Over the past few decades, loyalty in sports has declined dramatically. It has become exceedingly rare for players to spend their entire playing careers with a single team. The lure of getting paid a lot of money by the highest bidding team in free agency has been too hard to pass up. This is a trend that isn’t isolated to a single sport either, loyalty to a team is a forgotten concept in the NBA, NHL, NFL, and MLB.
Apparently, that lack of loyalty is something that occasionally translates into the athletes’ personal lives as well. While most pro athletes have no difficulty remaining faithful to their partners, there are athletes who too easily give in and are caught cheating. For whatever reason, they find it difficult to remain faithful to their partner and decide to hook up with another woman.
In this article, we will be exploring ten pro athletes who constantly cheated on their partners. In the interests of showing that not all athletes give in to these bad habits, we will also look at another ten athletes who have remained faithful.
20 CHEATED: MICHAEL JORDAN
We start off the cheaters side of this list with the legendary Michael Jordan. He is easily one of the best NBA players of all time and was always a thrill to watch during his playing days. He made a lot of money, and experienced a great deal of fame. Unfortunately, all that fame didn’t lead to Jordan being able to resist cheating on his wife of 17 years, Juanita Vanoy. She got tired of his infidelities and, after filing for divorce, received a shocking $168 million settlement!
Jordan also ended up having to shell out another $5 million to Karla Knafel to try to keep her silent about the affair the two had. Additionally, Jordan had to deal with publicized claims that he was the father of Pamela Smith’s son, Taj. While he did not turn out to be the father, it did reveal that he had an affair with her during the time he was married to Juanita.
19 FAITHFUL: SIDNEY CROSBY
Sidney Crosby has been one of the NHL’s top players for most of the past decade. His talents have landed him a great deal of attention from fans who admire and respect his game changing abilities. Crosby also happens to be a pretty good-looking player who has attracted a great deal of attention from female fans. From this, it would probably be safe to assume he has a lot of women who would be very interested in hooking up with him. By all accounts, Crosby has remained completely faithful to his long-time girlfriend, Kathy Leutner. The couple manage to remain out of the spotlight despite Crosby being such a high profile player, but they have been dating since 2008!
18 CHEATED: KOBE BRYANT
Kobe Bryant is a L.A. Lakers legend and almost certainly a future NBA Hall of Famer. Kobe was undoubtedly one of the best players in the NBA during his prime, and will long be remembered by Lakers fans for his on the court successes. However, Bryant was far from a saint off the court. The first scandal occurred in 2003 when Bryant was arrested for sexual assault. He held a press conference confessing to having a consensual encounter with the woman. His wife, Vanessa, sat by him in support but was visibly, and understandably, upset. The assault charges were later dropped.
Vanessa filed for divorce from Kobe in 2011 after revelations that he had been sleeping with numerous other women. She had enough of Kobe’s infidelities, or so we thought. The couple has since reconciled and are still married.
17 FAITHFUL: JAY CUTLER
Miami Dolphins’ quarterback Jay Cutler has been married to actress Kristen Cavallari since June 2013. While they have seemingly been happily married since then, they were not always happy together. Prior to their marriage, the two had what could only be described as an extremely tumultuous relationship. They were engaged (for a first time), before calling it off a few months later. They were an on-again/off-again couple for a little while. After another reconciliation, Cavallari was pregnant with their first child together in early 2012. While it is good to see the couple now happily together, it would have been easy to imagine Cutler giving up and being unfaithful to her while they were off and on. Instead, he apparently remained loyal to her and stuck through the tough times they were going through as a couple.
16 CHEATED: DAVID BECKHAM
David Beckham is arguably one of the best soccer players ever. He even married former Spice Girl Victoria, aka Posh Spice, in 1999, making them one of the more iconic power couples. Even though he has a gorgeous wife, David apparently found it difficult to remain faithful. Various news outlets reported that the then-Real Madrid star was having an affair with his personal assistant, Rebecca Loos. Shortly after that story broke, Malaysian-Australian model Sarah Marbeck also claimed she slept with Beckham on two occasions.
Beckham denied the allegations, but Victoria pretty much revealed that David had in fact cheated on her. In a 2007 interview, Victoria spoke out about the affair when she talked about how they have gone through bumps in the road but marriage isn’t easy. The couple continue to be married and raising their four children together. Hopefully David has learned his lesson!
15 FAITHFUL: TONY ROMO
Retired NFLer Tony Romo spent his entire career as a quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. In an era where very few athletes, in any sport, remain with one team for their entire career, that is a true sign of loyalty. As it turns out, Romo is a very loyal person in his private life as well. Romo had a well publicized relationship with Jessica Simpson from 2007 to 2009, before he ended the relationship. After that ended, he started dating former Dallas journalist Candice Crawford before getting married in 2011. The couple now have three children. There has never been any speculation on Romo being anything but loyal to Simpson when he was with her, and now with Crawford. It seems likely to remain that way since Romo is now out of the spotlight, enjoying life with his young family.
