AI’s 2015 Top 10 Hottest Cleveland Professional Athletes

It’s that time of year again, folks. Spending time with friends and family, gift giving with loved ones, judging the hotness of Cleveland athletes based on their looks, personality and athletic ability.

Let’s start with a refresher:

Athletes were judged in four categories. AT THEIR BEST, how good looking he/she is at his best on a scale of 1-10. AT THEIR WORST, how gross he/she looks at his worst on a scale of 1-10 (10 still being the best looking). PERSONALITY, what type of person he/she is, scale of 1-10. This can include playing style, fan interaction, social media presence, community outreach, etc. ATHLETIC ABILITY, how talented is he/she as an athlete on a scale of 1-3. We decided to make athletic ability worth less, so that our best athletes would have a slight advantage, but not a huge one seeing as this is a contest based on looks.

Ties were decided by the higher AT THEIR BEST score. If that was also the same, the higher AT THEIR WORST score was chosen.

Last year, California dreamboat Jordan Cameron edged out Kevin Love by a whopping 2.25 points to earn the inaugural AI’s Hottest Cleveland Professional Athlete crown. A quick review of those results:

ai2014

Cameron has since moved on to the Miami Dolphins, where he enjoyed virtually no success this season in the first of a 2-year contract. Other drop outs from last year to this year include:

  • Joey Hishon, now playing his hockey for the San Antonio Rampage
  • Spencer Lanning, a free agent after spending three days with the Bears in October
  • Joe Harris, who looks like he belongs more on the Monmouth bench than the Cavs
  • Nick Swisher, who the Indians paid the Braves $15 million to take off their hands
  • Justin Gilbert, who earned the first ever “zero” score in my two years of doing this for Athletic Ability

I also made a little change this year when it came to Athletic Ability. Last year we had 5 total guys score a perfect 3 (LeBron, Love, Irving, Kluber, Brantley). Obviously LeBron is a 3, and I decided that since he’s the best player in his sport, nobody else should really be on that level. Kluber and Kyrie might be in the discussion at their respective positions but it isn’t as clear cut as it is with Bron.

6 spots up for grabs. Let’s get it going.
First Three Out

Matthew Dellavedova, Guard, Cleveland Cavaliers

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Jordan Poyer, Defensive Back, Cleveland Browns

power

Travis Coons, Kicker, Cleveland Browns

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(Really says something that the only two Browns that appear on this list are a reserve safety and a kicker in the “Last Three Out” category)

Top Ten
10. Jessica Eye, MMA Fighter

At their best – 8.25

eyebest

At their worst – 5.75

eyeworst1

Personality – 6

Athletic ability – 2

TOTAL – 22

When Mike asked me to do this list last year my mind sort of automatically went to dudes? I think it’s cause we’re constantly blogging about our big three male sports teams, watching them play, listening to people talk about them on the radio and making small talk about them at work, and we’re now 12 years removed from the Rockers. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I wanted to get some ladies in the mix this year but I didn’t really know any off the top of my head. At first I thought golfers but the Cleveland golf company made Googling things rather difficult. MMA was the second sport that came to mind with all the Ronda Rousey hoopla lately. Enter, Jessica “Evil” Eye.

She’s originally from Rootstown, and I don’t know where that is either but she went to Akron and Wikipedia says her current residence is in Cleveland, so, good enough for me. I also don’t know D about MMA but there are articles out there with quotes from Dana White that mention her and Rousey in the same sentences, so she must be doing something right. In fact, the only thing I could really knock her for doing wrong are those cornrows. I guess the braided hair and black eyes come with the territory but she sure does clean up nice. She also did this to another human being once:

eye1

eye2

9. Daniel Zaar, Right Wing, Lake Erie Monsters

At their best – 9

zaarbest

At their worst – 8.5

zarworst

Personality – 4

Athletic ability – 0.5

TOTAL – 22

Whoa.

That first picture is absolute smoke patrol. The big brother, national smoke patrol that gets called into a smoke patrol investigation when the local smoke patrol can’t get the job done, and the local smoke patrol gets pissed off cause the national smoke patrol is stealing their smoke and stepping on their toes. Code word clearance smoke patrol.

He leads the Monsters in goals and is third in points, and he’s only 21, so there’s still some potential there, but I couldn’t justify giving him 0.75 for ability and putting him on the same level as Jared Cunningham, Moe Williams and K’Waun Williams. You’re all lucky he’s Swedish so I can’t understand his Twitter and judge his personality or he might have been staring #1 right in the eyeballs.

8. Francisco Lindor, Shortstop, Cleveland Indians

At their best – 7.5

lindorbest

At their worst – 7

lindorworst

Personality – 7

Athletic ability – 2.25

TOTAL – 23.75

If points were awarded for every time I’ve dreamed about a player laying in bed at night, Frankie would have won this puppy in a landslide. The Indians might be a frustrating team to root for but finally having an unquestioned stud live up to expectations at probably the most important position on the field is just so awesome. Did that cloud my judgement of his physical appearance? You might be able to make that argument. I’d counter with the fact that I very well may have sold him short in the personality department. On the field, he played with a fire we just haven’t seen in a while:

lindorgif1

He’s well-liked in the clubhouse and doing great things in the community too:

I heart him. Sue me.

