Olympians & Paralympians nominated for ESPY awards

June 29, 2010, 11:53 a.m. (ET)
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Award season has begun and a host of U.S. Olympians and Paralympians have been nominated for ESPY and Teen Choice Awards to be presented this summer. For both awards, fans nationwide can play a part in determining who wins by visiting www.espn.com/espys and www.teenchoiceawards.com.

In its 18th year, the ESPY Awards commemorate the most exciting moments, greatest achievements and top performances in athletics around the globe. The ESPY Award nominations, announced today, feature a total of 26 U.S. Olympians, two U.S. Olympic coaches and five U.S. Paralympians in 20 categories - including 13 U.S. Olympians and Paralympians from the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. Two of the five nominees for Best Male Athlete, and three of the four nominees for Best Female Athlete, are U.S. Olympians.

Voting for the ESPYs begins today and runs through 11:59 p.m. ET on July 10. The winners will be announced during the 2010 ESPYs, which will be televised live on Wednesday, July 14, at 9 p.m. ET. Fans will determine the winners in 37 categories by voting online at www.espn.com/espys, by phone, and at www.facebook.com/ESPN.

Two-time snowboarding Olympian and double gold medalist Shaun White and soccer Olympian Landon Donovan led Olympians and Paralympians with three nominations each.

White picked up nominations for Best Championship Performance, Best Action Sports Male Athlete and Best U.S. Olympic Male Athlete after winning his second consecutive gold medal in the halfpipe at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. White's gold-medal performance made him just the fourth American male in a winter sport to successfully defend an Olympic gold medal joining Dick Button (figure skating), Shani Davis (speedskating) and Seth Wescott (snowboarding).

Donovan, a member of the 2000 U.S. Olympic Men's Soccer team that just missed the podium finishing fourth in Sydney, was nominated for awards in the following categories: Best Moment, Castrol Edge Performance Under Pressure and Best MLS Player. Donovan's game-winning goal on June 23 over Algeria in the 91st minute provided Team USA with its first World Cup win in eight years and marked the first time since 1930 that the United States won their group.

Team USA posted a historic performance this February at the Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. The 37 medals won by the U.S. marked the most medals ever won by a nation at a single Olympic Winter Games and four categories specifically honor Olympians and Paralympians - Best U.S. Male Olympian, Best U.S. Female Olympian, Best Female Athlete with a Physical Disability and Best Male Athlete with a Physical Disability.

Nominated in the male Olympian category are:

Shani Davis (speedskating) - Davis successfully defended his gold medal in the 1000m and won silver in the 1500m in Vancouver. He became the first male to win back-to-back gold medals in the 1000m. The two medals from 2010 give him a total of four Olympic medals. Evan Lysacek (figure skating) - Lysacek took home gold from Vancouver, becoming the sixth U.S. man to claim the top spot at the Olympic Winter Games. Sitting in second place following the short program, Lysacek trailed Russia's Evgeny Plushenko, the 2006 Olympic champion, by approximately a half point. Lysacek won the free skate with a score of 167.37, pushing him 1.31 points ahead of Plushenko to win the gold, and thus ending the gold-medal streak the Russian men had held since 1992. Bode Miller (alpine skiing) - The three-time Olympian captured his first gold medal taking the title of Olympic champion in the men's super combined. Miller added silver (super-G) and bronze (downhill), bringing his total to five Olympic medals and becoming the most decorated American skier in Olympic Winter Games history. Miller's three medals in Vancouver put him in elite company as one of only 12 alpine skiers who have won three medals in a single Olympic Winter Games. Apolo Anton Ohno (short track speedskating) - Ohno's addition of three Olympic medals at the Vancouver Games gives him eight total, making him the most decorated winter Olympian in U.S. history, surpassing Bonnie Blair (six). In Vancouver, Ohno took the silver in the 1500m and bronze in the 1000m and the 5000m relay. Shaun White (snowboarding) -See above.

