Kevin Durant, Peyton Manning, Ronda Rousey, U.S. Men's National Soccer Team among the Night's Big Winners at The 2014 ESPYS, Hosted by Drake
The biggest stars from the worlds of sports and entertainment gathered in downtown Los Angeles at the Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE on Wednesday night to celebrate the best sports stories of the year at The 2014 ESPYS Presented by Capital One, hosted by Drake, which aired live on ESPN.
Peyton Manning, who won his third ESPY for Best NFL Player, also accepted the award for Best Record-Breaking Performance. He became the first athlete to be honored twice for breaking the same record. Manning earned the award in 2005 for throwing 49 touchdowns, a feat that he easily topped with his 55-touchdown performance this season.
NBA MVP Kevin Durant capped off a championship season with his first ESPY ever for Best Male Athlete and Best NBA Player. Both ESPYS broke two-year winning streaks held by LeBron James.
The U.S. Men's National Soccer Team was on hand to accept its Best Moment award for the win over Ghana in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, where Clint Dempsey and John Brooks scored goals that captured the world's attention.
Professional fighters were in the spotlight as Floyd Mayweather Jr. won his third straight ESPY for Best Fighter and sixth ESPY overall. Ronda Rousey, who won for Best Female Athlete, is the first UFC Fighter (man or woman) to win an ESPY in that category.
Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera won the ESPY for Best MLB Player for the second year in a row and NBA Champion Gregg Popovich won his first ESPY for Best Coach/Manager.
Three awards served as the emotional pinnacle of the industry-wide sports celebration. Stuart Scott was presented the Jimmy V Perseverance Award, given each year in honor of the late Jim Valvano and The V Foundation for Cancer Research, for the passion and determination he has displayed in the face of cancer. The Arthur Ashe Courage Award was presented to Michael Sam for breaking stereotypes, paving the way for others following him and displaying courage that resonates beyond sports. And a new annual award added this year, The Pat Tillman Award for Service, was given to Josh Sweeney, a Purple Heart recipient and a member of the U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team that won the gold medal at the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. The award honors an individual with a strong connection to sports that has served others in a way that echoes the legacy of the late Pat Tillman.
This year's presenters included (in alphabetical order):
Jessica Alba (Sin City: A Dame to Kill For), Jeff Bridges (The Giver) Jordana Brewster (Dallas), Victor Cruz (New York Giants), Cameron Diaz (Sex Tape), Taye Diggs (Murder in the First), Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder), Colin Kaepernick (San Francisco 49ers), Dan Marino, Floyd Mayweather, Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory), Danica Patrick, Jason Segel (Sex Tape), Maria Sharapova, Kiefer Sutherland (24) and Russell Wilson (Seattle Seahawks).
COMPLETE LIST OF THE 2014 ESPYS WINNERS
Best Breakthrough Athlete: Richard Sherman
Best Moment: U.S. Men's National Soccer Team
Best Game: Iron Bowl
Best Record-Breaking Performance: Peyton Manning
Best Play: Chris Davis
Best Female Athlete: Ronda Rousey
Best Male Athlete: Kevin Durant
Best Team: Seattle Seahawks
Best Upset: Mercer
Best Female Action Sports Athlete: Jamie Anderson
Best Male Action Sports Athlete: Nyjah Huston
Best Female Athlete with a Disability: Jamie Whitmore
Best Male Athlete with a Disability: Declan Farmer
Best Female College Athlete: Breanna Stewart
Best Male College Athlete: Doug McDermott
Best Coach/Manager: Gregg Popovich
Best MLS Player: Tim Cahill
Best NBA Player: Kevin Durant
Best NFL Player: Peyton Manning
Best NHL Player: Sidney Crosby
Best MLB Player: Miguel Cabrera
Best WNBA Player: Maya Moore
Best Female US Olympian: Jamie Anderson
Best Male US Olympian: Sage Kotsenburg
Championship Performance: Kawhi Leonard
Best Bowler: Pete Weber
Best Female Tennis Player: Maria Sharapova
Best Male Tennis Player: Rafael Nadal
Best Comeback Athlete: Russell Westbrook
Best Female Golfer: Michelle Wie
Best Male Golfer: Bubba Watson
Best International Athlete: Cristiano Ronaldo
Best Fighter: Floyd Mayweather
Best Driver: Ryan Hunter-Reay
Best Jockey: Victor Espinoza
Jimmy V Perseverance Award: Stuart Scott
Arthur Ashe Courage Award: Michael Sam
Pat Tillman Award For Service: Josh Sweeney
The ESPYS gather top celebrities from sports and entertainment to commemorate the past year in sports by recognizing major sports achievements, reliving unforgettable moments and saluting the leading performers and performances. The 2014 ESPYS marks the show's 22nd telecast and will recognize both sport-specific achievements, such as "Best MLB Player" and "Best WNBA Player," and best-in-sport winners, such as "Best Team" or "Best Female Athlete" that pit nominees from different sports against each other. For additional ESPYS news and information, please follow the official ESPYS Twitter handle: @ESPYS. Tickets to The 2014 ESPYS are available for public purchase at AXS.com. Official ESPYS media kit can be found here.
The 2014 ESPYS are Presented by Capital One and associate sponsors include, in alphabetical order: Brand Jordan, Gatorade, GMC, GREY GOOSE, MillerCoors, Nautica and Old Spice and Verizon Fios. GMC will be the presenting sponsor of the BODY at ESPYS Tuesday night pre-party. Additionally, Miller Fortune will be the presenting sponsor of the official ESPYS Post Party.
This year, ESPN is also expanding its 21-year effort to help find a cure for cancer with a day-long fundraising drive across multiple platforms called "ESPY Day Benefitting The V Foundation for Cancer Research." ESPY Day will begin at midnight ET on July 16 with integrated fundraising messaging across ESPN networks culminating with a special simulcast of the ESPYS on ESPN2 at 9 p.m. The simulcast will include fundraising elements and heavy social media integration of the hashtag #DontEverGiveUp, inspired by Jim Valvano's iconic speech at the 1993 ESPYS.