The Kardashian family are everywhere it seems, and they aren’t going away anytime soon. In August 2017, the family signed a $150 million deal with E! to keep airing their series of shows, namely Keeping Up With The Kardashians. Whether you follow them or not, you cannot argue that they have become a mainstay in the entertainment industry for the better part of the past decade.
While they may be famous because they are famous, as many have argued, the Kardashian women are known for their high-profile relationships. Past Kardashian relationships saw them get involved with other socialites, rappers, and musicians. Many professional athletes have also dated a Kardashian. Curiously, many athletes’ careers have gone downhill after dating a Kardashian. As we will explore, this sometimes means a decline in performance or the athlete might suddenly become very injury-prone.
But before we get into that, let’s do a bit of genealogy to get you acquainted with the Kardashians (in case you aren’t familiar with them).
Kris Jenner is basically the matriarch of the Kardashian family, and was married to Robert Kardashian Jr. The two of them had four children, including Kourtney Kardashian, Kim Kardashian (married to Kanye West now), and Khloe Kardashian. Rob Kardashian is their lone son. Kris Jenner was later married to Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner). They had two daughters: Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner.
Now that that’s explained, let’s explore 15 athletes who regret dating a Kardashian!
15 REGGIE BUSH
Reggie Bush was a running back in the NFL, and was playing for the New Orleans Saints when he started dating Kim Kardashian in 2007. Although they initially broke up in July 2009, they briefly got back together two months later. Bush experienced a great deal of success prior to and during their on again/off again relationship. Once they permanently severed ties in March 2010, Bush’s football-related fortunes went downhill in a heartbeat. Only three months later, in June 2010, the NCAA investigated and imposed sanctions against Bush. It was determined that Bush had committed significant NCAA infractions. As a result of this, he had to forfeit his 2005 Heisman Trophy and was stripped of other memorabilia, accolades, and records.
As if that were not enough, Bush sustained a broken leg which greatly hampered his playing career. It’s pretty suspect that all of this happened within months of the permanent end of his relationship with Kim Kardashian.
14 TRISTAN THOMPSON
Cleveland Cavaliers’ power forward Tristan Thompson played a huge role in the playoff pushes for the Cavaliers, especially during their 2016 championship season. Apparently the former 4th overall pick in 2011 did not listen to James Harden’s advice about Khloe Kardashian. Against his better judgement, Thompson started dating Khloe Kardashian. In the 2017 NBA Finals, many fans pointed to the Kardashian Curse as the reason for the Cavaliers’ failures against the Golden State Warriors. Thompson struggled mightily throughout the series and the Cavaliers came across as no match for the Warriors during the unexpectedly quick series.
While the Cavaliers will never publicly point fingers at the Khloe, it is just too coincidental. As Harden alluded to, dating Khloe was such a distraction that his performance on the court faltered. It seems like this certainly happened with Thompson.
13 JAMES HARDEN
The first pro athlete on this list is James Harden, shooting guard for the Houston Rockets in the NBA. Harden has accomplished a great deal in the NBA to this point and, at only 28 years old, likely has many more years left in him. Harden started dating Khloe Kardashian after having met in June 2015. In early-2016, Khloe’s ex-husband Lamar Odom dealt with some significant issues and she actually cared for him during at time. Even though Harden supported her caring for her ex-husband and showed no ill-will, she ended the relationship with him in February 2016.
Unlike many of the other athletes we will cover, Harden hasn’t really experienced any ‘curse’ that caused him to regret dating a Kardashian. Harden’s regrets lie in the fact that he did not enjoy being in the spotlight in that vein, which is something that would happen with dating a Kardashian. Harden went so far as telling Sports Illustrated in February 2017 that he didn’t like having his name and face out there so much and it was the worst year of his life. Ouch.
12 KRIS HUMPHRIES
Kris Humphries, who last played for the Atlanta Hawks, was married to Kim Kardashian. We use ‘married’ very loosely here, as they were only married for 72 days! They started dating in October 2010, got married on August 20 2011, and Kardashian filed for divorce on October 31 2011. In what turned out to be a lengthy divorce battle, Kardashian was accused of fraud (fraudulent marriage) and of marrying Humphries for the publicity. Suffice it to say, Humphries seemed genuinely blindsided by what amounts to a publicity stunt orchestrated by Kardashian.
