U.S. Olympians, Paralympians Headline The 2014 ESPYS

By United States Olympic Committee | July 17, 2014, 12:04 a.m. (ET)

U.S men's soccer team DaMarcus Beasley, Jermaine Jones, DeAndre Yedlin, Chris Wondolowski, Nick Rimando, Kyle Beckerman, Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore accept the ESPYS award for Best Moment during the 2014 ESPYS at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on July 16, 2014 in Los Angeles.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – A host of U.S. Olympians and Paralympians were recognized tonight at The 2014 ESPYS, held at the Nokia Theatre at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles. Determined by fan vote, 12 U.S. Olympians and Paralympians took home accolades in 11 categories.

Leading the list of Team USA winners were 2012 Olympic basketball champion Kevin Durant and 2008 Olympic bronze medalist in judo Ronda Rousey, winning Best Male Athlete and Best Female Athlete, respectively. Additionally, 2014 Olympic champion in slopestyle snowboarding, Jamie Anderson, joins Durant as the most decorated 2014 ESPYS Olympians, each winning two ESPYS. Anderson took home ESPYS for Best Female U.S. Olympian and Best Female Action Sports Athlete, while Durant won Best NBA Player in addition to Best Male Athlete.

In its 22nd year, the ESPYS – short for Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly – commemorate the most exciting moments, greatest achievements and top performances in athletics around the globe. At this year’s ceremony, Sochi 2014 Olympic bobsledder Jazmine Fenlator was on the scene as Team USA’s red carpet correspondent. She captured interviews with U.S. Olympic and Paralympic nominees, which can be found at TeamUSA.org. She also took over @USOlympic on Twitter and Team USA on Instagram, serving fans behind-the-scenes highlights and special access to some of their favorite Team USA athletes.

The 2014 ESPYS nominees, first announced June 24, featured 30 U.S. Olympians and eight Paralympians in 16 categories. Below are the 12 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic nominees who won in their respective categories.

Jozy Altidore, Michael Bradley, Brad Guzan and Tim Howard; soccer
Best Moment, U.S. defeats Ghana in 2014 FIFA World Cup opener

  • Three members of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team that defeated Ghana in the 2014 FIFA World Cup – Altidore, Bradley and Guzan – also represented Team USA at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, and Howard served as back-up for Brad Friedel at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. This marks the second ESPYS award for all four players and first since 2009 when Team USA won in the Best Upset category for its victory against then world No. 1-ranked Spain in the semifinals of the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup.

Jamie Anderson; slopestyle snowboarding
Best Female U.S. Olympian; Best Female Action Sport Athlete

  • Anderson took home the gold medal in slopestyle snowboarding at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, marking the first Olympic gold medal awarded in the event. This is her second consecutive ESPYS win for Best Female Action Sports Athlete and first ESPYS award for Best Female U.S. Olympian.

Kevin Durant, basketball
Best Male Athlete; Best NBA Player

  • A five-time NBA All-Star for the Oklahoma City Thunder and the 2013-14 NBA Most Valuable Player, Durant made his Olympic debut at the London 2012 Olympic Games where he helped Team USA win gold. The most nominated Team USA athlete at the 2014 ESPYS, these are his second and third ESPYS wins. His first ESPYS award was won in 2007 for Best Male College Athlete.

Declan Farmer, sled hockey
Best Male Athlete with a Disability

  • At the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, 16-year-old Farmer posted two goals and one assist in Team USA’s 3-0 win against Canada to secure a spot in the gold-medal game versus Russia. Farmer also notched one goal and one assist in Team USA’s 5-1 win over Italy. For its gold medal-winning performance, the U.S. team was named Team of the Paralympic Games at the USOC’s inaugural Best of U.S. awards this April. This his first ESPYS win.

Sage Kotsenburg, slopestyle snowboarding
Best Male U.S. Olympian

  • Kotsenburg won the first Olympic gold medal in slopestyle snowboarding, which also marked the very first gold medal awarded at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games. He also won Best Male Olympian at the USOC’s inaugural Best of U.S. awards this April. This is his first ESPYS win.

