The sports world has seen some exceptional talent over the years. These stars often transcend sports and can make an impact on the community and culture.
Muhammad Ali is widely considered one of the greatest heavyweight boxers in history. He empowered Black culture, jumpstarted an antiwar movement, and became a global icon for his dominance in the ring and ideals on the floor.
Babe Ruth is often called the “Father of baseball.” He was the greatest hitter ever, often out-homering entire teams and at one point even hit 50 of them in a single season (1920). His dominance changed the game of baseball forever.
Michael Phelps didn’t play a team sport, but his skill set in his field is unparalleled. As the most decorated Olympian of All-Time, he has won a total of 22 medals (18 gold) and holds 39 world records. He’s the best swimmer the world has ever seen.
The list goes on and on, with guys like Bo Jackson, Roger Federer, and Lionel Messi. The Sports world knows no shortage of stars and all of them have done incredible things.
The best of them, however, is basketball’s own Michael Jordan. At first glance, it might be easy to put him behind some other sports legends, but is there really anyone in history who has done what MJ has?
In a list on “the Top Tens,” Jordan ranked number one on a 50-person list of the Greatest Athletes of All-Time — and it’s easy to understand why once you know his story.
Michael Jeffrey Jordan was drafted 3rd overall by the Chicago Bulls in 1984. Right away, as a 21-year-old rookie, Jordan got off to a hot start. He averaged 28 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 5.9 assists on 51% shooting to win Rookie of the Year. It was a sign of great things to come.
After struggling with injury the following season, he would go on to win seven straight scoring titles, three straight NBA championships, and three MVP awards over the next seven seasons.
He retired for a short stint in Minor League baseball and then returned to dominate the NBA. From 1994-1998, he won two more MVPs and three more Championships before leaving the team in 1998. Looking at his resume over time, it’s clear that nobody can quite compare to his illustrious resume.
The eye test is proof enough to make MJ’s case. He had very little flaws in his game. He could drive to the rim, score off the dribble, hit from distance, dunk with unstoppable force, rebound, defend, and lead. When his team needed him most, he always stepped up to the call.
All of this resulted in unprecedented worldwide fame. The world knew who MJ was, and he embraced it. All-in-all, there hasn’t been an athlete on planet earth just like him, and there may never be. He broke countless records, set ridiculous standards, and became the face of an entire sport that he still represents even years after his retirement.
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Love him or hate him, it’s clear that when pitted up against other All-Time athletes, Jordan’s name belongs at the top. He dominated from beginning to end, achieved countless accolades, led his team to unprecedented success, and displayed dominance on the court that has yet to be matched today. His dominance and heroics on the court made him bigger than the sport itself.
He went on to impact American culture and became a huge icon in the 90s. He appeared on commercials, in movies, and even went on to start his own brand. Years later, he is still considered the greatest NBA player ever.
When you put it all together, Michael Jordan was a sports figure like no other. When you talk about guys like Ronaldo, Ali, Ruth, and Gretzky, Jordan should be right there at the top with them. His impact on and off the court was matched only by his dominance in the game of basketball. He deserves his place at the top of the greatest athletes ever.
“Yeah, other athletes like Muhammed Ali, Nadal, Federer, Gretzky, and others are legends. I like them too; they’re true, big inspirations to us. I also favor them. But, what makes Michael great though is he NEVER gave up, he ALWAYS strived and thrived, and he had BEYOND brilliant and amazing moves and skills. Sure, other athletes are SUCCESSFUL, but I think Michael chased after SUCCESS AND EXCELLENCE.
He had a massive passion for basketball; just played and played, and his name is still being mentioned up to this day. He will forever be a legend. And, even though he might not have been the most successful and best athlete of all time in some others’ opinions, he is always gonna be the sports #1 inspiration and legend. Another pro he has: unlike Lance Armstrong, or some other cheaters, M.J. NEVER cheated, NEVER did anything majorly illegal, and… What else can I say? SERIOUSLY. He literally pushed himself to max, and twice the power each game. The freethrows; the show-offs; the dunks; the fun; his agility, his maneuverability are incomparable. DON’T get me wrong: I respect others’ opinions, and I deeply favor other athletes (except Lance Armstrong and cheaters); but this is my opinion. Also, he knew how to play other sports too: like golf, not just basketball. KING OF BASKETBALL IS ALSO SUPREME LEGEND OF SPORTS. He lives up to this day.”