Perennial favorite Alex Ovechkin once again won for favorite local athlete, while Nats coach Davey Martinez scored best coach on this year’s Best of NoVA winners’ list.
Local Professional Coach
Winner: Davey Martinez, Washington Nationals
What was it like to win the World Series?
It was incredible. As I said after we beat the Cardinals in the National League Championship Series, often bumpy roads lead to beautiful places. We may not have gotten off to the best start last season, but we had a bunch of guys who never quit and came to the ballpark ready to play every day. Last year’s team was truly a special group and they worked hard for all their success.
How did you celebrate when you won?
We had a huge celebration with lots of Champagne in the clubhouse after we won Game 7 in Houston. I told all the players that they had cured my heart, since I had some heart issues earlier in the season. Then we had the World Series parade in DC a few days later. It was so great to get the chance to celebrate with all of our fans after they supported us all season long. I also had my kids with me. It was so special to be able to celebrate this achievement with them. I will never forget those moments. During the offseason, I mostly stayed on my farm in Tennessee, where I spent a lot of time chasing after my two new puppies, Mya and Champ.
What are you looking forward to as the Nationals return to play?
I’m excited to get to be around the players and other coaches again. I’ve definitely missed being able to go to work at Nationals Park and see the beautiful field and the staff there. I’m also looking forward to the challenge of defending our championship. I’ve been urging the guys to compete as hard as they can every day and I think we’ll have a successful season.
Local Professional Athlete
Winner: Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
Would the Caps even be the Caps without longtime favorite and record-breaking Ovechkin? He takes top honors for Best Professional Athlete once again. While fans can’t Rock the Red this year by the ice, just watching him play from the comfort of home is sure to be a thrill.