What goes around comes around, or so the saying goes. We’d all like to think that people get what’s coming to them. Bad people get bad karma and good people get good karma. But that’s not how the world works, at least not all the time. Chances are everyone’s going to have bad days. Then they might have some good days too. It’s not the result of someone being good or bad, it’s just the way life works. People get both. But we like to characterize these types of things in such terms as good and bad karma because we like to think that the just are rewarded and the wicked are punished. Kind of biblical really. And not entirely untrue.
The sports world is a breeding ground for controversy. Making it grade A entertainment. There are people we root for and others we loathe. That’s where the idea of bad karma becomes so enticing. While we see certain athletes act like scumbags and jerks, we ourselves can’t actually do anything about it. So we wait. We wait till something happens and more often than not, if they’ve been particularly bad, the result is often satisfying.
This list contains a whole range of particularly controversial athletes. Everything from loud mouth divas to cheaters to criminals. While some of these guys might’ve thought the good times would’ve just kept rolling, we all knew that eventually, things would stop going their way. It’s pretty satisfying to see someone who’s unjustly living it up fall right on their asses and fell the full brunt of the consequence of their actions.
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15 Terrell Owens
There’s no denying that Terrell Owens was one of the best receivers of his generation, and if you give the numbers a good look over he makes a convincing argument as one of the best to play his position. But there’s one thing that everyone hated about him. His attitude. Owens was a diva. He feuded with teammates, made questionable comments when speaking to the media and seemed to love making everything about him. So it seems just that his career didn’t end with a Super Bowl or record breaking performance. No, Owens withered away into obscurity giving everyone a well-deserved break from the human carnival that was Terrell Owens’ pro career.
14 Richie Incognito
Richie Incognito was painted out to be an abusive bully when it was revealed that he and several other teammates were harassing fellow offensive lineman Jonathan Martin. Incognito talked like some high school brick head who takes the joke too far. What he tried to pass off as friendly fun between teammates was seen as abusive behavior towards Martin. He’d verbally attack Martin and would reference such subjects as his sexuality, race and even send him text messages that contained sexual fantasies of Incognito assaulting Martin’s sister. Incognito was out of the NFL for the 2014 season. He’s now with the Bills, having received a second chance, at a lower salary than he was making before.. But that doesn’t matter. All the info’s out there, people know what Incognito is and what kind of person he is.
13 Luis Suarez
In a controversial move on the field, Luis Suarez bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini causing a great deal of outrage. The move came in a World Cup match between Italy and Uruguay. Suarez took a huge bite of Chiellini’s shoulder like a rabid dog going in for the kill. The incident wasn’t seen by the referee as the ball was on a different part of the field at that point and Suarez went on unpunished. Uruguay later scored and won the match eliminating Italy. While Suarez later denied having bitten Chiellini, he was later given a seven game and nine month ban for the attack and had to watch Uruguay crash out of the competition.
12 Usman Ahmed
In sports, confidence is key, but there’s a difference between being confident and being cocky. Often confused with one another, people don’t hate confident athletes because they rarely make a big deal of showing it. It’s those cocky showoffs that really get fans and players riled up. British boxer Usman Ahmed looked very smug entering the ring versus the undefeated Ashley Sexton and it was clear that he wasn’t nearly as concerned about going up against a boxer of Sexton’s caliber as he should’ve been. That didn’t last long, as he was knocked out for the first time in his career shortly after the first round started.
11 Rae Carruth
A true scumbag of epic proportions, Rae Carruth aided in the murder of his eight month pregnant girlfriend in 1999. The woman, Cherica Adams, was shot four times in a drive by shooting. Though she managed to call 911, she died a month after falling into a coma. Doctors managed to save her son but the boy was born with cerebral palsy. After being found in a trunk along with $3,900 in cash, bottles to hold Carruth's urine, extra clothes, candy bars, and a cell phone, Carruth narrowly avoided the death penalty and instead was sentenced to nearly 19 years in prison.
10 O.J. Simpson
Having been found not guilty in the death of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and her friend Ron Goldman over two decades ago, OJ Simpson was a free man for a good while. While the opinion on whether or not he did it varies from person to person, there is still strong evidence to suggest that he dodged the proverbial bullet. However, Simpson got bit in the ass in two ways. Firstly, he lost a civil suit, which didn't require any jail time but forced him to pay $25 million the victim's family. Then, in 2007, Simpson’s reckless disregard of the law finally caught up to him. Simpson was arrested after having gone into a Las Vegas hotel room to get back some sports memorabilia. He was charged with kidnapping, robbery and other charges. While he faced the prospect of life in prison, he instead received a 33 year sentence with a minimum of nine years without parole.
