Awards for the year 2006
Tuesday, January 2, 2007
The year 2006 was
a roller coaster year which saw such characters of renown as Saddam Hussein finally meet his day of reckoning doing his finest
Fred Astaire impression dancing on the wrong end of a necktie.
Locally the city of Toronto was faced
with such horrifying events as the arrest of 17 wannabe terrorists among our
midsts and the reality of another 4 years of lame duck mayor Comrade David
Miller. Crime was again rampant in the streets especially the violent ones
which saw much too many young people lose their lives due to the leniency of
our judicial system and law makers (see David Miller). No matter how people try
to sugar coat it and talk of color blindness the truth of the matter is that a
large portion of our violent gun crimes in Toronto the Suddenly Nervous is
linked to the Black community and until the public and media accept and openly
report this as such than little will be done to correct this huge problem.
Personally, I preferred hip hop when it was only publicly practiced by our
bunny population and not a bunch of dumb thugs of all colors who are being
taught that guns are cool and the quick solution to all our problems. But off I
go on another tirade when the purpose of this column is too present to you what
I consider to be the high and lows in the world of sports. So without further
adieu here are my top choices for people and sports events of the year.
of the Year
there anyone who it betters the man formerly known as Iron Mike Tyson? With his
career lying in ruins around him and his chances of regaining a boxing license
about as slim as Nicole Richie now he goes out and gets himself busted for DUI
and cocaine possession. This guy has not only blown his career into tatters but
has found a way to spend over 300 million dollars in his career to leave
himself millions in debt to not only creditors but to Uncle Sam himself. This
guy couldn’t be more of a boob if he started to wear a bra on his head.
Play of the Year
honor has to go to the legendary French midfielder Zinedine Zidane who in the
110th minute of the final game of this edition of the World Cup
turned around and head butted trash talking Azzuri member Marco Materazzi for
supposedly badmouthing his sister. It was truly a bone head move that cost the
French a shot at beating the Italians who defeated the Zidane less French 5-3
in a shootout. It really is a shame that he is going to be remembered for this
stunt as much as for his remarkable play, not only in this World Cup but in his
let’s get away from all the negativity and showcase the 2006 highlights of the
of the Year
absolutely could be none other than the Sultan of the Golf Club himself, the
incomparable Tiger Woods. This 31-year-old phenom had a tough year which saw
him lose his beloved father and mentor Earl to cancer in May. After a nine-week
absence from the game, Tiger came back like a man possessed and proved to the
world that he was not only the greatest player in the game today but to most
the best of all time. He finished 2006 with a total of eight wins including an
unheard of six straight. On a personal note just a few days ago he and wife
Elin Nordegren announced that they are expecting their first child next summer.
Player of the Year
can you say about the 19-year-old kid, affectionately called the “Next One”?
Sydney Crosby is certainly proving to all that all the press on this young
sensation was correct. Improving with every game, Crosby is not only leading
the NHL at this writing in points but is the biggest reason for the once
pathetic Pittsburgh Penguins’ rise to respectability this season. Now if the
Pens could only secure a new arena to go along with their young star, they
would have a sure shot at a return to success in the not so distant future.
Greatest Canadian Highlight
is surely to be expected that a Canadian would have a solid shot at being voted
as NHL MVP. And to almost no one’s surprise, it was London, Ontario’s own Joe
Thornton of the San Jose Sharks that would win the honour after leading the
league in scoring in 2006. But it was almost a dream too good to be true when BCs
own Steve Nash would lead the NBA in assists and put up career highs in points,
rebounds and field goals percentage to win his second consecutive MVP award.
But to compound this the year of the Canadian, it was another BC native Justin
Morneau of the Minnesota Twins who belted out a solid 34 homers to go along
with 131 RBIs to become the first Canuck to take home the American League MVP
of the Year
year’s champions of the art of promotions both come from the world of pugilism.
The UFC has grown in leaps and bounds since their humble inception a little
more than a decade and a half ago. Now owning a strong share of the lucrative
pay per view market, the UFC has successfully marketed itself as the fighting
sport of the future. They have put names like Royce Gracie, Matt Hughes and
Chuck Liddell out in the forefront of not only fight fans but the sports world
the award this year is Oscar De La Hoya's Golden Boy Promotions which has
quickly become a leader in the world of boxing promotions. Led by the Golden
Boy himself, they have put together blockbusters, featuring such stars as Shane
Mosley, Marco Barrera and De La Hoya. Along with raking in a couple of hundred
million dollars in TV revenue, the company has represented itself with
integrity, a somewhat lost art in the often controversial world of professional
boxing. Look for them to break all records with the much anticipated upcoming
May 2001 blockbuster featuring De La Hoya facing off against Floyd Mayweather
Jr in Las Vegas.
a close split decision, my choice for fighter of the year is the Pacman
himself, super featherweight champ Manny Pacquiea who stopped the great Eric
Morales twice and decisioned former two time bantamweight champ Oscar Largos in
a title defense in his home turf of the Philippines. Coming in a close second
in my voting was the talented Floyd Mayweather Jr who himself had an impressive
2006 by decisioning both Carlos Baldimir and Zab Judah. With his upcoming
blockbuster in May with De La Hoya in Vegas it just mean that the slick
Mayweather has a shot at the fighter of the year for 2007.
football player of the year is none other than the great and perennial favorite
Brett Favre of the Green Bay Packers. True he didn’t win that many games, win a
division or come even anywhere close to the Super bowl but Favre once again
proved to all that he has the heart and spirit of a true champion and plays
with a love and enthusiasm for the game which is truly unmatched. He has been a
true leader again for a team that was somewhat competitive in a season where
some critics claimed they would be hard-pressed to win 2-3 games.
class act of the year may not be known by sports fans even though her last
name is legendary here in Canada, Even though she’s not an athlete by
profession her training procedures are as tough as most followed by the most
elite of athletes in the world today. Joanne Chuvalo is without a doubt one of
the biggest hearted people you could find anywhere. Already in possession of a
schedule that makes incredible time for worthy charities, Joanne
will climb a huge challenge this upcoming January when she and a heroic group
hope to scale the 19,340 foot Mount Killamanjcero,all to benefit the Canadian
Liver Foundation. The best of luck, Jo. We all love and support you.
you guys next time and all the best to you and yours.
Copyright@ Edward Zawadzki All rights reserved
Reprinted with permission
Along with being Canada Free Press sports editor, Edward Zawadzki is also a best selling author and sports broadcaster in the Toronto area. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org