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Greatest Athletes of All Time

 
 
Reply Sat 21 Apr, 2018 08:26 pm
There are many types of sports and many types of athletes all over the world. Soccer, football, baseball, basketball, skate boarding, snow boarding, swimming, track and field, billiard, NASCAR, bowling, golf, judo, karate, MMA, boxing, weight lifting, bodybuilding, tennis, table tennis, archery, volleyball, figure skating, gymnastic, cycling, wrestling, and many other sports. There have been many great athletes throughout history.


1. In your own opinion who are some of the greatest athletes of all time?

2. Can you provide your reasons for each one of choices.

3. The reasons for each of choices being chosen is important to the discussion.
 
View best answer, chosen by Real Music
Real Music
 
  3  
Reply Sat 21 Apr, 2018 08:42 pm
Michael Jordan (NBA shooting guard)
Reason he is one the greatest athletes of all time includes:

Unlike other great scorers in the NBA is the manner of his scoring. Most of his career the opposing defenses never had a strategy of stopping him from scoring. The opposing defenses strategy was to try and contain him. No one could stop him from scoring. Throughout much of Jordan's career he not only faced constant double teaming by the opposing teams defense, he also face triple teaming by the opposing team's defense. While being double team and triple team virtually every game for much of his career, he was still scoring an average of over 30 points per game. Oh, by the way, he also won 6 NBA titles, multiple MVP's, many scoring titles, numerous all star appearances, multiple first team defense awards, Olympic gold medal as an amateur, Olympic gold medal as a professional, and a NCAA national championship.
0 Replies
 
Real Music
 
  2  
Reply Sat 21 Apr, 2018 09:07 pm
Lawrence Taylor (NFL linebacker) New York Giants
Reggie White (NFL defensive lineman) Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers
Reasons they are both one of the all time greatest athletes:

Both Lawrence Taylor and Reggie White were such overwhelming dominant forces, that the opposing team's offense had to account for where they were on every play. Every play the opposing offense had to develop a strategy of how to deal with one man on the other side of the ball. The reason for this concern by the NFL's offenses was that Reggie White and Lawrence Taylor were single handedly disrupting and destroying offensive plays. No one man could successfully block either of these two guys without some help. Even with blocking help, they still were often unsuccessful in blocking Lawrence Taylor or Reggie white.

Also Lawrence Taylor has two Super Bowl rings and Reggie White has one Super Bowl ring.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
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Reply Sun 22 Apr, 2018 09:29 am
It's like school...

Tom Brady and Bill Belichick - indisputably the best QB/Head Coach combo in the history of American Football. A dynasty of winning boasting so many records that I would have to copy and paste them all.

Micheal Phelps - Can anyone dispute his dominance in the pool? Like him or hate him, he is the reigning king of swimming laps.

Usain Bolt - I mean come on... that man can RUN! At the current time, he is (was) the fastest man to ever have his speed recorded. Imagine sending him out for milk as a kid?

[insert personal opinion]Steve Grogan - one of the last true field generals. Trusted to be able to lead the team by calling his own plays, master of the naked bootleg and, frankly, one of the best running QB's despite the length of his neck. [/opinion]
Ragman
 
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Reply Sun 22 Apr, 2018 11:52 am
@McGentrix,
I didn't check the whole thread for this mention but Muhammad Ali is my idea of the greatest in sports.

reasons:
1. he was the master of the technical side of the boxing sport that often has banger not boxers.
2. he psyched out opponents and critics in a way no one else had out has since
3. the way he stood up for his beliefs despite how much it cost him personally and financially.
4. he advanced his sport in the way he attracted attention to a sport that was dying before and after.
5. he was known and loved internationally both in sports and outside of sports.

Steve Grogan - one of the last true field generals with more guts than anyone in sports EVER (except a man named Ali)!

Brady
reasons
1. greatest record of SB and post-season wins
2. the way he wins almost regardless of of who the players are is on his team
3. wins when coming from behind ends/or when the money is on the line.
4. unflappable and hardly ever throws a pick later in the game.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Sun 22 Apr, 2018 12:22 pm
@Ragman,
gotta agree, he defined an era for sports
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Sun 22 Apr, 2018 12:50 pm
@farmerman,
..and it is just not a generational think, IMHO. Though, I must admit I've never seen Joe Louis other than short film clips.
0 Replies
 
Real Music
 
  1  
Reply Sun 22 Apr, 2018 02:16 pm
@McGentrix,
Quote:
Micheal Phelps - Can anyone dispute his dominance in the pool? Like him or hate him, he is the reigning king of swimming laps.

Michael Phelps is the most successful and most decorated Olympian of all time, with a total of 28 medals. Phelps also holds the all-time records for Olympic gold medals (23)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Phelps

I completely agree. He is definitely one of the greatest athletes of all time.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 10:53 am
@Real Music,
I do not disagree that Michael Phelps is a great athlete, however, I wouldn't classify number # of gold medals as an indicator - some sports you can only obtain one gold medal - whereas other sports there are a variety of competitions where you can load up.

