great list IS. cant wait to see who number 1 is.
great thread and list IS, many of them i don't know, but it's nice to see Pele and Ali in top 10, even if imo both of them and Jordan deserved a lil bit higher :D, but i could be wrong because, as i said before, i don't know about the other guys or sports, like baseball and american football. But nonetheless, this is your list, i respect that, and is great, i enjoy the comments for each and everyone of them
5 stars for this thread bro ... and can't wait to see the 1st place
keep it up IS :)
Thanks for the feedback guys!
As far as someone like Thorpe, yeah, as far as best "athlete", he and Jim Brown would probably be tops in the sense of being great in a wide variety of sports. Yet, part of MY (key word) criteria places a large impact on how much someone could dominate their sport, and the cultural impact that they had. That's why someone like Pele gets on my list, yet someone like Diego Maradona, who was arguably as good or even better of a soccer player, doesn't come close.
Number 1 coming up, probably on Sunday.
this list looks to me to be the most influential athletes of all time, not the best of all time. i don't see how else you put a woman at 4...ahead of micheal jordan
:keke: lol i know i mispoke the first time i said that. i thought it was a list of the top 100 athletes of all time not the top 10. and adrian peterson, barring injury, will easily make that list in the next 2-3 years.
still though man how can you possibly call this a list of the greatest athletes ever.....and put a woman on the list? seriously this isn't being sexist, women are physically and athletically inferior to men (when comparing athletes of similar caliber, obviously allison felix is a far superior athlete to the average man). it's just how it is. how you can put a female golfer ahead of the greatest basketball player ever (who is arguably one of the greaest physical specimens as well, ever) makes this a list of who you find to be the most influential ever, not the best.
edit: i am aware this is ironslave's list. i just want to hear more of a justification for the selection process here.
its not about whose better than who blah blah, its about how they dominated in their sport. the fact that shes female doesnt mean the domination she had is any less than the domination of guy. you're comparing totally different sports. and im pretty sure youve had arguments with people (tim i think it was??) about the same thing you're talking about :keke:
Edit: and sorry, if Adrian Peterson was to retire in 3 years, he wouldn't be close to a top 100 athlete.
.... which is what brings me to my number one.... THE most dominate athlete ever across any sport... and the athlete to have the most impact ever in sport across a worldwide level .....
….. and the greatest athlete of all time is…..
When it comes to athletic greatness, obviously genetic factors play a major, major role. Some people seem like they were born to run, shoot, throw, or perform the given action required for their sport. However, from the time he was a child, to what he has become today, NO athlete ever has ever, or will ever, seem like they were born for the purpose of greatness in their sport like Tiger Woods.
Most athletes are become noticed by many in the sporting word once they hit college age, some gain recognition during high school, and an even rarer few are touted as future greats in their sport during their teens; often times, these highly acclaimed athletes don’t pan out and make the professional level, let achieve superstar status. However, no other athlete, ever, gained national attention as a child phenom at a younger age than Tiger Woods. He hasn’t just lived to the hype, he’s done things almost unthinkable.
When Tiger turned pro on the PGA tour in 1996, he proclaimed “hello world”. But almost two decades prior, it was the world said “hello Tiger.” At the age of 2 years old (!) Tiger Woods was introduced to the world on National TV on the Mike Douglas Show. Already able to hit the ball, Tiger shared the spotlight in what now seems like a surreal moment on the show with Bob Hope, in a segment that is now legendary. Tiger couldn’t say hello back, he could barely speak, but he could still drive the ball straight.
The very next year, at the age of 3 years old, Tiger shot 48 on 9 holes! To put this in perspective, I’m willing to bet you could take the average golfer who has been playing for 3 years (nevermind being alive for 3 years) and they couldn’t shoot a legitimate 48 on 9 holes. He’d soon win the World Junior Golf Chanpionship at the age of 8 (in the boys 9-10 category, no less). He’d win 4 more World Junior championships from 88-91.
