Top Five Detroit Athletes of All-Time

If you grew up in the Metro-Detroit area, then I do not have to tell you that Detroit is the best sports town there is. Whether you are following the Pistons, Red Wings, Tigers or Lions they have all had their moments of triumph and heart breaking defeats. If you are a passionate Detroit fan then you will love or hate my top five Detroit athletes of all-time list. Let the Debate begin.

Barry Sanders

25 Oct 1998: Barry Sanders #20 of the Detroit Lions celebrates during the game against the Minnesota Vikings at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac Michigan. The Vikings defeated the Lions 34-13. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Squire /Allsport

25 Oct 1998: Barry Sanders #20 of the Detroit Lions celebrates during the game against the Minnesota Vikings at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac Michigan. The Vikings defeated the Lions 34-13. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Squire /Allsport

The electrifying and iconic figure is well regarded as the only running back to be mention in the same breath as Walter Payton. The Hall of Fame running back dazzle viewers with his amazing ability to reverse direction whenever he wanted. Sanders is the only player in NFL history to rush for 1,500 yards for four consecutive season and is currently ranked third on the NFL All-Time rushing leaders list.

Isaiah Thomas

INGLEWOOD, CA - JUNE 13: Isiah Thomas #11 of the Detroit Pistons smiles for the camera during the Postgame Press Conference of game four of the NBA Finals. The Detroit Pistons defeated the Los Angeles Lakers to win the championship at The Great Western Forum on June 13, 1989 in Inglewood, Calfifornia. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 1989 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

INGLEWOOD, CA – JUNE 13: Isiah Thomas #11 of the Detroit Pistons smiles for the camera during the Postgame Press Conference of game four of the NBA Finals. The Detroit Pistons defeated the Los Angeles Lakers to win the championship at The Great Western Forum on June 13, 1989 in Inglewood, Calfifornia. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 1989 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

Arguably regarded as the best point guard ever, Isiah Thomas could do it all. Recognized for his exceptional quickness yet, underrated passing game, Thomas averaged nineteen points and nine assist a game in his decorated thirteen year career. The hall of fame point guard led the Detroit Pistons to two back to back NBA titles and gained national respect in the “Glory Days” of basketball.

Al “Mr. Tiger” Kaline

DETROIT - OCTOBER 14: Hall of Famer and former Detroit Tiger great Al Kaline watchess batting practice prior to the start of Game Four of the American League Championship Series between the Detroit Tigers and the Oakland Athletics October 14, 2006 at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

DETROIT – OCTOBER 14: Hall of Famer and former Detroit Tiger great Al Kaline watchess batting practice prior to the start of Game Four of the American League Championship Series between the Detroit Tigers and the Oakland Athletics October 14, 2006 at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

When your nickname is named after a Detroit professional team, there is no question you’re one of Detroit’s most beloved sports figure. AL Kaline is the best right fielder ever to play in the Detroit Tigers franchise history. His stats stand alone with 399 Home Runs and a batting average of 297 and ten golden gloves awards.

Joe Louis

27 Jun 1948 : Joe Louis beats Jersey Joe Walcott in the 11th round by KO at Yankee Stadium. Credit : Allsport. Mandatory Credit: Allsport UK/ALLSPORT

27 Jun 1948 : Joe Louis beats Jersey Joe Walcott in the 11th round by KO at Yankee Stadium. Credit : Allsport. Mandatory Credit: Allsport UK/ALLSPORT

Remembered in Detroit as the Brown Bomber, Louis had a devastating knockout punch that left opponents looking at stars. Louis was ranked number one in The Ring magazine’s list of the 100 greatest punchers of All –Time… In his seventy professional fights, fifty-two were won by KO. Can somebody say Night-Night?

Gordie “Mr. Hockey” Howe

MONTREAL, QC - NOVEMBER 8: Goalie Terry Sawchuk #30 of the Detroit Red Wings makes the save on the shot by Jean Beliveau #4 of the Montreal Canadiens as Gordie Howe #9 of the Red Wings watches on November 8, 1968 at the Montreal Forum in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

MONTREAL, QC – NOVEMBER 8: Goalie Terry Sawchuk #30 of the Detroit Red Wings makes the save on the shot by Jean Beliveau #4 of the Montreal Canadiens as Gordie Howe #9 of the Red Wings watches on November 8, 1968 at the Montreal Forum in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Hall of famer Gordie Howe, had an extraordinary career. Howe was well known around hockey as someone who loved the game more than anyone. He retired from the sport with six Hart trophies, league MVP and won four Stanley Cups. But nothing stood out more than Howe winning the NHL first Lifetime achievement award. He left the game and the Detroit Red Wings in good hands. He will always be regarded as Detroit’s own and most beloved and iconic sports Figure.

A’kiem Gardner is a Creative Services intern at CW50.

Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More From CW50 Detroit

Street Beat
Detroit Proud Playlists
Play.it

Listen Live