20 Harshest Verbal Assaults In Sports

Amber LeeSports Lists Lead WriterSeptember 11, 2011

20 Harshest Verbal Assaults In Sports

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    Most professional athletes will just brutalize you on the field of play, shake your hand and call it a day. Winning is the ultimate goal, after all!

    Other professional athletes will brutalize you on the field of play, call you a woman and kick you in the crotch just to prove it. Then they'll take your mother out for a nice steak dinner and never call her again. Winning, humiliation and making you walk away less of a man is the ultimate goal, after all!

    Here are 20 of the best verbal beatdowns in sports.

20. Kevin Garnett vs. Craig Sager's Suit

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    The Boston Celtics' Kevin Garnett will tolerate a lot of things, but this butt-ugly suit is not one of them. 

    Obviously KG has dished out his share of smackdowns, but his deadpan delivery of the line "you take this outfit home, and you burn it" is absolutely priceless.

19. Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Ricky Hatton

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    Actually, what Floyd Mayweather Jr. had to say about Manny Pacquiao was harsher, but it also crossed the line from verbal smackdown to uncomfortably mean. 

    Floyd should stick to meanness that goes over better with the general public, like calling a dude fat:

    “Ricky Hatton ain’t nothing but a fat man. I’m going to punch him in his beer belly. He ain’t good enough to be my sparring partner. ... When I retire, I’ll get Ricky Hatton to wash my clothes and cut my lawn and buckle my shoes.”

18. Rasheed Wallace vs. LeBron James

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    Remember back when LeBron James was a Cleveland Cavalier and almost universally beloved? 

    Well, Rasheed Wallace wasn't a believer. When asked about having to face King James in their next game, Wallace said, "I don't know if there's any kings. Ya know that's something y'all label him."

17. Eli Manning Against the World

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    In August 2011, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning had the audacity to say that he belongs in the same class as Tom Brady.

    Within 24 hours it became clear that nobody in the entire world shared his opinion, and he was mercilessly mocked in the press.

    This dust-up came just three months after Manning failed to crack the NFL's top 100, as voted by the players.

    Wonder how the media would have reacted if Manning said he was an average quarterback who doesn't belong in the same class as Tom Brady.

    Something tells me that, thanks to a certain other Manning, nothing Eli ever says or does will be good enough. For anyone.

16. LeBron James vs. HATERS

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    The Miami Heat's LeBron James should just get a shirt that says HATERS GONNA HATE! and just stop talking, because every time he opens his mouth he becomes even more unlikable.

    The famously thin-skinned James decided the best time to air his grievances was after the Heat's defeat at the hands of Dirk Nowitzki's Mavericks in the NBA Finals:

    “At the end of the day, all the people that was rooting on me to fail, at the end of the day they have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today. They have the same personal problems they had today. I’m going to continue to live the way I want to live and continue to do the things that I want to do with me and my family and be happy with that.

    "They can get a few days or a few months or whatever the case may be on being happy about not only myself, but the Miami Heat not accomplishing their goal, but they have to get back to the real world at some point.”

    King James may have lost the championship trophy, but he definitely won the title for biggest, whiniest, pettiest baby.

15. Andy Roddick vs. Tennis Analysts

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    Andy Roddick is mad as hell, and he's not going to take it anymore.

    During the 2011 U.S. Open, he shared his thoughts on tennis analysts and offered a glimpse into what his future may hold after he (mercifully) retires from the game:

    "Tennis analyst is the easiest job in the world because whatever the person does, if it works you just say that's what's good, and if it doesn't work, you guys go, 'He should have done the other things.' So, you know, I'm pretty convinced that I could be a tennis analyst one day...it just doesn't take much thought...if I'm grinding and I'm winning, you guys are like, 'He's reinvented himself.' If I'm playing like crap and pushing, then, you know, 'He's horrible and he needs to hit the ball.' Everyone's an expert but I'm better than most of them, I believe."

    Roddick was brutalized by Rafael Nadal in the semis.

14. Gregg Williams vs. Patrick Robinson

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    In August 2010, New Orleans Saints defense coordinator Gregg Williams was unhappy with the play of rookie cornerback Patrick Robinson.

    Generally coaches tend to keep this kind of stuff in-house; Williams decided to go another direction. When asked about Robinson's play in the Saints' preseason opener, Williams had this to say:

    "Patrick has a lot of skill but right now he doesn't know how to play. Right now I don't have any trust in him. He has to take the next step up in pro football. He's had too much down time and he doesn't know how to take care of his body. Right now, he's my whipping boy."

    Gee coach, tell us how you really feel.

    I hope his wife never asks him if she looks fat in something.

13. Allen Iverson vs. Practice, Man, Practice!

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    Okay, so this wasn't exactly Allen Iverson versus practice, although he didn't much care for practice.

