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The Most Iconic Sports Superstars Of All Time



Welcome to our slideshow of the most iconic and dominating athletes to every play sports. From last second touchdowns, 3-pointers, home runs to goals and knockouts these incredible athletes have showcased their amazing talents for the world to see. These legendary athletes have won Super Bowls, World Series, World Cups, Stanley Cups, Grand Slams and even Olympic gold medals. Click START SLIDESHOW to take the journey through our collection of the most influential athletes that have redefined sports history as the greatest of all time.

Michael Jordan

Many call him the greatest basketball player of all time. Michael Jordan played in the NBA for 15 seasons, in which he earned six NBA championship wins. He abruptly retired from basketball to try his talents at minor league baseball only to return to basketball. Jordan is also known for his successful shoe line with Nike called ‘Air Jordans.’

Muhammad ALi

Born as Cassius Clay Jr., Muhammad Ali changed his name when he converted to Islam. He was an impressive boxer, philanthropist and civil right activist. He was known just as much for his inspiring impact outside the boxing ring than inside.

Usain Bolt

He has a name fitting for his talents; Usain Bolt is a track legend and holds the world record in the 100 metres, 200 metres, and 4 x100 metres relay. He is noted for being the greatest sprinter of all time for his dominance in sprint competition.

Babe Ruth

Babe Ruth is one of the recognizable names in baseball history. Also known as “the Bambino,” he began his career in 1914 playing for the Boston Red Rox before being sold to the New York Yankees creating controversy. The Boston Red Sox underwent an 86-year championship drought from that point, known as the “Curse of the Bambino” superstition.

Serena Williams

Serena Williams holds the most Grand Slam titles – 39 – in singles, doubles and mixed doubles combined amongst active players. Many sports writers, players and commentators consider Serena as the greatest female tennis player due to her numerous accolades.

Michael Phelps

Known as the most decorated Olympian of all time, Michael Phelps sets the bar when it comes to swimming. He has earned 28 Olympic medals, 23 of them gold medals!

Wayne Gretzky

Wayne Gretzky was famous for his talents on the ice hockey rink. Playing 20 seasons in the NHL, Gretzky was nicknamed, “The Great One” and has been noted as the “greatest hockey player ever.”

Billie Jean King

Professional tennis player Billie Jean King was known for her skills on the tennis court and her advocacy for gender equality and social justice. She famously won the “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match against Bobbie Riggs in 1973. She is the founder of the Women’s Tennis Association and the Women’s Sports Foundation.

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson ended racial segregation in professional baseball; he became the first African American to play in the MLB in the modern era and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962.

David Beckham

Known for his smashing good looks and skills on the soccer field, soccer player – or footballer, David Beckham retired in 2013 after a 20-year career.

LeBron James

LeBron James is quickly rising to the top as one of the greatest basketball players in NBA history. He was drafted in 2003 straight out of high school. He has three NBA championships under his belt and numerous accolades celebrating his talents on the court.

Shaquille O’Neal

This 7ft 1in tall athlete is no other than Shaquille O’Neal. He’s now retired, but you’ll still see him on the television screen as a sports analyst or during commercial breaks, featured in the ads for one of his many endorsement deals.

Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a famous boxing promoter and retired professional boxer. He’s notorious for his lavish spending habits and perfect 50-0 undefeated record.

Danica Patrick

Professional race car driver Danica Patrick has made some major achievements in the racing scene. Her win in the 2008 Indy Japan 300 marked the only win by a woman in IndyCar Series race history.

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods is known as one of the most successful golfers of all time and one of the highest paid athletes in the world with his numerous championships, record-breaking stats and lucrative endorsement deals.

Tom Brady

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has five Super Bowls under his belt!

Simone Biles

Simone Biles is the most decorated American gymnast and part of the gold-medal winning team the “Final Five.”

Derek Jeter

Derek Jeter is a retired baseball player who spent his 20-year MLB career with the New York Yankees.

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton is a four-time Formula One World Champion and considered one of the greatest drivers in the history of the sport.

Ronda Rousey

Former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Championship Ronda Rousey was the first female to sign on with Ultimate Fighting Championship in 2012 and is the first American woman to earn an Olympic medal in judo. She is currently with the WWE on the Raw Brand.

Kobe Bryant

Former professional basketball player Kobe Bryant was drafted to the NBA straight from high school and went on to play his entire 20-year career with the L.A. Lakers where he won five NBA Championships.

Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee was a famous actor, director, philosopher and considered one of the best martial artists and one the most influential martial artists of all time.

Joe Montana

Nicknamed “The Comeback Kid” and “Joe Cool,” quarterback Joe Montana played for the NFL for 16 seasons, first with the San Francisco 49ers then with the Kansas City Chiefs. He earned his nickname for his ability to stay calm under pressure.

Maria Sharapova

Professional tennis player Maria Sharapova is known for talents on the tennis court and her lucrative endorsement and advertising deals which has placed her on the Forbes highest paid female athlete in the world list for the 11th straight time.

