From the drawers of the Top Secret Fyles:
Many moons ago during the days of 1960s, the greatest sports celebrities played for New York City-based teams. There was Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Tom Seaver, Willis Reed, Walt Frazier, Rod Gilbert and “Broadway” Joe Namath.
In 2020, the cavalcade of star athletes now take up residence in Los Angeles and its sprawling communities. Los Angeles has become the city of champions, with the NBA Lakers and MLB Dodgers winning championships in October.
Here are my top 10 athletes currently playing in L.A., with no surprise as to who is No. 1.
n No. 1 LeBron James — Turns 36 on Dec. 30 ... Only player in NBA history to win championships for three franchises (Heat, Cavs, Lakers) as a Finals MVP ... All-time leader in playoff points ... Record 13-time All-NBA First Team pick.
n No. 2 Mike Trout — Age 29 ... Angels outfielder is an eight-time MLB All-Star, three-time AL MVP and a four-time runner for the award.
n No. 3 Anthony Davis — Age 27 ... Lakers forward/center is a seven-time NBA All-Star, and four-time All-NBA First Team and NBA All-Defensive Team member.
n No. 4 Mookie Betts — Age 28 ... Ex-Bosox, now Dodgers outfielder is first player in MLB history to win MVP, Silver Slugger, Gold Glove, batting title and World Series in same year.
n No. 5 Kawhi Leonard — Age 29 ... Clippers forward previously won NBA crowns with Spurs (2014) and Raptors (2019) — both times as Finals’ MVP. ... Four-time NBA All-Star and six-time NBA All-Defensive Team choice.
n No. 6 Aaron Donald — Age 29 ... Rams defensive tackle is a monster with six Pro Bowls in first six seasons and is a two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year. ... Member of 2010’s NFL All-Decade Team.
n No. 7 Jalen Ramsey — Age 26 ... Rams had to pay (his salary and draft picks) for talented CB who matches up well with NFC West’s best wideouts. ... Three-time Pro Bowl choice.
n No. 8 Joey Bosa — Age 25 ... Chargers defensive end virtually impossible to block ... 2016 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year ... Two-time Pro Bowl and First Team All-Pro pick.
n No. 9 Walker Buehler — Age 26 ... Dodgers starter was 2019 NL All-Star and should be a Cy Young Award winner soon. ... Has compiled 24-9 record, 3.15 ERA and 420 strikeouts in three-plus seasons.
n No. 10 Justin Herbert — Age 22 ... Chargers 6-foot-6, 237-pound rookie QB has tossed 23 TDs, nine INTs and 3,224 yards in 12 games.
n Honorable Mention — Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner, Keenan Allen, Clayton Kershaw, Anze Kopitar and Paul George.
Times sports copy editor Richard Fyle can be reached at email@example.com