By Tyler Leli @jetleli on March 14, 2014
With every passing year it seems that athletes who are beloved by fans, players and executives alike break the trust that everyone has put in them by making foolish decisions. The result of this is that these athletes instantly go from heroes to villains, and most times the worst wrath comes from the public.
Fans seem to take athletes actions extremely personally, and I have formed a list of the 25 athletes all fans love to hate.
Manti Te'o was a hated man before he ever entered the NFL, as he was the victim of an online relationship hoax while at Notre Dame. Some people may have let Te'o off the hook for this, but he made matters worse by covering up that the relationship was a hoax for a short period of time. Te'o is now the subject of many funny memes and jokes.
Right or wrong, Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler is viewed by many as being soft, or not wanting to play through injuries. Specifically after suffering a knee injury in the 2010 NFC Championship Game, the quarterback was ridiculed for not coming and active players even took to openly questioning him. Cutler is surely talented, but many hate him for not being tough.
Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik has long been viewed as one of the dirtiest players in the NHL, and both fans and players alike hate him for it. The two dirtiest hits Orpik ever did were: in 2006 his hit broke the neck of Erik Cole and one this year that gave Louis Eriksson a concussion. These types of hits built up anger in fans in players, and led to Shawn Thornton pulling a dirty sucker punch on Orpik this season.
Oscar Pistorius was once one of the most beloved athletes in the world, as the man known as the blade-runner became the first amputee runner to appear at an Olympic Games. Unfortunately the tides turned when Pistorius was charged for the murder of his girlfriend in February of 2013, which some have viewed as the O.J. Simpson case of the 21st Century. Whether or not Pistorius is found guilty, he will forever be a marked man to many.
The hatred of Boston Celtics forward Kris Humphries is actually quite comical, as it all surrounds over a failed marriage with pop culture star Kim Kardashian. The marriage lasted a total of 72 days, led to Humphries getting into a public spat with Kanye West and resulted in many fans around the NBA continuing to taunt him about his personal life to this day.
QPR midfielder Joey Barton is one of the biggest nuisances in all of world soccer, as he constantly runs his mouth, posts on Twitter and gets into on-field tussles. Barton has been convicted of violence related charges twice, been sentenced to six months in jail on a third charge and been charged by The FA for three more on-field violence related acts. The 31-year-old simply can't keep his hands off others, and fans hate him for it.
Andrew Bynum was viewed as one of the best centers in the NBA while playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, but his career has spiraled out of control in the last two years. During these two years Bynum has appeared in a grand total of 25 games while bouncing around from Philadelphia to Cleveland to Indiana, and has been viewed as lazy along the way. Bynum has taken home huge salaries along the way, and has been hated for not working hard.
Ndamukong Suh is undoubtedly one of the best defensive tackles in the NFL, but he is also viewed as one of the dirtiest. Over his four-season career with the Detroit Lions he has been find a whopping 6,875 for four separate incidents and has even been voted as the dirtiest player in the NFL on multiple occasions. Lions fans may let this go, but NFL fans as a whole hate Suh for repeated dirty plays.
Matt Cooke is one of the biggest pests in the NHL and he has been for many years now. On five different occasions Cooke has been suspended for downright dirty hits, and even after vowing to change his game he tore the Achilles tendon of Erik Karlsson in what some viewed as a deliberate move. Suffice to say, Cooke is hated for being dirty.
Dwight Howard always seems to be flashing a smile, and some people hate him just for doing this. Throughout his career Howard has been labelled as being too nice to win titles, afraid of the limelight, and generally just not being a hard-worker. It seems that if you're not a fan of Howard's team then you're a hater of the center himself.
Fans of every NFL team seem to hate Tony Romo, even Dallas Cowboys fans. This is because despite being able to put up jaw-dropping statistics, the quarterback always seems to falter when things get most important, and as a result he has never led the Cowboys past the second-round of the playoffs. Romo is the easiest whipping boy for the persistent mediocrity of Dallas.
Sergio Garcia was supposed to be the heir apparent to Tiger Woods in the golf world, but an inability to shut his mouth and deliver in big events has made this impossible. Garcia has never won a major tournament, and engaged in career-debilitating feuds with Woods, including one that was sparked by a comment in 2013 that seemed to be racially motivated. Few fans like a racist, and many view Garcia as being one.
