Inspiration & Sports

All-Time Favorite Game-Changers

Selfless. Determined. Courageous. Perpetual learner. Focused.

These are just some of the qualities I saw from history-shaping athletes. Below are in my all-time favorite list.

  1. Earvin “Magic” Johnson—Magic typified the unselfish pro basketball player of his time.

Picked first overall by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1979-1980 season, his entry signaled the beginning of the “Showtime” Era under coach Paul Westhead before Pat Riley took over come Magic’s third NBA season.

Magic, a monicker that stuck on his name after leading Michigan State to the US NCAA title against the Indiana Sycamores and Larry Bird, was the glue that kept the Lakers together.

His no-look passes, big smile and desire to put the team first than personal accolades are things I truly like about Magic.

Under his court leadership, the Lakers won five NBA championships, while LA appeared in the Finals eight times during the 1980s.

2. Manny Pacquiao – His cool under pressure attitude, his big, fighting heart in spite of the fact that he came from a poor family in Mindanao as well as his unmatched courage to face the world’s best ring gladiators are qualities that made Pacquiao part of my all-time favorite list of athletes.

He’s actually part of TIME Magazine’s 100 most influential personalities in the world in the May 2009 edition.

But more importantly, he admits that his life has made a radical turn from life of carnality to one that is completely yielded to God.

Hopefully, more athletes from different sports will follow Pacquiao’s radical transformation for only God can bring genuine change inside out.

3. Michael Phelps—He’s the most decorated Olympian of all time with 22 medals. The legendary American swimmer now holds the all-time records for Olympic gold medals with 18.

Probably not everyone knows that this swimming sensation battled through ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) during his childhood years, a deficiency that brought tension and pressure on his mother Debbie, who still managed to raise him up well.

Yet, through the patient guidance of his mother, Phelps by the time he reached sixth grade, overcame his ADHD. And by the time he reached the age of 18, was already a multiple gold medalist in the Olympics after bagging six mints.

Well, there goes my short list of all-time favorite athletes in the world.

Who’s in your list?

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