Professional athletes are known for having top choices in the dating pool. It is no secret that women flock to the men that just so happen to have fame, fortune and status. Among the athletes that are regarded the highest are NBA basketball players. The NBA does a great job of branding their athletes and making them household stars.
In comparison, the NFL always promotes "the shield" and wants the NFL brand to always reign supreme. It doesn't help that the game of football requires athletes to wear helmets. Helmets hide the faces of their biggest stars, so they would not be recognized easily. That plays into the favour of NBA stars along with the fact that their contracts are guaranteed, and they are paid a lot more money to play an overall less dangerous sport. But, I cannot say it is always about the money in dating with NBA stars. Some of the women who are dating NBA players have been around before the fame and an established bond that you cannot break.
Other players who didn't have that high school or college sweetheart may have dabbled here and there in women with a celebrity of their own. Throughout a relationship there are going to be the ups and down that may test the strength of that bond. Sometimes you find out that cheating scandals are the end of a high profile relationship. Other times, athletes do a good job of either keeping their skeletons in the closet, or not crossing that line with other women at all.
Next, we'll list 10 NBA stars who have won the relationship lottery (meaning they have found women they can be proud of and haven't hit any speed bumps) and 5 who lost out either through their own questionable decisions or by picking a girl who wasn't right for them.
15 Won: Al Horford
After a successful college career that resulted in winning two national championships, Al Horford went pro and was drafted by the Atlanta Hawks. Now, Horford is a member of the Boston Celtics and has been selected as an NBA All-Star 5 times in his 10 year professional career. Off the court, Horford married Amelia Vega, the first Dominican woman to ever win Miss Universe in 2011.
An athlete dating beautiful women is nothing new, but not everyone has the chance to date a woman who wins a contest against other beautiful women from all over the world. The award itself has a certain prestige that will stick with her for the rest of her life. Even though he may not win the NBA Finals this year, win or lose, Al Horford is going home a winner every night.
14 Won: Steph Curry
Steph Curry is among the highest regarded players on the floor in the NBA, and off the court he is among the tops of the league in popularity as well. Growing up in Charlotte, North Carolina, Steph met a young lady by the name of Ayesha in a church youth group around the age of 14 or 15.
She later would become his wife and the mother of his two daughters, Ryan and Riley and are expecting a third child later this year. Before marrying Steph, Ayesha was an actress in several movies as well as roles in a few television series. Her childhood passion was always food, this led Steph to encourage her to begin blogging. The blogging led to Ayesha having her own television show on the Food Network. A beautiful ambitious partner is a great catch for Steph Curry.
13 Lost: Andre Drummond
Andre Drummond is an All-Star Center for the Detroit Pistons. Drummond is among the best rebounders in the NBA along with being a great defender. The 6'11 Drummond posted former iCarly actress Jennette McCurdy as his "Woman Crush Wednesday" and the two began dating. Their relationship didn't last long as McCurdy coined the pair as "awkward." She went on a podcast interview and gave details about how their first date was laser tag, and they even enjoyed a kiss.
Enjoyed may be the wrong choice of word when describing the exchange. When detailing the kiss she said “I stood on a chair… I sort of went for it. But it wasn’t great. It didn’t go great. No sparks and the mouth… the shapes weren’t right.” Soon after she publicly made fun of Drummond, private photos were magically released online, and she accused Drummond of being the culprit. I'm not pointing any fingers, so I'll just laugh at all the messiness.
12 Won: Ben Simmons
The rookie of the year race this season has been almost a pick em' between Utah Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell and Philadelphia 76er Ben Simmons. Earlier in the year, it was almost a forgone conclusion that Simmons would be the unanimous Rookie of the Year. The former number 1 pick in the NBA draft has all the talent to become an eventual perennial All-Star.
With so much success comes the fame and adoration of being in the spotlight and on the big stage. Luckily for Simmons, he has caught the eye of the beautiful pop singer Tinashe. From modelling, to acting in shows like How I Met Your Mother alongside Charlie Sheen, Tinashe has had success in her personal life that makes her such a great catch for Simmons. The relationship is still new, but the two seem pretty happy, and we're hoping that doesn't change anytime soon.
