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The 50 Biggest Whiners in Sports History

David DanielsSenior Writer IJanuary 17, 2017

The 50 Biggest Whiners in Sports History

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    Harry How/Getty Images

    Kobe Bryant's use of a slur has been a hot topic as of late, but let's forget about the slur and focus on the complaining.

    In the world of sports, there is only one thing fans and referees can agree about: Nothing is more annoying than a whiner.

    When you're watching the game and an obvious call is made, someone still manages to complain about it.  Some players are hated for that reason alone.

    These are the players that never get a call.  These are the athletes who are targeted by their leagues.

    Here are the 50 biggest whiners in sports:

50. Dwight Howard

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    Dwight Howard complains enough to be much higher on this list.  

    The reason why he is just number 50: He has the right to complain on a good majority of calls against him.  Big men in the NBA are always officiated more strictly, and Howard is one big man.

49. Hines Ward

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    Hines Ward was one of the NFL's many critics this past season, calling the league hypocrites.

    He expressed his frustration toward Roger Goodell and the NFL saying: "Say one thing, do another.  Talk about safety, but you add two games.  Talk about you don’t want players to drink, but our major endorsement is Coors Light.  That’s all you see is beer commercials.”

    Ward has a point with the safety, but he definitely reached a bit with the beer comparison.

48. Chris Johnson

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    When Chris Johnson doesn't win an award that he believes he deserves, he lets the world know.

    He complained about not winning Offensive Rookie of the Year and this season not being voted to the Pro Bowl.  Last year when he didn't win the MVP award after rushing for 2,000 yards, he tweeted: "Do anybody got payton address I got to go get my award."

47. Josh Smith

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    Josh Smith is one of the bigger complainers in the NBA when he's fouled and doesn't get a call.

    On top of that though, in a matchup against the Oklahoma City Thunder earlier this season, he threw a fit after Serge Ibaka threw down a dunk with seconds left in a game that was already decided.  

    Showboating?  Yes, but get revenge on the court—don't cry about it.

46. Vijay Singh

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    Vijay Singh was the most outspoken male golfer about Annika Sorenstam competing in the PGA.  He said, "What is she going to prove by playing?  It's ridiculous.  She's the best woman golfer in the world, and I want to emphasize 'woman.'  We have our tour for men, and they have their tour.  She's taking a spot from someone in the field."

    Singh said he would withdraw if he ended up paired with her.  

45. Urban Meyer

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    Out of everyone who can't stand the BCS, Urban Meyer might be the system's biggest hater.

    He's always been outspoken against it.  At least he has a pretty good reason: In 2004, his Utah team went undefeated and still didn't receive a national championship game berth.

44. Steve Johnson

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    You have to feel bad for a wide receiver that drops a game winning touchdown.

    That sympathy begins to fade though once the wideout blames God for the drop: "I PRAISE YOU 24/7!!!!!! AND THIS IS HOW YOU DO ME!!!!! YOU EXPECT ME TO LEARN FROM THIS??? HOW???!!! ILL NEVER FORGET THIS!! EVER!!! THX THO..."

    All I have to say is, Steve Johnson, why so serious?

43. Alex Rodriguez

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    A-Rod isn't the most respected player in the MLB in the first place.  During the Super Bowl, a cameraman found Rodriguez and girlfriend Cameron Diaz in the box seats with Diaz feeding him popcorn.

    According to a source from the Chicago Sun-Times, A-Rod flipped out: "He really went ballistic, thinking the cameraman was out to get them in a paparazzi-like shot."  

42. Paul Pierce

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    Get use to seeing Celtics on this list because there are many more to come.

    If you haven't noticed a pattern yet, Paul Pierce is just one of many NBA players who love to argue with referees.  

    Pierce also whined about his stats dropping last year against the Cleveland Cavaliers because he "had to guard LeBron James."  It had nothing to do with LeBron guarding him...

41. Steve Spurrier

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    Steve Spurrier is one of the whiniest football coaches out there.

    A few years ago, he accused Alabama of cheating by putting tape on the ground when they were kicking field goals.  He also threatened South Carolina to lower admission standards to help his recruiting or he would leave.

40. Jeremy Roenick

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    The talented Jeremy Roenick lost his edge near the end of his career.

