There's this story in the Old Testament about how one of the strongest men in the world lost all of his powers because he trusted a woman. Samson (that was the fella's name) possessed great strength, which he owed to his long hair. Samson fell in love with Delilah, who, unknowingly to him, was bribed in order for his enemies to learn just what made him so strong. After three attempts, she asked him directly, and Samson told her. As he was asleep, she cut his hair, which made him unable to defend himself. When his hair grew back, he took his revenge on his enemies, but lost his life in the process.
The Kardashian/Jenner women are the modern version of Delilah. When it comes to them and athletes, they make them weak. Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian and their half-sister, Kendall Jenner have caused distress to a lot of athletes. Fans hate them and boo them as they appear during games, because they know something might be up with their favourite athlete. While the hate is partially validated, it's not like the athletes themselves aren't to blame. Actually, some of them were pretty bad to begin with.
This list highlights 15 athletes that dated one of the women from the most hated (but simultaneously richest and most popular) families in the media. While some of us would like to blame them for everything wrong with the world today, the curse (that undoubtedly exists) has only touched 8 athletes they've dated while 7 of them were just bad to begin with.
15 Cursed: Matt Kemp
Looking at his dating history, Matt Kemp definitely has a type - he likes them famous, spoiled and beautiful. The outfielder and two-time All Star is most famous for dating Rihanna - a relationship that started in 2009. What you probably didn't know - or ejected from your memory - is that he also dated Khloe Kardashian. The two were a couple for only a month, as Kemp found it hard to cope with the fame that being associated with a Kardashian brings. At what time was this? Well, in 2013 Kemp appeared only in 73 games and noted a career low six home runs and 33 RBI, so if you've thought about the end of 2012, you're right.
14 Bad: Kris Humphries
It's time for Mr. Kardashian himself, the man who was relatively unknown until he started dating Kim. The reason why she turned her attention towards this rather regular NBA player was a mystery until it was revealed that the two were supposed to get married and the ceremony would be televised. His willingness to participate in the media circus was what made him a potential candidate to marry Kim. The currently-unemployed power forward/centre was picked by the Utah Jazz with the 14th pick in the NBA Draft, which should make him at least a usable starter in the league. He was exactly that, but never much more. The couple divorced in June 2013 and Humphries bounced around the league. In the 2015-16 season he was on three teams! Maybe he's just not big on stability?
13 Cursed: Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the two best active soccer players in the world. He has won everything there is to win, apart from the World Cup trophy, which considering the way his national team plays, will remain his one unfulfilled team goal. When it comes to individual glory, the man has also won numerous accolades. The 2009-10 season remains one of the worst in his career. Even though he scored 33 goals in 35 matches, his team finished second in La Liga and was knocked out of the Champions League in the round of 16. His national team was knocked out from the World Cup by the eventual champions, Spain, in the round of 16 as well. The reason for his failures? A date with Kim K in April of 2010 in Madrid, obviously.
12 Bad: Chandler Parsons
Kendall Jenner recently got the top spot among the world's highest-earning models, but she was just a promising one in 2014 when she started dating Parsons. She was just 18 years old when the two were seen in a Los Angeles steakhouse. Parsons was then a member of the Mavericks. He was also the one that broke off the affair between the two and presumably suffered because of it, as he had two surgeries since their breakup. But to be honest, was he that great of a player? His highest scoring average was 16.6. Right now he's the third-highest earner on the Memphis Grizzlies but he isn't even a starter, and is one of the most overpaid players in the NBA. He never was as great as his salary indicated.
11 Cursed: Jordan Clarkson
Jordan Clarkson is a player on and off the court. Living in LA has definitely given him possibilities to rub shoulders with celebrities and get to meet some of them very intimately. When it comes to dating, his resume includes: Bella Thorne, Hailey Baldwin and... Kendall Jenner. The two got together in April 2016 and at first things started actually looking up for the young Lakers guard - in July he signed a four year, $50 million contract and was supposed to be the shooting guard next to a promising rookie point guard, D'Angelo Russell. Just a year later that promising rookie was replaced by a more promising (and currently more disappointing) one, Lonzo Ball. Clarkson on the other hand lost his place in the starting line-up and is currently rumoured to be on the move to create cap space for Paul George.
10 Bad: Mark Sanchez
Kim Kardashian presumably visited the Jets quarterback whenever she was in New York. Both parties denied not so much being together, but actually knowing each other. But such stubborn and repetitive denial means that something definitely was up. Mark Sanchez is not a bad looking guy, and Kim is quite attractive as well, so this definitely made sense for them. Currently Sanchez is serving as a mentor to Mitchell Trubisky on the Bears, but to be honest he can only really give advice on what not to do. Sanchez had one "magical" season in 2011, in which he put up 26 passing and 6 rushing touchdowns. The magic is in quotation marks, because he also put up 18 turnovers while the team went 8-8 and missed the playoffs.
9 Cursed: Tristan Thompson
It would be very convenient to explain the Cavs recent struggles by the Kardashian curse, but the Golden State Warriors are just too much for the whole league to handle after they've been joined by Kevin Durant. Still, the fact that Thompson started dating Khloe after he became an NBA champion and not only failed to repeat, but began this season with an injury is a bit troubling. The Cavs in the meantime began the season pretty badly. The surprising thing about the two is that Kardashian is a reality show star, while Thompson is a humble Canadian, who would rather shy away from the spotlight. The two of them somehow make it work and if they're happy, good for them.