    This iconic performance, in which he used the word practice over 20 times, was the result of 76ers head coach Larry Brown's criticism of Iverson's habitual absences from team practices.

    Iverson considered Brown a mentor in the early years of his career, but the two continually butted heads during their time together.

    Brown was out in Philadelphia in 2003, one year after Iverson's press conference.

12. Tom Brady vs. the Jets

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    You know the drill by now. Rex Ryan says something provocative about the New York Jets ruling the roost, and Tom Brady and the New England Patriots (minus Wes Welker) don't take the bait. Or do they? 

    Brady actually does respond, all the time, and he does it with a nonchalant smugness that must drive Ryan crazy. Take his recent statements, for example:

    "The Jets? Yeah, we've heard that for a few years. You don't ever hear us talking too much about that. I think there's a long way to go between now and the regular season. We've got a very important preseason game coming up, and all these games are very important for us. It's so far away at this point we've got other things on our mind."

    As a Steelers fan, I am fluent in Brady smugness. Here is the translation:

    "The Jets? Yeah, they say that every year, but they haven't done squat in the playoffs. They're an all-talk team, and we're an all-decade team in the NFL with three Super Bowl rings. Rex is focused on the Super Bowl in August, which will make him look even dumber in January and will make me look even smarter. Suck it, Jets."

    Damn you, Brady!

11. T.O. and Ocho vs. Cromartie and Revis

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    Anyone besides me miss the T.Ocho show? Probably not.

    Anyway, Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco used their Versus talk show as a public venue to embarrass themselves all last season, and their preview of the Jets-Bengals Thanksgiving Day battle was no exception.

    Apparently Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie referred to themselves as the Scottie Pippen and Michael Jordan of the NFL, which is actually pretty douchey; fortunately T.Ocho always up the ante on douche behavior.

    Says T.Ocho: "Pippen and Jordan? Child please! More like Ren and Stimpy is what I'm sayin'."

    It's not even a very funny or creative dig, but it's funny that T.Ocho thinks it's hilarious.

    Naturally, the Jets destroyed the Bungles.

10. Shaquille O'Neal vs. the Sacramento Queens

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    It's no secret that Shaquille O'Neal knows how to deliver a diss, and one of his most famous came at the expense of the Sacramento Kings.

    Shaq's exact words? Well, they were biting and confrontational, natch:

    “I’m not worried about facing the Sacramento Queens. Write it down. Take a picture. I’m not going to talk about this all year. When I get back, there’s going to be trouble.”

    It's been almost a decade, but the moniker has stuck, much to the chagrin of Kings fans.

9. Bernard Hopkins vs. Donovan McNabb?

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    Despite his affable demeanor and solid career, Vikings quarterback Donovan McNabb has suffered all sorts of indignity over the last several years.

    Shockingly, the worst of it didn't even come from Terrell Owens, the most likely source. The worst came from Bernard Hopkins, who offered some harsh words on McNabb to reporters in May, 2011. 

    "Forget this. He's got a suntan, that's all. Why do you think McNabb felt he was betrayed? Because McNabb is the guy in the house, while everybody else is on the field. He's the one who got the extra coat. The extra servings. 'You're our boy,'" Hopkins said, patting a reporter on the back in illustration. "He thought he was one of them."

    Hopkins was promoting his HBO fight against Jean Pascal, who he clearly got confused with Donovan McNabb.

8. Cris Carter vs. Terrell Owens

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    Former Vikings wide receiver Cris Carter is normally a pretty cool customer, but he made headlines in 2009 when he said he wanted to bust a cap on then Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens during two separate interviews! 

    Say you want to shoot T.O. once, shame on him. Say you want to shoot T.O. twice, shame on you:

    “I’d take one bullet and put it right in him. BAM!” Later on, Carter, on another ESPN radio show, said, “If I got a gun I got one bullet in it, I shoot T.O. right now. Right on the spot. I have a press conference my first day they hire me, I have him come, I put a bullet right there sitting in him.”

    The best headline: Former WR Cris Carter Takes Shot at Terrell Owens.

    Hehehe.

7. Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier

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    Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier engaged in three of the most epic fights in boxing history. They also engaged in some of the most epic trash talking in sports history!

    Unlike in the boxing matches, Ali always came out on top in the trash talking department. The best of his insults to Frazier:

    "Frazier is so ugly that he should donate his face to the US Bureau of Wildlife."

    "I'll beat him so bad he'll need a shoehorn to put his hat on."

    "If they can make penicillin out of moldy bread, they can sure make something out of you."

    You can never go wrong with calling someone ugly—it's a classic.

6. Reggie Miller vs. Spike Lee

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    The Indiana Pacers' Reggie Miller's trash talk is legendary, but his most famous moment didn't even require words (although he found some).

    In Game 1 of the 1995 Eastern Conference finals, the Knicks had a 105-99 lead on the Pacers with under 20 seconds to go.

