25 Sports Stars We'd Like to Sucker Punch

Zack Pumerantz@z_pumerantzAnalyst IIIMarch 30, 2011

25 Sports Stars We'd Like to Sucker Punch

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    While this piece is not about the dreamworld of a young girl who is forced to fight dragons, Nazis and pimps, it does present an epic fantasy that many fans wish they could freely explore.

    From vexatious criminal charges to excessive self-appraisal, these athletes continue to baffle fans and frustrate their teams.

    While many on this list believe that they are of a higher power, others garner a spot based on pure irritation.

    Whether it's the way they play their sport or the manner in which they celebrate success, these athletes have earned the right to a confrontation with angry fans—or maybe just in theory.

    Here are the top 25 athletes we would like to sucker punch.


25. Tiki Barber

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    Maybe it's the obnoxious million-dollar smile, or perhaps it's the fact that he dumped his eight-months-pregnant wife for Traci Lynn Johnson, an NBC intern who also babysat Barber's kids. The former Giants running back is the ultimate phony.

    After leaving the Giants and bad-mouthing the leadership, particularly the Man(ning) under center, the team went on to win the Super Bowl.

    Oh yeah, he's trying to make a comeback this season.

    Perhaps he'll get a spot as a replacement player.

24. Plaxico Burress

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    Two players, two former Giants. They might as well call this one Cheddar Bob.

    Not only did the star receiver go to a nightclub with a gun, he then shot himself in the thigh outside of the nightclub after being turned away for "carrying heat."

    Instead of working his way towards a potential Hall of Fame spot in Canton after catching the winning touchdown in the Giants' miraculous Super Bowl win, Plaxico earned two years in prison.

    Next step, parole visits.

23. Sean Avery

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    Known as the biggest pest in hockey, Avery has made his career on instigating fights and not finishing them.

    But even his own teammates hate him.

    When he was on the Los Angeles Kings, he pissed off coach Andy Murray, who then made him do push-ups in front of the team. After scoring in the next game, he did push-ups to celebrate, further mocking his coach.

    After wearing out his welcome in numerous cities, he was on the Dallas Stars and, during his 23-game stint, called Dion Phaneuf's girlfriend his "sloppy seconds."

    Watch him play and you will understand why he needs more than a vicious sucker punch.

22. Jay Cutler

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    Something about this guy's face is irritating.

    Not only does he sulk on the sideline and ignore the media, but he has the potential to rule Chicago.

    As he continues to pace through his career as an average quarterback with a rocket arm who can't win a playoff game, Chicago fans continue to hate him more with every interception.

    He just comes off as mundane and emotionless.

    Perhaps a good sucker punch from Brian Urlacher or Lance Briggs would wake him up.

21. Tony Parker

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    Eva Longoria, two NBA championships and U.S. citizenship.

    Tony Parker needs to be taken down a few notches since he thinks he is entitled to use and toss every piece of success that comes his way. 

    Not only does he play the most aesthetically frustrating style of basketball, but Parker is a waste of a human being and cheated on the hottest Desperate Housewife.

    We're still shaking our heads.

20. Alex Rodriguez

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    As he continues to swing and miss in crucial playoff games, his career continues to become a metaphor for his failed life.

    He cheated on his ex-wife with strippers and prostitutes, took steroids and then lied without hesitation about it, slapped the ball out of Bronson Arroyo's glove during the 2004 playoffs, and screamed at a Blue Jays infielder in an effort to distract him during the play (he claimed he said "HA" because he was excited about running around the bases).

    None of the above may be as bad and irritating as when he checks himself out in the mirror the way he would look into a woman's eyes.

    Don't let the money fool you, this man is a creep.

19. Albert Haynesworth

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    Aside from cashing in from the Redskins and then sitting out because of morbid obesity, Fat Albert was voted by players as the second-dirtiest player in the NFL behind, none other than, Hines Ward.

    It all started when Haynesworth stomped out center Andre Gurode in 2006.

    Now that he's become even fatter and lazier, while earning more than the average millionaire, he deserves a good sucker punch.

18. Sidney Crosby

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    Crosby inherited the Jordan/Tiger/LeBron syndrome before reaching the NHL.

