The life of an athlete is difficult because of the pressure to perform and outside distractions like luxury and partying. It’s no surprise that male athletes tend to get into shenanigans with a lot of women while female athletes have a more wholesome image. Relationships are key to some athletes since there are some who achieve great success during their relationships while others’ careers plunge. However, it’s more surprising to know that there are athlete couples getting stronger by the day.
Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi are the model athlete couple because they have been married for 16 years. Some people thought that the couple would never work because of Agassi’s issues with women and substances but the couple proved them wrong. Other couples that might give Graf and Agassi a run for their money include Triple H and Stephanie McMahon of the WWE. The Game and Stephanie had to endure heat from the locker room and the WWE chairman Vince McMahon himself.
On the other hand, some relationships are just bound to fail from the get-go like Greg Norman and Chris Evert or Maria Sharapova and Sasha Vujacic. Issues like age, children from previous relationships and more can do a lot of damage while others like Lindsey Vonn and Tiger Woods were just pressured by the media to stay together. As powerful and famous Vonn and Woods are, they did not last long and their relationship is considered a failure.
Here’s a list of ten present athlete couples we never thought would work and ten that finally failed.
20 Worked: Ronda Rousey And Travis Browne
Ronda Rousey has been very busy outside the Octagon ever since losing her second straight fight in December last year. Rousey appeared in the television series Blindspot and she is set to star in the film Mile 22. She also got married in August to fellow MMA fighter Travis Browne. The duo began dating in 2015 when Browne was still married to Jenna Renee Webb.
At that time, Webb accused Browne of having an extramarital affair with Rousey. She also accused her husband of domestic violence, but it was never proven and they got divorced. Rousey and Browne announced their relationship in October 2015 and they have been together since. While Browne has lost his last four fights, Rousey is reportedly training to become a WWE superstar.
19 Failed: Maria Sharapova And Sasha Vujacic
Back in 2009, Maria Sharapova and Sasha Vujacic were at the top of their games in their respective sports. Sharapova won the Australian Open a year earlier while Vujacic just won his first of two NBA championships with the Los Angeles Lakers. The couple announced their engagement in 2011 after two years of dating.
But the relationship was bound to fail because of their tight schedule. The couple called off their engagement in 2012 and Sharapova moved on by dating fellow tennis star Grigor Dimitrov for two years until 2015. As for Vujacic, he is still mad about their relationship after being asked in an interview two years ago. Vujacic should feel bad since he was out of the NBA and playing in Europe when their relationship ended.
18 Worked: Brock Lesnar And Sable
When Brock Lesnar and Sable went public with their relationship, some people thought that it would not work because they appeared to have little in common. These people almost got it right when Lesnar and Sable broke up in 2005, but they got back together a year later and got married. They have two sons together: Turk born in 2009 and Duke born in 2010.
Lesnar and Sable live together on a farm in Canada. He has twins, daughter Mya Lynn and son Luke, with former fiancée Nicole McLain, in 2002. This is Sable’s third marriage with the first one with Wayne Richardson in 1986. Richardson passed away in an accident in 1991 and Sable married former WWE superstar Marc Mero two years later. Sable has a daughter named Mariah from her first marriage.
17 Failed: Kevin Durant And Monica Wright
Fans were ecstatic when then-Oklahoma City Thunder star, Kevin Durant, announced his engagement with former Minnesota Lynx player Monica Wright in July 2013. Basketball royalty was bound to be born, but the couple separated a year later. Wright revealed in an interview that her Christian faith and Durant being satisfied with his own life led to their breakup.
Meanwhile, Durant noted that he did not love Wright “the right way” and he was very sad after the breakup. Fast forward to 2017, Durant is now an NBA champion with the Golden State Warriors and they are the favourites to win it all again next year. As for Wright, she has been plagued by knee injuries and she last played for the Perth Lynx of the WNBL in 2016.
16 Worked: Misty-May Treanor And Matt Treanor
Misty-May Treanor is one of the most successful beach volleyball players of all time. She is a three-time Olympic gold medalist and a three-time FIVB Beach Volleyball World champion with Kerri Walsh Jennings. She was inducted into the Volleyball Hall of Fame in 2016 and is a household name in her sport. The same can’t be said for her husband and journeyman major leaguer, Matt Treanor.
Matt played catcher for the Florida Marlins, Detroit Tigers, Texas Rangers, Kansas City Royals, and Los Angeles Dodgers throughout his nine-year career. The fame of his wife did not affect their relationship as they have been married since November 2004. The couple has one daughter together named Malia Barbara born in 2014 and the family currently resides in Coral Springs, Florida.
15 Failed: Adam Scott And Ana Ivanovic
Australian golfer Adam Scott started dating Serbian tennis star and former World No. 1, Ana Ivanovic, 2010. The couple had an on-and-off relationship until 2011 when they broke up for the final time. The breakup affected Ivanovic on the court and she later dropped from the Top 50. She is now retired from competitive tennis at the age of 29 years old.