    He once put the blame from a poor game on the team's equipment staff and said, "I struggled because I couldn’t get my skates sharpened the way I like.  I wasn’t confident in my footing.  I wasn’t confident in my feet.  When you feel like you’re going to fall down and you’re off balance, you’re going to struggle."

    Roenick later tried to make up for his shortcomings by writing a poem for the fans.  As you can see, he repeated the line, "And the fans can kiss my ass," 15 times. 

39. Jennifer Capriati

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    Jennifer Capriati was Serena Williams before Serena Williams.

    She's also been called the McEnroe of women's tennis.

38. Randy Moss

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    Apparently Randy Moss felt unappreciated.

    Moss is known for being one of the biggest head cases in the entire NFL so that interview shouldn't have been a surprise.  

    His short stint in Minnesota last season came to an end after he complained in the locker room about catered food, saying, "What the (expletive)?  Who ordered this crap?  I wouldn't feed this to my dog."  Of course, that wasn't much of a surprise either.

37. Stephen Jackson

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    Stephen Jackson is one of the league leaders in technical fouls every season.

    Some may believe he can't keep his temper under control—think again.  This season, Jackson was quoted saying, "I get techs because I want to."

36. James Harrison

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    This past season, James Harrison was the poster boy for the NFL's enforcement of head-to-head contact violations.

    He was fined multiple times and pled his case to the media every chance he got.  Harrison was so baffled that he couldn't lead with his head, he contemplated retirement.

35. Kendrick Perkins

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    There are too many complainers in the NBA to count.  Pouters though, are much rarer.

    On that note, meet Kendrick Perkins.  Be sure to watch his lower lip closely after a call doesn't go his way during a Thunder game this postseason.

34. Curt Schilling

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    There were plenty of instances when Curt Schilling showed his whiny side.  The one that sticks out though surrounds the "controversy" of his almost perfect game.

    When he was still with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Schilling had a perfect game intact in the eighth inning with two outs to go.  A San Diego Padre bunt ended those hopes.

    Schilling and his teammates were furious that someone would bunt late in a game to erase such a historic accomplishment, even though the Padres were still in the contest.

33. Tiger Woods

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    Tiger Woods curses like crazy after every bad shot he makes, well; at least that's what YouTube makes it seem like.

    On a serious note, Woods has flipped out on photographers for taking a picture during his swing.  Golfers and their OCD...

32. Peyton Manning

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    Peyton Manning is perfect.

    The 11 interceptions he threw in three games this season: the offensive line's fault.  The playoff loss in the video—the offensive line's fault.

31. Jack Nicklaus

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    Even the greatest of all time had his faults.

    Golfer Casey Martin had a bone disease and asked if he could use a golf cart to get from hole to hole.  He was granted his request by the Supreme Court, which didn't believe walking was a fundamental part of the sport.

    Nicklaus didn't approve and said, "I think we ought to take them all out and play golf.  I think they'd change their minds.  I promise you, it's fundamental." 

30. LeBron James

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    Again, NBA players love to argue with, and complain about, referees.  

    Referees aren't the only thing LeBron James complains about, though.  After a loss to the Magic in the playoffs he was quoted saying, "I'm only one guy.  I took Hedo in the first game and Rashard made the shot.  I took Rashard in the second game and Hedo made the shot.  If I could clone myself, we'd be all right, but I can't."

    He also almost ran Erik Spoelstra out of town earlier this season.

29. Shaquille O'Neal

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    Shaquille O'Neal is notorious for criticizing referees, not only during the game, but postgame.

    He was fined 35 grand this season for his comments on the Celtics' Christmas Day game, saying, “I guess they (fans) come out to see No. 26 (referee Bob Delaney) play.  He was a great player out there today.  They paid all that money to see No. 26 come play.  My thing is, if you’re going to call it, call it the same way every time.  Don’t pick and choose who you are going to call it against.”

28. Mike Krzyzewski

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    Ok, coaches are supposed to complain to referees to a certain extent.  It's called strategy.

    Mike Krzyzewski is a great coach, but he takes it to another level.  Just type in his name on YouTube and see what word pops up next: angry.

27. Ray Allen

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    Last year, Ray Allen complained about fans voting Allen Iverson to the NBA All-Star Game over him.

    Some of that whining may have originated a long time ago, about 10 years to be exact.  Back in 2001, Allen's Milwaukee Bucks faced off against Iverson's 76ers in the Eastern Conference Finals.  The Bucks lost the series, a series in which Allen complained that the league was against them.