Whenever you are the best in the world fans are going to hate you, and LeBron James surely knows this better than anyone. Hatred for James was stoked when he decided to take his talents to the Miami Heat via a nationally televised decision, and since then people have viewed him as being too lazy to win without the aid of superstars. Young people think he is lazy, old people say he will never be Jordan. There is no winning for King James.
Tony Stewart is one of the most successful drivers on the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, but he also runs his mouth like no other. Stewart wears his heart on his sleeve while driving, and he seems to engage in what seem to be monthly spats with other drivers because of this. This has made Stewart one of the most polarizing drivers in NASCAR, and also one of the most hated.
Sidney Crosby is arguably the best hockey player in the world, but he is also one of the most hated by those who aren't fans of the Pittsburgh Penguins. The reasons for this generally are that Crosby has been known to embellish injuries, that he gets all the calls from referees, or just pure jealousy at his remarkable talents and results. Either way, those that don't like the Penguins normally don't like Crosby.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. is the undoubted best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, but he tends to draw hate to himself. Mayweather loves to get in public feuds, whether it be with opposing fighters or his own dad, who is a boxing trainer in his own right. If this wasn't enough, many people dislike Mayweather for his inability to fight Manny Pacquiao over an unwillingness to submit to Olympic style drug testing.
Richard Sherman is the best cornerback in the NFL right now, and he loves to let everyone know it. Whether it was sparked by an impassioned post-game interview with Erin Andrews, trash-talking everyone in sight on Twitter or just seeming arrogant to many, Sherman has taken up the role of the most hated man in the NFL.
Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the premier whiners in all of world soccer, and many fans hate him for it. The Real Madrid superstar seems to go down after every tackle like he has been shot, is always whining to officials on the field, and is viewed as caring more about personal accolades than team trophies. Ronaldo is the exact opposite of Lionel Messi because of this, and many hate him for it.
Ryan Braun has taken on the title of a marked man because of persistent performance-enhancing drug use. After beating a failed test back in 2011, Braun broke the trust of millions of fans around the world when he once again became embroiled in a steroid scandal in 2013. Braun took a 65-game suspension after the second instance, and he is now viewed as this generation's perennial cheater.
If you are not from Uruguay or are not a fan of Liverpool then chances are you hate Luis Suarez. The striker has been caught up biting players on the soccer field twice, he has racially abused Patrice Evra on the field, and he was involved in one of the most blatant hand-ball incidents ever at the 2010 World Cup. When you add in a propensity to dive for no reason, it is obvious why many fans hate Suarez.
Richie Incognito is now one of the most hated men in the NFL because of a case that can't seem to go away in which he persistently bullied teammate Jonathan Martin. Incognito has been shamed because of this incident, but it has come on the back of being kicked off two college football teams and previously being voted the dirtiest player in the NFL. These repeated incidents have led to Incognito being a hated man.
Johnny Manziel hasn't even entered the NFL yet, but he is already a marked man. Manziel is hated by many for his love of partying, brash demeanor on the field and even just for being extremely successful.Things are only due to get worse in the NFL, and Manziel looks to spark a Tim Tebow level of hatred from many fans.
Tim Tebow isn't even signed one with a team in the NFL right now, but he is still one of the most hated men in the league. Tebow has never done anything wrong off the field, but many view him as a nuisance for the mass amount of attention he receives from places like ESPN, and others believe he fakes his outspoken Christian views. Suffice to say, Tebow is both the most loved and hated men in the NFL.
AC Milan and Italy striker Mario Balotelli brings on much of the hate he receives, as he picks up red cards with regularity because of foolish on-field mistakes and off the field he has been pictured with mafia men. Jose Mourinho has previously said Balotelli is unmanageable, which is quite a statement considering his world-class goal-scoring ability. Balotelli is very talented, but it is hard not to bang your head on the wall watching him play.
Alex Rodriguez is clearly the most hated man in all of sports, and he brings on everything that people say. Rodriguez is currently serving a season-long suspension after repeatedly being caught in steroid scandals, has been a fixture in the tabloids since joining the New York Yankees in 2004 and seems to anger everyone he plays against. Not even Yankees fans like Rodriguez any longer, and everyone else already hated him.
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