Olympic champion, Michael Phelps poses with 23 gold medals on cover of Sports Illustrated magazine
By Patricia Uyeh
Acknowledged as ”the greatest Olympian of our time”, Michael Phelps appeared on his 12th cover for Sports Illustrated magazine wearing all 23 Olympic gold medals for the first time.
He did not include the five non-gold medals that he had also won. This year at the Rio Olympics, Phelps won six more medals-five gold and one silver and he said that was his final Olympics appearance.
In 2012, Michael Phelps had said that he was retiring . However, he decided make a come back in 2016. The most decorated Olympic athlete in history discussed his decision to retire which he announced sometime in August during the 2016 Games in Rio with magazine. Michael Phelps told Sports Illustrated’s Tim Layden about his retirement plans. He said:
”I’m coming into my last four or five strokes, and I remember thinking, Whatever happens, this is how it’s supposed to end,” Phelps said. “Maybe I’m going 6-for-6 and that’s perfect, or maybe Joe [Schooling] is going to hang on and I’m O.K. with that. That’s when I knew I was ready to retire. Any other time, I would have been livid about finishing second.”
See more photos of his cover shoot for the magazine: