TIME Magazine released their list of the 100 most influential people in the world. A few athletes made the list, and they might not be the ones that you would have guessed.
The 5 athletes who are among the 100 most influential people on earth: Jeremy Lin, Tim Tebow, Oscar Pistorius, Novak Djokovic, and Lionel Messi.
Messi is understandable. He's arguably the best soccer player on the planet, and that's the most popular sport in the world. I get it.
Ditto for Djokovic, currently the #1 tennis player in the world.
Pistorius is a double amputee, who will be competing in the 2012 Olympics in London, and also competes in the Paralympics. I understand that completely.
Tebow's a bit mind boggling. As you may know, I'm not a huge fan, and I honest don't think he's a very good quarterback. That having been said, he's a folk hero and people have an odd fascination with him, so I can somewhat understand it. Does he deserve to be on this list ahead of someone like Peyton Manning, who had the entire league by the balls during his free agency? Probably not, but I'll let it slide.
The one I have a real problem with is Lin. I'm sorry, but he's simply not one of the most influential people in the world, the NBA, or even on his own team.
The main justification for Lin, courtesy of Arne Duncan:
That's nice, but what influence does Lin REALLY have?
Trey Kerby of the Basketball Jones posted a rather sarcastic list of 100 NBA personalities who are "less influential" than Lin, according to TIME.
Lin's 15 minutes of fame were nice, but Kerby has a point. Can you really make an intelligent case that Lin has more influence than Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, or Kobe Bryant? What about NBA commissioner David Stern? Hell, even former players like Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal, and Magic Johnson have more influence than Lin.
This is usually what happens when non-sports publications try to inject some sports opinions into their content. Look no further than the Wall Street Journal for many examples of bizarre sports lists that seem iike they're way out of left field.
What do you think... should Lin be dropped from the list, or am I missing something here?