16 Acts of Bad Sportsmanship

Nick Dimengo@@itsnickdimengoFeatured ColumnistApril 16, 2014

16 Acts of Bad Sportsmanship

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    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    There's a saying that goes, "It doesn't matter if you win or lose, it's how you play the game." And part of playing the game is respecting the opponent until the end of a match.

    Some people in sports seem to forget that, though.

    Like these guys, who let their emotions and poor attitudes reflect on some really poor sportsmanship. So take notes, kids, this isn't how you should react when playing sports.

This Flopping Kid

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    I've used this video a variety of times before—so apologies if it seems a bit redundant—but I just can't help myself.

    These are youth sports, kids.

    And while I have a ridiculous competitive streak that often gets the best of me, inane flopping like this makes me fear for the crap athletes will be trying to pull in the very near future.

    Be a good sport and just learn the game when you're young (says the old, 29-year-old writer).

Randall Simon

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    Morry Gash

    Mascots might not look like humans, but we should all remember that there actually are people dressed in those silly costumes that are running around the stadium.

    Someone probably should have reminded former MLB player Randall Simon that back in 2003 when, during the Milwaukee Brewers sausage race, he took a swing at one of the participants, knocking them to the ground.

    Sure, it wasn't an unsportsmanlike thing that was done to impact the game, but dude disrespected the Brewers and the poor person in the Italian sausage costume by nailing them with a bat—and picking up a hefty penalty.

Julio Borbon

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    Athletes may want to be actors, but I wouldn't recommend auditioning for any roles in the near future to former Chicago Cubs outfielder Julio Borbon.

    As anyone with even the slightest of vision can see, Borbon tried to cheat the system by acting as if he got pelted on the foot by a pitch during a game last season against the San Diego Padres—except the ball was a good two feet in front of him.

    Want to be a good sport? Don't try and pull something like this.

Benny Green

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    No one likes to lose—especially when it's in a tight game that comes down to just a few points—but taking it out on an innocent bystander isn't the way to show one's frustration.

    Yet that's what former Tennessee-Chattanooga men's basketball player Benny Green found himself doing back in a 1989 game with East Tennessee State, as he nailed a girl in the face with his fist after the buzzer had sounded.

    Like others on this list, Green's unsportsmanlike act didn't come in the game, but it was still a jerk move, nonetheless.

Alex Rodriguez I

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    Once the best player in the game, Alex Rodriguez hasn't exactly helped his reputation lately, most recently getting suspended for the entire 2014 season for being linked to PED use.

    But even before his exile from the New York Yankees lineup this season, A-Rod was showing to be a punk, swatting the ball out of then Boston Red Sox pitcher Bronson Arroyo's hand during a pivotal point in the 2004 American League Championship Series.

    While Rodriguez was initially ruled safe, umps huddled up and declared what so many of us saw on TV—the dude swatted at the ball with his hand—and the call was reversed.

Bill Romanowski

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    It may not be the ultimate sign of disrespect, but hocking a loogie on another person might just be one of the most disgusting ways to show you have zero class.

    And while former NFL player Bill Romanowski has said he regrets the decision to spit in the face of J.J. Stokes, that doesn't mean he never did it.

Woody Hayes

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    As an Ohio State Buckeyes football fan, this one is all too familiar with me.

    Although I wasn't even born yet, every Bucknut knows the story of legendary coach Woody Hayes punching former Clemson Tiger player Charlie Bauman.

    The hit abruptly ended Woody's career and showed that, although intense and passionate about the Scarlet and Gray, sometimes he let those emotions come out at the wrong times.

Alex Rodriguez II

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    Here he is again, folks, Alex Rodriguez.

    While I showed a clip of him earlier swatting the ball out of an opponent's glove to try and beat out a play, in 2007, Rodriguez showed that he hadn't quite learned his lesson, calling off Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Howie Clark to let the ball drop between two players.

Dale Hunter

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    Trailing 4-1 in the third period of the closeout game against the New York Islanders in the 1993 NHL playoffs, former Washington Capitals player Dale Hunter let his emotions get the best of him.

    Following a fifth goal by Pierre Turgeon, Hunter got mad, body-checking Turgeon and separating his shoulder in a nasty cheap shot.

    While it sucks to lose, losing with dignity is a hell of a lot better than what Hunter showed.

Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield

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    Even before this incident in 1997, sports fans knew that former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson had a few wires loose in his head.

    But when he actually took a chomp out of both ears of opponent Evander Holyfield, he outdid even himself in the crazy department, earning himself a lifetime ban for the unfortunate decision.

    I guarantee Holyfield didn't enter the ring that night thinking he'd win with a few pieces of his ears missing.

Decking the First Baseman

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    As someone who grew up on the baseball diamond, this type of play wouldn't really fly with any of the kids on my team.

    While this incident happened to occur in softball, the same rules apply—don't act like a bush-league chump while running the bases (as shown earlier with Alex Rodriguez).

    And if a player actually makes contact with another player during a play, well, that counts as bush league.

Roger Clemens

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    Just when you thought things couldn't get any weirder between former players Roger Clemens and Mike Piazza during their days in New York, something embarrassing like this happens.

    Following a shot to the head earlier in the 2000 season in which Clemens hit Piazza, when the Yankees and Mets met in the World Series a few months later, Clemens showed there was no love lost—at least from his side.

    Scooping up a piece of Piazza's shattered bat, Clemens tossed it in the direction of the former catcher, making it look like he was intentionally trying to hurt the guy—which was probably his plan.

Herb Pope

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    If there's one thing every athlete should know, it's that the family jewels should never be touched.

    Unfortunately for former Texas Tech men's hoops player Darko Cohadarevic, opponent Herb Pope of Seton Hall didn't much care for that rule, knocking him below the belt not just once but twice in a matter of seconds.

    For that, Pope rightfully got the boot. Still, I can't help but think Cohadarevic's goods weren't the same until a few days after that game.

Albert Belle

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    While baserunners are taught to go hard into second base in order to help disrupt the effectiveness of a double play, some guys just take things up a notch.

    That's what former MLB All-Star Albert Belle did back in 1996, when he didn't merely slide into the bag with force but lowered his shoulder and decked the pint-sized second baseman of the Milwaukee Brewers, Fernando Vina.

Richard Sherman and Michael Crabtree

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    While most fans remember the postgame rant that Seattle Seahawks All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman had following this year's NFC Championship Game, it was all provoked by a slap to his face from opponent Michael Crabtree.

    Sure, these two guys really dislike each other, but Sherman did approach Crabtree with a hand out to say good game—whether it was done with good intentions or not.

Chris Simon

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    When a guy like Chris Simon doesn't learn his lesson from a 25-game suspension from the following season for a violent hit on a guy, there has to be something seriously wrong with him.

    In a pathetic display of sportsmanship, Simon proved that he was about as dirty as they come, stomping on the ankle of opponent Jarkko Ruutu less than a year later and earning himself an NHL-record 30-game suspension.

    That's pretty messed up, which is why the former NHL player has to get a mention here.

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