The Best Athletes of All Time People In Sports

The Best Athletes of All Time

412,575 votes 22,229 voters 381,971 views 1,553 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Open to all amateur or professional athletes in any sport

The greatest athletes of all time: a list of the most dominant, iconic athletes to ever play sports. This list gathers sports stars from across every professional league, as well as amateur athletes who may have never competed professionally, in one overall list. Though it may be challenging to compare performance in a variety of different competitive arenas requiring different skill sets, this list nevertheless attempts to distinguish the top, highest-performing and most successful athletes ever to play. The sports stars that rise to the top can be considered to be the best athletes of all time.

Aspects to consider in picking a best athlete of all time would include, obviously, that player's raw talent and born ability. Some individuals seem to prodigally gifted in their sport of choice, and it's hard to discount the importance of this kind of natural talent. However, it's also important to evaluate hard work, discipline and a commitment to the game. Some athletes may not have the natural, genetic ability to dunk a basketball or hit a home run, but nonetheless have trained to the point of reaching these goals all the same. (They may not be the greatest athlete of all time at all sports, but they have mastered their activity.)

Finally, it can be a challenge to compare an athlete who competed in a solo competition with a member of a well known sports organization or club. How do you look at the achievements of, say, a boxer like Muhammad Ali alongside an athlete like Michael Jordan, who had to not only perform to his own best abilities but work as a cohesive unit along with other members of his team? These are the questions that must be answered when compiling a list of the world's greatest all-time athletes.

For more sports news and athlete trade rumors, vote on this list of sports news sites.


List Photo: user uploaded image
  • 269 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • 2 See list ranked by
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  1. 1
    + 5092
    - 4870

    most listed
    Brantford, Canada

    ;
  2. 2
    + 7309
    - 4801

    the people's #1
    New York City, New York, United States of America

    ;
  3. 3
    + 5774
    - 4308


    Louisville, Kentucky, United States of America

    ;
  4. 4
    + 3556
    - 2613


    Oakville, Alabama, United States of America

    ;
  5. 5
    + 3761
    - 3495


    New Eagle, Pennsylvania, United States of America

    ;
  6. 6
    + 4088
    - 3893


    Sherwood Content, Jamaica

    ;
  7. 7
    + 4150
    - 3978


    Três Corações, Brazil

    ;
  8. 8
    + 3765
    - 3009

    ranked low on reranks
    West Baden Springs, French Lick Township, Indiana

    ;
  9. 9
    + 2823
    - 2681


    Mannheim, Germany

    ;
  10. 10
    + 3365
    - 2922


    Basel, Switzerland

    ;
  11. 11
    + 3059
    - 3389

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Towson, Baltimore, Maryland

    ;
  12. 12
    + 2289
    - 2554

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Novosibirsk, Russia

    ;
  13. 13
    + 1927
    - 1866

    added by JonathanWeider
    Grand Duchy of Finland, Russian Empire

    ;
  14. 14
    + 3048
    - 2841


    New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

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  15. 15
    + 687
    - 458


    Hürth, Germany

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  16. 16
    + 1666
    - 1295

    ranked low on reranks
    Yorkville, New York City, New York

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  17. 17
    + 2927
    - 2508


    San Mateo, California, United States of America

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  18. 18
    + 2112
    - 1806


    Upper Arlington, Ohio, United States of America

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  19. 19
    + 2032
    - 1690


    Munich, Germany

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  20. 20
    + 1821
    - 1446


    Parry Sound, Canada

    ;
  21. 21
    + 1749
    - 1606

    added by JonathanWeider
    Elverum, Norway

    ;
  22. 22
    + 1840
    - 1544


    Montreal, Canada

    ;
  23. 23
    + 1885
    - 1718

    added by RodneyBlair
    Rockhampton, Australia

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  24. 24
    + 1648
    - 1595

    added by JonathanWeider
    Davenham, United Kingdom

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  25. 25
    + 2562
    - 2269


    Rosario, Argentina

    ;
  26. 26
    + 1653
    - 1540

    added by JonathanWeider
    Oslo, Norway

    ;
  27. 27
    + 3095
    - 3029


    Bessemer, Alabama, United States of America

    ;
  28. 28
    + 1702
    - 1440

    added by JonathanWeider
    Ashington, United Kingdom

    ;
  29. 29
    + 1517
    - 1196


    USA, Carlsbad, California

    ;
  30. 30
    + 1116
    - 790

    ranked low on reranks
    Spavinaw, Oklahoma, United States of America

    ;
  31. 31
    + 1189
    - 1054

    added by JonathanWeider
    Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States of America

    ;
  32. 32
    + 1460
    - 1337

    added by JonathanWeider
    Bro, Sweden, Sweden

    ;
  33. 33
    + 598
    - 476

    added by Arminius
    Gelsenkirchen, Germany

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  34. 34
    + 380
    - 234

    added by geyyy
    Moscow, Russia

    ;
  35. 35
    + 1518
    - 1442

    added by JonathanWeider
    Lidija Skobilowa

  36. 36
    + 1369
    - 1332

    added by JonathanWeider
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States of America

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  37. 37
    + 1381
    - 1400

    added by JonathanWeider
    Drammen, Norway

    ;
  38. 38
    + 1072
    - 1471

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America

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  39. 39
    + 1781
    - 1946

    added by Skojare
    Stockholm, Sweden

    ;
  40. 40
    + 369
    - 269

    ranked low on reranks & added by Polar Bear
    Trondheim, Norway

    ;
  41. 41
    + 261
    - 157

    ranked low on reranks & added by amsmaia
    São Paulo, Brazil

    ;
  42. 42
    + 794
    - 770

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Saginaw, Michigan, United States of America

    ;
  43. 43
    + 2177
    - 2409


    Baltimore, USA, Pigtown

    ;
  44. 44
    + 594
    - 468


    Prague, Czech Republic

    ;
  45. 45
    + 1339
    - 1094

    ranked low on reranks & added by averagej123
    Nyagan, Russia

    ;
  46. 46
    + 1199
    - 1179


    Volgograd, Russia

    ;
  47. 47
    + 1592
    - 1704


    Bedford-Stuyvesant, New York City, New York

    ;
  48. 48
    + 1273
    - 1269

    added by JonathanWeider
    Sandhult, Sweden

    ;
  49. 49
    + 1567
    - 1660


    Lansing, Michigan, United States of America

    ;
  50. 50
    + 556
    - 445

    ranked low on reranks & added by Arminius
    Weilheim in Oberbayern, Germany

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1554 +

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