I stumbled across this hypothetical today and thought I’d give my two cents on the matter.

This might be the biggest no brainer of all time. I’ll break down all nine choices, but there are like five legitimate options on this list.

1. Tiger Woods (YES)

Easiest pick in the list. He would have been my first overall selection if this were a draft format. Nobody, and I mean nobody, puts asses in the seats like Eldrick. I’d even draft him to my metaphorical team if he played horrible golf and we just got to see four hours of rage moments.

Off the course transgressions aside, how can you not love this guy? But I will say I hate how touring professionals get so angry over shots that would make any of us rejoice. Like dude, not putting the right spin on a wedge shot isn’t a reason to attack yourself in the third person as if you’re The Rock.

2. LeBron James (YES)

Another lock it in pick. Anytime you can get the best player of all time in a sport you gotta pounce on that. Somehow he’s getting better at age 35, which makes zero sense. My first blog shows my love for LeBron, so this shouldn’t come as any surprise. I especially would make this pick if LeBron knew he was the only one playing so he could really ham it up and put on a good show. I wouldn’t put Wilt’s record out of the question in this scenario.

I’d hope any list would have these two included, so the next seven are where the debate really starts.

3. Alex Morgan (NO)

There’s only room for one soccer star on my team, and there’s a far more deserving one later on. Nothing against her but come on now, she can’t be in your top three. That being said, if she would like to go on a dinner date with a nice guy, I’ve got more time now than ever.

4. Patrick Mahomes (NO)

Maybe if the hypothetical was, “you get to listen to three of these athletes give a press conference tomorrow” I’d pick Kermit for this slot. PFT’s impression of his voice is absolutely all-time.

In terms of this list though, he was the odd man out, mostly because I’m kind of out on the NFL in general. Yes, the Redskins have done that to me.

5. Serena Williams (NO)

She was one I really considered, being the tennis fan I am. She’s the most dominant tennis player, male or female, of all time (not best, but most dominant relatively). What she did for a solid fifteen years is kind of ridiculous. She hasn’t won a slam in a couple of years, though, and that’s a big reason she didn’t make my list. If this question was posed in 2010, maybe, but this is a what have you done for me lately world. Give me Nick Kyrgios over her all day long.

6. Alex Ovechkin (NO)

Just not a big enough hockey guy for this one. What he did after the Caps won the Stanley Cup will forever be legendary for DC sports fans, though. If he made the team, this video would have been why.

7. Simone Biles (NO)

I know she’s won a billion medals but I just can’t get into gymnastics. Sue me.

8. Lionel Messi (YES)

Nothing about Messi’s physique tells you he should be such a stud on the pitch. Hell, if he wore some long sleeves to cover up his tattoos, you would have no qualms about cutting him in line on a Black Friday at Best Buy. He’s also a complete asshole, but there’s a good chance that that disposition comes from being 5’ 7” as much as being a worldwide superstar. Regardless, I put a good individual soccer goal up there with any other highlight as most entertaining, and Messi has provided us with an insane amount of those, so for that reason I gave him the nod here.

9. Mike Trout (NO)

Sure, he’s the best player in the world, but I’ve never seen a less marketable superstar. He has the personality of a two-by-four. If you don’t believe me, try to remember a quote he’s said. Literally any quote. Zero shot you could come up with one, because a reportable sound bite has never come out of his mouth. And I would struggle to pick any baseball player for this list due to the nature of the sport. You’d only see him about five or six times in the game, and he could have a good game (like 1-for-3 with a walk) and not have any highlights.

I’d take my threesome of Tiger, LeBron, and Messi over any other combination a hundred times out of a hundred.

Which of these were a misread? Hit me up @jziller17 to discuss.