7. Michael Brantley, Outfielder, Cleveland Indians

At their best – 7.75

brantbest

At their worst – 7

brantworst

Personality – 6.5

Athletic ability – 2.5

TOTAL – 23.75

Smooth wins the tiebreaker over Lindor here with a higher “at their best” score. While Frankie seems like a West 6th bar hop chick chasing kind of dude, Brantley is much more my speed. I want to wear a hole in a bar stool and get black out drunk off of Miller Lite drafts while complaining about Ray Farmer with Smooth. He’s the George Clooney to Lindor’s Bieber.  That’s no knock on the Biebs mind you, it’s just funny to think about how Brantley is looked at as a veteran leader for guys like Lindor and Urshela when he’s just 28 years old. He’s been around so long he’s starting to get the “I know how to fix things with my bare hands” look in my eyes, and I’m not at all mad about it.

6. Tristan Thompson, Forward/Center, Cleveland Cavaliers

At their best – 8

thompbest

At their worst – 7.75

thomworst

Personality – 7

Athletic ability – 2

TOTAL – 24.75

Occupying the sixth spot for the second year in a row but always dressing to the nines…Tristan Thompson. Seriously, take ten minutes to go through his Instagram. His closet is absolutely outrageous.thomp2thomp1thomp3thomp4thomp5thomp6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Say what you want about his outfit choices but you can’t deny he consistently looks good. Has to be one of the best dressed in the NBA.

hated to do it but I had to dock him a little bit on personality because of the contract situation this past summer. He’s still tied for the third highest personality score on the list but that little knock allowed this next guy to jump him from last year…

5. LeBron James, Forward, Cleveland Cavaliers

At their best – 7

bronbest

At their worst – 7

Personality – 8

Ability – 3

TOTAL – 25

If Michael Brantley is George Clooney, LeBron James is Kirk Douglas. He’s seen all there is to be seen in his dozen years in the NBA. And he looks like it.

Bron is not the best looking person on this list. In fact, he has the lowest “at their best” score out of all 10 members. He says things sometimes about leading a team or being the best that make you cringe. He gets very close to being undefendable to Cavs haters with how much he complains to referees. He uses hashtags like #GrownMan on social media.

And he’s beautiful.

The big picture, the net result of all those things plus his fade away jumpers, his and 1’s and his monstrous slams, is beautiful.

bron

4. Corey Kluber, Starting pitcher, Cleveland Indians

At their best – 7.75

klubbest

At their worst – 7.75

klubworst

Personality – 7

Athletic ability – 2.75

TOTAL – 25.25

Went over this last year, and probably will every year I do this thing, but Klubes best and worst scores will always be the same, because robots always look the same. Just a normal good looking cyborg with an arm like a f*cking cannon. But a self-aware one at that, which is why I always score him so high for personality. Big fan of self-awareness. And beards. And I also really appreciate the work he does at night after games.

klubdex

3. Kyrie Irving, Guard, Cleveland Cavaliers

At their best – 7.75

kyriebest

At their worst – 7.25

kyrieworst

Personality – 8

Athletic ability – 2.5

TOTAL – 25.5

Kyrie moves his way into the top 3 this year for many of the same reasons he was at 4 in 2014. He’s one of the best point guards in the NBA. His Uncle Drew commercials are as good as it gets. He’s a solid, albeit unspectacular looking dude.

But you gotta love the way he went about coming back from the knee injury last year in the playoffs. He could have felt sorry for himself, done his rehab behind closed doors, sat in a suite at home games instead of sitting on the bench. Nope. Even though he was in a suit up until a few nights ago, Kyrie has been one of the most visible Cavs through the first two months of the season. Him and Shump built a nice little rapport as they worked toward getting healthy together, something I don’t think I saw between them last season. Just two injured players, stealing the show on 70’s night.

kshump

That’s why his personality is the highest on this list, and why he’s my third hottest Cleveland professional athlete.

2. Jason Kipnis, Second baseman, Cleveland Indians

At their best – 8.25

kipbest

kipbest2

At their worst – 7.5

kipworst1

kipworst2

Personality – 7.5

Ability – 2.25

TOTAL – 25.5

I caught some flack last year for having Kip at #3 and to be honest I still have no idea why. The guy grows a FABULOUS beard. Just killer. One of those faces that was just meant for it. He’s got above average swag on the field and solid swag off it. He’s a big sports fan (Chicago Blackhawks), loves video games and is a great follow on all social media.

View this post on Instagram

Almost getting to be that time…. #doubleduecesaround

A post shared by Jason Kipnis (@jasonkipnis22) on

Not to mention the fact he’s coming off his second All-Star game appearance and was American League Player of the Month in May. To me, that’s about as close to the total package as you can get.

1. Kevin Love, Forward, Cleveland Cavaliers

At their best – 9.75

lovebest1

lovebest2

lovebest3

lovebest4

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At their worst – 8

loveworst1

loveworst2

loveworst3

Personality – 7.5

Ability – 2.5

TOTAL – 27.75

Why, Kevin? WHY WHY WHY. The perm and overgrown beard was fun for a minute. Let it all out for Movember. Good, grand, wonderful. Sleeves for headbands! Ha!

But I think I speak for the entire city and, quite frankly, humanity as a whole when I say – It’s time to turn the page. Get the clippers out and give me my short haired scruffy bearded Kevin back. Please. That’s my Christmas wish this year.

It also says quite a bit about Kevin that he can subject us to a look like that for the past two months and still win the title of AI’s 2015 Hottest Cleveland Professional Athlete pretty handily. I might have to implement some sort of weighted scoring system to make things interesting next year because Kevin’s a goddamn aesthetic juggernaut. It was over before it even started.


That’s a wrap, folks. In summation:

summ

Got beef? Let me know at @Bottlegate or bottlegatecle@gmail.com. And be on the lookout for our reader poll — here’s what you guys came up with last year.

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