There is little doubt that the USA is host to some of the top athletes on the planet. Players from all over the world flock to the NBA, NFL, and MLB to test their mettle against the likes of Lebron James, Adrian Peterson, and Miguel Cabrera, thus making these leagues the grand stage of sports today. Though everyone on an NBA, NFL, and MLB roster is physically gifted in ways we can’t even imagine, there are a select few from these prestigious ranks who’s athleticism makes even their peers look like mere mortals. We currently don’t have a Bo Jackson or a Deion Sanders among us, but there are quite a number of athletes that could fit the bill if they decided to pursue a professional career in multiple sports. Here is a list of those guys.
Adrian Peterson: Running back, Minnesota Vikings
Though Peterson is in my mind the best athlete in the world and would have been a success no matter what he decided to play, he has stuck with football and playing the running back position throughout his college and professional career. Ultimately I think he made the right choice punishing defenders between the tackles full-time, but his commitment to excellence at the running back position cost him a spot on this list.
5. Steve Nash: Point guard, Los Angeles Lakers
Steve Nash may be pushing 40, but the man can still ball. Not just on an NBA court either, as he has showcased a real talent in the game of soccer as well. Just this past summer he had a ‘tryout’ with Inter Milan, an Italian soccer team that is known as a real powerhouse back in Italy. His younger brother Martin Nash was also a regular participant in the Canadian National Soccer Team, and the elder Nash can reportedly keep up with Martin on the soccer field. It’s probably too late for Steve to carve out a career in soccer, but the fact that he can still hang with the pros in practices is still an impressive feat.
4. Patrick Peterson: Cornerback, Arizona Cardinals
Cornerback. Punt returner. Wide receiver. Wildcat quarterback. Running back. Is there anything that Patrick Peterson can’t do on the football field? The answer to that question is cover Michael Crabtree, but other than that Peterson is an all-around dominant force. Any time he steps onto the field you have to worry about everything he can do, from blitzing your quarter to shutting down your top receiver not named Michael Crabtree to taking back a punt return to catching a 50 yard bomb on offense.
He is heavily involved in all three facets of his football team, which is a rare feat in today’s NFL. Include that with the fact that Arizona Cardinals GM Steve Keim said he is the closest thing sports has to a Bo Jackson or a Deion Sanders, and you have to believe that Peterson would succeed in any sport he set his mind to. As long as Michael Crabtree didn’t decide to join him, of course.
3. Carl Crawford: Outfield, Los Angeles Dodgers
The Perfect Storm may also be the perfect athlete. Not only was he heavily recruited by UCLA to be their point guard coming out of high school, he was also recruited by football powerhouses such as USC, Nebraska, Florida, and Tulsa as an option quarterback. He even went as far as to sign a letter of intent to play football for Nebraska, though he ultimately decided that a career in baseball was his best choice. It’s hard to argue with the results of his choice, but I still would have loved to see Crawford in the shotgun or throwing up an alley-oop.
2. Colin Kaepernick: Quarterback, San Francisco 49ers
Somebody pick up the phone, because I called it. When the 49ers drafted Colin Kaepernick I said he was going to take them to a Super Bowl, and he did not disappoint. From putting the 49ers (and carrying various Packers defenders) on his back by breaking an NFL quarterback rushing record to beat the Packers in the playoffs to spanking Tom Brady and the Pats in front of the world in week 14, Kaepernick became a true NFL superstar on his way to leading the San Francisco 49ers to their first Super Bowl appearance in almost 20 years.
Coming out of high school, however, the sport he was heavily recruited in as baseball. Him and his 170 pound frame was mostly scoffed at when he said he was committed to football, and he ended up turning down multiple baseball scholarships at prestigious NCAA schools to accept his lone football scholarship at Nevada. It seems he made the right call, though his 87-mile bullet of a first pitch at a Giants game in June leaves me wondering just how good he would have been if he stuck it out with baseball.
1. Lebron James: Small forward, Miami Heat
Love him or hate him, it’s hard to deny that Lebron James is the most polarizing athlete in sports today. His impact on the game of basketball has drawn comparisons to Michael Jordan, and he is known as one of the most physically gifted players of all time. His talents aren’t just on the court though, as he was just as dominant on a football field in high school and was routinely linked to the Cleveland Browns back in his Cavalier days.
