Who is the most dominant athlete in the world right now?
Ronda Rousey is on the cover of this week’s Sports Illustrated under the headline “World’s Most Dominant Athlete.” I wanted my friends’ opinion on the matter. I asked six friends who know and love sports.
Here are their responses:
Credentials: Works for the Worldwide Leader in L.A., meaning she gets the coveted “ESPN” designation in the Company section of my iPhone’s contact card. Dominated the student sports media scene in Eugene. Was smart enough to combine working for ESPN with the California sunshine, which I apparently couldn’t figure out.
“Based on public opinion or talent level? LeBron, Neymar.“
“If it’s the world, Neymar. As unexciting as that is domestically. Especially right now with UEFA and Copa del Rey. I mean, it’s not a super popular answer, especially considering that most people think Messi and Ronaldo are better. But at this moment, his play is dominant, I think.
“I wouldn’t say Mayweather for obvious reasons.”
Credentials: Might be the most intelligent person who actually believes Tom Brady is innocent. Doesn’t let living in Oregon stop him from appropriating Masshole culture. Commissioner of the first fantasy football league that let me invite my girlfriend to join. (That might be a strike against him?)
“The dude’s insane! He’s 20+ years into his career and still beating kids that are young enough to actually be his kids. Usain Bolt should be in that discussion, too. “
Credentials: Works for the NL East-leading (!!!) New York Mets. As devoted an Oregon Duck fan as you will find east of the Mississippi. Once had a 95-minute conversation with me about the relative talents of Dillon Gee and Jacob deGrom.
“Ronda Rousey. No one dominates a sport like her. It would be like if Kentucky was up 25 on Wisconsin five minutes into the game.”
Credentials: Actually played D-I sports, which is more than anyone else whose appeared in this space can say. Works for Nike. Has probably forgotten more about personal training and what it takes to be a legitimate athlete than I will ever learn.
“Are you hinting at the Ronda Rousey article?
“She is compelling. I’d say her, Floyd, maybe Ashton Eaton. She beats a good portion of her opponents in less than a minute.
“I wish I knew more about water polo, cricket, track, rugby, and even bowling. Then I could give you a better answer.”
Credentials: Has lived a long, tortuous life as a Buffalo fan. Gamed Madden by converting fictional Jimmy Garappolo into a monstrous 100x Super Bowl-winning quarterback, thus ensuring that Jimmy G does exactly that in real life when he replaces Brady this season.
“Hmm. I don’t like the Ronda Rousey argument. How bout we get some competition in women’s UFC… LeBron half-asses it too much lately. No football players because there are four great QBsa and A.P. is old. I don’t know, man. I don’t know baseball, but I’d have to say Jon Jones until he loses.
“[Ronda is like Oscar Robertson beating up little white guys. Jones got his title stripped, but that doesn’t mean he’s not the best. Plus, he has real competition. Messi might be right, but I haven’t ever actually watched him, so I can’t say.”
Credentials: Sports producer at Cleveland.com. Ran a mean sports desk at K-State and a meaner beer pong table. Currently forced to watch his Bulls fill their own feet with bullets against LeBron and the Cavs while living in Cleveland.
“Rousey. Without a second thought too. I’ve been saying that for a year.
I just ordered her book. She is my second favorite athlete to watch after Westbrook. People don’t like her because she isn’t scared to say what’s on her mind, but the UFC needs her. With Silva failing drug tests and Jon Jones’ problems, Rousey is the superstar in the sport.”