I don’t think I’ve ever blogged about him before because swimming is generally ignored in the world apart from the Olympics, no?
What he’s achieved is simply staggering, there is no way around it. 21 Olympic medals, sure, impressive, but 17 gold. 17. That is a rather large number. It might even be 18 after tonight. I still maintain that his 8 Olympic golds in 2008 is one of the greatest sporting feats ever achieved.
People can debate forever about who’s the ‘greatest Olympian’ but I’d go even further than that, this man is one of the greatest athletes that has ever lived. He’s been part of my life basically since I can remember and if this really is his last race I will miss him dearly, and so will the rest of the swimming world. Obviously Ryan will still be there and so will Chad and I hope they have success but swimming without Michael Phelps is like tennis without Federer, it just won’t be the same.
If you’ve never watched swimming, watch the 4x relay tonight, I beg you. Watch this man race because people will forever remember him as the best swimmer of all time.
I cried yesterday after his last singles race so will probably cry again when he gets out the pool for the last time, if this really is the last time. Obviously he’ll do charity races and maybe the World championships but argh, no more Olympics and that is where he belongs.
But however it goes tonight, I’m so ridiculously proud of this man and what he’s achieved. <3