The Rise of the Asian Superjocks
Slate: The Rise of the Asian Superjocks
The fastest man in Major League Baseball is Asian. The most eagerly anticipated NBA rookie in years? Asian. The world’s greatest golfer, the quickest pro hockey player, the most precocious relief ace? Asian, Asian, Asian.
[Ichiro] Suzuki and Yao [Ming] are just the start. The world’s greatest golfer, hailed as the most dominant athlete in any sport, is Tiger Woods, who has more Asian ancestry than he does anything else. In women’s golf, Korean Se Ri Pak is ranked No. 2.
Pick a sport: In soccer, South Korea stormed to the World Cup semifinals this year, knocking off the likes of Italy along the way. In hockey, Paul Tetsuhiko Kariya is consistently among the NHL scoring leaders and is widely regarded as the league’s best pure skater. The most celebrated athlete in the Salt Lake Olympics was short-track speed-skater Apolo Ohno. The WBC and WBA boxing titleholders include Osamu Sato, Yodsanan Nanthachai, Masanori Tokuyama. Twenty-three of the last 35 Little League World Series champions have come from Taiwan, Japan, or Korea. Who led the Dallas Cowboys with 172 tackles last year? Linebacker Dat Nguyen, from Vietnam.