14 CHEATED: ROB GRONKOWSKI
Rob Gronkowski is one of the biggest playboys and parties currently playing in the NFL. The 28 year old New England Patriots tight end seems to enjoy in living each day to the fullest. Apparently that means living life like he is still in college and frequently attending parties and hooking up with women. Gronkowski claims that partying helps his playing abilities because it refreshes him and allows him to give it his all when it comes to game-time. We are not sure whether or not those claims are actually true or not, but we do know that he will not be mistaken for being in a long-term relationship anytime soon. Making millions playing the sport you love and having enough time to party like there’s no tomorrow sounds like a lot of fun, but all that partying isn’t conducive to a healthy committed relationship. At least for now, Gronkowski just seems to prefer to sleep around and party with many different people.
13 FAITHFUL: LONZO BALL
It probably wouldn’t be a stretch to say we have heard more from LaVar Ball than we have from his son, Lonzo. Part of the reason for this might be that Lonzo is actually, you know, focused on contributing to the L.A. Lakers efforts rather than building a brand. It also might be because he does not really share the brash personality of his controversial father. Lonzo has quietly been in a committed and healthy relationship with the gorgeous Denise Garcia. They have been together for several years now, well before Lonzo became famous. Based on their social media accounts, the couple seem to still be very much in love. You don’t often hear about the two of them, but there has never been any allegations or speculation of Lonzo having been unfaithful to Garcia.
12 Cheated: Alex Rodriguez
When seeing how capable A-Rod is of being dishonest, it's not surprising to find out that he cheated on his first wife and there have been whispers of his infidelity being the cause of several of his other relationships ending. His wife reportedly left him back in 2008 over A-Rod having an affair with Madonna. Since then, A-Rod reportedly had trouble getting over Madonna and would seek out ways to get back together with her after they had split up and while he was in other relationships.
There were even rumors this past summer that A-Rod had an affair with 34-year-old fitness model Lauren Hunter despite being in a relationship with Jennifer Lopez. Either the report was untrue, or J-Lo forgave him, as the two still seem to be going strong for now.
11 FAITHFUL: TOM BRADY
New England Patriots star quarterback Tom Brady is not a perfect person by any means. He has been involved in his fair share of scandals, most notably the Deflategate incident during the 2014-15 NFL playoffs. Regardless of where you stand about whether Brady cheated during the playoffs, he should not be classified as a cheater in his personal life. There have never been any allegations to believe that Brady has ever been unfaithful to his wife. Brady has been married to Brazilian model Giselle Bundchen since 2009, and the couple has two children together. Their marriage still appears to be going quite strong, as evidenced by the couple managing to get past the whole aforementioned Deflategate debacle. One could imagine the impact that ordeal would have had on their relationship, but the power couple’s relationship fortunately survived.
10 CHEATED: AVISAIL GARCIA
Avisail Garcia is probably one of the less recognizable names on this list, but we would be remiss to not include his name on this list. In 2013, Garcia and Prince Fielder were teammates with the Detroit Tigers. Revered slugger Prince Fielder was mysteriously struggling on the field for much of 2013, and fans had wondered what had happened to their expensive first baseman.
Stunningly, it was later revealed that Garcia had been sleeping with Fielder’s wife, Chanel. While Fielder immediately filed for divorce, Garcia’s wife somewhat surprisingly decided to remain by his side. It’s not difficult to imagine this creating a lot of tension in the clubhouse, though that was lessened when Garcia was traded to the White Sox at the July 2013 trade deadline. Garcia is still married to his wife, despite his cheating ways.
9 Faithful: Steph Curry
Steph Curry has the face of an innocent boy and by all accounts, he has remained a faithful husband to Ayesha. The two met when they were very young and were able to reconnect through Facebook after several years apart. Since they began dating, they seem to have been inseparable, with Ayesha constantly being there to support Steph and Curry saying that he has no regrets getting married young because he found the woman of his dreams. There have been no whispers at all of Curry straying from Ayesha and it doesn't appear things will ever go down that path. Curry seems like one of the good guys of the NBA and if a cheating scandal involving him ever came to light, we'd be very surprised.
8 CHEATED: Shaquille O'Neal
Shaq and Kobe kept trying to one-up each other so it's not really surprising that both Shaq and Kobe would be serial cheaters. Shaq was married to his wife Shaunie through much of his NBA career, but eventually the Basketball Wives star just had enough of Shaq's lifestyle and left him. For his part, Shaq admitted to his infidelities as he said there were just too many temptations while he was traveling with his NBA teams to stay faithful. Kobe had some part in Shaq's marriage ending, as during his trial mentioned earlier, he mentioned that Shaq had shown him some inappropriate messages sent to his side chicks. Shaq seems to be enjoying life now without the responsibilities of marriage.
