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2014 ESPY Awards: Major Award Predictions

2014 ESPY Awards: Major Award Predictions

The 2013 ESPY Awards - Backstage
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The 2014 ESPYs are tonight, and there are plenty of intriguing battles for some of the night's best awards. Based on how this past season in sports went, here is who will be taking away the hardware in the eight biggest categories.

Best Male Athlete - QB Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

Super Bowl XLVIII - Seattle Seahawks v Denver Broncos
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Best Male Athlete - QB Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

Super Bowl XLVIII - Seattle Seahawks v Denver Broncos
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Other Nominees:
Miguel Cabrera
Kevin Durant
Floyd Mayweather

What Peyton Manning did this past season was nothing short of remarkable. It was relatively unknown how he was going to respond to neck surgery, and he has proven the past couple years that he's come back even stronger. Even though he came up short in the Super Bowl, he was still the most impressive male athlete this season.

Best Female Athlete - G Maya Moore, Minnesota Lynx

Tulsa Shock v Minnesota Lynx
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Best Female Athlete - G Maya Moore, Minnesota Lynx

Tulsa Shock v Minnesota Lynx
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Other Nominees:
Ronda Rousey - UFC
Mikaela Shiffrin - Alpine Skiing
Breanna Stewart - UCONN Basketball

Since she was in college, Maya Moore has been one of the faces of women's basketball. Putting together a great 2013, she deserves this award.

Best Team - San Antonio Spurs

San Antonio Spurs Victory Parade And Rally
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Best Team - San Antonio Spurs

San Antonio Spurs Victory Parade And Rally
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Other Nominees:
Boston Red Sox
L.A. Kings
Seattle Seahawks
UCONN Women's Basketball
FSU Football

This award goes to the best team, and that's exactly what the Spurs are. They're the definition of how a team should work together to achieve a goal. They don't have any superstars, but by being unselfish, they were able to win the NBA Finals this season.

Best Game - Alabama vs. Auburn, Iron Bowl

Alabama v Auburn
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Best Game - Alabama vs. Auburn, Iron Bowl

Alabama v Auburn
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Other Nominees:
Colts vs. Chiefs, AFC Wild Card
Rangers vs. Kings, Stanley Cup Game 5

This seems like the best bet of the night. The Iron Bowl is already a legendary matchup, but this involved the best play of the season and set the stage for several different BCS matchups, including the BCS Championship for Auburn.

Best NFL Player - QB Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am - Round Two
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Best NFL Player - QB Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos

AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am - Round Two
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Other Nominees:
HB Jamaal Charles
LB Luke Kuechly
HB LeSean McCoy
QB Russell Wilson

It's possible that someone else will get the award if Manning also wins Best Male Athlete, but he deserves this award, too. Wilson won the Super Bowl, so he has a compelling case, but Manning was more central to his team's success.

Best NBA Player - G/F LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers

2014 NBA Finals - Game Five
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Best NBA Player - G/F LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers

2014 NBA Finals - Game Five
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Other Nominees:
F Kevin Durant
F Blake Griffin
C Joakim Noah

LeBron James is the most dominant athlete in any sport today; he also got a lot more popular by going back to Cleveland. There's a good chance he's the best athlete on the planet right now, so he seems like a no-brainer for this award.

Best MLB Player - OF Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels

Cleveland Indians v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
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Best MLB Player - OF Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels

Cleveland Indians v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
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Other Nominees:
3B Miguel Cabrera
OF Chris Davis
LHP Clayton Kershaw
RHP Max Scherzer

Mike Trout is baseball's next big thing. This could easily go to Kershaw because of his dominance on the hill, but the flare with which Trout plays is likely to land him the award.

Best NHL Player - G Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers

Pittsburgh Penguins v New York Rangers - Game Six
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Best NHL Player - G Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers

Pittsburgh Penguins v New York Rangers - Game Six
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Other Nominees:
C Sidney Crosby
C Ryan Getzlaf
C Anze Kopitar
C Jonathan Toews

This might be a long shot, but Lundqvist really does deserve this award. He willed his team into the Stanley Cup Finals when they certainly weren't the most talented team in the Eastern Conference. His amazing play would've been even more amplified had they won it all.