26. Serena Williams

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    Serena Williams Whining

    Williams may be a questionable addition to the list.  Why?  She complains more than anyone in tennis today.

    She's too beastly to "whine"—she threatens. 

25. Lane Kiffin

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    In Oakland, Lane Kiffin whined about how Al Davis was unfair to him.  Being familiar with Davis, most of America believed and backed up Kiffin.

    At Tennessee, the other side of Kiffin began to show as he made a fool of himself.  Early in his time there he accused Urban Meyer of cheating to sign a recruit.  When he left the Vols after just one year, the fraud was revealed.

24. Danica Patrick

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    Danica Patrick has a temper.

    After a race in 2010, she blamed her team for her bad loss, exclaiming: "This is the worst car I've ever had.  There's no stability or grip.  It's just scary, really scary.  It's awful, really awful.  I think I'm still shaking.  I wasn’t flat out the last two laps and I was scared to death flat on the first two.  I’ve never been bad here before.  I’ve never been outside the top 10 on a finish or qualifying, so, it’s not my fault.  The car is not good."

23. Tim Duncan

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    Tim Duncan seems so innocent it's hard to call him a whiner.  He's one of the more consistent complainers in the NBA, though.

    He was once thrown out for laughing on the bench.  How many times do you think Duncan had to heckle that ref on the court to get in his head that much?

22. Scott Hoch

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    Back to golf and arguably the biggest complainer in the sport, Scott Hoch.

    He was another male golfer against letting Annika Sorenstam play in the PGA.

    Hoch also said he disliked the British Open because of the weather and bashed St. Andrews Golf Course, a course known to be the birthplace of golf.  He has an opinion on everything. 

21. Jeff Gordon

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    Not so much anymore, but earlier in his career, Jeff Gordon was seen as a huge crybaby.

    He supposedly complained after every loss.  There are actually two Facebook pages dedicated to Gordon on the topic: One, "Jeff Gordon is a Cry Baby!!!!"  And two, "Jeff Gordon is a Whining Crybaby!"

20. Vince Young

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    In 2008, Vince Young, after not being able to take the boos from a Tennessee crowd, disappeared.  His mother called police worried that he could take his own life.

    In 2009, Young told the media he either wanted to start or be traded.  After he got the starting job back, he pouted about not being able to play hurt, threw his shoulder pads into the stands, and called out Jeff Fisher.

    Texas Vince seems so long ago.

19. Mark Cuban

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    Mark Cuban is probably the most hated owner by referees ever.  After all, he's one of the few, if not the only one, who actually pesters them during games.

    Lakers coach Phil Jackson went as far as to say Cuban's antics may have cost the Mavericks the NBA title in 2006 as the Miami Heat were heavily favored in foul calls late in the series.

18. Danny Ainge

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    We're going back a bit, this time to find one of the biggest whiners in NBA history.

    Danny Ainge was an aggressive player who didn't appreciate when he heard a whistle.  

    He may have given an earful to referees during his playing days, but if the Celtics get upset in the first round by the Knicks this season, fans will be the ones in his ear complaining about the Kendrick Perkins-Jeff Green trade.

17. Wayne Rooney

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    Most international soccer players are known, at least in America, as being whimps and whiners.

    The aggressive Wayne Rooney isn't a whimp, but he's definitely a whiner.  He has a short fuse and that temper can get him into trouble.

16. Allen Iverson

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    Allen Iverson whined about practice.  He whined about Larry Brown.

    In 2009 after sitting the bench in Detroit, Iverson signed with Memphis just wanting some playing time.  He was quoted saying, "God chose Memphis as the place that I will continue my career."

    Three games on the bench with the Grizzlies and Iverson was back to whining.  Now, he's in Turkey, probably whining about something. 

15. Lou Holtz

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    Lou Holtz wasn't the same jolly character when he was coaching that you see when you watch college football on ESPN.

    He once said, "The man who complains about the way the ball bounces is likely the one who dropped it."  This came from the guy who had more sideline tantrums than Bobby Knight.

14. Floyd Mayweather Jr.

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    Floyd Mayweather talks a lot of trash.  He may even be up there with Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson in that department.

    The man who calls himself "Pretty Boy" demanded that Manny Pacquiao get drug tested before the two big names would fight.  At first, Pacquiao didn't like the idea.  Now though, he has agreed to testing, but Mayweather still refuses to fight him.