Jack Nicklaus

Nicknamed “The Golden Bear,” professional golfer Jack Nicklaus is considered by many as the greatest golfer of all time. He won a record 18 career major championships.

Lionel Messi

Lionel Messi is an Argentine footballer who is noted by many as the best player in the world and greatest of all time. His skills also landed him on Forbes’ list as one of the highest paid athletes in the world, earning 111 million.

Jim Brown

Former football star Jim Brown was considered one of the greatest football players of all time. He played running back for the Cleveland Browns and was invited into the Pro Bowl all of his nine seasons in the league.

Lindsey Vonn

Alpine ski racer Lindsey Vonn is one of only two female skiers to win four World Cup overall championships. She’s earned Olympic gold and bronze medals, 2 World Championship gold medals in 2009 (plus three silver medals in 2007 and 2011), and 4 overall World Cup titles propelling her earn the reputation as one of the most successful skiers of all time.

Mike Tyson

Retired professional boxer, Mike Tyson holds the record as the youngest boxer to win a heavyweight title at age 20. He was known by his wins by knockout, 19 of his fights won by knockout and 12 of them in the first round.

Stephen Curry

American basketball player Stephen Curry has played his entire NBA career with the Golden State Warriors. He is noted as one of the best shooters in NBA history, helping his team secure three NBA championships in four years.

Peyton Manning

Former quarterback Peyton Manning played 18 seasons with the NFL for the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos. He is recognized as one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history for his numerous accolades and achievements.

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Former race car driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. was one of the most popular drivers earning the “Most Popular Driver Award” 15 years straight. The son of famed race car driver Dale Earnhardt also earned the nickname “Pied Piper” of Daytona due to his success at the Daytona International Speedway.

Cristiano Ronaldo

This famous footballer with a killer smile is none other than Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo is considered one of the greatest soccer players in the world. He also landed himself on Forbes’ highest paid athletes list this year at $108 million.

Nadia Comaneci

One of the world’s most recognizable gymnasts of all time, Romanian Nadia Comaneci, was a force to be reckoned with due to her performances in the 1976 and 1980 Olympic games. She is the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect 10.0 score and went on to earn six more perfect 10.0 scores in the ’76 games.

Jackie Joyner-Kersee

Retired track and field star Jackie Joyner-Kersee is considered one of the greatest for her success in long jump and in the heptathlon with Sports Illustrated for Woman magazine dubbing her the “Greatest Female Athlete of All-Time.”

Steffi Graf

Retired German tennis player Steffi Graf is known for her great talent on the court. She is the only tennis player in history to earn a Golden Slam by winning all four Grand Slam singles titles and an Olympic gold medal in the same year.

Larry Bird

Larry Bird is considered one of the basketball greats! He was a member of the 1992 United States men’s Olympic basketball team known as “The Dream Team,” earning a gold medal.

Barry Bonds

Former MLB player Barry Bonds played 22 seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants. Holding numerous MLB hitting records, Bands is considered one the greatest baseball players of all time.

Rodger Federer

Roger Federer is a force to be reckoned with on the tennis court. He currently holds the title for most Grand Slam singles wins for a male player, with 20 victories under his belt.

Phil Mickelson

Nicknamed “Lefty,” Phil Mickelson ranks high on the list for greatest golfers of all time.

Martina Navratilova

Former tennis player and coach Martina Navratilova was named by Tennis magazine as the greatest tennis player from the years 1965-2005 and considered one of the best of all time.

Pete Rose

Retired switch-hitting baseball player and manager Pete Rose holds some impressive records being the all-time MLB leader in hits, games played, at-bats, singles and outs. Wow!

Mia Hamm

Former professional soccer player Mia Hamm is considered a soccer icon. She has earned two Olympic gold medals and has won two FIFA’s Women’s World Cup Championships.

Jeff Gordon

Former stock car racing driver Jeff Gordon is hailed as one of the race car driving greats with his numerous title wins.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

One of basketball’s greatest, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar played 20 seasons for the NBA for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Mary Lou Retton

Mary Lou Retton is a name synonymous with gymnastics. Her performance at the 1984 Summer Olympics earned her a gold medal, two silver medals and two bronze medals and made her one of the most popular athletes in the U.S.

Carl Lewis

Carl Lewis won nine Olympic gold medals and one of only three Olympic athletes who won a gold medal in the same individual event in four consecutive Olympic Games.

Abby Wambach

Among the numerous accolades retired soccer player Abby Wambach has earned include being a two-time Olympic gold medalist, a six-time winner of the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year Award, a two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup champion and listed on the 2015 Time 100 list as one of the most influential people in the world.

Lisa Leslie

Lisa Leslie is a three-time WNBA MVP, a four-time Olympic gold medal winner and was the first player to dunk in a WNBA game.

Jerry Rice

Considered the greatest wide receiver in NFL history, retired football star Jerry Rice is a leader among stats for wide receivers in the NFL.