20 toughest athletes in sports today

1 of 21

These guys have some bruises

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Athletes are just simply crazy as can be. Every year, the sporting world witnesses some crazy things. Who would have thought that the time would come where American sports would be known throughout global markets just as they are in America.

Some athletes are crazier than others. A few of them don't have limits. However, either way, it's plenty of fun to watch wackos in the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB, etc. fight over the silliest things. Whatever it is that these guys do, they're pretty tough.

Fans seem to focus on the physical toughness of athletes and don't pay much attention to the mental toughness which it takes to be a top tier athletes. The folks on this list aren't just brutal physically, but mentally as well. The intimidation factor has a lot to do with being tough and it definitely has a lot to do with the amount of success they have throughout their career.

2 of 21

Candace Parker

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

She may be in the WNBA, which is considered a joke of a league to most fans, but she's one heck of an athletes and can probably outplay a vast majority of players in the NBA. Candace Parker is a true athlete and is highly respected within her sport as she only has four years of experience. She's probably the toughest female basketball player there is and her stats prove just that.

3 of 21

Roger Federer

Presse Sports-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 2 tennis player in the world, Roger Federer, is pretty tough for the sport he plays. Just looking at the guy is intimidating, imagine being on the same tennis court as him.

4 of 21

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

They may be the best duo in Olympic Women's Volleyball history. Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh are simply unstoppable. Though the two have participated in their run in the Olympics was amazing. They were probably the toughest female volleyball players within the past hundred or so years to say the least.

5 of 21

Mike Trout

Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Trout is going to be a triple crown candidate if he can play a full 162-game schedule. Trout is an all around athlete and his natural ability to crush a baseball nearly a third of the time he swings the back is absolutely ridiculous, especially for a rookie. The guy is tough and aggressive which is going to make him an unbelievable athlete once he gains even more experience.

6 of 21

Lionel Messi


Arguably the best Soccer player in the world, Lionel Messi is pretty tough. The guy gets whacked around all the time and still has the ability to be the best Soccer player in the world, if that isn't intimidating, then what is?

7 of 21

Alexander Ovechkin

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The leader of the Washington Capitals, Alexander Ovechkin is simply one of the best players in the NHL. Ovechkin has a few teeth knocked out and is feared by his competitors for his crazy ability to score on the ice.

8 of 21

Kobe Bryant

Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

Kobe Bryant has been playing basketball for quite some time and is still capable of making moves such as the one seen above. He's still able to box out guys larger than him and can fight off injuries making him one of the toughest players in the NBA.

9 of 21

Josh Hamilton

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

After all that he's been through, Josh Hamilton is truly a humble man. Hamilton is a case of a guy going from zero to hero and playing baseball has certainly helped him on the way to sobriety. Hamilton is one of the most feared players in the MLB as his outrageously accurate arm strength combined with his speed and hitting ability have ultimately created a monster of an athlete.

10 of 21

Jamaal Charles

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Besides rushing for just over 1,500 yards for the first time in his career, Jamaal Charles proved that he's one tough guy. Besides becoming a leader on the worst team in the NFL, Charles was able to fly right through all those giant Defensive Tackles throughout the year while dealing with a knee and neck injury, coming off knee surgery after the second week of the 2012 season.

11 of 21

Dwight Howard

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers big man is pretty tough, not just because of his size, but because of his work ethic as well. Howard has been dealing with that terrible situation in Los Angeles and has been battling a shoulder injury throughout the season and has still been able to perform at a high enough level to get him elected as a Western Conference starter in the All Star game.

12 of 21

Peyton Manning

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Probably one of the top-five quarter backs in NFL history, Peyton Manning has gained the respect of practically every single player in the NFL and is an intimidating factor when opposing teams face the man that lead the Denver Broncos to the playoffs after coming off a neck injury in 2012.

13 of 21

Sidney Crosby

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

One of the best scorers in the recent years of the NHL, Sidney Crosby isn't afraid to throw guys into the boards just to make sure his team wins.s just to make sure his team wins. Crosby is one of the most versatile athletes in the league and can definitely toughen out any NHL player on any given day.

14 of 21

Dwayne Wade

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Dwayne Wade is a beast. Every single NBA fan knows what the guy can do on any given night. The man isn't afraid to jump over anyone to score and his match-ups against Kobe Bryant are just insane.

15 of 21

Justin Tuck

Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

He's going to be the next Michael Strahan. Well, maybe not a talk show host but football wise he definitely has that label set for the rest of his career. Justin Tuck was able to sack some of the best quarter backs in the NFL over the past few years and has the ability to break through offensive linemen better than most defensive ends will ever have in their careers.

16 of 21

Steve Nash

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Canadian guy from South America is unbelievably tough. Steve Nash is tough enough to even put his nose back into place after having it broken by Derek Fisher a few years ago. Fishera few years ago. The guy is just flat out tough, he may not look it, but he is. Oh by the way, he's a pretty good point guard too.

17 of 21

LeBron James

20 Toughest Athletes in Sports Today

The "king." LeBron James is totally insane. He's the most versatile player in the NBA and is arguably the best player on the planet behind Michael Jordan. We don't even need to get into how tough this man is, just watch the NBA finals from last season to figure it out.

18 of 21

Ndamukong Suh

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

If the guy wasn't so violent, he would probably be an even better player, but he's still exceptional. Ndamukong Suh has 22 sacks in his first three seasons and has only missed two games due to a suspension for being a dirty player. The man can literally yank someone down with his pinkie finger probably, that's how strong he is.

19 of 21

Ray Lewis

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

It's sad that the Super Bowl is going to be his last NFL game. Well, not really considering if he wasn't an athlete he would have probably been locked up in jail. However, he's straightened out his life and now he's one of the most feared linebackers in the NFL.

20 of 21

Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

The guy is an undefeated boxer and more than half of his wins has been by knockouts, does it get any better for Floyd Mayweather Jr.? When the guy enters the boxing ring, the fear in his opponent's eyes sets in and Mayweather does his job just like he was trained. The guy is insane and is beyond tough.

21 of 21

Every goalie in the NHL

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Sports fans don't give the NHL much attention unless they like hockey, but what they don't realize is, the NHL season is probably more grueling than any other sport in America. NHL goalies have the toughest job in all of sports. Every single one of the goalies has a three in wide rubber puck smacked at their bodies and faces at nearly 100 mph. Imagine what kind of reflexes that takes. It's pretty sick what those guys can do and definitely isn't easy considering they're on their knees probably more than anyone else, well maybe not that pathetic loser begging to get his woman back.

Around the Web

  • ThisListIsAJoke

    Dwight Howard!?

  • Ichabod Crane

    This is the stupidest list EVER. A chick from the WNBA. REALLY?!?!