Nominations for The 2006 ESPYS Co-presented by GMC and Under Armour will be announced June 26 during "Nomination Monday" – a day-long ESPN event that kicks off fan voting for The ESPYS and debate about the nominees. Starting with ESPN Radio, nominee news and interviews will break across a variety of ESPN platforms including ESPN.com, ESPN360 (broadband) and ESPNEWS. Cycling great Lance Armstrong – the first athlete to host the show, will assist with announcements on both the ESPN and ABC networks. Presenters already confirmed to attend The ESPYS include: Will Ferrell, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Mariah Carey, Ben Stiller, Ashley Judd, Carmen Electra, Reggie Bush, Greg Kinnear, Venus Williams, Jimmy Kimmel, Kiefer Sutherland, Shaun White, Rosario Dawson, Terrell Owens and Jake Gyllenhaal, among others.
Starting at 7:40 a.m. ET on Monday, Armstrong will be a guest on ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike in the Morning, the popular syndicated sports radio show hosted by Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg and simulcast on ESPN2, to preview the first slate of ESPYS nominee announcements. At 8:05 a.m., nominees for the 11 "Best in Sport" categories will be announced with a variety of athletes such as Jerome Bettis calling in live. Five minutes later at 8:10 a.m., voting will open at www.espys.tv where for the third consecutive year fans will determine the winners in ALL contested categories, by voting June 26 through midnight July 8. Last year, more than 10 million votes were tabulated.
Continuing that day, Armstrong – winner of five ESPYS including Best Male Athlete for the past three years – will discuss The ESPYS during two ABC television appearances. He will announce the nominees for Best Comeback on ABC's morning show Good Morning America at 8:15 a.m., and will later be a guest on the network's talk show The View at 10:30 a.m.
The day's nomination news will be summarized the next night at 7 p.m. on ESPN2 in The ESPY Nomination Show presented by GMC from New York City's 40/40 Club. Co-hosts Stuart Scott and television personality Melyssa Ford will be joined by in-studio guests Armstrong, Hines Ward and others to review the nominee roster and weigh in on who should win an ESPY. The one-hour show also will include commentary by Jim Rome and Pardon the Interruption's Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon.
Leading up to and following The 2006 ESPYS telecast on July 16, ESPN has arranged a special line-up of ESPYS-themed programming:
• SportsCentury: Arthur Ashe -- Sunday, July 9 at 10 a.m. on ESPN Classic
• Portraits of Courage: Best of The ESPYS Ashe Award hosted by Kiefer Sutherland -- Sunday, July 9 at 5 p.m. on ESPN
• SportsCentury: Lance Armstrong -- Friday, July 14 at 1 p.m. on ESPN Classic
• Red Carpet Special -- Wednesday, July 12 at 7 p.m. on ESPNEWS
• The ESPYS Red Carpet Special Presented by Under Armour -- Sunday, July 16 at 8 p.m. on ESPN2
In addition, Nomination Monday will kick off ESPN360's new "The ESPYS" channel where viewers can go for behind-the-scenes content from past ESPYS, video of best on-stage moments and ESPYS features, Jim Valvano's memorable 1993 Arthur Ashe Courage Award acceptance speech and nomination analysis from the Nomination Show. The channel's ESPYS content offerings will culminate with 360 at The ESPYS, a live show from The ESPYS red carpet with Thea Andrews and Dana Jacobson.
The ESPYS gather top celebrities from sports and entertainment to commemorate the past year's best sports stories by recognizing major achievements, reliving unforgettable moments and saluting the leading performers and performances. The 2006 ESPYS will include both sport-specific awards such as Best MLB Player and Best WNBA Player and distinguishing "Best in Sport" awards, categories that pit different sports against each other, such as Best Team or Best Female Athlete. The ESPYS are committed to the advancement of The V Foundation for Cancer Research, established by ESPN with the late Jim Valvano and announced at the inaugural ESPYS in 1993.