Some of baseball’s greatest players have been eternally blemished because of their association with steroids, HGH, and other performance enhancing drugs. ARod, Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Sosa, Braun, and Palmeiro all torn down. Maybe they’ll be in the Hall of Fame someday, maybe not. But they’ll always have haters and detractors.
Baseball, media, and fans are almost consumed with the topic.
My question is this: Which pro athlete would lose the most in a PED scandel?
Peyton Manning and Tom Brady jump out the most in the NFL. Both are in the conversation for the greatest quarterback to ever play the game. I think we can stop assuming PED-usage means big muscles. Too many guys haven’t fit that profile. Many guys are simply trying to recover from injury. Both of these guys would fall under that category. We may never look at football the same again.
Kobe Bryant and LeBron James are the two most obvious names in basketball. One is a top ten player ever, and the other is on his way. Many media members heads would explode covering that story because while there is no denying each’s popularity, they each have been ripped as often as they have been praised, for on-the-court matters, and off-the-court issues/decisions.
Tiger Woods could very well be the biggest name in sports, period. If arguably the greatest golfer of all-time was directly connected to using like any of the mega-baseball players or Lance Armstrong, what a field day that would be.
Those would easily be my top 5 current athletes. I thought about debating the order, but I am not sure it matters. I think all would be treated the same, with the same amount of coverage, and same kind of reaction.
For retired athletes, that list could be much, much longer, but I’d go with Michael Jordan, Jerry Rice, Hank Aaron, and Michael Phelps. Perhaps the greatest athlete ever (and most famous), the baseball player that seems to represent the good old days in the dirty sport, and the great Olympian of all-time, also an American, and recent.
Could you even imagine?