I've got my own personal Buddy experience, and yes it did take him down a few pegs for me. That didn't diminish his playing ability. I was a teen then and figured everyone is due a bad day or two. It's one thing if an offensive outburst is an outlier; it is something entirely different if cantankerousness is a base part of your personality. While being an ass may not detract from one's playing, it definitely made it more difficult for me to enjoy his playing especially in juxtaposition to players like Louis Bellson and Ed Shaughnessy.I'm not so pro-Neil as much as I'm anti-Buddy. In my opinion Buddy was a real douche-bag at a concert that I saw him at in Lakewood Ohio in 1975.
No feathers ruffled.
There is no GOAT. There is a galaxy of great players past and present, and trying to single one player out as GOAT is a pointless exercise in mental masturbation. Greatest at what: time, taste, musicality, creativity, chops, technique, influence, contribution to the art and craft of drumming ...? Maybe it is hit records or number of records sold.