4

Fine, I’ll Say It. Michael Phelps is Overrated

Over-hyped. Clap. Clap. Clapclapclap. Over-hyped. Clap. Clap. Clapclapclap.
^
Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

I know, I know. But hear me out.

Michael Phelps, the U.S. Olympic golden boy, isn’t overrated athletically. He’s amazing, of course. In Beijing he’s 5-for-5. As in gold medals and world records. We’re all impressed down here on Earth. Inspired even.

Best swimmer ever? Fine. Most decorated U.S. Olympian ever? Non-negotiable. But best Olympian ever? Hold your equestrian horses.

Spewed NBC’s Dan Hicks last night, “He’s Tiger in a Speedo.”

I’m not denying that Phelps is fantastic. Just sayin’ that isn’t part of his quality a by-product of inordinate quantity? He wins everything. But he also gets a chance to win everything.

I say Dallas’ Michael Johnson was just as impressive in Atlanta. Gold shoes. Unprecedented double. Not even water in his goggles. And, don’t forget, Carl Lewis won golds in both track (100 meters) and field (long jump) at the same Games. Let’s see Phelps win a gold in 3-meter platform diving, then I’ll rush out for his Wheaties’ box.

Phelps benefits from a sport that hands out hardware as liberally as parents passing out Ritalin at a sleepover. This week alone he’s won the freestyle, backstroke, butterfly, individual medley, jitterbug and tonight I think he’s the fave in the dog paddle.

Take American volleyballers Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, for example. The duo not only looks much better than Phelps in their micro-bottoms, they’ve gone a year a full year without a loss. As good as Phelps is in the water, they’re better in the sand. How about 457-18 since the summer of ’04?

Problem is, they have to win like seven matches just to earn one medal. Imagine if beach volleyball awarded golds for best serve, dig, bump, dink, set, spike and tan line? If you see my point, welcome to the minority. Plenty of room in here.

If not, well, I think that brings me back ‘round to my original point. -- Richie Whitt

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.