    That is until Miller went on one of the most spectacular game-ending scoring runs in NBA history to win the game for the Pacers, who went on to win the series.

    Miller taunted Knicks front-row staple Spike Lee with the universal sign for choke artists, while the game was still going on! After the victory he shouted, "Choke artists! Choke artists!" as he ran to the locker room.

    Brutal!

5. Bryan Trottier and Kevin Stevens vs. Brian Bellows

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    Former Minnesota North Star Bryan Bellows probably still has nightmares about the 1991 Stanley Cup Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

    Not because Minnesota lost the Stanley Cup, but because of the verbal assault he suffered at the hands of Bryan Trottier and Kevin Stevens.

    Thanks to the glories of the Internet, we get to witness this amazing moment in time. Here is the basic gist of the conversation:

    Stevens: Bellows, you must be really hurt. Get off the ice. Get off the ice, you bleepy!
    Trottier: You're the best.
    Bellows: Hey, you suck...
    Trottier: You're the bleeping best.
    Stevens: Lay on the ice like a little...
    Trottier: You're the bleeping best, Bellows.
    Stevens: You lay on the ice like a...
    Trottier: You're a bleeping superstar.
    Stevens: You lay on the...
    Trottier: You're the bleeping best, Bellows.
    Stevens: You lay on the ice like a little...you lay on the ice like a broad, Bellows. Bleepy!
    Trottier: You bleeping woman.
    Someone else: ...you bleeping puke...
    Stevens: Get up, you bleep!
    Trottier: You bleeping got balls, you bleeping bleep bleeper!

    Amazing.

4. Barack Obama vs. Rajon Rondo

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    In March of 2011 a few of the Celtics attended a fundraiser at the museum of Fine Arts for President Barack Obama.

    Rajon Rondo, who was initially very excited about the opportunity, later probably wished he never came after Obama used the opportunity to take a jab at the youngster's shooting.

    Obama pointed at Rondo and asked Ray Allen, “Hey, Ray, why don’t you teach this kid how to shoot?”

    Cue the laughter, and the humiliation.

    Shaquille O'Neal said of the incident:

    "KG (Kevin Garnett) told me he saw the look on Rondo’s face and the kid was devastated, embarrassed. Dissed by the President, even though I’m sure Obama didn’t mean any harm. Rondo smiled and went along with all of it, but KG told me he could see it in his eyes. It bothered Rondo. It killed him."

    Shaq also noted that Rondo "shot the ball horribly" in his next game and blamed the President's chiding for Rondo's sudden fear of shooting the ball.

    Come on Rondo, toughen up! Your numbers are better than Obama's at the moment.

3. Mike Tyson vs. Lennox Lewis

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    Mike Tyson has done a pretty decent job at repairing his image, considering he used to say stuff like this:

    "My style is impetuous, my defense is impregnable and I'm just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat your children. Praise be to Allah."

    Threatening to eat children and actually eating ears! WTF.

2. Patrick Roy vs. Jeremy Roenick

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    During the 1996 NHL playoffs, the Colorado Avalanche and Chicago Blackhawks met in the Western Conference semifinals.

    Game 4 of the series went to overtime, and after Patrick Roy stopped Jeremy Roenick on a breakaway shot, the Avalanche went on to win the game.

    After the game, the always colorful Roenick had this to say about the shot:

    "It should have been a penalty shot, there's no doubt about it. I like Patrick's quote that he would've stopped me. I'd just want to know where he was in Game 3, probably getting his jock out of the rafters in the United Center maybe."

    Roy replied:

    "I can't really hear what Jeremy says, because I've got my two Stanley Cup rings plugging my ears."

    Advantage Roy. The Avalanche went on to win the series and the Stanley Cup, and Roy retired with four Stanley Cup championships under his belt. Roenick retired with zilch. Boom.

1. Shaquille O'Neal vs. Kobe Bryant

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    Shaquille O'Neal has lobbed so many zingers at Kobe Bryant that it's impossible to narrow the field down to just one, so let's not even try. Here are his greatest hits:

    “I’m not the one buying love. He’s the one buying love.”

    “If you’ve got a Corvette that runs into a brick wall, you know what’s going to happen. He’s a Corvette. I’m a brick wall.”

    "You know what I am not familiar with that name, I know a lot of names and I have a lot of names in my head, but I am not familiar with that name. Especially if there is nothing to talk about, I’m sorry I can’t recall that name."

    “Kobe always tried to be a hero. But you know, as the saying goes, a hero ain’t nothing but a sandwich.”

    “You know how I be. Last week Kobe couldn’t do without me.”

    And my personal favorite:

    “My personal opinion is, how, if you never hung out with somebody, do you know them so well? I never hung out with that dude because the dude is a weirdo.”

    That's just cold, Shaq!