markwwnb's Comments

I don't buy that the medal count alone should decide who the GOOAT is. It's simply not a fair comparison. While a single swimmer might compete in as many as 12 or more events in a single Olympics (Phelps has been entering eight events every time), a wrestler (for example) or a boxer or a decathlete can only enter one. A gymnast can only possibly win five medals in a single Olympics, meaning she'd have to win every medal possible over four Olympics to beat Phelps' total. A boxer would have to compete and win in every Olympics for 80 years to beat Phelps' total. There are other factors that have to be included such as longevity, versatility, class, honour, sportpersonship, etc.

Canada's Clara Hughes, for example, can make a legitimate claim to being the GOOAT simply because she is the only athlete in the history of the Games to win multiple medals in both the Summer and the Winter Olympics. Over the past 16 years, Hughes has medalled in both speed skating and cycling. Just today, at 39 years old, Hughes placed fifth in an Olympic Road Race, an amazing accomplishment for anyone, not to mention a 39-year-old athlete competing in her "other" sport. Phelps is great, certainly, one of the greatest, in fact. But the GOOAT? I don't think so.

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