Hugo Berger | July 13, 2013
Jon Hamm – who is best-known for playing the roguish advertising executive Don Draper on Mad Men – has been confirmed as the host for this year’s Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly [ESPY] Awards.
It is a natural segue for Hamm, who was a talented sportsman in his younger days and is an avid fan of his hometown’s baseball team, the St Louis Cardinals.
The 42-year-old star of AMC’s hit TV show called himself a “pretty good” high school player, but is quick to note he was never a threat to make it in the professional ranks.
He said he wants to keep the focus on the athletes when he hosts the annual show honouring the year’s best sports moments.
It will air on the sports channel ESPN on July 17 from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles.
“When you look at someone else who is excellent at what they do, you can’t help but be jealous,” Hamm claimed.
At John Burroughs High in suburban St Louis, Hamm was on the football, baseball and swimming teams.
“I loved it. A lot of those guys I played on those teams with I’m still pretty good friends with,” he said. “It’s important for young kids to get out there and move around, especially in the kind of high-fructose environment we have these days.”
Hamm is hosting the ESPYs just as he finishes filming on the Disney movie The Million Dollar Arm, in which he plays a sports agent.
Other scheduled presenters on the show are LeBron James, Ben Affleck, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Selena Gomez and Maria Sharapova. – AP