Mixed martial arts superstar Conor McGregor, world football maestro Neymar and NBA champion LeBron James have each been named as part of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People list for 2017.
NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick was also included among the century of pioneers, style icons, actors and artists deemed to be the most influential people on the planet.
McGregor’s swift rise through the Ultimate Fighting Championship and becoming the promotion’s first star to simultaneously hold titles in two weight divisions will justify his place among esteemed company.
Time also published a video of this year’s list to its official Twitter account, with singers Chance the Rapper and Alicia Keys making the cut alongside United Kingdom prime minister Theresa May and president of the United States Donald Trump:
— TIME (@TIME) April 20, 2017
The Time 100 list is divided into five sub-categories pertaining to the fields in which nominees have each made their respective impact: pioneers, artists, leaders, titans and icons.
In truth, McGregor could have fit into any one of those selections, considering his fighting practice is undoubtedly art, his personality is certainly that of an icon or leader, and his titan credentials in the Octagon speak for themselves.
In the end, however, the publication sorted the Dubliner as a pioneer, which is fitting given the fashion in which he’s blazed a trail through the UFC and rose to become its first Irish champion in any weight—never mind two.
The Time 100 alumni, along with the magazine’s writing staff, make nominations before deciding on who will be included, and MMA reporter Chamatkar Sandhu highlighted who exactly received recognition for handing McGregor his:
— Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) April 20, 2017
Considering only a handful of athletes made the final 100—each of whom rank as one of the most talented in their given practices—the likes of James, Kaepernick and Neymar can consider it a great honour to make this year’s countdown.
Although one can break into the Time 100 for good or bad reasons, it’s safe to assume each of those aforementioned sports stars have contributed their share of entertainment to vindicate their positions.
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