Former NBA star Amar’e Stoudemire began his career as Rookie of the Year in 2003 and went on to play in six NBA All-Star games and get named to the All-NBA team five times. But his talent may have been overshadowed by flashes of temper and ill-advised comments. So frustrated over a playoff loss when he was with the New York Knicks in 2012, he slammed his hand against a fire extinguisher, suffering cuts. In 2017, when playing in Israel, Stoudemire said he would “shower across the street” if he knew a teammate was gay. He later said he was joking and apologized, but added, “there’s always truth in a joke.”
A timeout is supposed to calm down an angry child – or an athlete in a meltdown. Hockey player Andrew Shaw was put in the penalty box in a game in 2016. Rather than using the time to reflect or cheer on his teammate, Shaw proceeded to smash his hockey stick into pieces and yell obscenities at the officials. Last year, the now much calmer former Canadian and Blackhawks player retired due to repeated concussions. He acknowledged his hard-charging style made it difficult to continue to compete.
Andy Roddick had a meltdown for the ages in 2011. After losing a set, the tennis star blamed it on his racket, smashing into the ground. He was warned. Then, after a double-fault, he launched the ball into the stands home-run style. Roddick argued the shot was a “lob,” but the unconvinced referee dinged him a penalty.
Former Chicago Cub pitcher Carlos Zambrano led his team to three NL Central titles in the first decade of the 2000s. The beefy Venezuelan was also an excellent hitter. But his former teammates saw a different side. In 2007, he brawled with teammate Michael Barrett, sending him to the hospital. Two years later, Zambrano was slapped with a six-game suspension and a fine after losing it following an ejection from a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. In 2010, he stirred it up with his first baseman, Derrek Lee, forcing the Cubs to suspend him.
Unfortunately, UFC mixed martial arts fighter Conor McGregor doesn’t always confine his anger to the ring against professional opponents. Over the years, McGregor has been involved in altercations with a television executive, a referee, rapper Machine Gun Kelly, an older gentleman in a Dublin bar, and most dangerously, the father of a drug dealer. In 2018, McGregor was hit with a disorderly conduct charge for mixing it up with UFC lightweight contender and rival Khabib Nurmagodov at a press conference for a match he wasn’t involved in. McGregor was reportedly upset because the UFC stripped him of his championship belt and awarded it to another fighter.
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