Athlete of the decade? AP names Tiger Woods, but he wasn't the most dominant
Tiger Woods is the Athlete of the Decade, according to the Associated Press.
Is it deserved? Sure, Tiger has done some incredible things, but he hasn’t set the records of the following three athletes:
Roger Federer comes to mind first. While Tiger Woods is on track to beat Jack Nicklaus’ majors record (assuming he returns to golf by the Masters like he should), Federer has already captured the record: 15 from Pete Sampras.
Those might note that while Federer has won the majors record, he’s not as inspirational as Woods. For that, we’d have to turn to Lance Armstrong, who has won the Tour de France a record seven consecutive times and did so while defeating cancer and constantly defending himself against doping allegations. Armstrong loses points though because in the last couple years he hasn’t been riding as much, and cycling, like baseball, has lost a great deal of integrity this decade.
Then there’s the sheer dominance of your sport. Tiger dominates, sure, but not as much as Michael Phelps. Phelps won more golds in an Olympics than anyone in history, eight (beating out my fellow IU alum Mark Spitz). He also won six in the 2004 games as well. If you thought Tiger was unbeatable, he’s nothing compared to Phelps.
Tiger’s marketing muscle is unmatched though, and he moves the needle unlike just about any person alive, and that’s probably what put him over the top in this vote at the AP.
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