After Ronda Rousey’s Complaint, Michael Phelps Took His Leadership More Seriously Despite Different Approach by Serena & Venus Williams in the London Olympics

Published 11/27/2022, 12:00 PM EST

Michael Phelps is an all-time Olympics legend. The talismanic swimmer has 28 Olympic medals. 23 of them are gold. The success makes him the greatest olympian of all time. Michael Phelps, however, was an introvert and didn’t like interacting much with his teammates. It was only in his last Olympics that Michael Phelps spent time with his teammates and shared his experiences with them.

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This change happened only after fellow Olympian Ronda Rousey expressed how she felt Phelps snubbing interaction with other Olympians was “annoying“. Other teammates had also shared experiences about his time with Michael Phelps.

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In an interaction with the media, Ronda Rousey said, Michael Phelps needed his own private section of the club to be like private for him,” talking about a party that happened during the Beijing Olympics, where both Ronda Rousey and Michael Phelps were present. “All of these NBA players are a bigger deal than this guy, and they are hanging out with the rest of us.” she had added.

Ronda Rousey made Phelps step up

Ronda Rousey is a two-time Olympian and a Bronze Medalist in Judo. She didn’t keep her feelings to herself and talked about Michael Phelps being elusive. She was not the only one. Michael Phelps’ teammate Tyler Clary had similar feelings.

LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 28: Ronda Rousey celebrates her victory over Cat Zingano in their UFC women’s bantamweight championship bout during the UFC 184 event at Staples Center on February 28, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

In his final Olympics in London, Phelps took out more time to relax and spend time with his teammates. He was competing in 7 events instead of the grueling 8 events he took part in Beijing. Phelps said, “We’re a lot more laid-back this time around, not only myself but as a team, Just being able to sit around and just talk about our experiences and what we can look forward to having to happen when we’re around the pool,”

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Michael Phelps stayed at the Olympic Village, unlike the Williams

To avoid interactions and autograph requests from other Olympians, the basketball team and the tennis stars like Serena Williams and Venus Williams used to stay away from the Olympic Village. Swimmer Brendan Hansen, however, credited his extraordinary teammate for staying at the games village.

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Watch This Story: Ronda Rousey Best Finishes 

Michael Phelps never got formal schooling, so he didn’t know about the team’s first philosophy. He was content with being himself and focusing on his goals. He was also very tightly managed by his team and kept moving in crowded places. All this said and done. The Maestro will remain a legend for Olympians all around the world. If Ronda Rousey made him a better leader and it was an advantage for the USA swimming team. Did you know about this aspect of Michael Phelps’ career?

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Akshay Pallav

257 articles

Akshay Pallav is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. Having completed his undergraduation from National Institute of Fashion Technology in Apparel Production, he has been a sports enthusiast all his life and has several medals at the University level across multiple sports including basketball, badminton, track and field. He aspires to interview Conor McGregor and Cristiano Ronaldo someday.

Edited By: Vineet Nandwana

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