Matt
Last year

Is Roger Federer greater than Michael Jordan

Has Fed overtaken MJ, in greatest ever sportstar status? Measurement of success is stuff like marketability to a wider audience/statistics/greatness in there career(stuff that stats don't always pick up)/dominance in there era/longevity e.g. Fed not just run of the mill at 36 he's still kicking ass and in the top 5 best players in the world/ etc.
Michael Jordan has sold a lot more merchandise than Fed and still does today 15 years after he retired. Fed one US open wore a custom made nike Air jordan shoe, as both are sponsored by Nike.
But yeah has Fed overtaken Michael Jordan in best ever sportstar status etc?
If one just says Fed is that unfair to MJ, and just showing recency bias etc?
But yeah, also a list of guy I think are best since 1970- in sport(ps I don't know enough about horse riding/car racing/baseball/or winter sports so hence hardly added any there etc).. But here's a list..

- Some Modern day men's sport greats since 1970:
Maradonna/Zidane/Richie McCaw/Dan Carter/Jonah Lomu/Shane Warne/Viv Richards/Rafa Nadal/Federer/Michael Jordan/Kareem/Wilt/Magic Johnson/Larry Bird/Le Bron James/Kelly Slater/Sergi Bubka/Jahanger Khan/Micheal Phelps/Mark Spitz/Ian Thorpe/Tiger Woods/Jack Nickalous/Bo Jackson/Dion Sanders/Ali/Floyd Mayweather/Carl Lewis/Michael Johnson/Usain Bolt/Steve Redgrave/Sidney Crosby/Wayne Gretzky/Tom Brady/Joe Montana/Jerry Rice/Micheal Doohan/Schumacher/Senna/Ashton Eaton/Daley Thompson/Dan O'Brien etc..
Imagine being at a party with this lot etc...

Topic #42611 | Report this topic


Jack Toft  
Last year

There's a study that looked at "The Greatest Athlete Ever" where they put up the best of the best in each sport. They looked at each athlete's performance and then compared it to averages and worked out standard deviations etc.

I can't recall who they nominated for tennis, or what the measure was. From memory Don Bradman was #1 amongst them all with Jordan right up there.

Reply #669434 | Report this post


Jack Toft  
Last year

Athlete Sport Statistic Standard deviations

Bradman: Cricket Batting average 4.4
Pele: Soccer Goals per game 3.7
Ty Cobb: Baseball Batting average 3.6
Jack Nicklaus: Golf Major titles 3.5
Michael Jordan: Basketball Points per game 3.4
Bjorn Borg: Tennis Grand slam titles 3.2

The Ice Borg won 11 Grand Slams, won 82.7% of games (609-127)
Federer has won 20 slams and 82.0% of games (1,139-250)

Reply #669435 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

He's not even greater than Margaret Court

Reply #669436 | Report this post


Yinka Dare  
Last year

Michael Jordan might not even be the best Michael. Michael Phelps 23 gold medals is crazy.

Reply #669437 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

I wouldn't have cricket in it, not a sport played over the world but here is a few that are equal.
Michael Jordan, LeBron
Mohumad Ali
Pele, Maradona
Federer, Laver
Michael Phelps, Ian Thorpe.
Stef Graff, Serena Williams

Reply #669438 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Margret Court played as amateur while the best players turn professional, the opposite to Rod Laver who turned professional and missed about 6 years playing at the majors. Laver won a grand slam and when professional were allowed back in won it again.

Reply #669440 | Report this post


Curtley  
Last year

Federer has never won a french open. That will always be an asterisk i reckon.

Reply #669441 | Report this post


Latrentis  
Last year

He's definitely up there as one of the greatest.

Reply #669442 | Report this post


Tribe  
Last year

Fed over MJ for mine.

But if we want to talk statistically, without question Don Bradman is the greatest sportsman of all time.

Reply #669443 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Federer has won a French Open actually. In 2009. So take that asterix away.

Reply #669444 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Could Federer beat the 1988 Geelong Supercats?

Reply #669445 | Report this post


Zodiac  
Last year

I'd say Federer gets the nod over Jordan because Federer is so far ahead of the next best tennis player where as the next best basketball player (probably LeBron) is closer to Jordan.

Greatest sportsman ever? Don Bradman comfortably. The next best batsman averaged about 40-50% less runs per innings than he did.