8 Bad: Alecko Eskandrian
When a striker scores 30 goals in 125 games, is he good? Ronaldo or Messi are able to score twice as much in a season, playing in much better leagues (no offense American and Canadian readers) than the MLS. So blaming Eskandrian's misfortunes on Kim K, whom he briefly dated because of Kris Jenner, Kim's mother, would be a bit of a stretch. Kris wanted her daughter to date a good Armenian boy. Obviously that meant Eskandrian making an appearance on the family's reality show. This may have been pulled more as a publicity stunt than a quest for real romance, but either way, the curse was not cast. Eskandrian was a good Armenian boy, but he was not a very good soccer player.
7 Cursed: Miles Austin
Miles Austin made quite a career for a guy that wasn't even drafted by an NFL team. He went to two Pro Bowls and was the NFC receiving yards leader in 2009, which remains his best career season. He spent most of his career with the Cowboys, so the fact that he's currently with the team after his playing days are over makes a lot of sense. He and Kim Kardashian started dating in 2010 and as you can probably guess, despite making another Pro Bowl during the same year, Austin was not the same player as before. Year after year he looked worse and ended his career when he was just 30 years old. The curse is clearly real!
6 Bad: Derrick Ward
That Khloe Kardashian sure does get around. In 2009 she was dating then-Buccaneers running back Derrick Ward. The player made a name for himself on the Giants and even won a Super Bowl with the team. In the 2008 season Ward rushed for 1,025 yards, which was his career high in the NFL. Following that great season he left New York in order to get paid. He was picked up by the Buccaneers in 2009 and began to see Khloe soon afterwards. You probably know what happened next. During his first season on the team he scored just one touchdown and was cut once it was over. Still, was he really that good? 12 career touchdowns in eight seasons aren't that impressive.
5 Cursed: James Harden
James Harden, this season's MVP runner-up and perennial candidate for the award once he left OKC in 2012 (he was traded away, but the move really benefited his playing career, so Sam Presti actually did him a favour) progressed like few other NBA players. Year after year Harden keeps getting better and better. After his team made the Western Conference Finals in 2015, The Beard started dating Khloe Kardashian. Instead of being on the rise, the following year the Rockets got eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. That was a couple of months after he broke up with Khloe and his team barely even made it to the post-season. Harden blamed too much media attention for his team's poor performance. Remember that this is a guy who had his jersey retired by an exotic dance club in Houston. If he says being with a Kardashian is a distraction, he's probably telling the truth.
4 Bad: Julian Brooks
Who? Yes, Julian Brooks is the worst athlete on this list, which makes his inclusion all the more necessary. Actually, Brooks is now only known as Kendall Jenner's ex-boyfriend and not much more. However, back in the day the wide receiver was a three-star recruit who was pursued by UCLA, Arizona and Oregon State, among others. The couple were together from November 2o12 to September 2013. It was Jenner who broke up with the football talent after he was caught cheating on her. Brooks committed to University of Nevada, but never played in the NCAA. The fact he was never even able to pan out as an athlete shows he was just bad, or maybe that's what you get cheating on a Kardashian!
3 Cursed: Reggie Bush
Reggie Bush attended the University of Southern California so it's understandable that Kim Kardashian was on his radar due to her close proximity to the college. The two officially became a couple in 2007, when Reggie was already in the NFL, as a member of the Saints. Granted, Bush was no bust, but he definitely suffered the Kardashian curse. The couple broke up in 2010 and Bush was later seen dating a woman very similar to Kim K, but that wasn't the most embarrassing thing that happened to him after they severed ties. The same year Bush was accused of NCAA infractions and stripped of all his trophies (including the Heisman) and records. He broke his leg in the same season and started his journey across Miami, Detroit, San Francisco and Buffalo. During his last season he rushed for -3 yards.
2 Bad: Rashad McCants
Before he was the number one pick in the BIG3 League and hit the winning shot for the eventual champion, Trilogy, he was a washed up NBA player by the age of 25. What did he blame for his bust status? The Kardashians of course. More notably, Khloe Kardashian, whom he dated for seven months up to January of 2009. 2008-09 was McCants' last season in the NBA, after which he was released by the Kings. The player claimed that he failed to make an impact in the league because people questioned his commitment to the game. Seriously? No one questions James Harden or Tristan Thompson, other players whom Khloe dated. When you're supposed to be a shooter, but make a bit more than one third of your attempts (39 FG% in his final year in the league), maybe you're just bad at basketball?
1 Cursed: Lamar Odom
The man that was most touched by the curse is the one that got the closest to the family - Bruce Jenner doesn't count, as he's partially responsible for the creation of this clan. Lamar and Khloe got married only after a month of being together, but it seemed that the two really loved each other. Lamar did cheat on Khloe multiple times, yet there was no denying the general affection he had for her. They were still together as Odom's downfall began. Disrespected by the "Chris Paul trade" eventually vetoed by David Stern, according to which Odom was supposed to join the New Orleans Hornets, he demanded a trade from the Lakers and joined the Mavericks. The former Sixth Man of the Year, instrumental to LA's success, was completely uninterested in basketball in Dallas and was placed on the inactive list by the end of the season. He and Khloe divorced in 2013. In October 2015 Odom was found unconscious in a brothel. He's still battling drug and alcohol addiction.