I am not dismissing his accomplishments as it shows he is a great swimmer in a variety of different types of swimming competitions, but other events - say basketball you only have the opportunity for one gold medal.

That being said he is probably the greatest swimmer ever.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 11:10 am
@Real Music,
I do not think I could pinpoint one - to me the greatest athlete would need to excel in more than one sport.

How can you say that a tennis player is athletic as a soccer player? You can be the best in your sport, but be downright horrible in another sport.

Also how do you define athletic - being incredibly strong? being incredibly fast? agility? being incredibly skilled? having endurance? being able to win? some even mentioned the mental part of the game/sport. Some of these attributes actually conflict with the other. What is a positive attribute in one sport would hold you back in another - a gymnastic would not make a good football player or the other way around.

I think that is probably why typically those winning the decathlon are considered the best athletes. This type of competition tests most of those attributes you would consider athletic.
edgarblythe
 
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Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 11:30 am
Wikipedia

James Francis Thorpe (Sac and Fox (Sauk): Wa-Tho-Huk, translated as "Bright Path";[4] May 22 or 28,[2] 1887 – March 28, 1953)[5] was an American athlete and Olympic gold medalist. A member of the Sac and Fox Nation, Thorpe became the first Native American to win a gold medal for his home country. Considered one of the most versatile athletes of modern sports, he won Olympic gold medals in the 1912 pentathlon and decathlon, and played American football (collegiate and professional), professional baseball, and basketball. He lost his Olympic titles after it was found he had been paid for playing two seasons of semi-professional baseball before competing in the Olympics, thus violating the amateurism rules that were then in place. In 1983, 30 years after his death, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) restored his Olympic medals.
McGentrix
 
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Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 01:19 pm
I would agree with Ali, but Tyson would certainly give him a run for money boxing wise. Ali was a true entertainer in the ring where Tyson was a bit of a thug. Both brought boxing back from the brink though and made it relevant to society.

Gretzky vs. Orr... I am not a big enough hockey fan to know, I would choose Gretzky as he is more my generation. I was always a Messier fan though.
Real Music
 
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Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 03:15 pm
@McGentrix,
Mike Tyson may have been the most dominant fighter of all time in the manner of his knock out power and knockout numbers.
He would have most of the fights already won during the stare down before the fight. Many of the fighters were intimidated by Tyson before the bell rang.
Real Music
 
  1  
Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 03:28 pm
@Linkat,
Bruce Lee is possibly the greatest martial artists of all time. His physical abilities and physical conditioning was unmatched. Everything from physical strength, physical speed, his reflex, his flexibility, and cardio endurance. There were also professional body builders who became body builders because of Bruce Lee's influence on body building.
Roberta
 
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Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 04:59 pm
Because athletes in team sports are playing a position, it's hard to say that they're the best athletes.

I would say that Lawrence Taylor was the best defensive player ever in football. Unusually fast for his size, powerful, and relentless. I regularly watch highlight films of him on youtube. He revolutionized the game.

I agree re Jordan and Phelps.

I'm adding two more. There was one baseball player who consistently dominated his position. Mariano Rivera. The greatest reliever ever? I think so.

Who else? Not a human, but a dominant, overwhelming athlete. I doubt that we'll ever see anything like him again: Secretariat.

0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
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Reply Mon 23 Apr, 2018 11:33 pm
@McGentrix,
I'd place the late Gordie Howe ahead of either Gretzky or Orr. Currently, we have Sidney Crosby of the Pens (Pittsburgh Penguins) doing his best to become another contender for all time greats on the ice.

Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Apr, 2018 05:15 am
@edgarblythe,
Yes, my daughter did a report on Jim Thorpe - he was an amazing athlete.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  2  
Reply Tue 24 Apr, 2018 05:19 am
@Real Music,
Its funny but you wouldn't think of a martial artists off your head, but yeah you are right; Bruce Lee was incredible and had many skills that meet the attributes of a great overall athlete.

I think when people think of great athletes, they automatically think of those competing in professional sports where you have a large audience. Bruce Lee though became known more for his movies than his competitions. If he did not appear in all these movies we might not be talking about him now.
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Tue 24 Apr, 2018 03:14 pm
@McGentrix,
If you are going to use the times and performances of current athletes to make your judgement than the notion of a GOAT athlete is valid no more than year to year.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
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Reply Tue 24 Apr, 2018 03:21 pm
Arguably the GOAT should be an athlete who transformed his or her sport with their unique excellence.

Phelps for instance doesn't cut it because for all time, swimming has been about swimming fast.

Babe Ruth, on the other hand single-handedly moved baseball from very small ball to love for the long ball and lot's of runs.

Jordan was a truly gifted athlete and may be one of the top 5 competitors in sports history, but he didn't change basketball much and certainly not for all time.

Ali, another very gifted athlete, only changed boxing in a sociological and political sense.
 

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