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Another exciting edition of sports knowledge packed into one show. The Pal hosts with WBOB Sports Dir. Michael Parente. The two welcome from pennlive.com Audrey Snyder to talk BCS and Bill O'Brien. PFW's Andy Hart talks playoffs and fallen coaches in the NFL. Hot stove discussions with Mike Oz from yahoo sports and Mike Scandura from the AP. Plus the dynamic duo give out the first annual Parente & Pal awards.
The Only Awards that Matter. The First Annual Parente & Pal Sports Awards
Parente's 2013 Awards
Transaction of the Year - Only two players come to mind for this category and, coincidentally, both now play in the AFC West. Quarterback Alex Smith threw for an efficient 3,313 yards with a career-high 23 touchdowns and only seven interceptions as the Kansas Chiefs rebounded from a 2-14 season with 11 wins in 2013, but no player had a bigger impact on his new team than wide receiver Wes Welker, who defected from New England to Denver and scored a career-high 10 touchdowns as the Broncos broke every offensive record set by the 2007 Patriots and finished with a 13-3 record as the No. 1 seed in the AFC. More importantly, Welker's impact on the Denver offense might be the reason New England has to travel to the Mile High City for a potential conference title game.
Manager of the Year - Joe Girardi lost his Hall of Fame shortstop, power-hitting third baseman, starting first baseman and just about everyone else in his lineup, not to mention the fact his ace pitcher (C.C. Sabathia) turned into a pumpkin overnight, and yet the New York Yankees still won 88 games and remained in the hunt all season until the Boston Red Sox buried them for good in September. Kudos to Girardi in his finest hour.
Story of the Year - Two years removed from a surgical procedure on his neck that would've ended most players' careers, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning cemented his status as the most prolific passer of our generation, setting a new NFL record with 55 touchdown passes and 5,477 yards while still completing more than 68 percent of his passes at the ripe old age of 37. Not only did Manning shatter Brady's record of 50 touchdown passes set in 2007, he surpassed that in his 15th game. The additional four touchdown passes in the season finale were just icing on the cake for the greatest quarterback who ever lived.
Game of the Year - Trailing by five points with 28 seconds remaining, the Miami Heat were on the verge of elimination in Game 6 of the NBA Finals until LeBron James and Ray Allen saved the day -- and the season -- for the NBA's defending champions. James' quick three-pointer pulled the Heat to within striking distance and Allen's fadeaway three from the corner off a James miss with time running out sent the game to overtime. Miami won that night and again the following night in Game 7 for its second consecutive title. This was one for the ages and a reminder that NBA action is still fantastic.
Meatball of the Year - Aaron Hernandez. Need we say more?
Athlete of the Year - This is a mainstream choice, but who can honestly challenge King LeBron James, who is by far the most polarizing, dominant athlete in professional sports? James led the Heat to their second consecutive NBA title in 2013, disproving the idea that a.) he can't win the big one, b.) 2012 was a fluke and c.) the "Big Three" can't possibly play unselfishly long enough to make their mark on the NBA landscape. James still catches a lot of flak for everything he does on and off the court, but no athlete did a better job in 2013 of shunning the negative publicity and simply dominating in crunch time.
Let us know what you think - Michael Parente - MP@990WBOB.com - Pal - Pal@990WBOB.com
PAl's 2013 Awards
Transaction of the Year - The Celtics trade of Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce was without a doubt the biggest move made by any sports organization in 2013. Moving the beloved Pierce out of town was not easy, nor was spinning to the Celtic faithful they are to rebuild. However six months after the deal the C's are far more competitive than expected with a boat load of prospects and picks.
Manager of the Year - Jimbo Fischer, with a name like that you deserve some type of award. Fischer took over a proud program in decline in 2010. A year after loosing EJ Manuel to the draft all Jimbo did was replace him with a Heisman winner in Jameis Winston. Besides his recruiting credentials he has taken the Seminoles to BCS National Championship game for the first time since 2000.
Story of the Year - Amongst all the headlines by far the biggest in 2013 was the Aaron Hernandez story. Accused of murder, the former Pats star could repeat as story of the year in 2014 if the prosecution fails to present a decent case.
Game of the Year - This was the easiest decision of all. The only choice to be made was which Auburn football game to choose. My pick for Game of the Year is Auburn vs then #1 Alabama.Watch full game.
Meatball of the Year - I may surprise some on this choice, but with out a doubt in my mind NY Mets GM Sandy Alderson takes the Meatball of the Year award. In his three years he has failed to put a competitive team on the field at any point. The 2013 Mets were deplorable. Besides the continued destruction of the Metropolitans, Alderson sits as the chairman of the MLB rues committee. He hopes to enforce more instant replay almost immediately in baseball. I absolutely despise instant replay in football, baseball or any sport. More replays in baseball will slow down a game, which definitely can afford anymore disruptions.
Athlete of the Year - He set just about every passing record this season he could. He's on the fast track to another Super Bowl. Peyton Manning maybe getting older but he's also getting better.