2012 ESPYs: Power Ranking Best Male Athlete Nominees
On Wednesday night the 2012 ESPYs will take center stage in Los Angeles.
Superstars from across the world of sports will gather at the Nokia Theater as awards are handed out to the year's best and brightest athletes.
Although ESPYs are hardly the most coveted hardware in sports, it's a prestigious honor to be recognized by fans for excellence in your field.
Like previous years, the category of Best Male Athlete is one of the most intriguing, as individual and team stars are matched up against each other for the honor.
Here are the power rankings for this year's Best Male Athlete nominations.
4. Novak Djokovic
Although he was recently knocked out in the semifinals of Wimbledon by ageless wonder, and eventual champion, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic has been tennis' brightest star over the last year.
Victories at the 2011 Wimbledon Championships, 2011 U.S. Open and 2012 Australian Open led the way for Djokovic to attack the career grand slam in 2012.
After capturing the Australian Open title in January, Djokovic advanced to the finals of the French Open where he would fall to Rafael Nadal in four difficult sets.
Djokovic's success throughout 2011 and the early stages of 2012 make him an intriguing candidate, but his recent failures should prevent him from taking home the hardware on Wednesday evening.
3. Aaron Rodgers
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The recipient of last season's NFL MVP award, Aaron Rodgers has established himself as one of the National Football League's elite signal-callers.
Rodgers has become a beloved figure around the NFL, boasting his championship belt celebration, and sending fantasy football owners home with championships.
Rodgers' 2011 numbers were simply phenomenal, as the Green Bay Packers' quarterback threw for 4,643 yards, 45 touchdowns and a mere six interceptions.
However, Rodgers and the Packers could not fulfill their quest of repeating as Super Bowl Champions, as they fell to the New York Giants in the playoffs.
Arguably the NFL's most polished quarterback, Rodgers has plenty of hardware to look forward to as his young career continues to take shape.
2. Justin Verlander
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Justin Verlander was simply dominant in 2011. In fact, Verlander was so dominant that he brought home the American League Cy Young Award and the American League MVP.
Verlander topped the majors in just about every significant statistical category, pitching a league-high 251 innings while posting a 2.40 earned run average.
The flame throwing right-hander also led all of Major League Baseball with 250 strikeouts and an opponents batting average of .192.
Although his teammates couldn't match his success, Verlander has established himself as the most feared pitcher in all of baseball.
He may not walk away with the ESPY for Best Male Athlete this year, but he should have no problem doing so in the future.
1. LeBron James
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Come Wednesday night, no one will be surprised when LeBron James approaches the stage and claims the hardware for Best Male Athlete.
Fresh off of the best year of his NBA career, James has been showered with accolades over the past few months.
After being named the 2011-2012 NBA MVP, James led the Miami Heat to their second NBA Championship, winning the NBA Finals MVP in the process.
James averaged 27.1 points, 6.2 assists and 7.9 rebounds per game during the regular season, shooting a stellar 53.1 percent from the field.
The NBA's most criticized talent, James will head to London with Team USA in a few weeks looking to capture his second gold medal.
Just another day at the office for the NBA's best player.