11 Won: Dwyane Wade
If you know Dwyane Wade, you know there was a period where Wade was among the top players in the NBA and was considered "Mr. South Beach." Now, D-Wade is enjoying a high profile relationship with the beautiful actress Gabrielle Union. If you are not familiar with Gabrielle Union, she has been the strong female lead in tons of Hollywood pictures as well as the star of her own television star.
Union has been one of the most supportive WAGS you find in the NBA, and always sits either court side or in the family section loudly cheering on her husband. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Gabrielle Union has a net worth of $20 million dollars. Anytime your significant other has a fortune of her own, I would consider that a win, as well as having a respectable wife such as Gabby.
10 Lost: Kyrie Irving
In 2016, when Kyrie Irving was coming off of a knee injury and on a crash course to face the Golden State Warriors again in the NBA Finals, he was dated singer Kehlani. The Oakland native Kehlani, was coming off of a successful mixtape You Should Be Here, which was nominated for a Grammy in 2016. Prior to her relationship with Kyrie, she dated singer PartyNextDoor who is signed to Drake's OVO record label. After a public breakup with PND, she began dating Irving and posting him all over her social media accounts.
The internet saw photos of her and PND back together and immediately began piecing together the clues. Kehlani was silent on social media until days later she surfaced on IG with a photo in a hospital bed. The internet can be a cruel place and somehow we forgot how Kyrie was the one who should have been embarrassed in the first place.
9 Won: Iman Shumpert
The New York Knicks drafted Iman Shumpert in the 17th pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. Shumpert was a key member of the 2016 NBA Finals team that defeated the Golden State Warriors in route to the Cleveland Cavaliers' first championship. The Sacramento Kings G is married to singer and dancer Teyana Taylor. Teyana was first seen in the public eye when she appeared on MTV's My Super Sweet Sixteen.
The couple is now staring on a reality based television show on VH1 titled Teyana & Iman which chronicles their relationship as a couple in the public eye. Taylor has recently stared in Kanye West's Fade music video from his Life of Pablo album. Iman was traded from a championship contending Cleveland team which has LeBron James to the Sacramento Kings this season that were among the worst teams in the NBA this season. While he may be losing on the court, off the floor give him a win by marrying the talented Teyana Taylor.
8 Won: DeAndre Jordan
The Los Angeles Clippers big man DeAndre Jordan is the last Clipper standing after being a part of "Lob CIty" with star players Chris Paul and Blake Griffin. When Jordan was a free agent in 2016 he committed to sign in Dallas, his Clipper teammates bombarded his home and forced him to rejoin them in Los Angeles. Things haven't been bad in Los Angeles since they missed the playoffs but many people think the Clippers were overachievers given their injuries and trades.
Originally from Texas as is Jordan, Amber Alvarez moved to Los Angeles to being her modelling career. Now Alvarez is signed to one of the top modelling agencies in the world, Wilhemina International. The 5'8 stunner will surely welcome DeAndre home after his season ended after missing the postseason for the first time since 2012.
7 Lost: Nick Young
There was a point in time when Nick Young may have been on the list for relationship winners. Then, Young was secretly recorded by teammate D'Angelo Russell in 2016 and admitted to some questionable decisions when asked by Russell. This was a terrible look for both Young and Russell. In 2016, Young was in a relationship with musician Iggy Azalea and once that video surfaced, their relationship immediately ended.
The two were engaged at the time and that dream crashed and burned. Speaking of burning, Azalea was so furious she threw all his clothing in the swimming pool but that wasn't enough. She wanted to make sure he knew the severity of his actions and began burning all Nick Young's belongings. He definitely didn't play his cards right and had to pay the price!
6 Won: J.J. Barea
J.J. Barea saw his most success in the NBA as a member of the Dallas Mavericks in 2011. That Mavericks team notably defeated the Miami Heat lead by LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in stunning fashion. When drafted in 2006, Barea became just the 7th Puerto Rico born basketball player to play in the league. Barea was also a member of the Puerto Rican national teams that won gold in 2006 and 2010. In 2013, J.J.
