Much talk has been made of the best athletes of the decade. In my honest opinion, you can’t argue too much for the ladies, its Serena all the way. But what about the men? Tiger Woods? Fed? Phelps? (Sorry AP, its not a guy who “sits for a living”). I’m tempted to pick Tiger, just because his decade of dominance was SO long, and its kind of awesome that a black dude could come along and mess with the old, rich, white man’s sport, no?
But then there’s Fed setting the grand slam record in a sport with such a long and insane history. Not to mention his slam semi final streak (which is still going) and a long period in which he was nearly untouchable. But what about Michael Phelps? Physically untouchable. Setting world records and collecting medals like its his day job.
Regardless, this is why I love lists for sport. They’re totally pointless and arbitrary, but they get discussion going, and get me nostalgic.
Sports Illustrated released its top everything for the decade, including franchises, coaches, everything I discussed above, and more. Their top 20 games/events is a hoot though and is bound to bring about some serious joy and nostalgia for all diehard sports nerds, even if there is some obvious American bias (AKA no soccer) just like the top athletes. I actually can’t believe how many of them I saw, some by complete chance, like the Bulls/Celtics playoff game. Regardless, the final three made me absolutely giddy, as they’re probably my favourite three of the decade, and for completely selfish and biased reasons.
Number 3, the Diamondbacks game 7 win over the Yankees (my least favourite team ever) in what was an absolute insane finish to a World Series of which I saw all of, and an all around amazing game. I still remember Gonzalez’s floater single into centre field to win it in the bottom of the 9th like it was yesterday.
Number 2 is the whacktastic Super Bowl of last season, in which, as most people know, my favourite football team, the Steelers, took it home with Santonio Holmes’ insane toe tapping touchdown reception. A completely insane game that had me on the edge of my seat the entire time.
Number 1? But of course, the greatest match ever played, in what is regarded as an all around “win for tennis” (maybe unless you’re a Fed fan). The “Fedal” rivalry was also the second greatest rivalry of the decade, too. Love the blurb:
The match had it all: context, gravitas, swings in momentum, injury, recovery, sportsmanship, acts of God. And some of the highest quality tennis ever played. In the end, it was a five-hour infomercial for everything right and virtuous about the sport. Nadal ended up prevailing 6-4, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-7 (8), 9-7, but those prone to cliché had it right: Tennis was the real winner that day.
Because its the off-season, I feel like blabbing about whatever partially tennis related stuff that interests me… but congrats tennis nerds! We were the sporting event of the decade! Here’s to another crazy 10 years!