bolt

  • 8 Olympic Medals (8 gold)
  • 2 in Beijing (2008), 3 in London (2012), 3 in Rio (2016)

2) Tiger Woods

  • 79 PGA Tour wins, 14 Majors wins
  • Masters Tournament (1997, 2001, 2002, 2005)
  • U.S. Open (2000, 2002, 2008)
  • The Open Championship (2000, 2005, 2006)
  • PGA Championship (1999, 2000, 2006, 2007)

1) Serena Williams

  • 72 WTA wins, 23 Grand Slam wins
  • Australian Open (2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2017)
  • French Open (2002, 2013, 2015)
  • Wimbledon (2002, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016)
  • US Open (1999, 2002, 2008, 2012, 2013, 2014)

The top 4 on this list are arguably the greatest of all time in their respective sports. Their level of dominance is unmatched. Their competition isn’t “cupcakes” either which makes their success much more fulfilling. Floyd Mayweather’s undefeated record is impressive, however, during the prime of his career he avoiding fighting certain opponents such as Manny Pacquiao. That fight happened 6 years too late. Tom Brady has been dominant in an era with Peyton Manning and Drew Brees. LeBron James finally got over the hump in 2011 and has been to the finals ever since. Roger Federer was dominant until injuries started to get the best of his abilities and field caught up with him. Jimmie Johnson was unstoppable from 2006-2010. Maya Moore has been sensational since her iconic days playing for UConn. She’s arguably the best female basketball player since Sheryl Miller. I’m sure this list may be different from most but I can defend every spot. Let me know what you think!

JGOOD

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Sunday Red: Tiger Woods


 

I’ve played three years of high school golf. Every time I tee’d off… every time I approached the green… every time I was ready to putt… I imagined that I was Tiger Woods. Tiger was the reason I started to have an interest in golf. Before him, I thought golf wasn’t appealing. I started to even question why golf was even a sport.

Image result for tiger woods fist pump

Seeing Tiger play and dominate at a young age, provided me with a pulse for the sport. I began to watch him regularly during the summer and the majors on a regular. I made sure I was at home on Sundays to watch him cruise to victory after victory. He had overcome rivals such as Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh,  Rocco Mediate, Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els, and Jim Furyk. I even started to take notes of his game and tried to replicate his tactics.

Tiger Woods came out the gate destroying the competition. In 1997, Woods was the youngest to ever win The Masters at the age of 21 (win by 12 strokes). In 2001, he became the first golfer to be the reigning champion of all four majors. Tiger has won a total of 14 majors and 79 career PGA tour events. In every event that Woods has played in, you will see him wear the color red on Sundays. He said:

“I wear red on Sundays because my mom thinks that that’s my power color, and you know you should always listen to your mom.”

 

My favorite memory of Tiger Woods came at the U.S. Open in 2008 when he beat Rocco Mediate in a playoff to claim the major championship. What makes this major significant for Woods, and myself personally, is that he won this major on a bad left knee. He was shown grimacing and in discomfort while taking strokes (especially while teeing off). Shortly after taking the crown, Woods had reconstructive surgery on his ACL on the same left knee. He was out of action for over 9 months. With this injury, came a domino effect of different and reoccurring injuries.

Image result
Tiger Woods vs Rocco Mediate (2008 U.S. Open)

The scandal in December of 2009, when he openly admitted to cheating on his (now) ex-wife, did not help his status of trying to return to “Vintage Tiger”. Woods eventually started to lose endorsements such as Gillette, AT&T, and Gatorade. You add this with the chronic injuries, you have a recipe for failure for anybody’s image and career.

Image result for tiger woods scandal lost endorsements

Even with the scandal that has stained his imaged and lost some of his endorsements, Tiger Woods will always have a major influence on my life and my others. The recent news of him returning to golf at Safeway, after being out more than a year due to injuries, has given me hope that maybe (just maybe) he might be able to show his dominance one more time. I know it’s wishful thinking, but I’ve seen crazier things happen in sports. Either way, I’ll be following him again on his return to golf. I just want to see that signature fist pump one more time.