    Highly touted as a youth, Sid the Kid is arrogant and believes he's the second coming of Jesus.

    While he has amazing talent and is perhaps the second-best player in the game behind Alex Ovechkin, Crosby excessively whines when he gets checked and the refs don't call a penalty. He throws a tantrum every time he doesn't get his way.

    Crosby has latched onto the Halo Effect, believing that all calls should go his way.

17. Matt Leinart

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    Not only did he win the Heisman Trophy at USC when it should've unanimously gone to Texas quarterback Vince Young, but after losing the 2006 Rose Bowl to Texas, Leinart was quoted as saying, "We are still the better team."

    He was then drafted by the Cardinals 10th overall in the 2006 draft and went on to hold out, angering his coach Dennis Green.

    Believing he should be given the starting position after Kurt Warner retired, his coaches felt differently and wanted him to earn the spot.

    He lost out to journeyman Derek Anderson and his pretentious career quickly became a joke.

    His self-righteousness caused his downfall.

    At best, he was a poor man's Chad Pennington.

16. Kevin Garnett

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    When Garnett starred on the Minnesota Timberwolves and failed to win a ring, empathetic fans idolized him and prayed for him to finally win a championship.

    After coming to the Celtics and forming the "big three" in an effort to win a championship, Garnett finally got his gold.

    Then his attitude trickled to new lows.

    Becoming more of an ass, Garnett believes he can throw elbows or shove defenders out of the way any time he pleases.

    Call it the Terrell Owens Effect.

15. Terrell Owens and Chad Johnson...Ochocinco...No Wait Johnson

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    These two prima donnas share this slide, but each warrants a sucker punch.

    While Terrell Owens is a locker room cancer, Chad Johnson is an attention hog.

    At the same time, it would've been great if they backed up their chatter.

    That is clearly too much to ask.

    Collectively they are the Beavis and Butthead of the NFL...at best.

14. Dan Marino

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    This video is only slightly disturbing.

    What's more bothersome is Dan Marino's obsession with Saints star quarterback Drew Brees.

    I'll avoid the lack-of-a-Super-Bowl-win chatter, because that is useless. So, here is a typical Marino conversation:

    Analyst: So how will the Colts attack the Saints defense in the Super Bowl?

    Marino: Well if you want to talk defense, you have to start with Drew Brees...

    Analyst: But we're discussing the Saints defense, not their offense, Dan.

    Marino: True. Well, to discuss their passing defense you have to start with the throwing arm of Drew Brees.

13. Jimmy Clausen

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    Clausen looks more like a member of Jersey Shore than he does an NFL quarterback.

    While he still has time to create a solid career for himself, Clausen reportedly scheduled a press conference at the Canton Hall of Fame to state his college choice.

    Resembling LeBron's "decision," Clausen showed up in a limo and stated he would throw 60 touchdowns every year while winning four Heisman trophies and four national championships.

    Matt Leinart part two.

12. Wes Welker

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    This pick is out of pure frustration.

    Welker isn't a spectacular route runner, isn't astoundingly fast and doesn't have jaw-dropping hands. So why does he catch 23 percent of Brady's passes?

    Maybe it's the milk.

    Always open across the middle as a slot receiver, Welker may be the most annoying receiver in the league.

    Can anyone just crush him across the middle please, just to set the tone.

11. Charles Barkley

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    Barkley not only accused his alma mater of being racist when they hired Gene Chizik over Turner Gill, but he almost never shuts his mouth in his quest to prove his self-entitlement.

    After retiring from basketball, Barkley has always found himself in controversial situations because he has no boundaries.

    He is known for speaking about things that he has no idea about and criticizing anyone he pleases.

    Charles, stop trying to keep yourself relevant.

10. Keith Hernandez

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    Talk about self-righteous.

    Phil Mushnick of the New York Post once said in reference to Hernandez, "He's arrogant, vain, condescending, impolitic, opinionated, judgmental, profane, sarcastic, obnoxious and scornful."

    Keith Hernandez also is obsessed with Keith Hernandez and focused more on himself than any Mets game he is announcing.

    Stick to Just for Men commercials.

