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The ESPY Awards is an annual sports awards event created and broadcast by Americanmarker cable television network ESPN. Begun in 1993, the event confers eponymous awards, fully styled as Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Awards, for individual and team athletic achievement and other sports-related performance during the calendar year preceding a given ceremony. Given the fact that the ESPYs are promotions of the sports network ESPN, and were named such that the acronyms are so similar, the awards are generally regarded as a celebration of the power of ESPN. As the similarly-styled Grammy (for music), Emmy (for television), and Academy Awards (for film), the ESPYs are host by a contemporary celebrity; the style, though, is more relaxed, light, and self-referential than that of many other awards shows, with comedic sketches usually included.

From their inception until 2004, the awards were chosen variously through voting by fan; sportswriters, broadcasters, sports executive, and sportspersons, collectively experts; or ESPN personalities. Award winners have been selected thereafter exclusively through online fan balloting conducted from amongst candidates selected by the ESPY Select Nominating Committee.

Charitable role

A portion of the proceeds from sales of tickets to the event devolves on the V Foundation, a charity established by collegiate basketball coach and television commentator Jim Valvano to promote cancer research. Valvano announced the creation of the charitable foundation during his acceptance of the Arthur Ashe Courage Award during the inaugural ESPY telecast on March 3, 1993, fifty-five days before Valvano's death from metastatic adenocarcinoma.

Ceremonies

Timing

Between 1993 and 2001, the ceremony was held each year in either February or March and was broadcast live on ESPN.

Since 2002, the ceremony has been conducted on the Wednesday in July following the Major League Baseball (MLB) All-Star Game; as none of the major North American professional leagues have games scheduled for that day—the National Basketball Association, National Football League, and National Hockey League are not in-season, and MLB does not contest games on the day following its all-star game—major sports figures are available to attend. The show is aired on the subsequent Sunday four days later, although the results are announced on ESPN.com and thereafter across media outlets immediately after taping is complete.

Location

The first seven editions of the ESPYs were held in New York Citymarker, New Yorkmarker—in 1993 and 1994 at Madison Square Gardenmarker and between 1995 and 1999, inclusive, at Radio City Music Hallmarker. The awards relocated to Las Vegasmarker, Nevadamarker, for two years beginning in 2000, and ultimately settled at the Kodak Theatremarker in Hollywoodmarker, Californiamarker. In 2006, it was announced that the awards would move in 2008 to the Nokia Theatre, to be situated as the West Coast headquarters of ESPN at LA Livemarker, adjacent to the Staples Centermarker in Los Angelesmarker, California.

Hosts

The ceremonies have been hosted variously by comedians, television and film actors, and sportspeople. Americanmarker film actor Samuel L. Jackson is the only individual to have hosted four times (in 1999, 2001, 2002, and 2009); American comedian Dennis Miller and American film actor and singer Jamie Foxx are the only others to have hosted the awards ceremonies more than once.

Year-by-year

Year of ceremony Iteration

Venue
Geographic location
Host
2009 17th Nokia Theatre
Los Angelesmarker, Californiamarker
Americanmarker actor Samuel L. Jackson
2008 16th Americanmarker pop singer Justin Timberlake
2007 15th Kodak Theatremarker
Hollywoodmarker, Californiamarker
Americanmarker basketball player LeBron James & American comedian and talk show host Jimmy Kimmel
2006 14th Americanmarker road cyclist Lance Armstrong
2005 13th Canadianmarker-Americanmarker actor Matthew Perry
2004 12th Americanmarker actor and singer Jamie Foxx
2003 11th
2002 10th Americanmarker actor Samuel L. Jackson
2001 9th MGM Grandmarker
Las Vegasmarker, Nevadamarker
2000 8th Americanmarker actor Jimmy Smits
1999 7th Radio City Music Hallmarker
New Yorkmarker, New Yorkmarker
Americanmarker actor Samuel L. Jackson
1998 6th Canadianmarker actor and comedian Norm Macdonald
1997 5th Americanmarker actor and comedian Jeff Foxworthy
1996 4th Americanmarker actor and comedian Tony Danza
1995 3rd Americanmarker actor and comedian John Goodman
1994 2nd Madison Square Gardenmarker
New Yorkmarker, New Yorkmarker
Americanmarker comedian Dennis Miller
1993 1st


Awards

Americanmarker professional golfer Tiger Woods is the most-honored ESPY recipient, having captured 21 awards.

Extant

Cross-cutter categories

Cross-cutter awards are those the eligibility for which is not confined to those sportspersons participating in, or those events occurring in, any single or specific sport.

  • Outstanding Team ESPY Award, presented to the collegiate, professional, or national team, irrespective of sport contested, adjudged to be the most outstanding in a given year (1993)


Individual categories

Individual awards are those for which eligibility is limited to those partaking of a single individual or team sport or specific sport category. These are used as time fillers and bear no real meaning or depth, since the leagues and associations of the respective sports already present these awards.

Sponsored categories

Sponsored awards are those otherwise constituted as cross-cutter awards the titles and eligibility criteria of which reflect corporate sponsor.

Discontinued or superseded

Cross-cutter categories

Cross-cutter awards are those the eligibility for which is not confined to those sportspersons participating in, or those events occurring in, any single or specific sport.

Individual categories

Individual awards are those for which eligibility is limited to those partaking of a single individual or team sport or specific sport category.

Sponsored categories

Sponsored awards are those otherwise constituted as cross-cutter awards the titles and eligibility criteria of which reflect corporate sponsorship.

See also



References

  1. Because of the ceremony's rescheduling prior to the 2002 iteraton thereof, awards presented in 2002 were for achievement and performances during the seventeen-plus months previous.
  2. The Best Female and Best Male College Basketball and Best College Football Player ESPY Awards, awarded betwixt 1993 and 2001, inclusive, were absorbed in 2002 by the Best Female and Best Male College Athlete ESPY Awards.
  3. Between 2002 and 2004, inclusive, a single award for best sportsperson with a disability was presented; in 2005, the award was bifurcated by gender and reconstituted as the Best Female and Best Male Athlete with a Disability ESPY Awards.
  4. In 2001, the Outstanding Team ESPY Award was bifurcated and two new awards—styled as the Pro Team of the Year ESPY Award and College Team of the Year ESPY Award—were presented; the two were combined once more in 2002.
  5. In 2002 and 2003, a single award, styled in the former year as the Best Action Athlete of the Year ESPY Award, for best action sportsperson was presented; in 2004, the award was bifurcated by gender and reconstituted as the Best Male and Best Female Action Sports Athlete ESPY Awards.
  6. Between 1993 and 2006, inclusive, the award for best fighter, styled as the Best Boxer ESPY Award, was limited only to boxer; the Best Fighter ESPY Award absorbed the former in 2007.
  7. Between 1993 and 2004, inclusive, the award for best professional golfer was bifurcated by gender; the Best Female and Best Male Golfer ESPY Awards were merged and reconstituted as the Best Golfer ESPY Award in 2005.
  8. Both males and females were eligible for the 2000 and 2001 iterations of the award, which was bifurcated by gender and reconstituted as the Best Female and Best Male Soccer Player ESPY Awards in 2002; the awards were merged into a single award in 2005.
  9. Amongst those eligible for the Best Outdoor Sportsman ESPY Award were bass sport fishermen; such sportspersons are eligible for the Best Angler ESPY Award, which partially replaced the former award and was first presented in 2006.


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