ESPY 2013 Winners: Why Michael Phelps Owned the Night

Justin OnslowContributor IIJuly 18, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 17:  Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps and Golf Channel reporter Win McMurry attend The 2013 ESPY Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on July 17, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for ESPY)
Christopher Polk/Getty Images

To take nothing away from LeBron James and his three ESPY awards, Michael Phelps simply had a much better evening.

The 28-year-old swimmer made his final mark on the Olympics with a six-medal performance at the 2012 Beijing games. Since that performance, Phelps has spent much of his time honing his golf game on the Golf Channel’s The Haney Project. And while he has been out of the spotlight as a decorated swimmer, he’s still being recognized for his efforts.

Phelps took home two wins at the 2013 ESPYs, on e for Best Record-Breaking Performance and another for Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete, the former he has now won twice, per ESPN Stats & Info:

And the icing on the cake? He also lit up Twitter with references to the woman who joined him at the awards show.

As Larry Brown of Larry Brown Sports tweeted, Phelps brought Golf Channel personality Win McMurry along for the event, the pair gaining a little extra attention from the cameras following months of speculation that the two were dating:

He also appeared to be having a good time with McMurry and Tony Gonzalez, as the future Hall of Famer showed with this post-show tweet and photo:

McMurry is a celebrity in her own right. One of Golf Channel’s preeminent personalities, she’s also a very attractive woman who, as social media users were quick to point out on Twitter, is quite a catch.

It makes sense McMurry and Phelps would have an opportunity to connect. The gold-medalist swimmer is a terrific golfer who seems to have embraced the sport since retiring from swimming, and while renowned instructor Hank Haney was instrumental in his recent progress, it looks like McMurry may also have had a small hand in that.

But regardless of his extracurricular activities, there’s no denying the importance of Phelps’ historic night at the ESPYS. Even after years of praise for his remarkable swimming career, he’s still being recognized as both the best of the sport and an iconic figure in the sports world.

Phelps holds the Olympic record for most individual medals for any athlete with 22, 18 of which were of the gold variety. With a track record like that, it’s no wonder Phelps is still winning things.