9. Eli Manning

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    While the youngest Manning does have a confident and collected, albeit slightly doofy, calmness about him, the media and the NFL seem to have placed an undeserved halo above this guy's head.

    Kudos to the Super Bowl, but seriously, what else have you done?

    Watching Eli play football is more frustrating than being tied to a chair and being forced to watch Say Yes to the Dress all day.

    He displays immense potential at times, only to make bonehead plays that ruin the game.

    Giants fans are used to watching plays like the one above.

    While he is a smart guy, a good sucker punch might fix some screws inside that head.

8. LeBron James

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    Before his hyped decision to move to South Beach, LeBron was beloved as an elite athlete and leader on a wounded team.

    After taking the easy route and forming a "big three" in Miami, while just entering the prime of his career, he became a villain.

    Referring to the athletic freak as a villain is too generous. Rather, he is a sellout and a wimp.

    He could have changed basketball forever and created a legacy for himself.

    No turning back now.

7. Tom Brady

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    Everyone get off his bandwagon. He is an arrogant and whiny pretty boy who looks like Sebastian Bach with his Rapunzel-style hair.

    Call this choice a "fun" sucker punch.

    What's not to love? He's one of the best quarterbacks ever, was drafted in the sixth round, has three rings and is married to Gisele.

    Oh wait, yeah that's right, he's married to Gisele.

    Enough said.

6. Cortland Finnegan

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    Hey Cortland, how dare you touch the most dynamic, most caring and sensitive receiver in the league?

    While the fight was the most entertainment in a Titans game this past season, that doesn't take away from the fact that Finnegan is a dirty player who thrives on getting under his opponents' skin.

    Fans can't help but clench their fists while watching this guy play.

5. DeSean Jackson

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    While he is good at doing the jerk and the dougie in cleats, nobody in the NFL taunts opponents more than Jackson, and that's saying a lot.

    With the game on the line, the haughty receiver is more concerned with an end-zone celebration than actually crossing the line into the end zone.

    Arguably the cockiest player in the NFL.

4. Philip Rivers

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    While Jay Cutler certainly deserves to be trash talked to, Rivers is still perhaps the second-cockiest player in the NFL.

    With no significant wins in his career, Rivers has this undeserved self-righteousness about him that rubs fans the wrong way.

    Merriman would have been a good candidate to sucker punch him, although seeing LaDainian Tomlinson hit him could've been epic.

    Try winning something before you open your mouth, Rivers.

3. Ben Roethlisberger

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    Richard Seymour had the right idea when he punched the whiny quarterback.

    Roethlisberger may be one of the best quarterbacks in the game and can sure win like one, but there is more behind the man.

    He crashed his motorcycle in 2006 while not wearing a helmet and not having a valid Pennsylvania driver's license. You're not invincible, Big Ben.

    He then was involved in rape accusations, reportedly partied during Super Bowl week and is continuously pampered by the NFL.

2. Brett Favre

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    He may be a Hall of Famer, but Brett Favre is no angel.

    Here are the top five reasons he deserves a thorough beating.

    1. He sexted Jenn Sterger and sent her pictures of his manhood repeatedly then lied about it.

    2. While he leads the NFL in touchdowns all-time, this blinds people from the fact that he also leads in interceptions.

    3. His acting makes Michael Jordan look like Denzel Washington.

    4. He has retired and come back 64 times.

    5. He put his consecutive games streak ahead of his team.

1. John Rocker

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    Mets fans remember him from his days with the Braves and his obscene harassment of the New York crowd.

    A raging bigot, he hated all minorities equally.

    The scum of the earth and a true waste of life, Rocker had a memorable quote regarding a question if he would ever live in New York.

    "I'd retire first. It's the most hectic, nerve-racking city. Imagine having to take the 7 train to the ballpark looking like you're riding through Beirut next to some kid with purple hair, next to some que*r with AIDS, right next to some dude who just got out of jail for the fourth time, right next to some 20-year-old mom with four kids. It's depressing...

    "The biggest thing I don't like about New York are the foreigners. You can walk an entire block in Times Square and not hear anybody speaking English, Asians and Koreans and Vietnamese and Indians and Russians and Spanish people and everything up there. How the hell did they get in this country?"

    Yes, that's word for word.