People who call themselves athletes—not the dude at the gym who’s always eager to offer unsolicited workout tips, but those individuals who compete at a pro or collegiate level—are fortunate for so many reasons.
Athletes have a rare combination of talent and physical capability that the average person simply can’t duplicate with training and hard work alone. No matter how many laps you run around the track, it’s highly unlikely you’ll wake-up one day and be able to run a sub-4.5 in the 40 yard dash.
However, just because some people are born with the natural ability to sink three-pointers, or redirect an airborne puck between a goalie’s blocker and the post, it doesn’t mean that great fashion sense is part of the package deal. Considering these same folks are often massive, relative to us “normals”, there are ample opportunities for hilarity when it comes to athletes and what they wear.
In a world where millions of people walk around with a de facto digital camera/computer in their pocket, there is no shortage of photos available on the Interwebs that showcase some veritable fashion disasters (some intended, some not.) And as the late, great Chris Farley once taught us, a “fat man in a tiny coat” is comedy gold.
These are the funniest athlete outfits of the last year caught on camera.
Fashion Crime: Blending Western Wear and Work Wear
There are probably places in the U.S. where a suit is not complete without a cowboy hat—like San Antonio, NM. I commend Charles Barkley's 'When in Rome' attitude, but there's something positively unsettling about him tipping his cowboy hat from the back of a horse.
Well, I guess he never said he was a role model.
Fashion Crime: Monochromatic Madness
Golfer Rickie Fowler definitely has a unique fashion sense all unto his own. He remains admirably committed to his Justin Bieber haircut—long after the Biebs, himself, decided to go in another direction with his own coiffe.
Fowler also remains steadfastly dedicated to his signature monochromatic (and often very bright) look. Is it just me or is anyone else feeling the overwhelming urge to watch Groundhog Day?
Fashion Crime: Rapping In An Old Timey Gentleman's Hat
First of all, apparently Glen "Big Baby" Davis is following in the proud tradition of basketball players recording rap albums that everyone makes fun of. So…that should be fun. Someone remind me to not buy that as soon as it comes out.
Maybe I'm wrong about Big Baby's foray into the lyrical arts and it will be a massive commercial success. There's just nothing about his look here that reads "street," or inspires any confidence in his rapping abilities.
Fashion Crime: Canadian Tuxedo
Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin was named the most eligible bachelor in all of Russia by OK! magazine in November 2012. And nothing says "single and slammin" better than rocking the finest denim duds money can buy.
For those of you unawares, a "Canadian tuxedo" is what results when one pairs blue jeans with a denim shirt and/or jacket. It stems from the Canadian love of denim and distaste for formality—which was on full display at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Fashion Crime: Pretty in Polka Dots
Superstar Kevin Durant is coming off one heck of a year in 2012. Durant was the NBA scoring leader for the third consecutive season, led his Oklahoma City Thunder to the finals, and he set an Olympic scoring record in London, where he won a gold medal.
Quite a run, right?
A year like that would cause anyone's self-esteem to skyrocket right through the damn roof. Which is obviously the case here, because that's the only possible explanation for why Durant thinks he can pull off a skin-tight polka dot blouse. Good heaven that shirt is snug!
Fashion Crime: Cutting the Sleeves Off Michael Jackson's Thriller Jacket
Looking like he came straight from a seedy leather bar, Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte wore this goofy getup to the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas, NV, last fall. Red leather isn't an easy look to pull off, especially when it's paired with…more leather.
I actually think I know what Lochte was going for here. You may recall that the late Michael Jackson was known as the "King of Pop." With the retirement of Michael Phelps, Lochte is now the "King of the Pool."
And the king...well...he can wear all the red leather he wants. Jeah!
Fashion Crime: Capri Pants on a Man
New York Knicks big man Tyson Chandler fancies himself a fashionista and is often spotted alongside the likes of Vogue editor Anna Wintour at fashion shows in New York City. Which means he should know better than this.
I'll concede that I don't know all that much about high fashion. But I do know that if a gigantic man wears a formal blazer with a t-shirt, skin-tight capris pants, fancy dress shoes and black socks, he looks very silly.
Fashion Crime: Shockingly Underdressed and Rocking a Denim Vest
Pittsburgh Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey recently dressed up for a night out on the town, and this is the best he could do. Let's just hope he was drunk when he decided that a denim vest, pink shirt, camouflage shorts and red sneakers was a solid choice.
The real issue here: Where the hell are these two going?
His girl is dressed for a red carpet and Pouncey is dressed for a frat party. He said they were going out on the town—I wonder if he meant that they were going to different parts of town as individuals, but just met up for this picture first.
Fashion Crime: Man Purse
For many of the rich and famous, there comes a time when they become so rich and so famous that they no longer feel the pressure, or desire, to play by society's rules.
That time has obviously already come for Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney and his Louis Vuitton man purse.
Fashion Crime: Vintage Cartoon Wear
In the wake of the global "Linsanity" pandemic, New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony was accused of being a selfish player and unwelcoming to Jeremy Lin. And everyone knows that the best way to combat negative press is with cartoon panthers.
It definitely works too. Every time I've heard Melo's name mentioned, since seeing this photo a few days ago, I've immediately remembered him in this shirt and smiled contently. Which is a nice change from hearing his name and shouting "GOD THE KNICKS SUCK" at nobody in particular.
