Greatest Athlete in Connecticut History Tournament: Joey Logano vs. Rick Mahorn

It’s summertime, and that means it’s time for another SportzEdge ® Bracket-style, 64-team tournament! Feel the excitement!!!

Last year, we changed the course of modern human civilization with the Coolest NCAA Logo Tournament, which became a national phenomenon along the lines of a presidential election, Caitlyn Jenner’s ESPY speech, or DeAndre Jordan changing his mind about where he wants to play basketball.

This year, we decided to take on a question scholars have been debating since the 1800’s, maybe.

Who is the greatest athlete in Connecticut history?

There are plenty of outstanding candidates, from Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young, to four-time Boston Marathon champion Bill Rogers, to all-time great featherweight boxer Willie Pep.

The athletes we considered must have grown up in Connecticut, and we counted only their prowess on the playing field, so coaches, executives and contributors like Walter Camp were not considered.

WALTER CAMP REGION

Joey Logano5. Joey Logano

NASCAR Racing 

Middletown

The No. 22 Team Penske driver began his racing career at 6 years old, and he hasn’t looked back. Logano is the youngest driver to win a Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series race, and he was the 2009 Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year. In the Sprint Cup Series, he has nine wins, 95 top-10 finishes, and 12 poles.

The 25-year-old is in search for his first Sprint Cup Series championship as he is currently tied for second place with six-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson. Logano’s best finish in the Sprint Cup Series came last year when he finished in fourth place. Back in February, Logano won the 2015 Daytona 500, which is his only win so far this season. Along with that win, he has 10 top-five finishes and 13 top-10 finishes in 2015.

 

 (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

12. Rick Mahorn

NBA Forward, 1980-98.

Perhaps the baddest of the “Bad Boy” Pistons of the late 80’s, the former Weaver High School star is remembered as one of the NBA’s toughest enforcers. The physical forward played 18 years in the league, averaging 7 points per game and helping the Pistons bully their way to the 1989 title.

Detroit would go on to win the championship the next year. But before he would get the chance to defend that title with his teammates, Mahorn was scooped up by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 1990 expansion draft. He was devastated by the move. Mahorn never played for Minnesota though; as they traded him to the Philadelphia 76ers. He earned second team all-defense in the NBA that year, and would spend seven more seasons in the league.


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