- 08/13/2012, 10:22PM ET
Sabih said 08/13, 10:22 PM
More dominant over the last 2 Olympics
Bolt or Phelps.
I will take Bolt.
I am not going to sit here and diminish what Phelps has accomplished. The guy holds the record for most medals and most GOLD medal at the Olympics.
That being said Bolt has been the more dominant of the two.
First of all. Bolt wasn't beaten in any other Olympics. Every event he competed in, he won. 6 events, 6 gold medals. He set WR in 4 of the 6 events, and the Olympic record in the 5th event. Only event in which he did not set a record in was the 200m race.
He became the first track and field to finish 1st in 100m and 200m in back-to-back Olympics.
There is the competition. Track and Field has always been the crown jewel of the Olympics. And the 100m is the Super Bowl. Without using any external source, most of us can name a handful of sprinters who have won the 100m (Bolt, Lewis. Bailey, Gatlin, Owens) are just ones I can remember of the top of my head.
I am not saying swimming is easy or any less competitive but the 100m race is the biggest single event in the Olympics
williewilliejuan said 08/14, 11:50 AM
Not to take anything away from what Bolt has accomplished, but Phelps has been more accomplished over the last two Olympics. Let's start with the fact that the London Games was Phelps' third Olympics, compared to just the second for Bolt. If Bolt repeats his accomplishments in Rio, then we can have a true "apples to apples" comparison between the two.
Second, let's dispatch with the notion that the fact that Bolt hasn't lost any races makes him more dominant. He only competed in three races in each Olympics, one of which each year required help from teammates. Phelps competed in 14 races between the two Olympics, 11 of which were individual events. It's more impressive to take a silver or bronze in an event that isn't your strong suit than fail to even try.
Phelps competed in more events, at more distances and across more different disciplines than Bolt. Bolt just ran forward for either 100 or 200 meters. Phelps swam races at 100, 200 and 400 meters. He swam the butterfly, freestyle, and (in the IM) backstroke and breaststroke. That would be the equivalent of Bolt running 100 meters forward, backward, sideways and skipping.
Phelps was more dominant.
Sabih said 08/14, 01:12 PM
That would be the equivalent of Bolt running 100 meters forward, backward, sideways and skipping.
First of all Phelps does not swim ALL the disciplines. He does not do the breaststroke or backstroke. So he is picking and choosing which events he competes in. I am not holding it against him,
In the 08 Olympics, he did not compete in all the events he usually does (skipped the 100 m). I understand the scheduling is tough but other swimmers have the schedule.
It's more impressive to take a silver or bronze in an event that isn't your strong suit than fail to even try.
Second, the events you mentioned, do not exist. He competes in the events available to him.
Length of dominance
Sprinting is not a sport you can dominate for 8 years. No one prior to Bolt has dominated it for 4 year. It has never been done. Even what Bolt did this Olympics has never been done.
To win 100m and 200m in back-to-back Olympics in events that has been extremely competitive and produced some of the biggest stars in the Olympics.
williewilliejuan said 08/14, 11:22 PM
Let's start with the corrections and move forward from there. You say that Phelps doesn't swim all of the disciplines. That is incorrect. Three of Phelps' golds in the past two Olympics have been in the IM, which requires him to swim all of the disciplines. You also say that other events in which Bolt can compete do not exist. Also incorrect. The 400m is categorized as a sprint, so Bolt could've competed in two additional events within his discipline in each Olympics. He chose not to.
You point to Bolt winning gold in back-to-back Olympics as a sign of his dominance. You know what's more impressive? Winning your third straight gold medal. Phelps did just that in four different events in 2012 (100 butterfly, 200 IM, 4 x 200 free, and 4 x 100 medley).
Bolt's 6 track and field golds over two Olympics isn't unprecedented. Carl Lewis won 6 golds (seven total medals) in 1984 and 1988. The 12 gold medals Phelps has won over the past two Olympics alone are more medals (of any color) than any other swimmer in history has won. In the 2012 Olympics, Phelps won his 18th gold medal and 22nd total medal. That's double the amount of medals any swimmer has ever won. That's dominance.
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