Instant Karma in Sports

Gabe Zaldivar@gabezalPop Culture Lead WriterDecember 14, 2013

Instant Karma in Sports

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    Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

    The Wyld Stallyns were on to something when they cautioned, "Be excellent to each other." You never know when your conceit or harsh gesture will come back to bite you. It could be months, years or decades. In the case of this lot, karma worked rather quickly. 

    We all have to deal with frustrating menaces on the highway, in grocery stores or pretty much any place humans might roam. We are, after all, the worst. 

    Thankfully, the sports world is hardly devoid of those who need their comeuppance. Here is a brief breakdown of some hilarious instances when justice was served in an instant. 

    Of course, the sports world is chockablock filled with instances of hubris, premature celebration and ill-fated notions all running amok on athletes and sports personalities. 

    So please feel free to fill the comments section with GIFs, videos or anecdotes we may have missed. And, since we started with a pop culture adage from Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, we might as well send you on your way with, "And party on, dudes."

MMA Knucklehead

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    You know the guy in the blue headgear is in trouble the moment he starts pretending to dig a grave for his opponents.

    Intimidation is earned, not mimed. 

    Middle Easy has a full report on this moment that was apparently recorded via potato. Hey, 1998 called, they want their video-capturing technology back. 

    The report states this quick bout took place at Underground Battle 2 in July 2013. As soon as the fight starts, the man who will eventually get a nice look at his opponent's foot decides to taunt. 

    We only wish we could go back in time, perhaps warn him that sort of thing is rather foolish. 

Goalie Celebrates Early

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    Someone please alert Khalid Askri that the ball he just masterfully parried away from goal is now tucked ever so nicely into the net. 

    Deadspin reported back in 2010 that the knuckleheaded moment came during the "Throne Cup" match between Askri's FAR Rabat and Maghreb Fez. 

    Let this be a lesson to you, kids. Go ahead and pump your chest and gloat about a job well done, but make sure you keep an eye on the ball while you do it. 

    To make things easier, just make sure that job well done is actually, you know, done. 

Be Careful What You Ask for

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    Take heed of the announcer in the video. Be always careful of what you ask for. Want that last piece of pie? Enjoy the extra inches around the waist. Want more money? Well, you need to put in more work and extra hours. 

    Want someone to come at you and punch you in the face? Well, yeah. 

    For the Win's Nate Scott has a report on this fight between Daquan Arnett and Miguel Zuniga, including video footage of another angle. 

    In that video, it really looks as if Arnett is simply complying with Zuniga's plea. And that's when boom goes the dynamite

Not so Fast: Leon Lett

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    As you will see, there are a few moments presented in this slideshow that feature athletes celebrating far too soon.

    We might as well start with one of the more iconic of those priceless moments: Leon Lett's Super Bowl blunder. 

    For those who forgot, we posted the video so you can enjoy the moment a showboating Lett remembered he was on defense for a reason. 

    This is also the moment we remind you that a year later, Lett made another gaffe in a game against the Miami Dolphins, touching a live ball and giving possession back to the opposition in a classic Thanksgiving finale. 

    Feel free to watch Leon Lett Blunder Part 2 at that link. 

The Day the Dancing Ended

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    Perhaps Usman Ahmed should have moonwalked away from that devastating right hook. 

    The Huffington Post reports Ahmed was as giddy as Michael Flatley getting a new pair of dancing shoes when he was introduced for his bout against Ashley Sexton in January 2010. 

    Unfortunately, he wasted all of his moves and was given a one-way ticket to a nap two minutes into the fight. 

Korean Bat Flip

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    I could watch this for days. Even then, I would still wish for weeks of free time. 

    CBS Sports' Dayn Perry reported on this video back in September, featuring Nexen's Lee Taek-keun showing off his home run swagger like a champ. 

    Too bad there's no home run. 

    As Perry reminds us, this is sort of a trend in Korean baseball, which means we are all not watching enough of the sport. 

Heads Up!

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    Little did I know, but fans running along cyclists is sort of a nuisance in the biking community. Feel free to contend or support that in the comments section below. 

    The video posted comes from a July 2013 Metro report on a brief moment from the Tour de France. In it, you will notice that a fan begins running along with the cyclists because, well, we have no idea why anyone would want to do that. 

