19th Greater Cleveland Sports Awards

Celebrate an epic year in Cleveland Sports! Greater Cleveland Sports Awards is the premier annual sports fundraising event in Cleveland.

Lifetime Achievement Award

 

Zydrunas Ilgauskas

Zydrunas Ilgauskas, former Cleveland Cavaliers center is this year's Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Cuyahoga Community College recipient!  

"I'm very happy and humbled to receive this award," said Ilguaskas. "I'm very thankful to the whole city of Cleveland for giving me and my family these opportunities and support over the years.

 
Affectionately known to Cleveland as "Z," Ilguaskas spent the first 12 seasons of his career as a Cleveland Cavalier. During his time in Cleveland, the Lithuanian center was named the MVP of the 1998 Schich Rookie Challenge and was voted on two NBA All-Star teams in 2003 and 2005. 
 
After becoming the Cavaliers' first round pick in 1996, Ilgauskas made his debut for the Cavs on Oct. 31, 1997 and played his final game with Cleveland on May 13, 2010. Ilgauskas finished his career as the Cavaliers’ all-time leader in games played (771), total rebounds (5,904), offensive rebounds (2,336) and blocked shots (1,269). On March 8, 2014, Ilgauskas’ No. 11 uniform became the seventh number in Cavaliers history to be retired.
 
After his playing career, Ilguaskas re-joined the Cavaliers organization as a special assistant to general manager Chris Grant. 
 
Off the court, Ilgauskas has created a major impact on the local Cleveland community. In September of 2015, Ilgauskas joined Saint Ignatius High School as the assistant coach for the boy’s team. He married his wife, Jennifer, in 2004 and the couple adopted two Lithuanian brothers from his hometown of Kaunas.
 
Lifetime Achievement Award is given to an individual who has dedicated their life to the advancement of sports in Cleveland. Recipients have ranged from former Cleveland Indian’s and Cleveland Brown’s players to High School Football coaches. 

 

Past Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients consist of:

2002 – Jim Brown, former running back, Cleveland Browns
2003 – Mark H. McCormack, Founder, International Management Group (IMG)
2004 – Bob Feller, former pitcher, Cleveland Indians
2005 – Richard Jacobs, former owner, Cleveland Indians
2006 – Herb Score, former pitcher & announcer, Cleveland Indians
2007 – Joe Tait, former broadcaster, Cleveland Cavaliers
2008 – Chuck Kyle, Head Football Coach, St. Ignatius High School
2009 – Bob Kain, former CEO, IMG
2010 – Dr. John A. Bergfield. M.D., Sr. Orthopedic Surgeon & team physician, Cleveland Clinic
2011 – Reggie Rucker, former wide receiver, Cleveland Browns
2012 – Austin Carr, former guard & current broadcaster, Cleveland Cavaliers
2013 – Bernie Kosar, former quarterback, Cleveland Browns
2014 – Tom Hamilton, sportscaster & announcer, Cleveland Indians
2015 – Jim Donovan, radio & TV personality, Cleveland Browns
2016 – Mike Hargrove, former first baseman, Cleveland Indians