10 Most Overrated Sports Legends Ever

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 7 years ago '09        #1
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BrooklynStiles 82 heat pts82
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10 Most Overrated Sports Legends Ever
 

 

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5: Paul Coffey

If you look at the statistics, Paul Coffey is probably the second best defenseman of all time behind only Bobby Orr, but as we have already seen throughout this list, statistics can be a bunch of damn liars. Coffey played in a run and gun era in which it was acceptable for a defenseman to serve as virtually a fourth forward on the ice. No one was better at joining the rush than Coffey and no one put up gaudier numbers. He also won several championships as a member of the famed Edmonton Oilers teams of the 1980’s and then one more with the Pittsburgh Penguins after he was traded. But here’s the thing: Coffey had teammates named Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier and later Mario Lemieux and Jaromir Jagr, so he wasn’t exactly heroically carrying mediocre teams to glory. And, perhaps more damning, both of those teams won more Stanley Cups after trading Coffey. Further, the Detroit Red Wings, for whom Coffey starred after getting traded to them by the Los Angeles Kings (Hmmm, for an all-time great, Coffey sure got traded a lot.), didn’t win the Stanley Cup until the season they traded him away, after which they went on to win back to back Cups. All this seems to point to a very talented offensive player who was never really considered indispensable by the teams he played for. And when the NHL moved to a more defensive oriented style of play in the mid to late ‘90s, Coffey immediately became irrelevant, which is kind of a problem for his reputation since he was, you know, a defenseman.


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4: Nolan Ryan

Nolan Ryan is the greatest strikeout pitcher of all time. He also walked more batters than anyone in baseball history. And while he won 324 games in his career, good for 14th all time, he also lost 292 games, the 3rd most all time. Ryan was a workhorse who pitched for an astonishing 27 seasons, which allowed him to rack up his ridiculous numbers. He also threw 7 no-hitters –- again, the most all time -– and he set the single season mark for most strike-outs with 383 in 1973. Fittingly, he also led the league in walks that season. He never won a Cy Young despite his huge numbers, and while he won a World Series with the Mets in 1969, he only won 6 games that season and was little more than a wild relief pitcher for them. He never even sniffed the World Series after that – and remember, he played for almost 25 more years -– and in his whole career he never won more than six games more than he lost. Of course, pitching success in terms of wins and losses is heavily dependent upon the team surrounding you, but Ryan’s style also played a big part. He never learned to pitch to contact, or to rely upon his defense. He either struck everyone out or walked them. This is not to say that Nolan Ryan wasn’t a great player –- he was -– it’s just that he wasn’t as good as some of the numbers say. He was one of a kind, more of a freak of nature than anything else, and while he should be remembered for all of that, he should also be remembered as a flawed pitcher who was never quite as good as the numbers said. Then again, he did famously beat the crap out of the much younger Robin Ventura, so maybe I’m being too harsh. Who’s to say?


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3: Joe Namath

Yeah, yeah, I know Joe Namath was maybe the single most important player in the merger between the NFL and AFL and I know that he is beloved for being a legendary horn-dog and degenerate. I love him for those reasons too. But as a quarterback? Eh, not so much. For his career, Namath threw 173 touchdowns –- hey, that’s good! –- but he also threw 220 interceptions, which, uh, well that’s not so good. He threw more than 20 interception in a season five times and he averaged 17 INTs a season, all while completing only 50.1% of his career passes, which… yikes! Only twice in his career -– twice! –- did he throw more touchdowns than interceptions. His ratio in those two glorious years? 18-15 and 19-17. Hardly inspiring stuff. Namath is a Hall of Famer because he got lucky after opening his big mouth and guaranteeing a Jets victory prior to Super Bowl III and for being a drunken manwh0ore. In that famous Super Bowl victory -– which the Jets won 16-7 -– Namath managed to avoid throwing an interception, but he also didn’t throw a touchdown. Basically, he managed to not screw up while the defense and running back Matt Snell eked out a hard fought victory for the Jets, saving Namath’s a.ss in the process. It may sound like I’m being tough on Namath here, but the truth is, is that I love him like a horny old goat of a father. It’s just that, well, the dude’s overrated and you simply can’t deny that.