    The only thing we can think of is Lil Mac, but he was training for big fights against guys like Don Flamenco. 

    Back to this race. We initially felt bad for the dude who took a face full of sign, but it seems those with a love of the sport see this as some sort of karmic cleansing.  

    Via Metro: "Tour de France spectators are a ruthless bunch as this particular fan demonstrated, but quite honestly, we can’t really blame him [...] Hopefully this will act as a warning to anyone else who thinks they can match the pace of elite athletes on bikes."

    An Examiner article from 2009 posits that fans running along cyclists is kind of the bane of the sport. Oh, OK. Enjoy the video then. 

Soccer Head Smash

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    Simple. Refined. Spectacular. 

    Here is one man exacting punishment on another, only to get a face full of soccer ball a moment later. We have gone on long enough already. 

Not so Fast II

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    This one stings all the way from 2010. 

    The Huffington Post explains that Cibona had just taken the lead with 0.6 seconds left in the game, which caused them to forget the remaining time and celebrate on the court. 

    What could possibly go wrong in under a second?

    Partizan's Dusan Kecman gets the ball and the figurative dagger through the heart. If you were wondering, that is what they mean by a roller coaster of emotions. 

Bobblehead Headache

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    The Star-Ledger-USA TODAY Sports

    Ah, the awkward situation. It's the reason why personalities like Sacha Baron Cohen and Larry David are so entertaining. While hilarious, awkward moments are only really entertaining from afar. 

    With that, we simply have to applaud those teams that decided to ship off talent only to realize moments later they had an upcoming bobblehead or T-shirt night promoting said player. 

    Whoopsie daisy!

    Granted, we are giving ourselves a bit of leash on the term instant, but this is a funny occurrence nonetheless. 

    We recently saw it with the New York Mets when they traded Marlon Byrd on the day of Marlon Byrd T-shirt night. Let that be a lesson to any of you planning to throw Byrd any sort of promotional night. 

    And let's not forget the Philadelphia Phillies, a team that had to go through the awkward situation of holding Hunter Pence bobblehead night a couple of weeks after he was sent packing to the San Francisco Giants. 

    Perhaps these bobbleheads are cursed. 

Just Kick Already

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    The YouTube description tells us this is from the 2011 Egyptian Cup, when Amir Sayoud decided to fake a kick with such aplomb that he basically tripped over his own feet. 

    As many of you know, you can't come to a complete stop, but you shouldn't hit the ground with your face on a penalty kick. 


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    Look, we aren't telling you that you can't celebrate, merely that you should refrain from embracing one of the players you just scored on. 

    You do that, you are getting a swift punch to the face. We can also safely say that hockey player isn't a hugger. 

Poor, Poor Robin Ventura

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    Now, to be fair, Robin Ventura didn't exactly want to go in on Nolan Ryan after getting plunked, but he had to simply because of the animosity shared by the Rangers and White Sox back in 1993. 

    The Houston Chronicle's Craig Hlavaty does a great job breaking down the fight between Ryan and Ventura, or, in many fans' eyes, old versus young. 

    Of course, many of you will scream that Ryan is the one who hit Ventura. Well, we still say the 26-year-old should have taken his base rather than exchange blows with a 46-year-old legend. 

    Or, you know, he could have put up a better fight. 

Not so Fast III

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    Meghan Rutledge had just one jump and subsequent turn for gold at the 2013 X Games, leaving little time to do anything like, oh, I don't know, pump your fist wildly as your bike flies over a jump. 

    Again, it's better to look boring and win than look good and lose, or something like that. 

Reggie Miller and the New York Knicks

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    If you love a good laugh and don't consider the Knicks your favorite team, I highly suggest watching Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. The New York Knicks

    It's high in LOL moments. 

    The snippet posted should have you craving more, and includes Miller's over-the-top response to getting shunned by John Starks. 

    Of course, the best part about the documentary is the brutal back-and-forth between the two iconic teams. (As a side note, it also makes you miss 1990s NBA more than you already do.)

    The most classic example might be Spike Lee chiding Miller from the sidelines in Game 5 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals, fueling an improbable comeback for the Pacers thanks to Miller, who was happy to get in the director's face with each and every shot. 

    The Pacers would ultimately lose the series, so this karma thing is contagious. 