Floyd Mayweather, boxing
Best Fighter

  • At age 19, Mayweather won the bronze medal in the featherweight division at the Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games. This marks Mayweather’s third consecutive ESPYS award for Best Fighter, and sixth overall ESPYS win. He also won Best Fighter in 2013, 2012, 2010, 2008 and 2007. He was also nominated for Best Male Athlete at this year’s ESPYS.

Maya Moore, basketball
Best WNBA Player

  • A two-time WNBA champion with the Minnesota Lynx, Moore helped Team USA win the gold medal during her Olympic debut at the London 2012 Olympic Games. This marks her fourth ESPYS award. She is a three-time recipient of the Best Female College Athlete award (2009-11) for her outstanding performance with the University of Connecticut Huskies. Moore was also nominated for Best Female Athlete at this year’s ESPYS.

Ronda Rousey, judo
Best Female Athlete

  • A two-time U.S. Olympian in judo, Rousey claimed the bronze medal in the middleweight division at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, making her the first American woman to win an Olympic medal in judo. This marks her first ESPYS awards, though she was also nominated for Best Fighter at this year’s ESPYS.

Russell Westbrook, basketball
Best Comeback Athlete

  • After undergoing three knee surgeries within an eight-month timespan, the three-time NBA All-Star for the Oklahoma City Thunder showed up big in the 2014 NBA Western Conference Finals against the San Antonio Spurs, forcing the series to six games against the eventual NBA Finals champions. Westbrook helped Team USA win the gold medal at the London 2012 Olympic Games. This is his first ESPYS award.

Additionally, sled hockey player Josh Sweeney – who scored the gold medal-winning goal in Team USA’s 1-0 victory over Russia at the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games – received the inaugural Pat Tillman Award for Service. A special honor created by ESPN and the Pat Tillman Foundation in honor of former NFL player and U.S. Army Ranger Pat Tillman, the award recognizes an individual with a strong connection to sports who has served others in a way that echoes the Tillman legacy. 

"This is a tremendous honor and, hopefully, this award will help others like me realize that nothing is impossible without hard work and dedication,” Sweeney said. “Organizations like the Pat Tillman Foundation are amazing and being honored by them is extremely humbling."

An able-bodied ice hockey player in high school, Sweeney was drawn to sled hockey while rehabbing an injury he received from an improvised explosive device in October 2009 while serving as a sniper in the U.S. Marine Corps in Afghanistan. He later received a Purple Heart for his service. A special one-on-one interview with Sweeney can be found at USParalympics.org.

KIDS’ CHOICE SPORTS AWARDS 2014

As the summer awards season continues, 22 U.S. Olympians have been nominated in 12 of 15 categories for Nickelodeon’s inaugural Kids’ Choice Sports awards. The winners – selected by fan vote on nick.com/kids-choice-sports/vote – will be announced live at 8 p.m. ET Thursday (July 17) on Nickelodeon. Below are the U.S. Olympic nominees:

Best Female Athlete

Gabby Douglas, gymnastics

Gracie Gold, figure skating

Candace Parker, basketball

Hope Solo, soccer

Lindsey Vonn, alpine skiing

Serena Williams, tennis


Best Male Athlete

Kevin Durant, basketball

LeBron James, basketball

Dwyane Wade, basketball


Best Save

Tim Howard, soccer

Ryan Miller, ice hockey

Jonathan Quick, ice hockey

Hope Solo, soccer


Biggest Cannon

Serena Williams, tennis


Clutch Player of the Year

Carmelo Anthony, basketball

Kevin Durant, basketball

LeBron James, basketball

Abby Wambach, soccer


Don’t Try This Move at Home

Lindsey Vonn, alpine skiing

Shaun White, snowboarding


Favorite Comeback Athlete

Russell Westbrook, basketball


King of Swag

Amar’e Stoudemire, basketball

Dwyane Wade, basketball

Russell Westbrook, basketball


Party like a Sports Star

Abby Wambach, soccer


Queen of Swag

Gabby Douglas, gymnastics

Lolo Jones, bobsled, track & field

Lindsey Vonn, alpine skiing

Serena Williams, tennis


Sickest Moves

Landon Donovan, soccer

Alex Morgan, soccer

Chris Paul, basketball


Superstar Siblings

Serena and Venus Williams, tennis


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