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2: Wilt Chamberlain

I’ll probably catch hell for this one. In fact, I predict that this will be the one that gets people angry at me more than any other entry on this list –- well, other than the irrational Dale, Jr. zealots anyway. But it’s true. I know I have some explaining to do, especially given Wilt’s gaudy stats, but hear me out. This is my case: Wilt is considered by most fans to be one of the two or three greatest players who ever lived. The only player put in front of him is Jordan and maybe -– maybe -– Kareem. But here’s the thing, throughout the 1960’s, Wilt famously battled Bill Russell of the Celtics and almost every time, Russell came out ahead. But does it really mean that much to always come out as second best against a great like Russell? It sure as hell does when you’re considered to be one of the two or three greatest players of all time. The greatest of the great are always the alpha dogs. Always. And the simple fact is that Chamberlain was almost always number two to Russell. Yeah, he had better regular season numbers, but when it counted, in the playoffs, Russell always managed to better Wilt. Chamberlain was infamous for being a stat wh0ore. He needed, wanted, his points, his rebounds, his a.ssists –- whatever. And he usually got them. I’m not arguing with that. But Wilt also played in an era when numbers as a whole were gaudy and hyper-inflated. The year that he averaged an unreal 50.9 points per game, his Warriors averaged 125.4 points per game, the most in the league. They also gave up 122.7 points per game, dead last in the league. The point is that Wilt’s greatness has to be taken in context, and the context -– the era, the constant beatings by Russell –- show that Wilt was a tremendously gifted talent, playing in a league that had never seen someone with his physical gifts, but he wasn’t Jordan and he wasn’t Kareem. He wasn’t even Russell. He was Shaquille O’Neal, and while that is a hell of a thing to be all on its own, that doesn’t make Wilt Chamberlain one of the one or two best players of all time. It just doesn’t, and that’s why he’s overrated. But no one will ever be able to take away those 20,000 women from him, which probably makes him one of the one or two greatest swordsmen of all time. I’ll give him that.



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1: Phil Rizzuto

Phil Rizzuto is in the baseball Hall of Fame for one reason: he was a New York Yankee. This is the average Rizzuto season: .273 – 3 home runs – 50 RBI, with a .351 OBP and a .355 slugging percentage. In other words, the average season for this Hall of Famer was consistently below the league average. According to baseball-reference.com, here are the five players most similar to Rizzuto: Art Fletcher, Billy Rogell, Lonny Frey, Billy Jurges and Claude Ritchey. The closest any of those five ever got to the Hall of Fame was through buying a ticket or working as the night janitor. This is the shortest entry on this list because, honestly, there’s really no need to argue. The argument speaks for itself. And that’s why Phil Rizzuto is the most overrated of all sports legends.

75 comments for "10 Most Overrated Sports Legends Ever"

 7 years ago '04        #2
LovinPavan 
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add: Dan Marino.
 7 years ago '06        #3
B Ray 14 heat pts14
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scratch nolan ryan and wilt off the list and add dan marino and larry bird
 7 years ago '06        #4
ThaShark316 86 heat pts86
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Wilt is the most overrated player in sports history.
 7 years ago '08        #5
stlcardinals19 32 heat pts32
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I'm pretty sure Rizzuto was voted in mainly in part due to his contributions as the Yankee's broadcaster.......
 7 years ago '10        #6
Agentzer0oo0 209 heat pts209
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Kobe stans gonna be mad Jordan's not on here...
 05-21-2011, 11:20 AM         #7
Dangerously 
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This writer is a casual fan. (no fmoney)
 7 years ago '05        #8
jay964 12 heat pts12
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how the fu*k do you consider dan marino and larry bird overrated?
explain yourselves
 7 years ago '05        #9
StateProperty88 34 heat pts34
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i spit my juice out when i saw wilt up there, im sure some cats will agree with that dumb sh*t too
 7 years ago '08        #10
arthurmack27 8 heat pts
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wilt was so god damn great that the media of had to make up reasons to discredit his legacy. almost any of the old timers who watched or played with or against him say hes the greatest and its not even close, and those happen to be the ones who matter most. leave it up to the gatorade generation to discredit someone.

and for the record, since the writer is comparing wilt to russell, and not team vs team, i figured id throw out that wilts TEAMS lost more than russells (damn near the entire celtics roster is in the hall of fame!), but in head to head matchups, wilt outscored (by a lot), outreabounded (by a solid margin), and outpassed russell. so that right there k!lls the writers arguement.