Videos of him catching passes and throwing footballs leave us saying “what if” every time he decides to tease us with one, and though I doubt we will ever truly see him on an NFL field it would be a sight to behold. King James, if you’re reading this, the world of sports is begging you to follow in the footsteps of Deion and Bo and show us what you’re made of on an NFL field.
In lieu of Jason Kidd being named the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, that got the brain thinking. Which other current NBA players would make better than average to great head coaches in the NBA. Of course most coaches that are great weren’t always the best players on the court. We still have not seen the likes of Patrick Ewing or Charles Barkley sitting court side as the head man. Alas, here is the top 5 current NBA players that would make great coaches.
5. Rajon Rondo:
Rondo would be the type of coach that would remind us all of John Chaney (Temple Owls). He will work himself up on the sidelines over bad plays and calls on the side lines and have very entertaining press conferences. At the same time, he will have the full attention of his players and in being a point guard will have his team offensively sound. The question with Rondo won’t be if he will succeed or fail, it is what will his win to technical foul ratio be.
4. Dwayne Wade:
He’s the type of coach that many people would scratch their heads when announced but would time and time again prove everyone wrong. That has been the story of Wade’s career since coming out of Marquette and that is what he will bring to the table as a coach. He knows how to win games, he always gives 120% on the court and players can rally around a coach and play how he want them to (which in this case is just like he did). He has that mean streak to where players won’t test him but the tenacity to where the players will respect him. He would be a lot like Doc Rivers as a coach.
3. Steve Nash:
Steve Nash has one of the best basketball IQ’s of his time. He, like many point guards, knows when to make the pass and when to pull up for the jump shot in transition. He has led the league in assists multiple times and has played international basketball to boot. Having played under several different head coaches, Nash has seen how different systems work and can implement them with players that he is given. Of course he would have to find his own Steve Nash to start.
2. Kobe Bryant:
The Black Mamba would be the first “superstar” to succeed as a head coach. He has that Jordan demeanor on the court and like Mike was coached by Phil Jackson. Kobe would bring the new generation up to speed with that triangle offense and add a few more rings to his trophy case. Also Kobe’s intensity would lead him to actually coach his players rather than sit on the bench and watch them screw around. I don’t see many players getting in his face now, I doubt any player he’s coaching would question his methods.
1. Tony Parker:
Straight out of the Greg Popovich school for head coaching, Tony Parker would make a tremendous head coach. He is generally a calm guy but the fire comes out when need be, always makes great decisions on the basketball court and knows when to take over. These are qualities that make a great head coach. Coaches have to know when to bench a star player and when to play the hot hand. Parker knows when he needs to put up 30+ points and knows when its best to dish out 15 assists. It also doesn’t hurt that Parker has played his entire NBA career under one of the greatest coaching minds in league history.
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Legendary Rolling Stones’ front man, Mick Jagger, recently took a jab at how old the Los Angeles Lakers are, during a show at Staples Center. This report per Kelly Dwyer of Yahoo! Sports:
“The only reason we’re here is to make the Lakers look younger,”Mick Jagger joked.
The Rolling Stones have been considered “old” for a few decades now, but still, Mick’s claim that the Lakers are old holds plenty of water. The battered, and often lethargic Los Angeles Lakers, crawled into the NBA’s post-season, and hardly did much to impress their fans as they were steam-rolled by the San Antonio Spurs during the first round of play. The Spurs, much like the Stones, have been judged based on their age for years now, but that didn’t stop them from appearing to be the far younger, more spry squad as they dismantled LA in a four-game sweep to advance to the second round of play.
After acquiring Steve Nash during the off-season, and Dwight Howard via trade, the Lakers, alongside Pau Gasol, Kobe Bryant and Metta World Peace, were getting praise as true contenders in the western conference, if not the entire NBA. Kobe and company looked slow and old, particularly on defense, which ultimately resulted in the firing of head coach, Mike Brown, after just five game. The Lakers managed to grasp on to the 7th seed, but failed to make any noise, minus Kobe Bryant, and ultimately were swept by the Spurs in the first round.
Oh, the strange places athletes get photographed at. Los Angeles Lakers point guard and living legend Steve Nash recently attended a Barmitzvah, and was seen holding the sacred book of Jewish tradition, the Torah, on his lap. Obviously, onlookers wasted no time cuing up their cameras and taking pictures of the NBA star:
Nash’s expression is priceless.