Guan Tianlang stole the headlines at the Masters with his
improbable 73 at the ridiculously tender age of 14 on Thursday. The
Chinese phenom punctuated his astounding round with a birdie from
the fringe on 18. But did all the success go to the kid’s
head? “Hopefully I can win the four majors in one year,” Guan
Hey kid, not even Tiger Woods has done that. But Guan’s
impressive play and confident comment got us thinking. How does his
performance in his first major event compare to former child
prodigies’ first taste of the big stage?
Less than a year after turning pro, the former Stanford star
announced his presence with authority, cruising to a record 12-shot
victory at Augusta and becoming the youngest to win the green
jacket. He was also the first African-American to win at the
The high school hoops prodigy was on the cover of Sports
Illustrated at 17 with the headline “The Chosen One.”
The Cavs made the St. Vincent-St. Mary’s phenom the No. 1
overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.
LeBron lived up to the hype, and then some, taking home Rookie
of the Year honors. But LBJ didn’t get a taste of the
playoffs until his third season in the league. He didn’t
disappoint there, either.
In his first playoff game against the Wizards, LeBron did what
he’s most known for doing — notching triple-doubles.
King James went for 32 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists while
playing all 48 minutes in the Cavs’ 97-86 win.
The Great One seemed to be born to play hockey. Gretzky
fell in love with the game at a young age and
never looked back. At age 6, he played for a traveling team that
competed against 10-year-olds and though he scored one goal that
year, the next year he scored 378.
Despite leading the NHL in points scored his rookie season at
age 19 and being a first-team All-Star, Gretzky did not take home
top first-year honors because a rule in place at the time
prohibited players who played in the WHL from winning rookie of the
year. But he still took home league MVP, and the rookie slight
didn’t affect his playoff performance.
In three games against the Flyers, Gretzky totaled two goals and
one assist, paving the way for arguably the greatest career in NHL
Oh, and Wayne should get some extra points for this too.
The free-swinging Nationals star hit the scene as a
power-hitting high school catcher and became a national star when
he was tabbed as the “Chosen One” by, you guessed it,
Sports Illustrated. Washington scooped him up with the No. 1
overall pick in the 2010 draft, one year after the Nationals took
Stephen Strasburg with the top pick.
Last year at age 19, Harper made the big club as an outfielder
and became an instant favorite for Rookie of the Year honors.
Though he struggled with strikeouts (120), Harper held on to
receive top rookie honors.
The Nationals made the playoffs but it wasn’t the best of
showing for Harper, who batted .130 in the series and struck out
eight times in five games.
But Harper seems to have put those struggles behind him this
season, becoming the fourth player in MLB history aged 21 or
younger with four home runs through his team’s first eight
Iron Mike burst on to the heavyweight scene in 1985 and
proceeded to annihilate the competition. Under the tutelage
legendary trainer Cus D’Amato, Tyson soared up the
heavyweight ranks, eventually facing Trevor Berbick for the WBC
title in 1986.
Tyson jumped on Berbick early, pummeling him with vicious shots
knocking down the defending champion two times,
the second of which ended the fight. At 20 years old, Tyson become
the youngest heavyweight champion.