Tonight, the 21st airing of the ESPY’s – a celebration of the year’s best moments, teams and players – will be aired on ESPN.
What if there was a separate show that celebrates the best moments of the past year for all Bay Area sports teams?
Ladies and Gentlemen, presenting the 2013 GoldenGateSports Awards (from July 2012 to July 2013):
BEST MALE ATHLETE: BUSTER POSEY
There were many tremendous athletes in the bay this past year, but how can one top an MVP season that finished with another World Series championship? There is no debate here, Buster is the clear winner.
Honorable Mentions: Colin Kaepernick, Stephen Curry
BEST TEAM: SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
The Warriors and Athletics made unprecedented runs into the playoffs, and the 49ers made it New Orleans for the Super Bowl. The Giants, however, were the only team to call themselves No. 1, being the only team in the bay to win a championship.
Honorable Mentions: Oakland Athletics, San Francisco 49ers, Golden State Warriors
BEST COMEBACK PLAYER: BUSTER POSEY
Get your ankle shredded in a nasty collision at home plate, come back the next season, win the MVP, and then top it off with a $167 million dollar extension? There aren’t even any honorable mentions. Posey is the winner
BEST BREAKTHROUGH ATHLETE: COLIN KAEPERNICK
If Alex Smith hadn’t suffered a concussion against the Rams, we may not even know who this guy is. But after bursting onto the scene in a Monday night match up against the Bears, Kaepernick brought many different elements to the 49ers offense – a quarterback with an absolute cannon and an ability to stretch the field with his legs.
Honorable Mentions: Logan Couture, Josh Donaldson
BEST CHAMPIONSHIP PERFORMANCE: PABLO SANDOVAL 3 HR IN GAME 1
If the 49ers pulled off the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history after trailing 28-3 (they ended up losing 34-31), then they probably win this category.
But what the Kung Fu Panda did against the Detroit Tigers in Game 1 of the World Series, smacking three home runs — two off Justin Verlander — was a performance that will never be forgotten
Honorable (almost) mention: The 49ers (almost) comeback
BEST GAME: ALDS – TIGERS VS ATHLETICS, GAME 4
This may have been the hardest category to choose a winner for; there were so many great moments, it was nearly impossible to decide. But I am going to go with the Athletics’ incredible comeback to keep their season alive against the Detroit Tigers. Seth Smith’s game tying double and Coco Crisps game winner blew the roof off the O.Co coliseum. A building that was silent during the regular season exploded during the playoffs.
Honorable Mentions: NLCS Game 5 – #RallyZito, NFC Championship – 49ers comeback from 17-0 deficit to defeat Falcons
BEST UPSET: WARRIORS TAKE DOWN DENVER
In a preseason ESPN magazine, they picked the Warriors to come in 13th in the western conference and gave them a 0.0% chance of making the playoffs. So, that’s an upset in and of itself.
They then proceeded to take down the heavily favored Denver Nuggets in the first round of the playoffs behind the play of Steph Curry and the deafening crouds at Oracle Arena.
Honorable Mention: A’s take the AL West from Texas
BEST RECORD BREAKING PERFORMANCE: COLIN KAEPERNICK VS GREEN BAY
It seemed like a disaster. It turned the doubters furious and the believers a bit skeptical. The 49ers first round game was against the Green Bay Packers. The 49ers had the ball first, and Colin Kaepernick threw a pick six to give Green Bay a quick 7-0 lead.
It may have seemed that the stage was too big for him. But what happened from there – 263 yards passing and 181 yards rushing – was history. He set the record for most rushing yards by a QB ever in a playoff game and made his name known as one of the best in the league.
BEST MOMENT: CURRY CATCHES FIRE IN THE THIRD
In Game 4 of the Warriors first round match-up against the Denver Nuggets, the score was going back and forth, with no team taking a firm grasp on the game.
But then the greatest four plus minutes of shooting happened. Stephen Curry set Oracle Arena to utter pandemonium, scoring 19 points in the final 4:09 of the third quarter, highlighted by an off balance 3 pointer on the fast-break. It was a magical moment, proving to the fans that this team has a bright future.
Honorable Mentions: Marco Scutaro looking into the rain, 49ers punching their ticket to the playoffs, the A’s clinch the west
BEST COACH: BOB MELVIN, BRUCE BOCHY, JIM HARBAUGH, MARK JACKSON
Thats up for you to decide. How can you pick? Melvin led an Athletics team that was suppose to lose 100 games to the playoffs. Bochy won his 2nd WS title. Harbaugh, in only his second season, led his squad to the Super Bowl. Jackson nearly led a young and inexperienced team to the Western Conference Finals. It is the impossible decision.
BEST PLAY: HARRISON BARNES DUNK ON PEKOVIC
Maybe the play of the NBA season, Barnes dunk against the Timberwolves epitomized the new age Golden State Warriors — young, athletic, and not afraid of anyone.