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What If Athletes Were Superheroes?

What If Athletes Were Superheroes?

For most of us the Superheroes we see on our film screens and in our comics are just make belief. We like to imagine that one day a real Superman will swoop down and solve all our problems (and there are many), but in reality we have to do it ourselves. As this is being written the 2016 Paralympics is taking place and those athletes are often referred to as the super human. The people competing have incredible stories of fighting back from adversity and then showcasing their skills on a global scale.

Sport is the great melting pot, with different skills and athletes who become worshipped among their fans, much like the Marvel and DC Comics heroes. Perhaps it is here that we may find realistic Superheroes and the people to inspire us to do great things. For now though we will have to make do with comparing them to their closest fictional counterparts!


Usain Bolt – Flash


The Jamaican sprinter who is one of the greatest Olympians alive holds the current 100m World Record. This standard human experiment for speed makes Bolt is a freak of nature compared to the rest of us. Bolt has equally made fans happy and experts of betting tips bored with his constant winning. He may not be able to run around the planet in seconds, but he is the closest thing we have got.


John McEnroe – The Hulk


You won’t like him when he is angry. John McEnroe that is! The American tennis legend is one of the greatest living players, but unfortunately for him is perhaps best known for his incredible outburst at poor umpire Edward James during the 1981 Wimbledon Championships. “You cannot be serious!


Nadia Comaneci – Spiderman


This pocket sized Romanian flies through the uneven bars like Spiderman swinging from the skyscrapers in New York City. She got the first perfect 10 ever in Gymnastics at the 1976 Montreal Olympics with a routine I think even Peter Parker himself would struggle with!


Michael Phelps – Aquaman


The most decorated Olympian of all time surely has to be our king of the water! He might not be able to control fishes like Aquaman, but he might just beat him at backstroke!


Wonder Woman – Ronda Rousey


She may be licking her wounds still from her defeat to Holly Holm still, but there is no doubt that for a period of time Ronda Rousey looked unbeatable. Her terrifying ferocity would scare most men which gives her a very Amazonian like quality!


Captain America – Michael Jordan


The most famous sportsman in American history has to take the mantle of Captain America. Not only in sporting ability, but also his embracing of the capitalist ideal USA is built on, having built himself a mini-empire with Air-Jordan.


Kelly Slater – Silver Surfer


Surfing may be alternative but everyone has heard of Kelly Slater, such is his transcendence on a board. He has certainly mastered the waves, so now he just needs to master flying and we will have our very own Silver Surfer!


Mariusz Zbigniew Pudzianowski – Thor


The Polish weightlifter turned MMA fighter has won the world’s strongest man competition on five separate occasions. All of this will give him the best chance of lifting Thor’s hammer.


Tom Brady – The Green Lantern


A superhero that is know for his rings and being able to create anything from his hands! There is only one man for the job and that is the Superbowl king Tom Brady, and he has four rings, not one!!


Muhammad Ali – Superman


It was always going to be difficult to pick someone for Superman, but I think Ali may just be the ticket. Undefeated, adored by the world and with a strong moral compass. Ali passed away at the age of 74 this year but it could be argued that he is the closest humans have ever come to being Superheroes. (I am sure he would have something to say about that).

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Football correspondent for GarberSports, Masters of Sports Law (LL.M)

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