9 Richard Sherman
In what became somewhat of a popular internet meme involving Tom Brady and Richard Sherman, the Seahawks star is seen taunting the Patriots QB after Seattle beat the Patriots in a regular season game a few years back. Sherman, considered to be the best at his position, is known for being outspoken and his brash behavior can often get on some peoples bad sides. But it seems that Sherman finally got what he deserved when Seattle fell to the Patriots in the last minute of Super Bowl 49. The look on Sherman’s face as he comes to grips with Seattle’s loss is priceless. Like a mixture of heartbreak, anger and utter disbelief.
8 Daniel Carcillo
It’s always satisfying to see someone try and be a jerk, then have it blow up in their face. In a game between the Blackhawks and the Oilers, Daniel Carcillo delivered a horribly dirty check to Tom Gilbert that could've seriously injured him. Injuries are a serious matter in any sport, as they can sometimes ruin a career and should not be used as an intimidation tactic. But sweet justice was delivered when Carcillo went in for the kill and instead slipped on the ice, injuring his ACL. Perhaps the injury gave him some insight as to the severity of such actions.
7 Aaron Hernandez
As was the case with OJ Simpson, Aaron Hernandez was a big name football player that was suddenly charged with murder. One of the big differences between the cases was that Hernandez was at the peak of his career when he was charged with the murder of Odin Lloyd. In a lengthy trial that looked increasingly bad for Hernandez everyday it went on, he was released by the Patriots, had his jerseys returned and was finally convicted of murder this past April.
6 Ugueth Urbina
After a decent pro career, Ugueth Urbina retired to his native Venezuela. Some athletes are known for being hot tempered, but Urbina took things to a whole other level when he attacked five farm workers working on his property. Why’d he do it? He accused them of stealing a gun from him. When he went to confront them, the conversation got heated. He attacked them with a machete and even tried pouring gasoline on them. He was sentenced to 14 years in prison after being convicted of attempted murder, but only served 5 1\2 years of his sentence.
5 Brett Favre
Brett Favre had a fantastic career as a Green Bay Packer, leading the team to two Super Bowls and one championship title. But when it came to retirement, Favre just couldn’t make up his mind. After initially retiring after the 2007 season, Favre quickly changed his mind and was shipped to the Jets. Then he went to play for the Packers rivals, the Minnesota Vikings. That really hurt his image in Green Bay. While he did play three more years in the league, Favre never won a Super Bowl outside of Green Bay. A relatively anticlimactic end to his career followed suit and in a way Favre got what he deserved. After all that he put the Packers faithful through, he really couldn’t have gone and had success somewhere else. He was destined to fail as soon as he came into Lambeau in a Vikings uniform.
4 Michael Vick
Any violence against innocent animals is unforgivable, no matter who you are and what kind of status you have. Michael Vick greatly damaged his reputation after he was found to have been implicated in an illegal dog fighting ring. Many dogs died because of that ring and Vick was cast off as a monster by the media. He was suspended by the NFL, released by the Falcons and sentenced to 23 months in prison after blowing nearly all of his fortune on his legal team. On top of that, he also lost all his sponsorships.. In fairness to Vick, he's since turned his life around and should be commended for how's rebounded and atoned for what he's done.
3 Alex Rodriguez
He’s one of the biggest and most accomplished players in the MLB, but how much has Alex Rodriguez earned throughout his career? By now it is well established that Rodriguez has used steroids. He committed one of the biggest taboos an athlete can commit by admitting to having done so. After consistently maintaining a story that painted him as an honest, clean player, Rodriguez admitted to being a liar as well as a cheat. The ramifications on his legacy are yet to be felt, but no one will ever look at him in the same light again. With the cases of Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire as examples, we can assume that A-Rod has also likely lost his Hall of Fame candidacy.
2 Lance Armstrong
Lance Armstrong was the voice of hope for many that didn’t have a voice of their own. He was a figurehead everyone could look up to and his career accolades, as well as campaign against cancer after he himself was diagnosed with testicular cancer, was something to be admired. But all that changed after it was confirmed that he’d cheated and used drugs throughout his career. He was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and stepped down as chairman of the Livestrong foundation. He’s gone from being one of the most beloved men in sports to perhaps one of the most hated.
1 Tiger Woods
A golfer at the peak of his game, a family man with a loving wife and two beautiful daughters. Tiger Woods lost it all because he couldn’t keep it in his pants. After having numerous affairs, including with an adult entertainer, Woods had a very messy and very public falling-out with his wife and sponsors. By the end of it all, he had to pay his wife $100 million in the divorce settlement. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Woods also lost $22 million in endorsements that year and just wasn’t the golfer he used to be when all was said and done.
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