However, Ivanovic found love in the form of German soccer star Bastian Schweinsteiger, whom she started dating in 2014. The couple got married in July 2016 and they currently live in Chicago where her husband plays professionally. On the other hand, Scott got married in 2014 to Swedish architect, Marie Kojzar. The two dated on and off from 2001 to 2008, and they have one child together, a daughter named Bo Vera born in 2015.
14 Worked: Heather Mitts And A.J. Feeley
One of the hottest female athletes of the 2000s, Heather Mitts was a star defender for the United States women national soccer team. Mitts had an on and off relationship with NFL journeyman quarterback, A.J. Feeley, for several years. Feeley eventually realized that it was stupid of him to let someone like Mitts get away.
The couple got married in February 2010 and they welcomed their son Connor in 2014, and daughter Blake Harper, in 2016. Mitts announced her retirement in 2013 while Feeley last played in the NFL in 2011. Mitts is a three-time Olympic gold medalist and a silver medal winner at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup while Feeley played backup quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles, Miami Dolphins, San Diego Chargers, Carolina Panthers, and St. Louis Rams.
13 Failed: Enzo Amore And Liv Morgan
Enzo Amore might be the most annoying WWE superstar at the moment, but he backs it up inside and outside the ring. Amore nabbed Liv Morgan from NXT and they became public with their relationship earlier this year. However, Amore was called up to the main roster and the problems started to come in. The Certified G was earning main roster money and he spent a lot of it based on his social media posts.
The relationship ended due to Amore being unfaithful to Morgan, who is undoubtedly one of the most attractive wrestlers in the WWE. The last straw could have been Enzo getting blasted by a stripper at the strip club in New York. Morgan has since moved on to former United Kingdom champion, Tyler Bate. As for Enzo, he is the current two-time cruiserweight champion so everything turned out great for the both of them.
12 Worked: Safwan Khalil And Carmen Marton
This Australian couple made headlines in 2012 before the London Olympics. Safwan Khalil and Carmen Marton of the Australian taekwondo team got married under Islamic Law before the games. They met in 2002 and they have been dating since they were teenagers. The couple’s parents came to Australia as refugees with Khalil originally from Libya and Marton coming from Poland.
What makes this relationship a little odd is their religion since Marton was raised Catholic. However, religion does not matter in love as proven by the lovely couple. Marton converted to Islam before their wedding and she described it as a natural progression. Khalil and Marton almost won bronze medals in 2012 in their respective divisions. The couple also qualified for the 2016 Rio Olympics, but they did not bring home any medals.
11 Failed: Dolph Ziggler And Dana Brooke
Dolph Ziggler and Dana Brooke started dating in 2015 when she was still down at development in NXT. They reportedly met at the WWE Performance Centre and they began dating immediately. Brooke was a former gymnast and bodybuilder while Ziggler was an accomplished collegiate wrestler at Kent State. The two looked perfect for each other, but fans predicted that their relationship won’t last long.
Ziggler has been involved in a couple of high profile relationships including comedian Amy Schumer and fellow WWE superstars, Kelly Kelly and Nikki Bella. The couple broke up after less than a year of dating with Brooke moving on to a relationship with bodybuilder Dallas McCarver until his untimely passing in August. Ziggler and Brooke are both single again, but there’s no reason to get back together since they already failed as a couple.
10 Worked: Rusev And Lana
Possibly the most unlikely couple in the list, Rusev and Lana have been together since 2014. If you look at Rusev, you’ll notice that he is built like a bear and he would scare every woman he met. As burly as Rusev is, he managed to make Lana, one of the hottest women in wrestling today, fall in love with him. The couple got married in July 2016 and they reside in Nashville, Tennessee.
For people who are confused as to what Lana saw in Rusev, he is actually awesome and a babyface in real life unlike the character he portrays in the WWE. He has a great sense of humour and he just wins at life. Don’t believe me? Follow him on Twitter or Instagram and watch him on YouTube playing video games for Austin Creed’s channel.
9 Failed: Greg Norman And Chris Evert
After just 15 months of marriage, Australian golfing legend Greg Norman and American tennis legend Chris Evert announced their divorce in 2009. It came as a surprise to many back then because Norman and Evert left their significant others, flight attendant Laura Andrassy and downhill skier Andy Mill, respectively to be with each other. What’s even worse is Norman and Mill were best friends.
The reported cause of their divorce was problems interacting with their respective children. Norman has two children with his ex-wife while Evert has three sons with Mill. The couple was also not living together during their marriage. They slept over at each other’s homes in Norman’s Jupiter Island mansion and Evert’s home in Boca Raton. Norman eventually remarried again in 2010, tying the knot with interior decorator, Kirsten Kutner.
8 Worked: John Cena And Nikki Bella
John Cena finally got engaged to Nikki Bella at WrestleMania 33 earlier this year in what appeared to be a genuine moment. It was a shock to many because Cena was notorious for not wanting to get married again or even having children. Cena and Nikki have been dating since November 2012 and they are living together in his mansion in Tampa, Florida.
