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Don't be paranoid: the reason he's not naming Valentino Rossi is because he is talking of the three of them racing each other since 125cc. They have a long history together. They only encountered Rossi when they arrived at MotoGP. Different generations. Of course any of them is proud to have raced Rossi.
In a recent interview with Pedrosa, he was asked how he'd feel if he were to retire without a MotoGP title and he said he'd still be proud to have raced against Rossi, Lorenzo and Stoner. So there. I'm sure Stoner thinks the same.