One of the greatest rivalries in bodybuilding history happened between Phil Heath and Kai Greene during their competitive careers. These Open superpowers went toe to toe several times on stage en route to building their legacies. During a recent Muscle Maturity Podcast, Samir Bannout explained why their rivalry has stood the test of time.
Phil Heath is one of the most accomplished bodybuilders in the sport. After years of dominating the stage and earning seven Mr. Olympia titles tying him with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Heath forged his name into bodybuilding history as one of the best.
Maintaining the throne was no easy feat as he went up against some of the sport’s best athletes including Jay Cutler and Dexter Jackson. However what many fans will remember most was his rivalry with Kai Greene. Their on-stage scuffle remains some of the most memorable moments in bodybuilding history.
While many believed it would be Greene to eventually dethrone Heath, it ended up being the late Shawn Rhoden who in 2018 emerged victorious. Rhoden brought a more defined midsection and overall package that ultimately allowed him to take the reins from Phil Heath.
Samir Bannout Relives Phil Heath VS Kai Greene, “I Think Phil Heath Is A Better Poser”
After years of being neck and neck, Kai Greene and Phil Heath took a back seat when Shawn Rhoden came to the 2018 Mr. Olympia fully prepared. Samir Bannout talks about both Green and Heath in a recent podcast on YouTube giving his thoughts on who was the best.
“I saw every competition between Kai Green and Phil Heath. I watched all of them. It was a major rivalry I mean they both have a different kind of physique but they were both impressive but they clashed. They almost got in fights.
I kinda like these days of bodybuilding, they were like really intense and you know Phil Heath can pose.I love the way he flows, Phil Heath has got beautiful flow to his body.
Kai Greene was massive and he gets super ripped too. So, the only difference between the two is the physique. I felt Phil Heath’s physique flowed better than anybody. Let’s give him the credit he deserves.
While Greene was an incredible poser in his own right, Bannout always preferred “The Gift’s” flow on stage.
Now Kai Greene is an incredible poser. He knows how to make it rhyme, he knows how to move, he slides. I think Phil Heath is a better poser” Bannout said.
Regardless of how he felt about Heath, Bannout reveals that he believes it was his stomach issues that ultimately led to him losing the title.
“I think that stomach issue with Phil cost him the last show against Shawn Rhoden. Shawn was really prepared. Shawn was in really, really good shape. I was sitting there with Tom Platz in the first row, honestly, I was undecided who should I go for but when you look in the middle, in the midsection, Shawn Rhoden had a lot tighter midsection than Phil.
He cannot flex the lower abs. You see the lower abs in Phil, he’s having a hard time flexing it. Look at his belly button is sticking out and Shawn was ripped but to say Shawn had better physique than Phil, I’m sorry nobody has a better Physique than Phil. I mean Phil’s issue, his biggest dilemma was his middle the last couple of years of his competitive days.”
While the Kai Greene and Phil Heath rivalry is widely regarded as one of the best in the sport, another worthwhile mention would be Jay Cutler and Ronnie Coleman. These two were constantly looking to out-muscle the other, but there a was friendship between them, which is why Heath believes his rivalry with “The Predator” is the best in history.
Rivalries continue to define the sport, whether they’re friendly or cutthroat and charged with emotion. For Samir Bannout, nothing can stand up to the battles of Heath and Greene.