37 Most Successful Athletes of the 21st Century

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Source: Harry How / Getty Images

Richard Seymour
> Sport: Football
> Championships: 3x Super Bowl
> Team or country: New England Patriots
> Career length: 2001-2012
> Other accomplishments: 7x Pro Bowl, 3x All-Pro

Richard Seymour became a linchpin of the New England Patriots defense as the team won three titles in four years. He was an All-Pro pass rusher during two of those years.

Source: Michael Dodge / Getty Images

Roger Federer
> Sport: Tennis
> Championships: 20x Grand Slam
> Team or country: Switzerland
> Career length: 1998-present
> Other accomplishments: 310 weeks as #1

Roger Federer has staked his claim as the greatest male tennis player of all time. He has won 20 Grand Slam titles and spent over 300 weeks ranked as the No. 1 player in the world — and counting. He is the only man to accomplish either feat.

Source: Clive Brunskill / Getty Images

Serena Williams
> Sport: Tennis
> Championships: 23x Grand Slam, 1x gold medal
> Team or country: United States
> Career length: 1995-present
> Other accomplishments: 319 weeks as #1

Serena Williams sits just one title behind Margaret Court for the most singles Grand Slam titles in tennis history, winning all four major tournaments at least three times.

Source: Michael Tullberg / Getty Images

Shaquille O’Neal
> Sport: Basketball
> Championships: 4x NBA Champion, 1x gold medal
> Team or country: Los Angeles Lakers
> Career length: 1992-2011
> Other accomplishments: 15x All-Star, 8x All-NBA, 1x MVP

As one of the most dominant centers in NBA history, Shaquille O’Neal helped three Los Angeles Lakers teams win a ring before winning another with the Miami Heat.

Source: Laurent Salino/Agence Zoom / Getty Images

Shaun White
> Sport: Skateboarding, snowboarding
> Championships: 15x X Games gold medal, 3x Olympic gold medal
> Team or country: United States
> Career length: 2000-present
> Other accomplishments: 23 total X Games medals

Shaun White is one of the most successful two-sport athletes of all time. White is a skateboarding and snowboarding legend, having won 23 X Games medals, 15 of them gold, as well as three Olympic golds for halfpipe snowboarding.