Streakers Beware

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    Video posted is NSFW for what looks to be blurry butt

    Streaking is only really funny if Will Ferrell is doing it. Even then, we can find other stuff on television. So it goes without saying that we have had just about enough of you streakers taking time from our enjoyment of watching sports to show off your ability to get on the field naked. 

    The video posted is all you need to remember that the cheap seats are sometimes preferable to watching the game on the field. 

    If that doesn't do it for you, watch this Super Bowl streaker get popped by a special teams player. 

Mike Tomlin

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    Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

    It seems the football-loving world is split between those impressionable cuties who think Mike Tomlin accidentally meandered close to Jacoby Jones as he ran by the sidelines in Week 13 and those who, well, don't. 

    For the sake of argument, let's say he was employing some gamesmanship. And maybe there are some of you thinking, I'd like to pull off similar shenanigans


    Tomlin lost the game, was fined $100,000 and lost a late-round draft pick. So, um, watch where you are standing. 

Careful What You Wish for

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    This long jumper wanted everyone in attendance to see his leap into greatness. Well, he certainly has our attention and now lives on in this wonderful video. 

    We think we found Superman's lesser-known underachiever of a brother. 

Not so Fast IV

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    This might be my favorite moment, simply for the fact that the rollerblading hot rod actually looks back at the field before thumping his chest in a show of utter dominance—at least the kind of dominance that comes with anyone wearing roller blades. 

    ESPN's report was rather scant on the details, simply stating, "A Colombian celebrates much too early and the South Korean skater takes advantage in this race at the World Roller Speed Skating Championships last week in Guarne, Colombia." 

    Sweet, thanks. 

    If anyone has more information, please drop us a line. We will be out on the boardwalk carving up some sweet lines in our roller skates. 

Celebrate with Caution

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    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Let's play fast and loose with the term "karma," shall we?

    It's one thing to celebrate and devolve into a massive heap of jubilation and jocularity, but there is a line. That line, as it were, begins and ends at hurting yourself. 

    Famously, former NFL kicker Bill Gramatica tore his ACL after securing a field goal back in December 2001. Pro Football Talk quoted Gramatica, who recounted his celebration-turned-injury, "You guys got it wrong. You said I got hurt jumping. My jump was excellent. It was my landing I needed to work on."

    More recently, former Angels slugger Kendry Morales broke his leg in 2010 after celebrating with teammates on a grand slam. 

    Stay humble; stay healthy. 

Not so Fast V

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    No lead is safe. 

    That's pretty much all you can say as you recall Lindsey Jacobellis' brutal fall in the 2006 Winter Olympics. She would later say, via ESPN: 

    I was caught up in the moment. I think every now and then you might see something like that. I didn't even think twice. I was having fun and that's what snowboarding is. I was ahead. I wanted to share with the crowd my enthusiasm. I messed up. It happens.

    While that should end the showboating, we know there is an athlete out there who will do the same thing at some point. Set your DVRs accordingly. 

Jason Kidd "Hit Me" Moment

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    At the most egregious, Jason Kidd was trying to finagle some time with his players in the most immature manner possible.

    At the most benign, he is way too freaking clumsy with a cup of water and the last few years of his career are now explained fully. 

    For his "Hit me!" transgressions, Kidd was fined $50,000, which is one expensive spilled drink. We also noticed he was retroactively labeled as the most befuddled coach in the NBA by yours truly. 

Spike to the Nuts

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    Here's an oldie but a goodie. Well, it's an oldie where I come from. 

    Back in 2000, Toronto Argonauts' quarterback Kerwin Bell gets into the end zone and decides to spike the ball as a sign of his dominance and prowess. 

    It doesn't go well for him or his manhood. 

    You would think spiking a ball would be a relatively easy endeavor, because even Rob Gronkowski has mastered it. 

Ironman Shenanigans

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    This one is last only for the fact that this guy never receives the full complement of justice he should have. 

    Deadspin reports that man celebrating his Ironman 70.3 victory way too soon is Jérémy Jurkiewicz, and he very nearly wasted all of his hard work thanks to a surging Igor Amorelli. 

    As you can see, Jurkiewicz ultimately wins, proving that good doesn't always triumph and karma is just a silly little thing that keeps us all from taking the last slice of pizza. 

    We leave this here, however, so that you are ever mindful to be humble and finish the job before you begin popping bottles all over the place, because that's how messes are made.