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Michael Phelps says he was inspired by Michael Jordan

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After winning his third NBA championship and finally making good on his promise to end the Cleveland Cavaliers' wait for a title, LeBron James will be enjoying his summer. Having turned down the opportunity to represent the United States at the Rio Olympics, he has a lot of spare time ahead of next season.

Michael Phelps has cemented his position as the greatest ever olympian in Rio de Janeiro. Having come out of retirement, the swimmer has won 23 gold medals in his career - to put that into context, the next most successful athlete has nine.

After ending his career on a high; topping the podium alongside his compatriots in the 4x100 medley relay, the 31-year-old said 23 was a great number for his gold medal haul to end on, given his admiration for six-time NBA title winner Michael Jordan.

Phelps insists he will not be returning the pool in for years for the games in Tokyo and explained how His Airness inspired him to become one of the greatest athletes in sporting history.

“Michael Jordan has been an inspiration to me throughout my whole career,” Phelps said. “What he did to the sport of basketball is what I’ve always wanted to do in the sport of swimming. No. 23 is a special number, and will always be a special number. It always has been, and now it is even more special.”

MICHAEL JORDAN

Jordan had an impact on many people during his time on the hardwood, but they don't come any bigger than Phelps. The Maryland native will go down alongside MJ in terms of greatness and may even surpass the now-Charlotte Hornets owner.

We will probably never seen another olympian as dominant as Phelps, and we will never witness another player reach the heights and iconic level of Jordan, they really are legends. 

Topics:
NBA
Michael Jordan
Chicago Bulls
Central Division
Eastern Conference

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