Associated Press | Male Athlete of the Year
For LeBron James, 2016 was a year for the books. From helping deliver Cleveland’s first championship in 52 years, to using his platform to create social change – starting with his community and his commitment to the more than 1,100 APS students in his Foundation’s program – and being named Sports Illustrated’s Sportsperson of the Year, it was 12 shining months of personal, professional, and philanthropic achievement. To cap it all off, LeBron was chosen as The Associated Press 2016 Male Athlete of the Year, becoming just the second NBA player to earn the honor twice.
For LeBron, this was bigger than another individual award. His achievements are the achievements of his family, his friends, his fans, and his Foundation.
"I look at the accomplishments, and none of it is for me," he told the AP. "It's for my wife and my kids and my mother and my in-laws, all my friends, all the kids in the foundation, everyone I tried to inspire. I accomplished everything for them to be happy. I do everything because of them and for people to be able to say, this is who we are and be confident about it. That's what matters to me."
According to the AP, of the 59 eligible editors, LeBron tallied 24 first-place votes. LeBron was joined in the honor by U.S. Olympic gymnast Simone Biles who was named the AP’s top female athlete.