After winning the World Junior Championship in 1991, Tiger began an unprecedented streak of USGA Amateur wins, winning 3 straight US Junior Amateur Championships (becoming the youngest player to ever win it, and nobody else has won it more than once!) and 3 straight US Amateur championships (also, youngest and only player to ever win this). For those unfamiliar, these tournaments are played in a match play tournament format, meaning that on any given day, anybody can beat anybody. To illustrate the difficulty of winning match play, the difference in between first and 250th is 4 strokes! Thurs, it takes 1 or 2 bad or good holes, lucky breaks, and anybody can beat anybody. Even winning these by itself is just mind boggling, it wasn’t just the fact he won, it was HOW he won. Tiger changed the golf world with his booming drives, high and soft iron shots, and his enthusiasm. Before Tiger, golf was an “old white man’s” game, yet Tiger pretty well singlehandedly made golf “cool”. It was at these events where Tiger established himself as the most exciting, and best pressure performer the sports world has ever seen. Most golfers crack under pressure, but somehow, Tiger just gets better.
In his first US Amateur, he came from an incredible 6 holes (not strokes, holes) behind (including 5 behind with 12 to play!) to win in his trademark dramatic fashion in the afternoon round. He did so by staging a tremendous comeback, only to tie his opponent Trip Kuehne by making a long, sliding birdie on arguably the most famous hole in all of golf, the “Island Green” 17th at the TPC at Sawgrass. Tiger followed his incredible putt with a fist pump that would take the world by storm, and won on the 2nd extra hole.
After a relatively “uneventful” 2nd straight US Amateur win in 1995, Tiger went into his last US Amateur in 1996, and again made it to the finals, and fell into morning trouble being 5 holes (again, not strokes) with 16 holes to play (and 2 holes up with 3 to go!) Again, one for the dramatic and eerily similar to 2 years prior, Tiger made a 35 foot putt on the 17th hole to tie the match. Tiger won the Match on the 2nd extra hold, and although he would go on that year to win the NCAA Championship, it was at this moment where Tiger Woods had arrived.
Shortly after this, Tiger turned pro in his famous “Hello world” press conference, immediately signing a mind boggling $40 million dollar deal with Nike, and $20 million dollar deal with Titleist. At the time, those looked like two of the most outrageous endorsement deals ever signed, but now, it looks like an absolute bargain. The excitement and change Tiger brought to the PGA tour was unlike anything any athlete has ever done. Ratings and attendance both skyrocketed (literally, doubling because of Tiger), and prize money followed suit. Not only were new, younger audiences attracted to the game because of Tiger, but the game exploded on a global market. People around the world of all different ages, sexes, races and cultures all wanted to try golf because of Tiger Woods; no other athlete has ever had this impact on a global level.
Once turning pro, Tiger showed no signs of slowing up, winning 2 of his first 10 tournaments. Already knowing that Tiger was well on his way to one of the best careers of all time, still, nobody ever could have predicted what would happen next, in his first major as a professional in 1997, appropriately named the “Masters.”
Before that Masters, the sports world was abuzz with “Tiger Mania”. In large part of this was due to the fact that just over 20 years prior, black athletes weren’t even allowed to play in the Masters, nevermind thinking that a black athlete had a chance to win. After starting slow on the front 9 shooting a 40, tiger blitzed the back 9 shooting 30. He’d go on to destroy the field, winning by an incredible 12 shots over 2nd place! Again, to put this in perspective, the difference between 2nd place and 30th place was 12 shots, simply unreal. Tiger set the record for lowest score, largest margin of victory, and youngest winner ever.
Tiger would follow this up with another Major in the 1999 PGA, putting the breaks on those who doubted his dominance after not winning another major in over 2 years. However, by the 2000 US Open, Tiger put any doubters to rest with the most dominant win ever in the history of golf, and possibly sports. On the famed Pebble Beach, Tiger shot -12, while his next closest opponent shot +3, a record breaking margin of victory (though, the record he broke was his own his own.) Again, to put in perspective how insanely dominant this was, 15 strokes separated 1st and 2nd place, and also separated 2nd and 55th place! The USGA actually moved up Pebble Beach in the tournament rotation, because they wanted the 2000 Open to be remembered, however even after 1997, it would have been difficult to envision anything happening like this.
