Many cities have a reputation for producing some of America’s top athletes. From basketball to football to bowling, the City of Destiny has a list of outstanding athletes.
Avery Bradley made his debut with the NBA when the Boston Celtics drafted him in 2010 as a first-round draft pick. He played for the Celtics until 2017. In 2018, Bradley brought his A-game as a shooting guard to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Denver Nuggets struck gold when Isaiah Thomas joined the team. Drafted in 2011 as a second-round draft pick, he began his career playing for the Sacramento Kings, the Phoenix Suns, and the Boston Celtics. He currently plays point guard for the Nuggets. For his outstanding achievements as a college player, the University of Washington retired his No. 2 designation.
When it came to making strikes and spinning the pins, professional bowler Earl Anthony knew how to make it happen. Born in Tacoma in 1938, Anthony went by several nicknames — such as Earl the Pearl and Square Earl — throughout the course of his career. With over two decades as a professional bowler under his belt, Anthony earned six Player of the Year awards. His overall titles totaled 43.
Putting the pedal to the metal was the goal for Pat Austin whose drag-racing feats made his name one to remember in the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA). During his career, he held the most wins (62) of any other driver, won four NHRA championships, and had the first run at 250 mph. His driving performances earned him the distinction of best driver of his generation by the NHRA.
When power was needed to hold the line, Steve DeOssie brought his veteran status as a linebacker to the game when playing for the Dallas Cowboys, the NY Giants, the NY Jets, and the New England Patriots. In his career, he not only played 175 games but also played on the Super Bowl XXV’s winning team.
Tacoma baseball is represented by Jon Lester and his speedy, on-target pitching. Lester began his career in 2006 playing for the Boston Red Sox. In 2014, he had a brief stint with the Oakland Athletics and then took his amazing pitching ability to his current team, the Chicago Cubs. His latest strikeout tally is 2,140, he pitched a no-hitter game in 2008, and he is a three-time World Series winner.
Del Rodgers played positions as a kick returner and a running back while playing for the Green Bay Packers and the San Francisco 49ers. He earned a ring for Super Bowl XXIII and currently holds the record for the longest kick return of 97 yards, which remains a record at Soldier Field to this day.
The City of Destiny is aptly named, as these notable athletes and many more were put on the path to success from the beginning to excel in their future athletic pursuits.