Reply #669446 | Report this post


Matt  
Last year

Guys, this is best since 1970, so leave Pele out of it or Don Bradman it's not relevant as you can't compare modern times with old times. So 1970 is a better measurement. And leave the women out this is based on sportsman, I might do a best modern day womens sports thread in another off topic post.

Jimmy Connors apparently has the best ATP win/loss record. Not sure that's grand slams as other have pointed out Bjorg, Fed might have past Bjorgs % stats.. But Connors on all ATP tour events in singles (GSlams/ATP events) has the best percentage win loss record. Jimmy connors longevity is off the charts like Ken Rosewell's was. He was still top 20 at 37 and top 50 at aged 39. Ken Roswell in the 1970's made the wimbledon mens singles final in his 40's, crazy stuff.

Winter Olympian men im gonna try and find more stuff on to. Micheal Phelps is off the charts, he won a world championship gold medal as a teenager aged 15 that's off the charts, Ian Thorpe won a world championship gold medal as well aged 15..

Swimming lacks the wider audience that tennis has perhaps(but that's debatable).. Participation I'm not sure what's higher in the western world swimming or tennis...

Reply #669447 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

"Could Federer beat the 1988 Geelong Supercats?"

More importantly should Michael Jordan change his name? Jordan was a surname slaves gave themselves as they had lost touch and had no idea about their true African names.

Reply #669449 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Definitely Phelps in conversation as well as Usain Bolt.
Sporting teams I would put All Blacks as top for success with different players and continued excellence and tradition.

Reply #669453 | Report this post


Manu Fieldel  
Last year

If that's true about the slaves, it's one hell of a comeback. From that to probably the most widely known and revered name in the history of sports

Reply #669455 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Has anyone changed a sport like Mj? Lebron will never be equal because MJ did it first. Fed is outstanding, but I wouldn't say his impact on tennis was like mj's on basketball. Also spacejam!

Reply #669460 | Report this post


koberulz  
Last year

If that's true about the slaves, it's one hell of a comeback.
It's true of essentially all African-American surnames, not just "Jordan". "Freeman" is the most obvious example.

Reply #669462 | Report this post


Yinka Dare  
Last year

Jordan and lebron both did it playing with all star players surrounding them. Not sure either make nba finals with the players iverson had with him lol.

Reply #669467 | Report this post


Isaac  
Last year

Playing solo (singles tennis, for example) gives you a really solid measure as to who is the best. In a team game, you can be boosted by your teammates or relegated. Might only take a teammate getting injured or wrecking team chemistry to kill a season or two and mean you don't have the championships to enter a discussion. Makes it difficult to compare.

Perhaps tiers rather than rankings. Federer, Jordan, Bradman, etc are solidly in the elite tier for their sports.

Reply #669479 | Report this post


PeterJohn  
Last year

Anon 669440

"Court is one of only three players in history (all women) to have won the "Grand Slam Box Set"; consisting of every senior grand slam title (the singles, doubles and mixed doubles) and the only one of the three to have won all 12 more than once each. Uniquely, she won all 12 as an amateur and then after a period of retirement, returned as a professional to win all 12 again."

Similar career trajectory as Laver but more successful. She won 13 grand slam singles finals as an amateur and 11 in the open era. Her last singles grand slam (all 4 in the same year) was in 1970 - open era. Her open era match winning percentage in singles tournaments is above 90%.

International Tennis Hall of Fame has stated "For sheer strength of performance and accomplishment there has never been a tennis player to match ". They probably are better placed than most to make that assessment.

Reply #669483 | Report this post


Matt  
Last year

Laver and court played in an era when tennis was less global, than what the 80's guys onwards had to play in... And court won lots of australian opens when not all the best players turned up. 1988 was the first truly time that everyone would turn up and take the oz open seriously..

Reply #669490 | Report this post


LV  
Last year

These debates will go on forever.

Federer's record on paper is ridiculous. 20 Grand Slams from 30 finals, and still winning them at THIRTY SIX!

I used to work with a guy who was mad about tennis.

I don't know much about tennis, but my old workmate used to swear he wasn't that good, because he won so many titles in a period where there wasn't much competition, and because he only won one french open.

Reply #669491 | Report this post


LV  
Last year

When I say "wasn't that good" I mean as in, he thought Federer wasn't the best tennis player ever, and wasn't as great as people like Jordan etc.