While Humphries had a solid 2011-12 season with the then-New Jersey Nets, his career was all downhill from that point on. Since then, he never averaged more than 8.4 points or 8 rebounds. Between his downhill career trajectory and the infamous 72-day marriage, Humphries certainly regrets dating and even marrying a Kardashian.
11 LAMAR ODOM
Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian got married in September 2009, after only a month of dating! Odom was a star for the Los Angeles Lakers at the time and would go on to win back to back championships with the Lakers. Things seemed to be going great, Khloe even got her own spin-off show with Lamar, entitled Khloe & Lamar. He was submerged into the Kardashian family and it sunk him. After their December 2013 divorce, he struggled to find work and never again played in the NBA.
His downfall following his marriage to Khloe Kardashian involved psychological struggles and addiction issues. Notably, he was involved in a drugs and alcohol incident at a brothel that nearly took his life prematurely. Khloe surely cannot be blamed for Lamar’s actions, but it does show a pattern of how pro athletes who get involved with a Kardashian always seem to suffer after it ends.
10 DERRICK WARD
Derrick Ward was an unlikely success story in the NFL. The New York Jets drafted him 235th overall in 2014, but was later released. He signed with the New York Giants and played well enough with them to earn a four-year/$17 million free agency contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in March 2009. Not bad at all!
Not long after signing the contract, he began seeing Khloe Kardashian. They split before the next NFL season began, but it was too late. His burgeoning career had sunk as a Buccaneer, as he was cut from the team just over a year later, in August 2010. Ward spent some time with the Houston Texans but had to retire in July 2012. He never was able to replicate the brief success he had in New York.
9 CRISTIANO RONALDO
Cristiano Ronaldo is arguably the greatest soccer player in history. Though he is well known for his elite talent, Ronaldo has also gained quite the reputation for being a womanizer. He has had several girlfriends, but he was photographed with Kim Kardashian in April 2010. According to a witness, “She and Ronaldo were kissing and very affectionate…They looked to be getting on very well.”
Although there was never anything confirmed about the two having dated, there certainly seemed to be something going on between the two. For several years, Ronaldo had been regarded as one of the two best players in the world. As you could imagine by now, that changed at the end of the 2010 campaign. As of 2017, 2010 stands out as the only season he failed to earn that distinction.
8 MATT KEMP
Matt Kemp is yet another pro athlete who got romantically involved with Khloe Kardashian for some reason. He was a star outfielder for the Los Angeles Dodgers for several years since breaking into the MLB in 2006. By the end of the 2012 season, he had been a 2-time All-Star, 2-time Silver Slugger Award winner, and a 2-time Gold Glove Award winner. Things were looking good for Kemp. Then, for a month during the 2012 offseason, he inexplicably got involved with Khloe Kardashian.
Ever since that one month ‘relationship’, his career has gone downhill. He battled injury after injury starting with the 2013 season and his play declined as a result. Kemp has since played for the San Diego Padres and Atlanta Braves, but has never come anywhere close to the player he was prior to dating Kardashian.
7 ODELL BECKHAM JR.
Odell Beckham Jr., a wide receiver for the New York Giants, was seen getting very handy with Khloe Kardashian in May 2016. The two were spotted together at Drake’s Memorial Day party in some questionable poses. In one photo, Kardashian was seen sitting on the 24-year-old’s lap during the party.
To her credit, Khloe took to Twitter to say that things were never too serious, and they were just being “friendly”. That didn’t stop Beckham Jr. from having to deal with some pretty serious fallout from the rumours. He probably regrets getting involved with her, since it ended up hurting the actual relationship he was in at the time.
As it turns out, Beckham Jr. learned the hard way to be careful about how intimate you allow yourself to get with a Kardashian. Beyond hurting his relationship, he was also fined on two separate occasions a few months after the party.
6 JORDAN CLARKSON
The Los Angeles Lakers acquired Jordan Clarkson 46th overall in the 2014 after a draft night trade with the Washington Wizards. He excelled in his first season with the Lakers, and was named to the 2015 NBA All-Rookie First Team. He was a rising star and became one of the more reliable and consistent players for the Lakers. In April 2016, Clarkson was frequently spotted with Kendall Jenner. The two of them apparently didn’t last long as Clarkson ended the relationship and moved on to actress Bella Thorne.
