Anthony Lawrence Azevedo (born November 21, 1981 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) is an American water polo player and a graduate of Stanford University. Nicknamed "The Savior" at one point, he is considered to be one of the best American water polo players in recent memory.
Although he was born in Brazil, his family moved to California when he was 1 month old. When he was four, Azevedo suffered a fall that severed his trachea and esophagus. Although his heart stopped beating on the operating table for a period of four minutes before doctors were able to revive him, he made a complete recovery and went on to excel in in Water Polo, a strenuous sport.
During his four years at Wilson Classical High School in Long Beach, California, his team won four California Interscholastic Federation championships and he was named MVP all four years. Azevedo led Stanford's men's water polo team to two NCAA championships (in 2001 and 2002), and he represented the United States at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and the 2004 Olympics in Athens. At the 2004 Olympics, Azevedo was second on the tournament’s goals scored list with 15. He set a school freshman scoring record (68 goals), a single-season school record as a sophomore (95, or 3.4 goals a game) and, scored a school record 332 career goals in four years at Stanford. For each of his four years in college, Azevedo was honored as the most outstanding male player of the year with the Peter J. Cutino Award – water polo’s version of the Heisman Trophy.
In 2004 after graduating from Stanford University with a degree in International Relations, Azevedo signed a professional water polo contract with Bissolati Cremona (Italy) placing him among the top 10 paid players in the sport. Playing with Team Bissolati for his third season in 2006, he scored 63 goals with a 2.62 average per game. Azevedo will rejoin the rest of the US men’s national team at the 2007 Melbourne World Championships.
The Azevedo family is a water polo dynasty. His father, Ricardo Azevedo, played on the national water polo team of Brazil (also known as BRA) . His father coached Tony throughout his age group and high school career.
The older Azevedo was Head Water Polo Coach both of United States (also known as USA) National Team and Long Beach State University. Tony's sister Cassie Azevedo is a two-time All-American water polo player at Long Beach State.
US international and former Stanford great Tony Azevedo announced via tweet in April 2013 the formation of the Water Polo Players' Organization , an advocacy group for current and former players. Azevedo is one of several highly visible founding members who will be well known among fans of the global game. One clear area of concern for the players is getting paid as promised. As stated on waterpoloplayers.org "[t]he Organization will develop an international standard for negotiating and fulfilling water polo contracts, increasing security for athletes," a clear reference to the notorious unreliability of some professional teams to regularly pay their players.
- Azevedo's Official Stanford Athletics Biography
- Tony Azevedo Biography on Mikasa Sports
- Tony Azevedo's U.S. Olympic Team bio
- USA Waterpolo: US National Team Athletes make impact on Italian League (Retrieved 2007-01-21)