Obviously a great player but not as good as he in on paper.

Reply #669492 | Report this post


Yes  
Last year

Yes he is the best sportsman ever. Cricket is barely a sport.

Reply #669520 | Report this post


TokotoRulz  
Last year

No

Reply #669521 | Report this post


AKA  
Last year

Yes

Reply #669528 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

"I wouldn't have cricket in it, not a sport played over the world"

I think cricketers aren't spoken of enough when it comes to talking about greatest athletes of all time. When you look at a bunch of lists of the greatest athletes, they are all filled with American NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB players, but hardly ever mention Cricket which is watched by billions around the world in a number of countries.

Reply #669530 | Report this post


Luuuc  
Last year

I guess 8 is a number, yeah

Reply #669534 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Cricket may have athletes, but many would struggle in intense sports like AFL, Basketball, Soccer, American football, Ice Hockey.

Where as you could take any player from those sports and put them on a cricket field and they'd survive.

They may not have the best techniques in the world but they'd be more than capable.

Not many sports where you can drink beers while your on the bench.

Reply #669535 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

I understand what you're trying to say, but you're kidding yourself if you reckon a random athlete can stroll onto a cricket field and be capable of surviving a number of overs of 150km/h bowling. Let alone doing that for an entire day, or playing a game across 5 days in 35 degree heat.

The great thing about sports is there are so many and each one accommodates for different types of athletes and different sets of skills.

By your logic Tiger Woods isn't a great sportsperson because he just walks around on some grass hitting a stationary ball with a stick, which is something everyone can do...

Reply #669543 | Report this post


Camel 31  
Last year

Perhaps Usain Bolt , then .

Reply #669551 | Report this post


PeterJohn  
Last year

"Laver and court played in an era when tennis was less global, than what the 80's guys onwards had to play in... And court won lots of australian opens when not all the best players turned up. 1988 was the first truly time that everyone would turn up and take the oz open seriously.. "

Mostly true. MThough most of Court's open era grand slam tournament singles titles were at the non-Australian opens (7 out of the 11). Australian Open really became global in the 1980s, when prize money was increased and women like Evert, Navratilova, Mandlikova, Wade, Austin etc started coming out regularly. Court had retired after 1977.

I think a bigger impact than globalisation has been the professionalisation and commercialisation of sports generally, over the last 40 years. Prize money and sponsorships/advertising revenue have soared as TV coverage and commercial opportunities expanded. As a result, coaching, sports technology, sports psychology and sports science have had enormous amounts of money pumped into them and driven a lot of performance improvements.

The technological differences alone make it impossible to directly compare players in one generation with those of later generations for many sports. Think teh switch to synthetic surfaces and carbon fibre racquets with huge sweet spots for tennis; swimsuit and pool design for swimmers; track surfaces and shoe design for track sprinters; carbon fibre frames, aerodynamic helmets and access to altitude training for cyclists; larger bats for cricketers; sprung floors and beams for gymnasts.

In light of these sorts of problems with direct comparisons, I've always landed on comparing players' performance records against their peers at the time.

Reply #669562 | Report this post


Ricey  
Last year

What about Bo Jackson? How hasn't he came up.

Basically a number one pick in two sports just to begin with

Reply #669687 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Great suggestion.

Reply #669688 | Report this post


paul  
Last year

"Where as you could take any player from those sports and put them on a cricket field and they'd survive."

I'm not sure they would survive a well-directed cricket ball coming at them at 140km+, or bowling repeat spells off a long run. What batsmen do is freakish in terms of reflexes, and what fast bowlers do is elite in terms of physical fitness and skill execution.

Reply #669725 | Report this post


Czaree  
Last year

Bradman played at a time when cricket was seriously played by very few countries. Even India and the West Indies were not really of any good standard then. If you want to do that then Jahanghir Khan is the best as he went unbeaten for nearly 6 years in squash over more than 500 matches.Bradman truly overrated by the cricket lovers.

Laver also achieved his greatness at a time went tennis was less global and less physical where his fine touches were rewarded. He wouldn't be as successful in today's situation for sure looking at his small stature and the nature of tennis these days. Federer on the other hand with his beautiful tennis would have been just as dominant in that era.

Federer it is for me. Woods second.

Reply #669901 | Report this post


Anonymous  
Last year

Ali for me followed by Federer and Maradona.

Reply #669910 | Report this post




 

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