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  1. #201
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    I feel the same way about Phelps not necessarily being the best Olympian ever. He's the most decorated Olympian, that's for sure, but the best? That's questionable and debatable just like Coe and Rogge said. He's definitely a contender... as I would consider Usain Bolt if he were to win everything he entered this year...among others.

    Like others have said, swimming gives far more opportunities to win, you can compete iin as many races as you like, provided you qualify. Gymnastics is another. Other sports don't have that to the same extent. I think if a person dominates the sport they are in for multiple games, or if they have achieved feats in ways never done before (like Bolt's fast 100m) that puts them in the running too.

    Sometimes the most titles, medals, championships don't equal greatest ever.

  2. #202
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    Catriona Lemay Doan noted that only 4 athletes have competed in both Winter and Summer Games; Clara Hughes of Canada is one of those four. She has also won multiple medals in both Games (speedskating and cycling), so it could be said she is one of the greatest Olympians ever.
    Haunting the Princess of Pink since 20/07/11...

  3. #203

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    While you're defining greatest, also define Olympian. If you become an Olympian just by competing, it follows that the greatest Olympian could be someone who competed at the most Olympics. I don't know who that would be, but I suspect it's a few people tying for that.
    The Junior Grand Prix: Where skaters who "come out of nowhere" come from.

  4. #204
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    Quote Originally Posted by Really View Post
    Catriona Lemay Doan noted that only 4 athletes have competed in both Winter and Summer Games; Clara Hughes of Canada is one of those four. She has also won multiple medals in both Games (speedskating and cycling), so it could be said she is one of the greatest Olympians ever.
    Only four athletes have medalled in both summer and winter Games. More than that have competed -- wikipedia lists 16, but it's at least 17 because Connie Carpenter-Phinney isn't on that list.

    (Though I still think Clara Hughes is awesome).

  5. #205
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    Quote Originally Posted by aster View Post
    Only four athletes have medalled in both summer and winter Games. More than that have competed -- wikipedia lists 16, but it's at least 17 because Connie Carpenter-Phinney isn't on that list.

    (Though I still think Clara Hughes is awesome).
    Then she's in very rare company, especially as she has multiple medals in both Summer *and* Winter Games.
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  6. #206

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    I agree with everyone who's said that Phelps is a great Olympian and swimmer, but not necessarily the greatest Olympian, even if he has won the most medals. Kudos to him for taking advantage of the opportunity to win in multiple events - that takes talent, a lot of training and obviously mental strength - but it's also important to recognize athletes who don't have the privilege of competing in multiple events at the same Olympics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Really View Post
    Catriona Lemay Doan noted that only 4 athletes have competed in both Winter and Summer Games; Clara Hughes of Canada is one of those four. She has also won multiple medals in both Games (speedskating and cycling), so it could be said she is one of the greatest Olympians ever.
    Quote Originally Posted by Really View Post
    Then she's in very rare company, especially as she has multiple medals in both Summer *and* Winter Games.
    Actually, the latter puts her in a category by herself. Nobody else has multiple summer and winter Olympic medals.

    Wikipedia lists five athletes who have medalled at the summer and winter Olympics, but one of them is Gillis Grafström, who won his first figure skating medal when it was still a summer sport.

  7. #207
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    Doan probably said only 4 had medalled in both -- I wasn't listening carefully enough (multitasking) and misremembered what I'd heard.
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  8. #208
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    If you look it up, she'sthe only athlete to have gotten medals in more than one summer and more than one winter olympics.

    And another thing I was thinking of: Before Phelps broke Latynina's record, did anyone consider her the greatest Olympic athlete? Probably not, as far as I know. She was considered the most decorated, but I doubt many would have named her as greatest athlete.

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    Quote Originally Posted by liv View Post
    If you look it up, she'sthe only athlete to have gotten medals in more than one summer and more than one winter olympics.
    I know -- that's what the poster just before me said.
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  10. #210
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    sorry, i just got up

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