GQ Sports dropped a take on the star power of New York athletes.
To some extent, I agree, but I think they missed some key names and the order is so-so.
It's safe to say, New York Sports are BACK. We've got the Knicks, Islanders, and Rangers, all battling it off in the playoffs, with the Nets making the postseason as well. The Yankees and Mets will probably win 95+ games, and both the Giants and Jets are going to be playoff contenders. Throw in the Bills too (because yes, Buffalo is part of New York and not Canada), and the state of the union for sports in the Big Apple is back to it's glory.
Two years ago, I dropped a response blog to John Jastremski having a similar list of power ranking New York athletes. I now have to fire up the blog machine yet again to send my response. GQ is a fashion site, that now is trying to submit it's influence into the sports world. I respect it, and I don't think this post was too far off, but the order was so-so, and I think they omitted some big names.
The list isn't bad, it's just not perfect. Mikal Bridges hasn't scratch the surface yet, and the Nets are not as relevant as the media proclaims them to be. Anthony Volpe has garnished some serious hype, but he's a rookie, and we are only one month into the season. The other names are valid, but the list is missing some marquee players, and the order needs to be shuffled. Here's my take.
Artemi Panarin (NYR)
Matt Barzal (NYI)
Anthony Rizzo (NYY)
Max Scherzer (NYM)
Mikal Bridges (BKN)
Sauce Gardner (NYJ)
I am not a big participation trophy guy, but I feel like these guys should get the nod of consideration. This crew of players are some of the top performers on their team, and have all made a name for themselves in New York, in their own accord. They are league leaders and will continue to be mini-kings of NY, as long as they keep up their respective levels of play.
No. 10 - Daniel Jones (NYG)
Arguably one of the top five quarterbacks in the NFC, Daniel Jones is now him. Danny Dimes has faced so much adversity, and has taken it with ease. New York fans and media aren't easy, but Jones rode the punches, and came out on top. He had quite the season, which resulted in the Giants winning their first playoff game in years AND he earned himself a new contract. Daniel Jones has emersed himself into New York sports and deserves a sit at the table, when talking keys to the castle.
No. 9 - Igor Shesterkin (NYR)
It's not easy playing a position on a team that was once held by an absolute legend. Shesterkin has handled that pressure perfectly. As our resident Hockey Analyst and Rangers fan, Chris Hanold, stated, Igor is doing things in the sport of hockey that hasn't been seen in a long time. He is a top tier goalie and the anchor of the playoff Rangers defense.
No. 8 - Francisco Lindor (NYM)
One of the first moves that brought relevancy back to the Mets, Lindor was made for the Big Apple. His enthusiasm and athleticism is perfect for New York.
No. 7 - Josh Allen (BUF)
Like I said, Buffalo is part of New York, and this is another nod for my friend Hanold. Josh Allen is good, actually very good. He has brought fame back to the Bills, and he is always competition at the highest level season after season. I would be remised if I didn't include him on this list.
No. 6 - Pete Alonso (NYM)
He is no Aaron Judge, but the Polar Bear is a very talented player, and the face of the Mets. There is no denying his bat and his power, and we shouldn't deny his status in New York.
No. 5 - Julius Randle (NYK)
Julius Randle gets a lot of unwarranted hate, and it's truly disrespectful. He bought into the Knicks culture in it's darkest times and he's worked his tail off to help them be where they are today. He's an All-Star, a workhorse, a potential MVP caliber player, and he has embraced New York through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
No. 4 - Gerrit Cole (NYY)
Our Ace. Another player who get's shredded by baseball fans and media members. This year, he is anchoring the rotation and pitching CY Young ball. How does Mikal Bridges make the list over Cole?
No. 3 - Saquon Barkley (NYG)
I hope that Saquon and the Giants get a deal done, because I am not ready to see him in another jersey. Riddled by injuries, Barkley has reinvented what it means to be a running back. He is versatile, strong, fast, fashionable. He has all the makings of being a top tier name in a big market like New York.
No. 2 - Jalen Brunson (NYK)
I have been the biggest Brunson supporter since the Knicks offered him a contract. He has proved everyone wrong, and he is on his way to becoming one of the best point guards in the Knicks history. A bullish statement, but he is going to lead this team to a title. I respect GQ throwing him on the top spot, but I don't think he is there just yet.
No. 1 - Aaron Judge (NYY)
Jay Z once said, "I made the Yankee hat more famous than a Yankee can." It's safe to say, the reigning MVP is doing the same. Aaron Judge, the new captain, one of the faces of baseball, he by definition is the King of New York. He is top two, and not two, and once he gets a ring (hopefully multiple), he will hold this title for a very long time.