This was written by Dan Steinberg from the Washington Post
Three years ago, Mike Wise wrote a column, dubbing Clinton Portis D.C.'s most popular athlete, ahead of Gilbert and Ovechkin. Two years ago, I did a similar Top Six list, leading with the same three names as Wise, but in a different order: Gilbert, then Portis, then Ovechkin. Then a few months ago, the AP's Joseph White wrote this:
Ovechkin has clearly become Washington's No. 1 sports star -- ahead of the Redskins' Clinton Portis (who seemed to spend all of last season grumbling about one thing or another) and the Wizards' Gilbert Arenas (who hasn't played all season because of a knee injury).So is it a done deal then? I certainly thought so, and for months I've told anyone who asked that Ovechkin has the crown, full stop, next question. But then I started chatting with Wise the other day, and he still disagreed. If we were in a room with Ovechkin, Portis, Gilbert and a random sampling of D.C. area residents, he asked, would Ovie really attract the biggest crowd? I said yes. Wise said no.
But who cares what we think? Let's find out what you think? Even cooler, I'm going to find out what the local media thinks, via the first ever D.C. Sports Bog Top 5 Athlete Poll. To me, there are only five reasonable answers for the top spot: the three names of above, plus Zimmerman and Cooley, but I'll let the people speak. And, of course, I asked some wise observers for their thoughts on who's most popular.
Click to VOTE and read the thoughts of Portis, Cooley and Smoot below.