The overriding sports story of the year in Arizona was the Cardinals, that’s easy for everyone to see. I will take it a step further. Arizona is the home of the fountain of youth if you’re an NFL player. Carson Palmer, Dwight Freeney, Jermaine Gresham, Chris Johnson, Cory Redding etc, etc, etc have all found the tonic in Arizona. In a League where turnover of rosters is just business as usual, Steve Keim has shown every player, agent and coach that “come to Arizona” and you can keep getting paychecks if you can still get the job done. New England had been the king of this model for years and years, now Arizona has shown the way. Keim is my Arizona Sports Story of the Year.
Keim has remained humble through the success of the team. I’ve come across lots of guys through the years that want to remind me how good they are when they don’t need to. Owners and management who are absent when things are bad, and in my face when they are riding high. Bobby Beathard and Jerry Colangelo were the best executives that I had covered until Keim came along. I simply mean from a credibility standpoint. I don’t need phone calls returned or off-the-record conversations to judge the acumen of a sports management person. Truth is there are more bad ones than good ones when it comes to front offices of sports teams. We have certainly seen our share of lousy ones through the years here in our great State. Bruce Arians should win coach of the year, but the roster that Keim constructed(yes, with input from others) is the reason that we are seeing a team that is now favored to win the 2016 Super Bowl.
Thanks to all of you for being a part of our community in 2015. I am most proud of our team! They are men and women who play hard, play smart, and have fun. Happy New Years!!