7 FAITHFUL: TRISTAN THOMPSON
Tristan Thompson’s personal life has been in the headlines lately because he is currently dating Khloe Kardashian. Anytime you date one of the Kardashians, your name is going to be in the headlines frequently. Thompson and Kardashian have been together might not have been dating long, but reports suggest they are very much in love.
Their relationship is going strong, and the couple revealed they are expecting a child together. This would be Khloe’s first child, but Tristan’s second. He has a son with his ex-girlfriend, model Jordan Craig, who gave birth in late-2016. Thompson and Craig split, but there was never any reports of Thompson being unfaithful to her.
6 CHEATED: DWIGHT HOWARD
Dwight Howard used to be regarded as one of the elite players in the NBA, alongside the likes of LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. Though he is no longer viewed at that level, Howard is still in the league with the Charlotte Hornets. Since entering the league in 2004, Howard has played for five teams – 4 of them since 2013!
In addition to switching teams frequently, Howard also apparently likes to sleep around with many different women. Though has never been married, Howard has fathered as many as eight children. He has often been called out by some of his ex-girlfriends for having cheated on them, with one of them actually claiming to have originally been a ‘sidechick’ of his. Dwight Howard seems like a man who has no interest in being faithful!
5 FAITHFUL: DEREK JETER
New York Yankees legendary shortstop Derek Jeter is one of the greatest to ever play the game, and is a sure bet to enter the MLB Hall of Fame. Jeter was one of the rare athletes to remain completely loyal and stay with the same organization for his entire playing career. Off the field, Jeter has a reputation for loving the ladies. He had previously been linked to several women, such as Mariah Carey, Jordana Brewster, Jessica Biel, and Minka Kelly. Throughout all of this, Jeter has never once been accused of infidelity. Jeter is now married to model Hannah Davis, who gave birth to the couple’s first child in August 2017. Jeter always did things the right way, always being honest with what he wanted.
4 CHEATED: RAY LEWIS
Ray Lewis is one of the most well-documented playboys in the NFL, and for good reason too! Although he has had multiple girlfriends over the years, he quickly developed a reputation for cheating on them. The 42-year-old currently is the father of six children with four different women! This is at odds with his claims of being a devout Christian, something that many of his critics have often pointed out. As talented as Lewis was in his heyday, his off- the field antics will ultimately be what he is remembered by. At the end of the day, Ray Lewis has to be considered one of the NFL’s leading playboys who refused to be able to settle down and commit wholeheartedly to a single woman.
3 FAITHFUL: BROCK LESNAR
‘The Beast Incarnate’ Brock Lesnar might have cheated when he failed a drug test, in violation of UFC’s anti-doping policies, in 2016. That certainly cast Lesnar is a negative light, although WWE apparently didn’t seem to care that he was taking illegal substances. While Lesnar may have cheated when he failed a drug test, Lesnar has never really been reported to have been unfaithful during any of his relationships.
Though Lesnar has been married to Sable since May 2006, he was previously engaged to Nicole McClain. There has never been anything reported about Lesnar being unfaithful to McClain during the time that he was with her. In fact, the two are apparently still on good terms and they are both involved in raising the son they had while they were together.
2 CHEATER: TIGER WOODS
Unless you completely lived under a rock in 2009, you had to of heard about Tiger Woods’ plethora of affairs. His personal life unravelled in the media following a November 2009 incident where he crashed his car into a tree outside his home at night. This led to the initial revelation that Tiger had been cheating on his wife, Elin Nordegren, with nightclub promoter Rachel Uchitel. If only he had stopped there.
In the ensuing weeks, woman after woman came forth with allegations they had an affair with the golfer. The allegations piled up at a dizzying rate, which led to Woods coming clean and publicly apologizing for his infidelities. We may never know exactly how many of the allegations were truthful, but it is very clear to all that Woods was quite the busy man when he wasn’t golfing.
1 FAITHFUL: ERIC DECKER
We will end this list with Eric Decker, the Tennessee Titans wide receiver. Decker ends up on the faithful side of this list, and with good reason. He would be absolutely crazy to cheat on his gorgeous wife! Eric Decker has been married to country singer and actress Jessie James since 2013. The couple have two children, and recently announced that they are expecting their third child in March 2018. Decker is a lucky man to be married to Jessie James and it not very surprising to hear that he has been faithful.
I mean, it should never be hard for anyone to remain faithful – it’s something that you should always do. It’s just a lot harder to imagine when one’s partner is Jessie James.