Sports Illustrated has released the list of finalists for its annual Sportsperson of the Year, and two with Carolinas ties are among the 12 being considered.
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, who grew up in Charlotte and attended Charlotte Christian and Davidson College, is among the nominees after shattering the NBA record for 3-point field goals in a season and leading his team to the NBA finals.
NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson, who on Sunday won his seventh Cup series title with a victory at Homestead-Miami Speedway in the season finale, is also on the list. Johnson tied Richard Petty and the late Dale Earnhardt for most Cup series titles in a career.
Also on the list of finalists: Swimmer Michael Phelps, the Chicago Cubs, gymnast Simone Biles, sprinter Usain Bolt, Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James, UConn women’s basketball player Breanna Stewart, broadcaster Vin Scully, Leicester City F.C. and Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller.
Fans can vote for their favorite among the 12 contenders – but the magazine’s editors will choose the winner.