Some athletes come and go and never leave your mind.
During Top 5 Thursday this week, we counted down the Top 5 Most Unique Athletes. In other words, athletes you've watched that you believe we will never seen another one just like them. Here's my list:
5.Shaquille O'Neal - Some younger fans may only remember Shaq for being overweight or unable to hit his free throws or for being the guy who feuded with Kobe Bryant. But for the rest of us, Shaq was a once in a lifetime seven footer who had an incredible combination of pure size and skill. Two inches taller and 80 pounds heavier than Giannis Antetokounmpo, early career Shaq was just as likely to grab a rebound and go coast to coast as he was to bully you down low and possibly break the rim. He was something else.
4.Deion Sanders - Neon Deion was a truly spectacular athlete but because most people couldn't stand him, might not get the due he deserves. He was a good two way MLB and NFL player but his real legacy was in the NFL. He was the best cover corner and one of the most electric returners in NFL history. His brash style influenced every generation of athletes since and his play usually backed it up.
3.Andre Agassi - Agassi was a true original in a sport that has really struggled to produce any personality close to his since his retirement. One of the most unique aspects of Agassi's career was his metamorphosis from punk rock tennis player to universally respected veteran. Agassi's style both on and off court left a void that tennis has never really filled, despite an era of all time greats who continue to dominate today in Nadal, Federer and Djokovic.
2.Randy Johnson - Are we likely to ever see another 6 foot 10 inch lefthander with triple digit heat, a wipeout slider and a mound presence that scared the bejeezus out of grown men? Probably not. Add in the mullet, the flavor savor and the overall grumpiness of one of baseballs most dominant pitchers and it equals a formula that will likely never be copied.
1.Barry Sanders - Think about Barry Sanders like this: He's the Bob Dylan of football. Lots of singer/songwriters have come along since Dylan. Some have tried to copy his lyrical style or his vocal style or even his song writing style but none have come close to making the impact on music history that Dylan has. Sanders is the same. Lots and lots of running backs have juked dudes or tried to emulate his helter skelter style but no running back has ever come close to being the next Barry Sanders.