Image result for tiger woods fist pump

JGOOD

Top 10 NBA Bust In The Past Decade


The past 10 years the NBA has provided us some memories from great players who were drafted within this time frame (Stephen Curry, Blake Griffin, Kevin Durant, Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and many more). The Oklahoma City Thunder and the Golden State Warriors are a prime example of what happens when you draft the right players. Unfortunately, there are others who didn’t even scratch the surface of the hype that they were given before stepping foot on an NBA court. Here are the honorable mentioned below:

Andrea Bargnani, 1st Overall, 2006, Raptors, Italy

Epke Udoh, 6th Overall, 2010, Warriors, Baylor

Jimmer Fredette, 10th Overall, 2011, Kings, BYU

Anthony Bennett, 1st Overall, 2013, Cavaliers, UNLV, (Jury still out on him)

And here we go!

10) Patrick O’Bryant, 9th Overall, 2006, Warriors, Bradley

This guy, physically, had the potential of being a game-changer but his skills never developed. He wasn’t able to crack the rotation. O’Bryant played in 90 games (started 3) in 5 seasons averaging 2.1 points per game. Yeah… that’s pretty bad.

9) Yi Jianlian, 6th Overall, 2007, Bucks, China

The next best thing from China was nowhere as formidable as Yao Ming. His game wasn’t as polished and was too injury prone to stay on the court. At times you saw flashes of what could be, but all we’re left with is a “never was” (sounds harsh).

8) Sheldon Williams, 5th Overall, 2006, Hawks, Duke

The former Duke star was nothing close to stardom in the NBA. After only 2 years in Atlanta, Williams became a journeyman around the league until 2012. The only thing going for him is Candace Parker (Winning).

7) Royce White, 16th Overall, 2012, Rockets, Iowa State

Royce White was one of my favorite players entering that 2012 draft because his game was outstanding (point forward with an all-around game). However, nobody will ever see him at the next level because he is battling with anxiety disorder. It is to the point that White is not comfortable with flying. The only stat he has is 3 minutes played in his NBA career (Shaking my head). Great talent nevertheless.

6) Michael Beasley, 2nd Overall, 2008, Heat, Kansas State

After missing out on the Derrick Rose sweepstakes, Michael Beasley became the “sloppy seconds” to a draft class that also produced Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, Brook Lopez, DeAndre Jordan, and Goran Dragic. Beasley’s play never lived up to the side kick that Dwyane Wade needed, and he also dealt with some off the court issues as well. Another player with wasted potential (You see the theme right?).

5) Joe Alexander, 8th Overall, 2008, Bucks, West Virginia

While we’re still on the 2008 draft class, we can’t forget Joe Alexander. Let’s put it like this: the guy who was supposed to help turn Milwaukee around played 67 games in his career in 2 years. He was phenomenal at West Virginia (I remember watching him on television). I honestly don’t have a clue what happened besides lack of work ethic and skills, but more unfortunate things have happened (You’ll see).

4) Jonny Flynn, 6th Overall, 2009, Timberwolves, Syracuse

I just want to remind everyone that the Timberwolves had back-to-back picks (like the cover of Lethal Weapon) which also included Ricky Rubio with the 5th pick. ALSO, they had two chances to draft the kid from Davidson but blew it. Jonny Flynn wasn’t the same after having hip surgery in the summer of 2010. No one could predict this would happen… just like the player who was selected after him right?

3) Adam Morrison, 3rd Overall, 2006, Bobcats, Gonzaga

Easily the 2nd worst pick that Michael Jordan was responsible for (cough, Kwame Brown). That one mythical season in College got him to be the worst pick in the Bobcats history (Now Charlotte Hornets 2.0). He lost his starting job mid way through his rookie year because of poor defense and shooting. The following year, he tore his ACL. He ended up being the late 2000’s version of Mark Madsen by riding the bench and receiving a championship ring from the Lakers (bum status with perks).

2) Greg Oden, 1st Overall, 2007, Trail Blazers, Ohio State

A lot of people have him at number one on these type of list because of where he was drafted and how many games he played. He also reminds people of Sam Bowie (ouch). When Oden did play, he was productive. Unfortunately, when you go four seasons without playing an NBA game due to knee injuries and set backs, it’s extremely hard to ignore that. At least he’s currently playing in China.

1) Hasheem Thabeet, 2nd Overall, 2009, Grizzlies, UCONN

He was the highest draft pick ever to be sent down to the NBDL. The worst lottery pick to ever come out of UCONN. He’s played on 4 different teams and his best statistical season was his rookie year (3.1 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 1.3 bpg). The Memphis Grizzlies passed on James Harden, Stephen Curry, Demar Derozan, Jeff Teague, Brandon Jennings, Tyreke Evans, Ty Lawson, Taj Gibson… even Danny Green would’ve been a better option than Thabeet (the list is longer than that). The TRUE definition of a wasted draft pick.