Hollywood’s biggest night of the year is upon us, and many actors, actresses, directors, producers, and anyone else connected with film and entertainment are descending upon the Kodak Center dressed to kill and hoping to hear their name called as the winner of the Oscar Award in on of the various categories.
When, it comes to sports, sure there are the Espy’s, complete with the red carpet and most every other element we’ve been accustomed to seeing in the Oscar Award Ceremonies. But, this is a bit different. This, the 1st Annual Sports & Swag Oscars of Sports doesn’t have a red carpet. But, it does have nominees for each category and in honor of tonight’s Oscar Awards, the categories are named as such. So without further ado, The Nominees Please!
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE
The Nominees are:
Tom Brady (QB, New England Patriots)
The quintessential pocket-passer is also one of the quintessential leaders in all of sports. Sure, he’s squarely in the middle of the infamous ‘Deflategate’ scandal. But, it doesn’t take away the fact that he led his New England Patriots to victory in Super Bowl 49 and also to this year’s AFC Title Game. And he did so with so much less.
Cam Newton (QB, Carolina Panthers)
The NFL’s MVP led the Carolina Panthers to their second-ever Super Bowl appearance. Like Brady, he did so with not exactly a who’s who cast of skill-players. Newton, compiled some impressive numbers individually in guiding the Panthers to a 15-1 record. But, his leadership shines even more. Because without him, the Panthers were likely not a playoff team. Let alone Super Bowl runner-ups.
Stephen Curry (PG, Golden State Warriors)
The NBA’s best shooter (possibly ever) is in the midst of one of the best runs in not only NBA history, but also in the history of sports. His Warriors are already the owners of one NBA title as they defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers. But, now Steph and his Warriors are ahead of the record pace of 72 victories in a season, set by the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls.
Lebron James (SF, Cleveland Cavaliers) – Despite losing to Stephen Curry and the Warriors in last season’s NBA Finals, James’ performance throughout the playoffs with a depleted Cavs’ roster exemplified what a leader he is. This season, the Cavaliers are set up to make a return trip to the Finals and attempt to win that elusive first NBA championship for Cleveland (The Land) and his third overall.
Derrick Henry (RB, Alabama Crimson Tide)
The Bama offense looked lost at times when they were forced into passing situations. That was before quarterback Jake Coker turned things around. But, even then there was no question who the best and most important player was. Henry, went on to win the Heisman Trophy in route to another national title for Bama.
And the winner is…..
While, unlike Curry, the other nominees were head and shoulders the best and most important players by far on their respective teams, none of the other nominees are enjoying the run that Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors are enjoying as we speak. So, it makes perfect sense that Curry win this award.
BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE
The Nominees are:
Maya Moore (SF, Minnesota Lynx)
Maya Moore, who was no stranger to winning championships before she arrived on the scene in Minneapolis, was spectacular all season long (20.6 ppg in regular season). But, she was even more spectacular in the playoffs where she averaged 23.4 points and led the Lynx to the WNBA title over the Indiana Fever.
Serena Williams (Tennis champion)
Serena Williams, is not part of a team. Well, at least when she’s not playing doubles with her sister Venus. But, she absolutely has a role of leadership in not only women’s tennis, but the sport of tennis as a whole. Williams’ current level of domination in the sport of tennis is unprecedented. In 2015, she narrowly missed completing the ‘Serena Slam’ by winning all four Grand Slam (Australian, French, Wimbledon, and U.S. Open) events. She lost in the semifinals of the final Grand Slam event, the U.S. Open. Still, Serena’s domination of the sport is unquestioned and makes her quite worthy of this award.
Alex Morgan (Forward, U.S. Women’s Soccer)
The U.S. Women’s National team won the 2015 FIFA World Cup and Alex Morgan was a huge reason why. Morgan, besides being the most recognizable player on the team, she is also the best. The U.S. Women gave up one goal to Australia in their opening match, and did not give up another goal until the Final match against Japan. A span of five matches.