The female Olympian category nominees are:

Hannah Kearney (freestyle moguls skiing) - Kearney put the United States on the board winning the first medal for the U.S. in Vancouver taking the women's moguls title. She had the top scores in all three categories (14.2 in turns, 5.40 in air and 7.03 for time) for a final total of 26.63, nearly a full point ahead of silver medalist Jenn Heil of Canada, who scored 25.69 Julia Mancuso (alpine skiing) - After not making the World Cup podium in two seasons, Mancuso won two Olympic silver medals at the Vancouver Olympic Winter Games in the super combined and downhill. The three-time Olympian is the first U.S. woman to win three Olympic medals in alpine skiing, the fifth female U.S. alpine skier to win multiple medals in the Olympic Winter Games, and the first since Jean Saubert at the 1964 Innsbruck Olympic Winter Games. Lindsey Vonn (alpine skiing) - No American athlete traveled to Vancouver with more hype than Lindsey Vonn. Despite winning the overall World Cup title in 2008 and 2009, Vonn was determined to earn the hardware that eluded her in two previous trips to the Olympic Winter Games. Vonn was named Olympic champion in her first event, collecting a gold medal in the women's downhill. She also took home a bronze medal in the super G. Vonn is also nominated for Best Female Athlete.

The Paralympic nominees in the Best Female Athlete with a Physical Disability category are:

· Alana Nichols (alpine skiing ) - Nichols enjoyed a successful March throughout the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver, winning four medals overall. With a gold medal in the sitting division of giant slalom on March 16, Nichols became the first U.S. female Paralympian to claim gold in both the Paralympic Summer and Winter Games. In 2008, Nichols helped lead her team to a gold medal in wheelchair basketball at the Paralympic Games in Beijing. In Vancouver, she again took the gold in the downhill and followed it up with silver in the super G and a bronze in the super combined.

· Stephani Victor (alpine skiing) - Victor, a three-time Paralympian in alpine skiing, collected a gold medal in super combined and a pair of silver medals in the slalom and giant slalom at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver. The three medals in Vancouver bring her overall total to five Paralympic medals.

Paralympians in the category of Best Male Athlete with a Physical Disability are:

· Steve Cash (sled hockey ) - Cash recorded four straight shutouts and 33 saves at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games in Team USA's quest for their second gold medal, including making five saves and stopping a penalty shot in USA's 2-0 gold medal win over Japan on March 20. His performance helped Team USA become the first team in Paralympic sled hockey tournament history to not allow a single goal throughout the tournament. Cash played in 210 minutes, and was named top goaltender by the tournament's directorate.

· Rudy Garcia-Tolson (swimming) - The two-time Paralympian became the first double above-knee amputee to complete an Ironman Triathlon when he completed the Ford Ironman Arizona.

· Andy Soule (biathlon) - On the opening day of the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, Soule came back from fifth place to win a bronze medal in the 2.4 km biathlon pursuit. This was not only the first U.S. medal of the Games, but also the first-ever medal for the U.S. biathlon team (Olympic or Paralympic). In the 12.5 km biathlon event later in the Games, Andy shot perfectly hitting all 20 of his targets and finishing fourth.

Below is the full list of Olympians and Paralympians and the respective categories in which they received ESPY nominations:

Best Male Athlete
Kobe Bryant, basketball
LeBron James, basketball

Best Female Athlete
Diana Taurasi, basketball
Lindsey Vonn, alpine skiing
Serena Williams, tennis

Best Championship Performance
Michael Phelps, swimming
Shaun White, snowboarding

Best Breakthrough Athlete
Stephen Strasburg, baseball

Best Game
Team Canada vs. Team USA in 2010 Olympic Winter Games men's ice hockey gold medal match

Best Moment
Landon Donovan, soccer

Castrol Edge Performance Under Pressure Award
Landon Donovan, soccer
Stephen Strasburg, baseball

Best Coach/Manager
Geno Auriemma, basketball
Mike Krzyzewski, basketball

Best NHL Player
Ryan Miller

Best WNBA Player
Tamika Catchings
Candace Parker
Diana Taurasi

Best Fighter
Floyd Mayweather

Best NBA Player
Kobe Bryant
Dwight Howard
LeBron James
Dwayne Wade

Best Female Tennis Player
Serena Williams
Venus Williams

Best Male Action Sport Athlete
Shaun White, snowboarding

Best Male Athlete with a Disability
Steve Cash, sled hockey
Rudy Garcia-Tolson, swimming
Andy Soule, biathlon

Best Female Athlete with a Disability
Alana Nichols, alpine skiing
Stephani Victor, alpine skiing

Best Male U.S. Olympic Athlete
Shani Davis, speedskating
Evan Lysacek, figure skating
Bode Miller, alpine skiing
Apolo Anton Ohno, short track speedskating
Shaun White, snowboarding

Best Female U.S. Olympic Athlete
Hannah Kearney, freestyle moguls skiing
Julia Mancuso, alpine skiing
Lindsey Vonn, alpine skiing

Best MLS Player
Conor Casey
Landon Donovan
Kasey Keller

Best Track & Field Athlete
Allyson Felix
Sanya Richards