What an incredible night in the world of sports.
Each year, ESPN brings together the biggest names in the industry for an award ceremony to recognize the best there is and the moments that captivate the nation. The 2013 ESPYS lived up to the hype, as it showcased not only the players we watch on TV each day, but also the athletes and icons who change lives.
There were plenty of moving moments throughout the night, but here are the three that stood out the most.
Complete List of Winners
|Best Male Athlete||LeBron James|
|Best Female Athlete||Serena Williams|
|Best Team||Miami Heat|
|Best Coach/Manager||Rick Pitino|
|Best Breakthrough Athlete||Colin Kaepernick|
|Best Game||Miami Heat vs. San Antonio Spurs, NBA Finals Game 6|
|Best Record-Breaking Performance||Michael Phelps|
|Best Championship Performance||LeBron James|
|Best Play||Jadeveon Clowney|
|Best Moment||Jack Hoffman|
|Best Upset||Florida Gulf Coast over Georgetown|
|Best Comeback||Adrian Peterson|
|Best Male College Athlete||Johnny Manziel|
|Best Female College Athlete||Brittney Griner|
|Male Action Sport Athlete||Nyjah Huston|
|Female Action Sport Athlete||Stephanie Gilmore|
|Best MLB Player||Miguel Cabrera|
|Best NBA Player||LeBron James|
|Best WNBA Player||Candace Parker|
|Best NFL Player||Adrian Peterson|
|Best NHL Player||Sidney Crosby|
|Best MLS Player||Thierry Henry|
|Best Bowler||Pete Weber|
|Best Driver||Ryan Hunter-Reay|
|Best Fighter||Floyd Mayweather|
|Best Male Golfer||Tiger Woods|
|Best Female Golfer||Stacey Lewis|
|Best Jockey||Joel Rosario|
|Best Male Tennis Player||Novak Djokovic|
|Best Female Tennis Player||Serena Williams|
|Best International Athlete||Usian Bolt|
|Best Male Olympian||Michael Phelps|
|Best Female Olympian||Missy Franklin|
|Best Male Athlete with a Disability||Jeremy Campbell|
|Best Female Athlete with a Disability||Jessica Long|
|Best College Athletic Program||North Carolina Athletics (W) and UCLA Athletics (M)|
|Arthur Ashe Courage Award||Robin Roberts|
|Jimmy V ESPY for Perseverance||Dick and Rick Hoyt|
Jack Hoffman Wins Best Moment
Jack Hoffman is one of the most inspiring kids of all time.
The seven-year-old has been battling pediatric brain cancer, but the disease never kept him from loving the Cornhuskers. Nebraska invited Hoffman to come to the program’s spring game back in April, and he even saw a bit of playing time. He took the field in the fourth quarter and ran 69 yards for a touchdown, per USA Today.
The video of Hoffman’s touchdown run was put on YouTube and started to get thousands and thousands of views. The video, which can be seen below, now has more than eight million views.
Hoffman’s story grabbed the attention of those throughout the country, and he was one of four nominees for the “Best Moment” award on Wednesday night. The other three candidates were Alex Morgan’s game-winning goal, Andy Murray winning at Wimbledon and the Olympics and Chuck Pagano’s return to the Colts.
While Murray and Morgan definitely had great moments, there’s no question that Hoffman and Pagano had the more touching stories.
In the end, it was Hoffman who took home the award.
Jimmy V Perseverance Award Given to Dick and Rick Hoyt
This time each year, we all take the time to reflect on the historic speech given by former college basketball head coach Jim Valvano at the 1993 ESPYS. His speech was about living life to the fullest and to never give up. Each year, the ESPYS present an award in his honor for perseverance.
This year, the award was presented to Dick and Rick Hoyt, a father-son combo that has participated in 31 Boston Marathons together. With such a great story, and considering the events that occurred at the Boston Marathon earlier this year, Team Hoyt is absolutely deserving of the award.
Here’s what Dick Hoyt said after winning the award, per Matt Pepin of The Boston Globe:
I don’t think you could find two guys more proud to represent the city of Boston. Next time you see someone in a wheelchair, or who can’t talk, or walk, or they may talk or walk a little bit different, they are people too, and deserve to be able to live, learn, work, and play. Rick and I want to thank you all.
These two men represent exactly what Jimmy V talked about in 1993.
Robin Roberts Takes Home Arthur Ashe Award
While there were plenty of great moments throughout the awards ceremony, the night definitely belonged to Robin Roberts, an accomplished newscaster who has battled breast cancer and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) in recent years. On Wednesday, she was presented with the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage.
Roberts delivered an emotional speech after receiving the award, and of her many words of wisdom, the one below, per the official Twitter account of the ESPYS, will forever be remembered:
Many had strong thoughts on Roberts, including Darren Rovell of ESPN:
Incredible tribute at the ESPYs last night for @RobinRoberts. She deserves it all.— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) July 18, 2013
Fox Sports reporter Erin Andrews was blown away:
Wow...wonderful speech tonight @RobinRoberts..blown away yet again— Erin Andrews (@ErinAndrews) July 18, 2013
Congrats, Robin. You deserve it.