Arash Markazi via Twitter
For an athlete the start of each year must be magic. A clean slate. So much is possible. So much can be accomplished. Titles can be nabbed. Contracts can be fattened up. Records can be broken. Headlines can be made.
But it doesn't always go like that. Sometimes Old Father Time pays a body too much attention. Or Lady Luck not enough. What could have been a banner year becomes one of squandered title shots. Pay cuts. Dwindling performance. Fading limelight.
Put on your sympathy caps and click on to see the woeful athletes who desperately await the clean slate of 2014.
Hey, it's rough out there. We expect athletes to get injured. When an injury happens in a game or in training, we understand. We forgive. We sympathize.
When an injury happens out of the stadium we might be just a tad less forgiving. We hope that our athletes are careful, that they take care of themselves. That they drive slowly. That they forgo skydiving and bungee jumping.
When an injury happens as an athlete is exiting his car to get sandwiches, well that just baffles and annoys us.
If you had stock shares in Michael Vick, they'd be selling for mere pennies now. People have gotten tired of waiting for him to break out and be that history-making QB they always thought he'd be.
Even Vick must see that. Otherwise why would he take a $8 million pay cut to stay in Philly?
When a professional career starts out 20-0, people take note. Expectations go sky high.
But since becoming a part of the MMA Bellator organization, Sarnavskiy has not had his past luck. First there was a debut loss in the fall of 2012. And now a hand injury has forced him to bow out of this season's tournament.
Well there are the ties to a steroid ring. That's pretty horrible. But worse for A-Rod is the fact that fans and analysts have been throwing the "A word" around in regards to him. No, not awesome. Not amazing. Not astounding. That other "A word." The truly ghastly one. The one that keeps athletes up at night and sets them trembling:
This year Chimera attained a goalless streak of epic proportions. A whopping 27 games went by with not a single Chimera love-tapped puck finding its way past a goalie.
Even a statue of Jobu in his locker brought no help.
Chimera's ice time melted away.
It took the luck of the Irish to fight off this hex; the streak was finally snapped on St. Paddy's Day.
A day after a for a sore back resulted in his getting nixed from the Team USA lineup against Team Dominican Republic, the Mets third baseman was diagnosed with a strained muscle in the area of his ribcage. Yahoo Sports reports that he may begin the season on the disabled list.
However Mets manager Terry Collins is full of sunshiny optimism; he claims Wright will be ready for Opening Day.
Spring training has been something of a nightmare for the Phillies pitcher. His stamina seems to be waning. His fast ball just isn't so fast lately. To top it all off, his body was ravaged by a stomach virus.
If a biopic about legendary Sehwag is ever made, following all the scenes documenting his rise to glory and his epic feats, a title card will flash across the screen: 2013.
Then a montage of Sehwag performing poorly game after game. The media taking hold and splashing his failures across their headlines.
Sorry, not sure how the movie will end yet. Wait for title card 2014.
(Thanks to B/R reader Shashvat Chitransh for his contribution to this slide.)
Apparently imaginary girlfriends don't go over well with the public. The fallen hero is now the vice president in the office of Most Hated Athlete. Who holds the presidency? Lance, of course.
A serious ankle injury itself is enough to cope with in one season.
But coupled with the humiliation that is "The Dunk," well... oof!
According to an ESPN article, McIroy's "swing looks off, his lucrative endorsement deal with Nike and switching clubs are being questioned, and now he has a grand total of four rounds plus eight lousy holes under his belt this year."
His toothache-induced withdrawal from the Honda Classic was about as popular with the masses as Romney's "47 percent" speech.
Getting traded can be tough on an athlete. New town. New team. New coach. But hey, it must feel good to be wanted. To have people negotiating for your services as an athlete.
That is unless your team gives you up FOR NO COMPENSATION.
Tebowing is out. Te-boo-ing is in.
And Timmy Boy is looking to be homeless very soon.
Oh Lance, and you thought 2012 was bad with your Tour medals being stripped away and all. But 2013 has had some real toppers for you.
The Oprah interview not only cemented in your reputation as a liar and cheater, it also made you look like an unrepentant jerk.
So that part of the world which didn't hate you before, does so now.
And then the IOC took away your Olympic medal.
And now the world is being deforested to provide paper for all the lawsuits you are being served with.