Holly Holm (UFC – MMA Fighter)
Holm, made a name for herself by beating former UFC champion, Ronda Rousey. That knockout of Rousey ended a period of dominance that was starting to seem like it would never end. Holm, has since turned down an opportunity to fight Rousey again. Hopefully, it’s just temporary. The hype around that rematch will be through when it goes down.
And the winner is…..
This one was pretty close with accomplishments of Alex Morgan and the U.S. Women’s National Team. But, in the end, nearly winning every Grand Slam event is just a bit more impressive.
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
The nominees are…..
Peyton Manning (QB, Denver Broncos)
This one might seem a bit strange to you. But, think about it and be honest. The real star or stars of the Super Bowl 50 champion Denver Broncos was that suffocating defense. However, the job Manning did in doing just enough for the Broncos to win, and not turning the ball over, as he did before he missed a few games due to injury was exactly what the Broncos needed to put them over the top and beat the Carolina Panthers. Now, is Peyton going to retire or not?
Klay Thompson (SG, Golden State Warriors)
Steph Curry, is the obvious leader of the Golden State Warriors. But, as stated above, he didn’t do it alone. Klay Thompson, was on point with his jumper all season and throughout the playoffs. You could even argue that Draymond Green is deserving of this award, because of his defensive play and his ability to distribute the ball and set up teammates to score. But, we’ll give the edge to Klay since he is the second leading scorer on the team.
Greg Holland (Relief pitcher, Kansas City Royals)
If, the opposing team trailed the Royals after seven innings, you could pretty much pack up the gloves and the bats and get ready to go home. You weren’t coming back. The New York Mets found that out the hard way in their loss to Kansas City in the World Series. The leader of that bullpen was Holland who led the Royals with 32 saves. That number is down from his output of a couple of seasons ago. However, the Royals’ bullpen numbers were still fantastic.
And the winner is…..
And the Nominees are…..
College Football Playoff National Championship Game (Alabama vs Clemson)
This game that decided College football’s national champion was just what the doctor ordered after a college Bowl season full of blowouts and terrible performances. The Alabama Crimson Tide used a timely and incredible on-side kick early in the 4th quarter that changed the momentum of the game to Bama’s favor. Still, Bama couldn’t put the Tigers away until running back/kick returnerKenyan Drake took a kickoff to the house to put Bama up 45-34 with under 2 minutes to go in the game. However, Clemson QB DeShaun Watson who was incredible all game long led the Tigers back down field for another score. Clemson coach Dabo Swinney opted to go for the 2-point conversion. Watson’s pass fell incomplete and kept the score at 45-40. Good enough for Bama to win their 16th national championship, and Nick Saban’s fourth with Bama and 5th overall.
NFC Divisional Playoffs: Green Bay Packers at Arizona Cardinals
Another game that wasn’t as high scoring, but was full of drama and excitement nonetheless was this one in the desert. Packers QB Aaron Rodgers used not one but two Hail Mary’s to keep Green Bay alive. But, it still wasn’t enough. Early in overtime Cardinals QB Carson Palmer threw short pass to Larry Fitzgerald , who then proceeded to run the ball across the field where he found enough running room to get all the way to the Packers’ 5-yard line. The Cardinals scored two plays later to put the game away.
NBA Western Conference First Round: Spurs at Clippers – Game 2
The Spurs went on to lose this series in what was an incredible seven game series. But, that doesn’t really take away from their incredible performance in game 2, which happened to be arguably the best game in the NBA last season. The two teams needed overtime to decide a winner. The Spurs won it 111-107 behind strong games from Tim Duncan and Kawhi Leonard.
And the winner is…..
ALABAMA VS CLEMSON
When you see Nick Saban smile like that during a game, if you’re the opposition you know you’re in trouble. There was nothing DeShaun Watson and the Clemson Tigers could do to overcome it. Definitely a championship performance from both teams.
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Carli Lloyd (U.S. Women’s Soccer)
Best Director (Coach)
Brad Stevens (Boston Celtics)