I Am Mad Online About The ESPYs Naming Klay Thompson "Best Comeback Player" Over Trey Mancini
I hate being this guy, but the ESPYs got me mad online last night. I don't watch the ESPYs anymore, I don't think anyone does.
It used to be a fun event to watch the one night a year there was no sports on, and just like the rest of ESPN (minus SVP and Tim Kurkjian) it has gone massively downhill and is absolutely unwatchable. I decided to tune in for the last hour to watch the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance. An incredible speech by Dickie V and a very touching tribute to the legend as he battles cancer at the age of 82. He spoke a lot about pediatric cancer, how kids should never have to go through chemo and treatments, it was amazing. Not a dry eye in my house.
So after his 25 minute touching speech they hit us with the "Best Comeback Player" award with 4 very deserving nominees, but 2 stood out over the others. It wasn't even close in my mind.
Klay Thompson, Joe Burrow, Diamond DeShields and Trey Mancini. All 4 have great stories, but again, 2 weigh heavier in my eyes. Klay Thompson and Joe Burrow both recovering from torn ACLs, Thompson also suffered that Achilles tear. Awful stuff, very bad injuries. Trey Mancini fought back from stage 3 colon cancer at just 27 while Diamond DeShields had a grape-sized tumor removed from her spinal cord and underwent a surgery that was supposed to be 3-hours but turned into a 9-hour affair. Here is an excerpt from the article about her surgery...
"One of the possible complications is paralysis, because we are operating around the nerves inside the spine," said Dr. Edwin Ramos, the neurologist who performed DeShields' surgery.
But if the tumor was not removed, it also could cause paralysis due to pressure on the spinal cord.
Dr. Ramos was able to remove the schwannoma, but the nerves were severely impacted, leaving DeShields with tremors and involuntary spasms throughout her body. And when the 6-foot-1 WNBA guard -- who was traded to the Phoenix Mercury in February after four seasons with the Chicago Sky -- awoke after the surgery, it wasn't clear whether she would regain full feeling or control of her body."
So again, you have two athletes coming back from ligament and tendon injuries compared to two players to battled life threatening ailments, their bodies were literally trying to kill them. That is why people flipped out and lost it when Klay Thompson got named Best Comeback Player last night over Trey and Diamond.
I get it, baseball and WBNA aren't really ESPN's thing, NBA is their "thing". And I know there is fan voting that goes into it, but read the room guys. And is Klay really the best? He averaged 17/3/2 in the finals, that's fine, nothing special. Joe Burrow was an MVP candidate, Trey was the best story in baseball in 2021 after playing in 147 games and hitting 21 homers, Diamond was just able to make it back after HAVING A TUMOR REMOVED FROM HER SPINE THAT WAS WRAPPED UP IN HER NERVES. There I go again, getting mad at the ESPYs. It's just the ultimate read the room move.
They really showed this incredible video followed up by his amazing speech only to give the award to a guy who hurt his knee and ankle. Who thought that would be a good idea? And again, I know the ESPYs don't mean shit, it's just more ESPN propaganda. But when there is an award like this it should actually mean something. Klay is a great player, played on a great team, arguably one of the top 5 shooters of all time. He didn't deserve this award over Trey or Diamond. I was thinking they'd give the award to both of them when Dickie V's speech was wrapping up. It made all the sense in the world. I honestly don't think you can put the two "injuries" in the same sentence. ACL and Achillies tear vs stage 3 cancer and a tumor intertwined with your nerves in your spinal cord.
It's par for the course with ESPN though, so it's whatever. I'm 100% mad online at something that I shouldn't be. It just would have been nice to see ESPN honor Trey and Diamond after a great speech about cancer instead of a guy who hurt his knee. Just saying. It wasn't surprising, just disappointing. Klay deserves a ton of credit for coming back, but his story isn't in the same atmosphere as Trey or Diamond's.
PS. I will never eat at another ESPN Zone again. EVER.