as far as ryan goes, yeah he was flawed, but if ur name isnt koufax or gibson then everyone was/is flawed. in 27 seasons, his career era is 3.19 yet only won 52% of his games. that says dude pitched great on POOR teams! sh*t, king felix won the cy young and look at his record. w-l record means nothing for a pitcher as its something they have no control over. and yeah, because of ryans teams, he wouldnt have been able to reach 300 wins (absurd almost neccessity to reach the hall) without playing 27 years, but even if he played 15yrs, he was a lock for the hall. also, anyone who throws a no hitter when theyre older than a dinosaur deserves every bit of credit in the world.
 05-21-2011, 11:49 AM         #11
Ca$h Out 
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This n*gga put joe namath....

hell nah
 7 years ago '05        #12
StateProperty88 34 heat pts34
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 arthurmack27 said:
wilt was so god damn great that the media of had to make up reasons to discredit his legacy. almost any of the old timers who watched or played with or against him say hes the greatest and its not even close, and those happen to be the ones who matter most. leave it up to the gatorade generation to discredit someone.

and for the record, since the writer is comparing wilt to russell, and not team vs team, i figured id throw out that wilts TEAMS lost more than russells (damn near the entire celtics roster is in the hall of fame!), but in head to head matchups, wilt outscored (by a lot), outreabounded (by a solid margin), and outpassed russell. so that right there k!lls the writers arguement.


as far as ryan goes, yeah he was flawed, but if ur name isnt koufax or gibson then everyone was/is flawed. in 27 seasons, his career era is 3.19 yet only won 52% of his games. that says dude pitched great on POOR teams! sh*t, king felix won the cy young and look at his record. w-l record means nothing for a pitcher as its something they have no control over. and yeah, because of ryans teams, he wouldnt have been able to reach 300 wins (absurd almost neccessity to reach the hall) without playing 27 years, but even if he played 15yrs, he was a lock for the hall. also, anyone who throws a no hitter when theyre older than a dinosaur deserves every bit of credit in the world.
i posted it in another thread. wilt had a 60 point game and 6 50 point games against russell, he had a 50 rebound game and 6 40 rebound games against wilt. russell's W-L against wilt was like 88-74, reading what this guy said you would think wilt never beat him. when the celtics won all those rings they had 4 HOF players on the floor, with how people sh*t on lebron playing with other stars i wonder what people would have been saying about bill back then

like you said ask any old head they the majority will say that wilt is the best player they ever seen, people want to have revisionist history years after the fact just to diminish his legacy
 05-21-2011, 12:50 PM         #13
Cheeze 
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 LovinPavan said:
add: Dan Marino.
 7 years ago '07        #14
RJ96 8 heat pts
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who the fu*k thought Danica Patrick was a legend???
 7 years ago '04        #15
BrBHZ 8 heat pts
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 billyloc said:
scratch nolan ryan and wilt off the list and add dan marino and larry bird
lost me with that one...
 7 years ago '07        #16
TH35 103 heat pts103
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 7 years ago '04        #17
CA$H MONEY 2 heat pts
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 StateProperty88 said:
i posted it in another thread. wilt had a 60 point game and 6 50 point games against russell, he had a 50 rebound game and 6 40 rebound games against wilt. russell's W-L against wilt was like 88-74, reading what this guy said you would think wilt never beat him. when the celtics won all those rings they had 4 HOF players on the floor, with how people sh*t on lebron playing with other stars i wonder what people would have been saying about bill back then

like you said ask any old head they the majority will say that wilt is the best player they ever seen, people want to have revisionist history years after the fact just to diminish his legacy
Bill didn't leave the celtics in the midst of all those numbers to go play on another players team......not comparable bro...
 7 years ago '05        #18
StateProperty88 34 heat pts34
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 CA$H MONEY said:
Bill didn't leave the celtics in the midst of all those numbers to go play on another players team......not comparable bro...
bill didnt have to go to another players team because his team HAD 4 HALL OF FAME PLAYERS ON IT...bron's didnt, so i guess you're right, its not comparable
 7 years ago '09        #19
ReggieA 196 heat pts196
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7 no hitters, how can that be overrated and over 5,000 strikeouts, yeah he pitched for 27 years and padded stats, but c'mon man.
 7 years ago '06        #20
jj01 
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weak list, if you're going to put up wilt then where the fu*k is j west?

he was the greatest loser of all time
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