50 Greatest Sports Quotes by Famous Athletes

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Which are your favorite sports quotes? 

For aspiring athletes, the motivation to keep on pushing and never give up is incredibly important.

After writing up an article on the top 100 gym motivation videos earlier in the week, I’ve decided to keep the motivation rolling and provided another article that can serve as a great source of motivation for athletes.

And who better to look to for motivation than other professional athletes themselves. I’ve compiled a list of the greatest sports quotes by famous athletes.

This article highlights some incredible quotes from famous athletes such as Kobe Bryant, Derek Jeter, Vince Lombardi, and Michael Jordan.

Take a look and please share the article on Facebook and Twitter if you enjoyed it!

For any athlete that has more than one quote listed here, I’ve split their name into a separate section. Any famous athletes that have just one quote listed are featured in the miscellaneous section towards the bottom of the article.

Enjoy the motivation!


50 Greatest Sports Quotes by Famous Athletes


Michael Phelps

“You can’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the farther you get.” Michael Phelps

“If I didn’t swim my best, I’d think about it at school, at dinner, with my friends. It would drive me crazy.” – Michael Phelps


Kobe Bryant

“I don’t want to be the next Michael Jordan, I only want to be Kobe Bryant.” – Kobe Bryant

“I’ll do whatever it takes to win games, whether it’s sitting on a bench waving a towel, handing a cup of water to a teammate, or hitting the game-winning shot.” – Kobe Bryant

“The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.” – Kobe Bryant


Michael Jordan

“Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.” Michael Jordan

“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” Michael Jordan

“If you do the work you get rewarded. There are no shortcuts in life.” – Michael Jordan


Michael Johnson

“As an athlete, I’d average 4 hours a day. It doesn’t sound like a lot when some people say they’re training for 10 hours, but theirs includes lunch, massage and break. My four hours was packed with work.” – Michael Johnson

“You can’t control what the other athlete; you can’t control anything except for your competition and how you execute the race or how you execute the task.” – Michael Johnson


Muhammad Ali

“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.” – Muhammad Ali

“I hated every minute of training, but I said, don’t quit, suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.” – Muhammad Ali

“It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.” – Muhammad Ali


Ray Lewis

“Every day of my life, I’m trying to find a way to get better.” – Ray Lewis

“Greatness is a lot of small things done well.” – Ray Lewis

“Don’t walk through life just playing football. Don’t walk through life just being an athlete. Athletics will fade. Character and integrity and really making an impact on someone’s life, that’s the ultimate vision, that’s the ultimate goal – bottom line.” – Ray Lewis

“No matter the circumstances that you may be going through, just push through it.” – Ray Lewis


Derek Jeter

“You’re playing a game, whether it’s Little League or Game 7 of the Word Series. It’s impossible to do well unless you’re having a good time. People talk about pressure. Yeah, there’s pressure. But I just look at it as fun.” – Derek Jeter

“I like to hit the gym early in the morning. I feel better throughout the day when I get in a workout first thing in the morning.” – Derek Jeter

“When I was younger, I was always taught not to make excuses.” – Derek Jeter


Floyd Mayweather

“I want to be able to separate the average from the good and from the great. I want to separate the ordinary from the extraordinary.” Floyd Mayweather

“It’s about having personality…it’s not about being the bad guy, it’s about entertaining people.” – Floyd Mayweather


Vince Lombardi

“The price of success is hard work, dedication to the job at hand, and the determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.” – Vince Lombardi

“Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.” – Vince Lombardi

“The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary.” – Vince Lombardi

“Winners never quit and quitters never win.” – Vince Lombardi

“The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.” – Vince Lombardi

“It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get up.” – Vince Lombardi


Usain Bolt 

“I’ve learned over the years that if you start thinking about the race, it stresses you out a little bit. I just try to relax and think about video games, what I’m gonna do after the race, what I’m gonna do just to chill. Stuff like that to relax a little before the race.” Usain Bolt

“Don’t think about the start of the race, think about the ending.” – Usain Bolt


Wayne Gretzky

“The highest compliment that you can pay me is to say that I work hard every day, that I never dog it.” Wayne Gretzky

“You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” – Wayne Gretzky



“Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement.” – Matt Biondi

“Do not let what you can not do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden

“Never let your head hang down. Never give up and sit down and grieve. Find another way.” – Satchel Paige

“There are only two options regarding commitment. You’re either IN or you’re OUT. There is no such thing as life in-between.” – Pat Riley

“Some people say I have attitude – maybe I do…but I think you have to. You have to believe in yourself when no one else does – that makes you a winner right there.” – Venus Williams

“Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game one foot from a winning touchdown.” – Ross Perot

“I always felt that my greatest asset was not my physical ability, it was my mental ability.” – Bruce Jenner

“My motto was always to keep swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging.” – Hank Aaron

“You can motivate by fear, and you can motivate by reward. But both those methods are only temporary. The only lasting thing is self motivation.” – Homer Rice

“If you don’t have confidence, you’ll always find a way not to win.” – Carl Lewis

“If you have everything under control, you’re not moving fast enough.” – Mario Andretti

“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”Lance Armstrong

“The principle is competing against yourself. It’s about self-improvement, about being better than you were the day before.” – Steve Young

“You’re never a loser until you quit trying.” – Mike Ditka

 “It’s better to fail aiming high than to succeed aiming low.” – Bill Nicholson

“When you see a good move, look for a better one.” – Emanuel Lasker

“Set your goals high, and don’t stop till you get there.” – Bo Jackson

“Just keep going. Everybody gets better if they keep at it.” – Ted Williams


Thanks for checking out the article guys and girls. Being a professional athlete is incredibly tough. It requires constant training, hard work, and dedication to the sport. Every now and then, it can become hard to keep up the momentum.

You get tired, de-motivated, and struggle to continuously give it your all.

Quotes are my go-to source for motivation along with motivational videos, and hopefully, some of the greatest sports quotes on this list by famous athletes will give you the strength you need.

As always, STAY MOTIVATED, go out there and kill it!

Which are your favorite quotes by famous athletes? Leave a comment below.

Dan Western
Dan Westernhttps://wealthygorilla.com/
Dan Western is the founder of Wealthy Gorilla. Dan has been running Wealthy Gorilla and studying self-development, personal finance, and investment for the last 7 years. To this day, Wealthy Gorilla has become one of the fastest growing wealth infotainment sites in the world; with over 300 million views worldwide. Dan doesn't use personal social media anymore, so you won't be able to find him on Instagram, or Twitter.


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