Cena’s fear of getting married again stemmed from a very messy divorce with his first wife, Elizabeth Huberdeau in 2012 that was mentioned during his feud with The Rock. On the other hand, Nikki previously dated Dolph Ziggler for three years during her first run with the WWE. Cena and Nikki, along with Brie Bella and Daniel Bryan, currently star in their own reality television show called Total Bellas on the E! Network.
7 Failed: Abby Wambach And Sarah Huffman
One of the greatest female soccer players ever, Abby Wambach married former University of Virginia soccer standout Sarah Huffman in 2013. It was not a coming out for Wambach since her orientation has never been a secret. Their marriage ended after three years as Wambach announced their divorce in her autobiography released last year.
When Wambach was arrested for driving under the influence in April 2016, it was a shock to many of her fans. She revealed that she was abusing prescription medication and alcohol for many years during his career. It might have been the cause of her marriage falling apart, but she has been sober since her arrest. Wambach started dating author, Glennon Doyle Melton, in November 2016 and they got married last May.
6 Worked: Jennie Finch And Casey Daigle
Jennie Finch is considered by many as the greatest female softball player of all time. She is a two-time Olympic medalist, winning gold in the 2004 Athens games and Silver in the 2008 Beijing games. Besides being famous for her softball skills, Finch is also known for marrying someone not as accomplished as her in former pitcher Casey Daigle who spent the majority of his career in the minors.
Finch and Daigle got married in 2005 and they have three children together: sons Ace Shane and Diesel Dean and daughter Paisley Faye. Only a handful of people expected them to break up because of Finch’s Christian faith, the foundation of their marriage. Finch famously turned down posing for Playboy magazine because she wanted to be a role model for young women.
5 Failed: Alberto Del Rio And Paige
Although Alberto Del Rio and Paige are still together, their relationship can be described as failed after all the things that have happened since they went public. They started it off by both being suspended by the WWE for violating the Wellness Policy with Del Rio getting released in September of last year. Paige then was the victim of an online hack wherein her private photos, videos, and tapes were released.
This has led to Del Rio, who is 15 years older, to be allegedly abusive towards her. Their arguments became public and they were arrested for an alleged altercation in a Florida airport last July. Although no charges were filed and the two seem to be doing fine at the moment, the relationship is eventually going to fail whether they like it or not.
4 Worked: Triple H And Stephanie McMahon
Triple H and Stephanie McMahon are the second most powerful couple in WWE behind Vince and Linda McMahon. The two started dating in 2000 when they were involved in a storyline. After three years, they got married and they have three daughters, Aurora Rose, Murphy Claire, and Vaughn Evelyn. Triple H and Stephanie also hold two of the highest positions in the WWE.
Despite their success, the relationship was frowned upon by the WWE locker room at the start even though Vince was okay with it. The WWE chairman was pressured into breaking them up, but he ultimately gave Triple H his blessing to become part of the family. The reason why the WWE locker room was unhappy with the relationship is that Triple H left Chyna to be with Stephanie.
3 Failed: Caroline Wozniacki And Rory McIlroy
From 2011 to 2014, Caroline Wozniacki and Rory McIlroy were one of the biggest athlete couples in the world. They got engaged in December 2013, but McIlroy ended their relationship five months later citing that he was not ready to get married. Wozniacki revealed that McIlroy broke up with her over the phone and they have never spoken since.
McIlroy was dating PGA of America employee Erica Stoll just a year after he called off the engagement. He got over his issues with marriage as they had their wedding in April. Meanwhile, Wozniacki recently got engaged to NBA star David Lee who she started dating earlier this year. The lovely couple appears to be perfect for each other. Also, Wozniacki’s family approved of their relationship.
2 Worked: Steffi Graf And Andre Agassi
The tennis power couple of Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi show that it is possible to have a lasting relationship despite all the problems of being famous. Graf and Agassi have a combined 30 Grand Slam titles, and they have been married since 2001. They have two children together, son Jaden Gil born in 2001 and daughter Jaz Elle born in 2003.
But why did we think it would not work? Well, Agassi had serious mommy issues since he dated Barbara Streisand (who was 28 years older) in the early part of his career. Agassi’s substance use was also a problem during his first marriage and it almost ended his career. But fast forward 16 years and Graf and Agassi look stronger than ever.
1 Failed: Tiger Woods And Lindsey Vonn
One of the highest-profile athlete couple in sports history, Tiger Woods and Lindsey Vonn was an odd pairing from the get-go. Woods was just three years removed from his messy divorce from Swedish model Elin Nordegren and Vonn recently split from her husband Thomas Vonn. He also had a history of extramarital affairs and he even entered a rehabilitation facility for his addiction. Lindsey gave him a chance in 2013 and it looked like Woods was going to rebuild his reputation.
However, the relationship only lasted for two years and Lindsey described it as “like living in a fishbowl.” The media coverage of their relationship was too much for her and Woods did not like that they were not spending time together because of their busy schedules. He was also allegedly cheating on Lindsey, but it was never confirmed.
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