    After his racist rant against Pacquiao, it now looks like all Mayweather's whining was just a cover-up for his own cowardice.

13. Sidney Crosby

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    Sidney Crosby isn't exactly known as the toughest player in the NHL.

    He's disliked by many fans for his lack of toughness and his constant whining.  During a game against the Washington Capitals, Alexander Ovechkin recorded a hat trick.  Crosby began to complain to the ref about fans throwing too many hats on the ice.  

12. Pete Rose

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    Pete Rose to this day still won't admit he bet on baseball.

    He complains to the media about not being able to be part of the game every chance he gets.  He may get into the Hall of Fame one day, but his whining about it isn't helping his cause.

11. Barry Bonds

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    Poor Barry Bonds.  The innocent home run king was targeted unfairly by media and fans alike because of incorrect steroid accusations.

    Just kidding.  Seriously, Bonds played the "Why me" card about a thousand times during his career. 

10. George Steinbrenner

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    The late great George Steinbrenner didn't always have a great relationship with his staff.  During Steinbrenner's reign in New York, the Yankees went through about 17 managers.

    He fired managers way more than 17 times, though, as multiple guys, including Billy Martin, were repeat hires and fires.  This is the same owner who fired Joe Torre, even after he won four championships.

9. Bill Laimbeer

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    Bill Laimbeer is one of the most hated players in NBA history.  Not just because of his style of play, which is often called dirty, but because of his whining.

    Even after he would get called for a dirty play, he would still complain about it.  In today's game where referees allow less contact, Laimbeer would be throwing a tantrum every other minute.

8. Cristiano Ronaldo

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    Cristiano Ronaldo may be the most talented soccer player in the world today, but he's also the biggest flopper and whiner.

    It's easy to comprehend why Ronaldo acts like a spoiled brat—it's because he is one.  Real Madrid is paying him $11 million a year plus the $70 million he reportedly makes in endorsements, again, per year.

7. Terrell Owens

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    Terrell Owens whined to many quarterbacks in his career, but his worst fit came in Philadelphia.

    He constantly complained to Donovan McNabb about not getting the football.  McNabb ignored Owens and TO reacted the way you would expect.  He single-handedly ruined the Eagles because of his whining.

6. Jerry Rice

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    Jerry Rice over Terrell Owens?  Surprisingly, yes.  Rice may have not complained to quarterbacks like Owens, but he complained to referees much more often.

    After winining the Super Bowl and Super Bowl MVP with the 49ers, he complained about not having enough endorsements.

5. Al Davis

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    As the video explains, it's always been Al Davis vs. the NFL.

    The "Immaculate Reception" and the "Tuck Rule" game have been complained about endlessly by Davis and the Raiders.

    He whined about Lane Kiffin not approving of JaMarcus Russell.  Then he cut JaMarcus Russell, whined that Russell didn't deserve his huge salary, and filed a grievance to get the money back.

    Davis has also tried to sue the NFL and Chuck Noll.

4. Tom Brady

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    If Tom Brady is knocked down, hit, or even touched, he's probably going to ask the ref for a flag.  No one is more protected by the new "roughing the quarterback" rules than him.

    Just as another example of Brady whining, even after winning three Super Bowls and going on to have a Hall of Fame career, he still manages to shed a tear when talking on ESPN about being drafted in the sixth round.

3. Kobe Bryant

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    Kobe Bryant's tantrum the other night was just one of thousands he has had in his career.

    "Every" is a strong word.  I don't want to say Kobe complains about every single call that doesn't go his way, but it's pretty close.  He even whines to the ref about calls that a fan in the upper decks could easily make.

2. Rasheed Wallace

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    It was a close one between Rasheed Wallace and Kobe for number two.

    Wallace complained just as much as Kobe, but his reactions were just so much more colorful.  Half the time a foul was called on him he ran around the court like someone just told him there was a bomb in the stadium.

    He holds the record for most technical fouls in NBA history. 

1. John McEnroe

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    In a civilized game, John McEnroe was pretty much as uncivil as you could be.

    Throwing rackets, insulting umpires—McEnroe's reputation is built around his whining.

    If there was a stat for most cursing and making a crowd gasp, John McEnroe would be tennis' all-time leader.

     

     

     

    David Daniels is an NFL Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report and a Syndicated Writer. Follow   him and  Bleacher Report Swagger on Twitter. 

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