Daily writing prompt
Name the professional athletes you respect the most and why.

The professional athletes I respect the most are the ones who despite all the fame, glory, money, influence, and everything else that goes with being a professional athlete, transcend all of it to play their game, enjoy it, and make the world a better place in the process.

As an athlete in college, the pressure to perform for us was intense, I can not imagine what professional athletes go through, especially in high pressure sports. You can be a hero or a goat any night in any sport, but some have been ridiculed throughout decades for one bad play, or one dumb mistake. Bill Buckner comes to mind for the Boston Red Sox. He missed an easy ground ball allowing the Mets to come from behind and win the game with 2 outs in the 9th inning. Forevermore, blowing a big play in baseball, even in other sports is known as pulling a “Buckner”.

When pro athletes are performing, everything is great, they are elevated in society as demi-gods of a sort. As soon as that performance falls off though, it is equally cutting on as it is elevating on the way down. Keeping a positive outlook, maintaining your focus, and working harder through those times can not be easy and is the demise of many a player.

Some athletes can transcend this, Clayton Kershaw (L.A. Dodgers) comes to mind. He is going on 15 years as the Dodgers ace pitcher. Despite a decline in his pitching velocity and numerous health issues, he still goes out and puts together a bunch of wins for his team. He has an adorable family that is easy to see is his bedrock. When he goes out to pitch, the rest of the team knows that he will absolutely give his all to the team.

Another athlete in this category that comes to mind is Justin Turner. Justin Turner was a player that The New York Mets essentially gave up on, was traded to the Dodgers and in ten short years, helped transform the culture of the team as its leader to unprecedented number of pennants in the National League West. Off the field, Turner began a 5K run at Dodgers Stadium that raises millions of dollars for charity. Turner now has the most hits in the postseason of any Dodger player…..ever. No crazy headlines, no fighting on social media with teammates, just solid leadership and leading by example. That is what ultimately gains my respect.

Thanks for reading Bunchiesblog! Check out some of my other recent articles. Which athletes do you respect and why? Feel free to comment below!

3 responses to “Greatness on the Field Complemented by Greatness off the Field”

  1. Interesting and informative. Thanks for sharing.

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