Barea met his eventual wife Viviana Ortiz. Ortiz is a Puerto Rican actress and model that won the pageant crown for Miss Corozal in the Miss Universe Puerto Rico in 2011. She would go on to compete in the Miss Universe pageant. For a marginal NBA player, much credit is due to J.J. Barea for landing a Miss Universe contestant.
5 Won: Zach LaVine
The Minnesota Timberwolves selected Zach LaVine with the 13th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. LaVine won one of the best NBA slam dunk contest in recent years in 2015 after defeating Aaron Gordon. He would return the following year and win back-to-back titles. Last season, LaVine tore his ACL and spent most of this season rehabbing that injury. Basketball aside, LaVine is dating Washington native Hunter Mar.
LaVine, also a Washington native, has been dating Mar since high school. Hunter went to Seattle University to play soccer. For an athlete, dating another athlete is always considered a dream. Dating a woman that is beautiful, smart, and athletic is a triple threat. Kudos to any NBA player that has been able to stay with his high school sweetheart throughout all that comes with the NBA spotlight.
4 Lost: Paul George
Athletes and especially NBA players can have almost any woman they want. Sometimes they have great discretion as you can tell from this article and other times, they make really terrible decisions. Sometime in 2014, Paul George visited a club in Indianapolis. An NBA player in a club is really no big deal, until we learned that George and one of the dancers were expecting.
Rajic gave birth to Paul George's now 3 year old daughter Olivia. Last year, Rajic was back in the news and apparently she was pregnant again with another child. It may not have had the best start, but it seems the relationship is at least still going and George did the right thing in the end.
3 Won: Kevin Love
The Memphis Grizzlies drafted Kevin Love in 2008 with the fifth overall pick in the NBA Draft. That selection later was traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves where Love played his first six seasons. The 5 time All-Star is now a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers and an NBA Champion. Considered one of the few 20 and 10 big men in the league, Love has had immense success during his playing career.
Love is dating Canadian fashion model Kate Bock. Bock has been pictured in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition for the last 6 years. Kevin Love has done his own share of modelling with a campaign for Banana Republic. In 2017, Love and Bock were both in the "Power Forward" campaign for Banana Republic which is centred around a day in the life of the high profile couple. A couple that works together, works together.
2 Won: LeBron James
There is no surprise that LeBron James makes this list. The best player in the league and the face of the NBA needs no introduction. LeBron first burst on the national scene when he was featured in Slam Magazine and labeled as the best high school player in the country. He would later on become the first underclassmen on the cover of Sports Illustrated. With that notoriety and attention, came the cameras and the spotlights. His senior season he had several games televised on ESPN.
During his time at St. Vincent-St. Mary in Akron, Ohio, he dated a cheerleader from rival Buctel High School by the name of Savannah Brinson. Fast-forward sixteen years later and two share three children and wed in 2013. The pressure that comes with the hype that LeBron had entering the NBA and the pressure of being the biggest celebrity in sports is something everyone wouldn't be able to handle. Savannah has done a great job of giving LeBron a solid foundation and an escape to a normal life when he isn't on the basketball court.
1 Lost: Tristan Thompson
You know there was no way we could put this list out without mentioning Tristan Thompson. Thompson plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers and that's enough about his playing career. Curse aside, anytime you can date a Kardashian member you should be considered a winner. All of that was true for Tristan until about a week ago. There was footage released of Tristan Thompson getting a bit too familiar with two women in Washington D.C. late last year. As bad as that footage was, that was only the tip of the iceberg.
Apologists wanted to use the excuse of the footage being old until pictures leaked of Tristan entering his hotel room with a New Jersey bartender during their recent trip to New York. This story was so unfortunate for his fiancé Khloe who gave birth to their child about a week later in Cleveland as he was preparing for their upcoming NBA playoff series. This is so fresh that it's hard to laugh at the situation, so I'm hoping that the two are able to withstand this drama and work things out.