Since February we’re celebrating Black History Month, it’s very important to take notice on how many black athletes made sports what it is today.
Let’s face it, without black athletes, sports in general doesn’t become as powerful as it is today.
They’re many successful black athletes all over the world. But they’re just as many who played on New York teams.
New Yorkers have watched so many black athletes shine before our eyes. Even shined us with championship success. And great moments that’ll last us a lifetime.
So, if I asked you, what are the top-ten greatest black sports athletes, or icons, to succeed in the bright lights of New York City? If you ask me, I have ten already listed in the bottom… Take a look.
10. C.C Sabathia
C.C Sabathia became the highest paid major league black pitcher, ever, when in 2008 he signed with the New York Yankees for $161 million dollar contract.
Sabathia, that season in 2009, got the Yankees to the World Series and won a championship for the Bombers, since 2000. He also became the ALCS MVP that year.
9. Darryl Strawberry
Darryl Strawberry was selected the first overall draft pick by the New York Mets.
Strawberry is known for his clutch postseason hits and “moonshot” homeruns.
In 1986, Strawberry hit 27 homeruns and 93 RBI. Also, that year in 86, the Mets won the World Series.
8. Carmelo Anthony
In 2011, Carmelo Anthony came to the New York Knicks in a blockbuster trade from the Denver Nuggets.
Anthony just made recent history on January 24th, 2014, by scoring 62 points against the Charlotte Bobcats.
7. Jason Kidd
In 2001 the Phoenix Suns traded Jason Kidd to the New Jersey Nets. In that 2001-02 season, Kidd and the Nets had 52-30 record, which set the Nets franchise record for the first ever 50-win team in their regular season history. Kidd finished second in the MVP voting that year, under Tim Duncan.
Kidd brought the Nets to two NBA Finals. Which also brought the Nets to their first Finals appearance.
Kidd will go down as one of the great point-guards in NBA history.
6. Patrick Ewing
The New York Knicks won the 1985 NBA Draft Lottery, and selected Patrick Ewing.
Ewing won Rookie Of The Year 1986.
He took the Knicks to two Finals appearance, in 1994 and 1999.
Ewing remains the franchise leading scorer for the Knicks, with 26,665 career points.
5. Reggie Jackson
“Mr. October” as they called Jackson, signed with the New York Yankees in 1976, to a 5-year $12 million dollar contract.
Jackson won the World Series with the Yankees in 1977 and 78. In ’77, he made history by hitting three homeruns in a World Series-Game 6 clinching game.
In 27 World Series games, he’s hit ten homeruns, with 24 RBI and a .357 average. Giving him the name “Mr.October”.
4. Walt Clyde Frazier
The New York Knicks picked Walt Clyde Frazier in the 1967 NBA Draft.
Clyde won an NBA title in 1970 and 1973 (’73 remains the last time the Knicks have won an NBA Championship).
Clyde is a 7-time All-Star, 4-time all-team and 7-time all-defensive first team.
He’s now the Knicks game commentator for MSG.
3. Lawrence Taylor
In the 1981 NFL Draft, the New York Giants select Lawrence Taylor, who was the 2nd overall pick.
Two-time Super Bowl champion. Ten-time Pro Bowl.
In 1986, he won the NFL MVP . He had one of the most successful season in NFL history, for a defensive player.
L.T was inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 1999.
2. Derek Jeter
Do I even have to give you the list of achievements?
The Yankees selected Jeter sixth, in the 1992 Draft.
Was the A.L Rookie Of The Year in 1996.
During the 1999-2000 season, the Yankees and Jeter agreed to a seven-year $118 million dollar contract.
Jeter has won five championship with the Yankees and been to a total of seven World Series, and the 2000 World Series MVP.
Jeter was named the Yankees captain in 2003.
In 2011, he became a member of the 3,00 hit club.
A Definite first ballot Hall Of Famer.
1. Jackie Robinson
I almost picked Jeter to be no.1, and luckily I thought about this guy… The man who open the door for all black athletes.
In 1947, Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier, when he was called up by the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Won Rookie Of The Year in 1947, the N.L MVP in 1949, a 6-time All-Star and won a World Series in 1955.
Without Robinson, none of these players — from Football to Basketball — would be playing, or would have the freedom to play sports in America.
This makes Jackie Robinson, the no.1 greatest New York black sports athlete.