Statistically speaking, Clarkson hasn’t seen a downfall yet and he also hasn’t suffered any notable injuries since the end of their relationship – yet. Clarkson does, however, have to deal with Lonzo Ball and his father LaVar Ball which we can only imagine is not the easiest thing in the world. Clarkson also was left off the roster for the Philippines’ Olympic men’s basketball roster for the 2016 Rio Olympics.
5 MILES AUSTIN
Miles Austin, as a wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, had a ton of promise. He seemed as if he was going to be the dynamic player the Cowboys needed to help lead them to greatness. For a while, it looked like he was about to do that – he led the NFC in receiving yards in 2009, after all. Then he made a grave mistake – he started seeing Kim Kardashian. The relationship started in June 2010 and lasted all of three months (big surprise!). In case it isn’t crystal clear yet, that turned out to be the kiss of death for his pro football career.
The 2011 season saw Austin hampered by injuries, 2013 saw Austin struggle greatly, 2014 saw Austin placed on the injured reserve list, and 2015 saw yet more disappointment. Austin’s playing days were over by age 30.
4 RICK FOX
Rick Fox was never a superstar in the NBA, but he was a very accomplished role player for many teams. Moreover, the 6-foot-7 small forward was a vital part in the Los Angeles Lakers winning an impressive three consecutive NBA titles between 2000 and 2002. During this time, Fox was married to Vanessa Williams for a few years during this time. He then dated actress Eliza Dushku for several years between 2009 and 2014, before things broke off between the two.
It didn’t take too long for Fox to move on, as he was spotted dining with Khloe Kardashian at a restaurant in California. A few weeks after being spotted out in public together in May 2015, Fox and Kardashian parted ways. A few months later, Fox purchased Gravity Gaming, a professional League of Legends team. Since Fox purchased the team, the franchise has performed very poorly.
3 CHANDLER PARSONS
Chandler Parsons was drafted in the second round of the 2011 draft by the Houston Rockets. He quickly established himself as a very valuable wing player for the Rockets, and probably made some teams regret not taking him with an earlier pick. After a few successful seasons with the Rockets, Parsons signed a lucrative three-year/$46 million contract with the Dallas Mavericks in July 2014. As you can probably guess by now, he became romantically involved with a member of the Kardashian family.
In 2014, Parsons was frequently spotted with Kendall Jenner. They eventually went their separate ways and, once again, Parsons experienced the worst of it. He missed most of the 2014 season with a knee injury, injured again 2015, and a third time in 2016. He missed a lot of playing time due to significant injuries, all of which came after breaking things off with Kendall Jenner.
2 RASHAD MCCANTS
Rashad McCants dated Khloe Kardashian well before many of the other athletes previously mentioned. During the time they were together, they were often spotted out in public together. McCants even made appearances on Keeping Up With The Kardashians. However, McCants told The Charlotte Observer in May 2017 that he regrets ever dating Kardashian and that it was a huge mistake. He said that NBA teams expressed doubt about his commitment to the sport since he was frequently seen out at parties with Khloe. He believed that if he never dated Kardashian, he easily could have made “at least $60 - $70 million”.
McCants also claimed that he never cheated on her, as she claimed on her show. He believes she said he cheated since it makes for better TV. McCants clearly regrets ever dating Kardashian because he believes she severely jeopardized his playing career.
1 BLAKE GRIFFIN
Full disclosure: Blake Griffin and Kendall Jenner are still dating, as of now. Apparently, they started out dating casually but they are seemingly get more serious. Kendall has frequently been spotted sitting courtside at L.A. Clippers games, showing her support for her boyfriend. Based on the track record of the Kardashian women, relations with pro athletes do not last. It is probably only a matter of time before their relationship ends and Griffin really suffers the repercussions of having dated a Kardashian.
The L.A. Clippers have played alright so far in 2017, but Blake Griffin is an injury risk waiting to happen. Based on the experiences of other basketball stars who dated a Kardashian, the Clippers and Griffin can only hope he can manage to stay on the court and contribute meaningfully.
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