Phil Taylor (darts)
Phil Taylor (darts)
Same. At my country club, there's a ton of swimmers and even a world class fencer.
I think some of the workers might run during their free time, and pretty sure chef plays "hoops"
It's a good comparison. The comparison is between people who actually take up a sport, not run a race once in gym class.
Hasn’t Katie Ledecky surpassed him?
"History's best athlete" is quite the subjective title, especially when comparing individuals across sports. One problem is that there isn't even a consensus within the swimming community on Phelps being the best swimmer ever, or with Jordan in basketball, or Ali in boxing, or Bolt as a sprinter, or Kipchoge as a marathon runner. Sure, those guys are widely considered the best in their respective disciplines but it's certainly not unanimous.
The second problem is with how any one person defines what it means to be an athlete, which qualities an athlete must possess and how exactly to weigh the importance of certain qualities against others. Hand-eye coordination, mental fortitude and skill have been mentioned as "athletic" traits that a genuine "history's best athlete" must possess. Well, golfers and video gamers possess those "athletic" traits but many people don't consider them to even be athletes!
Imagine a guy who is one of the greatest NFL players of his time.
Oh, and he also played major league baseball, on a championship team.
Oh, and he ALSO was a dominant basketball player on a barnstorming team, AND was a championship level ballroom dancer.
Just for good measure, he won the decathlon and the pentathlon in the same olympics, dominating the competition in a way that no other decathlete has done since.
And he won the last event of the decathlon running in 2 misfit shoes that he found in a trashcan because someone had stolen his shoes.
Dwight Eisenhower, who competed against him in football, said "He could do everything anybody else could do and do it better.”
Let him watch swimming for a week, then throw him in the swimming pool against Michael Phelps, and he'd have a shot at beating him. Put him in the ring against Rocky Marciano, there's no chance that Rocky walks out conscious.
Everyone else is just competing for 2nd greatest athlete in history.
Rowdy Gaines started swimming competitively in his senior year in high school. A year later, he won a scholarship to swim at Auburn.
Having said that, more people have tried sprinting than any other sport, and it's not even close. Most people had their sprinting speed measured at some point in their school life, and if they had world class talent, they entered some kind of competition.
It is extremely hard for any world class spring talent to be unrecognized, which we cannot say about any other sports.
Indeed, it is challenging to not simply select Jim Thorpe here and call it settled
As objective measurement, I'd go with the medal count.
Phelps has 28 individual gold medals in Olympics or World Championships. Ledecky has 20.
2nd among men is Sun Yang (a doper) with 14. Hosszu has 12 for the 2nd place among women.
An athlete who never won a single global championship is most definitely not the greatest athlete of all time.
So are you saying someone like Danny Ainge should be considered one of the greatest athletes of all time?
I think he was the only person to be a high school All-American in football, basketball, and baseball. He made the major leagues in baseball when he was only about 20 years old. He was an All-Star in the NBA. Two time NBA Champion. College basketball player of the year and won the Wooden Award.
Yep, hard to argue against this. Unless we are considering Babe Didrikson on the female side.
You get together with anyone and everyone on the list. Then, you are NOT told what sport you will be competing in. Without that specific information, you start to pick teams. You've got first pick. Who you got?
Michael Phelps? I don't think so.
yea by that metric it's Bo Jackson or Herschel Walker or Deion or somebody like Charlie Ward and yes, even Danny Ainge. I'm not sure the other people in the first sentence are overall better in a given ball sport than Danny Ainge.
Swimming is for lazy people with weak joints.
I'm talking most dominant in their sport. I thought that was obvious, given my OP.
Also consider Jackie Robinson. Played Football, Basketball Track, and Baseball at UCLA.
Dave Winfield, drafted by MLB and the NBA.
Bo Jackson, played at allstar level in NFL and MLB.
Defintely not Phelps
Phelps dominated, especially impressive considering his bong destruction. But agreed, Bolt with a dozen or so more BS races would have more medals.
Bjorn Daehlie is best overall, though.
It's not unanimous that Kipchoge is the greatest marathoner?
Individual medley swimmers are the best swimmers. You obviously are ignorant about swimming.