Enough with the “GOAT” debates


Aaliyah Solano, Editor-in-Chief

   There is always a correlation in every sport of making a player the face of it, often referred to as the “GOAT.” GOAT, and no this has nothing to do with the animal, is an acronym for the greatest of all time and is frequently used to recognize players who are regarded as the best by many fans. Basketball’s Michael Jordan, football’s Tom Brady, and now, after the most recent World Cup, soccer’s Lionel Messi. But why do we only recognize one player as the best, rather than all athletes?

Everyone who makes it into their desired sports world works hard and does more than the average person. To get into these leagues, you must be of a certain caliber; in some ways, only naming one person is inadequate.

To disregard an entire league’s work and only appreciate one, and to have that sport revolve around that one person rather than the hundreds or thousands of players who are equally as good, if not better, is demeaning. There should be no GOAT debates, and sports fans should value a player’s abilities rather than compare them to others.

This can have a negative impact on the players’ self-esteem and cause them to compare themselves to others while also feeling pressured to be better than others. Of course, competition can be beneficial and motivate people to do better, but if it causes people to feel bad about themselves, it is not worth it. 

Many players in leagues believe they are better than other players but live in their shadows. For example, Scottie Pippen was Michael Jordan’s right-hand man and arguably a better player. Still, those conversations are often drowned out by people raving about how no one compares to Jordan. Scottie has since been quoted in numerous interviews as saying how detrimental these comparisons have been to his mental health and how it irritates him because he believes he is better than Jordan. Instead of admiring and discussing how good Scottie was, the media and fans tried to spin it as if Scottie was jealous of Michael and his successes.

People do not want to be compared in their daily lives, and these comparisons must end among athletes because they are also human.