At the very next Major, in what by now seems like a storybook life, Tiger Won the 2000 British Open by 8 shots, at the Home of Golf in St. Andrew’s. In doing so, Tiger became the youngest player ever to win all 4 majors over a career. He followed this up winning the 2000 PGA in memorable fashion over Bob May in a shot for shot shootout that seemed like two guys playing darts with a golf ball, and the following year, went on to win the 2001 Masters, meaning he now held all 4 Masters championships at the same time! As a common theme, to put this incredible accomplishment in perspective, nobody else has ever won more than 2 in a row, and only 25 men have ever won 4 Major Championships over their whole career! (Phil Mickelson, 2nd best in the world, has only won 3).
Fast forward a few years, to this year’s US Open. After finishing second in the Masters (and having knee surgery the week after), Tiger returned at the US Open, his first tournament back, where he played his first full round the start or the week. Up until that point, Tiger hadn’t even bent down to read a putt on the greens! As if his performance (which he’d win) wasn’t incredible enough, we then learned that Tiger Woods won the US open with a Torn ACL and microfractures! Read that again, it’s simply absurd that he could do this.
Turthfully, I could go on and on forever about the accomplishments Tiger has achieved over his life. But now, I’ll wrap it up with summarizing in my mind why he is the greatest athlete of all time.
- Golf is THE most difficult sport for the best players in the world to excel at. Again, refer to the 4 stroke difference between the first, and 250th ranked player on the PGA tour. Anybody with a few good shots, a few lucky breaks, putts that just lip in, can win on any given week, and that’s a fact. I’m sure we’ve all heard the debate between who is the more dominant in their sport, Tiger Woods, or Roger Federer. This comparison is just LAUGHABLE. Never ever in tennis does a player ranked out of the top 300 in the world have a realistic chance to win a major. Like most other sports, tennis is a game where you can control your opponent, and the best player usually wins. To illustrate this, there have always been a select few men who dominated Tennis at the same time (Federer/Nadakl, Sampras/Aggasi, etc), and always seem to end up in the championship. This is not so with golf, as everyone is pretty well expected to “par” a hole. Golf is also THE most difficult, fine motor movement in sports. Even the SLIGHTEST degree of angle off can result in a shot sailing 30 yards wide into a water hazard, ruining an entire round. In a sport like tennis, or basketball, hockey, anything really… the margin for error is SO much greater. If a tennis player miss hits a shot, it’s often not a huge deal, as the ball can still go in and be a good shot. This isn’t the case with golf, especially with putting, trying to roll a little tiny ball along a sloped ground into a small hole. One or two “lucky” breaks can make or break an entire round, or even tournament. Across sports, no athlete has EVER dominated their particular sport to the level Tiger Woods has.
- On a global scale, nobody has had the impact for promoting their sport that Tiger Woods has, it’s not even close. Participation, prize money, and level of competition have advanced so much because of this one man. Not only have the way golfers prepare changed because of Tiger (permanent swing coaches, improved fitness, overall elevation of play), but they’ve actually tried to change the game because of Tiger! (ie, Tigerproofing the course). How many athletes can say that the field of sport was literally changed because of them?
- Tiger is THE mentally toughest athlete that has ever lived, or ever will live, period. The more pressure there is in golf, the more most people get nervous on drives and iron shots, but most importantly, putts. Somehow, Tiger lives for these moments, and he always produced his best play during these times. It seems like the tougher the shot, the better he hits it. Don’t believe me? Watch.
To force a playoff at this year’s US Open, a must make.
To win the Bay Hill (Arnold Palmers) Tournament
An impossible putt,
As I mentioned to start this, no athlete has ever seemed to be destined into greatness, yet at the same time, no athlete has ever surpassed those expectations since childhood like Tiger Woods has. It almost seems like he was put on this earth to accomplish something special, something that has never been done at a level its never been done before. Last year, ESPN had a contest, where it took all the athletes in the world, and voted who was “Now” in the sports world. Predictably (as always), Tiger won. However, Tiger Woods isn’t just who’s “now”, he’s who’s “ever”.