Fashion Crime: Dressing Like a Waiter
I have to give boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. props for occasionally resisting the urge to wear all of the Jennifer Lopez furs and Elizabeth Taylor diamonds he's got stacked up in his closet. I didn't think that he ever did that, but this Instagram photo that he posted in late 2012 proves he does.
That being said, just because you're going low key, doesn't mean you are contractually obligated to dress like a waiter. Or a flashy bus boy who likes to express himself with his fancy socks. Floyd Money needs to find a happy medium.
Fashion Crime: Too Many Statement Pieces
Honestly, this is a pretty tame ensemble compared to what we've grown accustomed to with Dennis Rodman over the years. He's not wearing lingerie, a wedding dress, a dress in general, or painted up in clown makeup—which is impressive.
That being said, he still looks insane. When it comes to statement pieces in your wardrobe, always remember that 'less is more'. Although, Rodman has always struck me as a 'more is more' type of guy and is probably unfamiliar with that concept.
Fashion Crime: Jorts and a WTF T-Shirt
Never one to do what's popular, unemployed wide receiver Chad Johnson was snapped wearing this ensemble in October 2012. As a general rule, I'm opposed to adults (not named John Cena) wearing jean shorts, but Johnson's actually aren't that bad. Yes they are bad, but they could certainly be worse.
Far more questionable is the homage to Saved by the Bell he's wearing across his chest. I love Zack Morris and company as much as the next girl, but I don't understand this t-shirt. If I'm not mistaken, it says "I (Kelly Kapowski) Bay Side." Is Kelly Kapowski a verb now?
Fashion Crime: Don't Want No Scrubs
Paging Dr. World Peace. Paging Dr. World Peace. Dr. World Peace, please report to operating room four, your patient is ready for surgery.
You just got shivers down your spine imaging Metta World Ron Artest Peace standing over you in an operating room with a scalpel, didn't you? I'd like to be able to tell you that this was a Halloween costume, but since this photograph was taken in August, I cannot.
Which leads me to believe that MWP has been doing some moonlighting as a medical professional at Los Angeles area hospitals during the offseason. Exercise extreme caution.
Fashion Crime: Dopey Hat Devotion
Everyone knows that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is married to supermodel Gisele Bundchen. Her influence, combined with his smug sense of self, is probably why he's become a fashion forward risk taker with his wardrobe in recent years.
Brady has obviously developed quite a fondness for goofy hats and he seems to have one for every occasion. Thankfully he covers up that hair of his with something.
Fashion Crime: Slim Fit Leopard Print Button Up
I'm not saying that Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Wilson and Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo attending this GQ magazine event during New York City's Fashion Week in 2012 together was a date or anything. They're probably just friends.
All I'm saying is that they did, in fact, attend the event together and only one of them was dressed like a lady. Actually, he's dressed more like a real housewife of wherever.
Hint: It's the one in the very snug leopard print blouse.
Fashion Crime: Grown Man Jammies
Actually, no crime has really been committed here. It's just a bunch of Green Bay Packers tight ends who got together over the holidays and celebrated the happiest time of the year in their jammies. What's criminal about that?
Nothing. That's what.
Fashion Crime: 80's Dayglow Flashback
If I didn't recognize this shirtless hunk-o-man as Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin, I would have assumed this photo was just a still frame from an 80's Pepsi commercial. Or maybe Bartles and Jaymes?
Or perhaps a print ad showcasing Hypercolor's new line of swim trunks, finally branching out from the t-shirt game after all these years. Either way, not a great frame of reference.
Fashion Crime: Slutty Ladybug
Patrick Kugler is a senior left tackle at North Allegheny high school in Pittsburgh and the son of Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line coach, Sean Kugler. He has committed to the University of Michigan and will be a Big Blue freshman in the fall of 2013.
The good people of Ann Arbor should rejoice, for it takes an extremely confident young man to buck Halloween tradition so boldly—that kind of confidence will serve the Michigan Wolverines well on the football field.
Creating the "slutty" version of an occupation, animal, or insect, is something that has been attributed to the fairer sex. But Kugler looked at the slutty ladybug and instead of asking "Can I hit that?" he said "I can do that!"
And did that he...did. Brava, sir. Brava.
Fashion Crime: Man Minks
In December 2012, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant proved, yet again, that he doesn't play by anyone's rules except his own…and sometimes not even those. He must have spent the night before with the kids and his not-so-ex wife, because Kobe showed up to the Staples Center for the Lakers Christmas Day game against the Knicks wearing one of Vanessa's coats.
The fur would have been more forgivable if the game was being played in New York and Kobe legitimately needed it to stay warm. But it's usually around 70 degrees in Los Angeles in December. I'm sorry, but there is no excuse for a man wearing a fur coat in 70 degree weather.
And to make matters worse, as you can see, Kobe is a repeat offender. Not that I would say any of this to his face.
He's certainly not an athlete, but any list about laughable fashion faux pas wouldn't be complete without Canada's national treasure Don Cherry. This guy has made quite a living dressing as a clown and saying hateful things. It must be nice to have that kind of job security.
Follow me, Amber Lee, on Twitter for more snarky fashion in sports commentary: Follow @blamberr if you want to live!