Top 10 athletes of the decade

Cameron Whitney, Staff Writer

  Many amazing athletes have competed in the past decade. These athletes have made history, including such moments LeBron James making eight straight finals appearances and Serena Williams winning her 23rd major singles title. These moments will live on and be remembered forever. Here’s a few athletes that were constantly filling up the highlights reels.

10. Kevin Durant– Durant has been a top player in the NBA for a long time now. Since being drafted in 2007, he has done nothing but impress. He is considered to be one of the best scorers in the league from the past decade. In the last 10 years, he averaged 27.4 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 4.6 assists. He won the 2014 MVP and won two championships with the Golden State Warriors. This past summer, Durant signed a four year, $164 million contract with the Brooklyn Nets. He is currently recovering from a torn Achilles, which happened during last years finals against the Raptors.

9. Michael Phelps– Every time Phelps got into the pool, there was a chance another record was going to be broken. Michael’s appearance in his first big professional meet was the 2000 Summer Olympics in Australia at the age of 15. Even in that Olympics, people knew he was special. Phelps would go on to compete  in the next three Olympics, win 22 medals in Olympic competition. In 2014, Michael decided to retire. He retired as a legend, having won many medals. In 2015, he decided to make a comeback and would again compete in the 2016 Olympics in Rio. While in Rio, Phelps would win six more medals, bringing his total to 28 Olympic medals, with 23 of them are gold. He is retired and now considered an Olympic legend. 

8. Stephen Curry– Steph Curry changed the game of basketball during this past decade. Coming into the league, Curry was known for shooting, but was not seen as a superstar. He changed the outlook of the NBA by shooting threes most of the time. Steph averaged 23.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 6.5 assists this decade. While playing for the Warriors, he  won three championships and MVPs in 2015 and 2016. He was also part of the record breaking 73-9 team in the 2015-16 season. This year, Curry had a broken wrist in October. The Warriors have a record of 9 wins and 30 losses this season.

7. Cristiano Ronaldo– The Soccer star has had a terrific career. Ronaldo’s pro career started in 2003 as part of Manchester United. He played with them all the way through 2009-2010 season. He choose to transfer to Real Madrid. In 2011-2012, he passed his previous goal record and scored 60 goals. Ronaldo participated in three World Cups but never won any. From 2010-2018, Ronaldo had five Ballon d’Or wins as the best player of the year. In the 2015-16 season, he became the all time scorer of Real Madrid. In 2018, he won his fifth Champions league championship. This year, he is playing his second season for Juventus and is hoping for another championship.

6. Usain Bolt– Usain Bolt is simply just faster than everyone else. In 2007, he set a world record for the 100 meter with a time of 9.76 seconds. But then again, Bolt would beat his 100 meter in 2008 with a time of 9.72 second. His first Olympics happened in 2008 in Beijing. Where he broke the 100 meter again with a time of 9.69 seconds. Bolt also competed in the 2012 Olympics where he got the gold medal for the 100 meter with a time of 9.63 seconds. He would also win the gold medal in the 200 meter also. Bolt dominated once again in Rio in 2016. He would achieve gold in the 100 meter, 200 meter, and 4 x 100 relay.  Bolt would finished his Olympic career with nine gold medals and world records. He would sign a contract to play soccer, but in 2019 retired from sports. 

5. Mike Trout– Mike Trout shot onto the scene in 2012. That season he hit 30 home runs, 83 runs batted in, and a .326 batting average. He finished the year second in MVP voting to Miguel Cabrera. Trout has been a star in baseball ever since then. He was voted to eight all star games and won three MVPs in his nine year career. For his career, he averaged 31 home runs, 83 runs batted in, a .305 batting average. Although, Mike Trout has been to the playoffs only once, he has done everything for his team. Even with a lackluster team, Trout still performs at his MVP caliber self every year. This past season, Trout and the Angels had 72 wins and 90 losses, but won his third MVP of his career.

4. Simone Biles– Biles started her gymnastics career at the age of six, but she began her elite career at the age of 14. Biles started competing internationally in 2013 and was named a replacement for the 2012 Olympic games. Biles  started her Olympic gymnastics career at the 2016 games in Rio. Where she won gold medals in the balance beam, vault, floor exercise, all around and team. She dominated in Rio and broke the record with the most medals at the Olympic games. In 2019, Simone competed in the World Artistic Gymnastics Championship. There she would win her 25th medal.

3. Serena Williams– Serena Williams started playing tennis at three years old. She grew up playing with her big sister, Venus. They would both grow up to play professionally. Serena’s first professional major championship was in 1999. She would begin to build a valid case for the best women’s tennis player.  From 2001- 2003, she won the Australian Open twice, Wimbledon twice, and the Hopman cup twice. She would continue her dominance into the 2010’s. Williams would also participate in the 2000, 2008, and 2012 Olympics. Where she would win four gold medals. Serena has won the most single major singles title with 23. Which is the most by male or female. This past year, she continues her way back to the top from coming back from having her child in 2017.

2. Tom Brady– Tom Brady wasn’t supposed to be in the NFL, let alone be the player that he is. Brady was drafted 199th in the 2000 NFL draft. At best, he was projected to be a backup quarterback. Brady has done nothing but amaze people. He has been part of the New England Patriots dynasty for his whole 20 year career. Since 2010, Tom Brady and the Patriots has done nothing but dominate the NFL. He lead the Patriots to ten division titles, and three Super Bowls. Tom won two MVPs in 2010 and 2017. Tom Brady and the Patriots are in contention for the Super Bowl every year. This year, they went 12-4 but lost to the Tennessee Titans in the Wild Card round.

1. LeBron James– Arguably the best player of all time, he has had an amazing career. LeBron was one of the best high school prospects ever. He could do everything on the basketball court at a young age. James was the first overall pick to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2003 NBA draft. He has been a superstar ever since coming into the league. He won four MVPs, three of them having come in the 2010’s. During the decade, he averaged 26.4 points,  8.5 rebounds and 7.7 assists. LeBron has sustained his production and play style even into his 30’s. LeBron went to the NBA finals from 2010- 2018, appearing with Miami and Cleveland during that stretch. James won NBA championships in 2012,2013, and 2016, with the remembered one being when LeBron lead the Cavs past the Warriors, who went 73-9 in 2016. Now, LeBron is playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, who have championship aspirations.