We rank 'em. You react. That's how the Daily List rolls.
7/18/2008 02:39:00 PM
Ugliest Career Endings of All Time
Has Brett Favre done significant damage to his legacy?
By Lang Whitaker, SI.com
With so many incredible athletes out there, I suppose it’s bound to happen: The ugly career end. People can plan their exit strategies all they want, but sometimes even the most meticulous people have control yanked from their hands, leaving us with a spectacle that is beneath them but fun to watch. Here’s my top five ugly career endings...
1. Brett Favre: It's not too late to redeem himself, but as of now he’s gone from a man who gracefully walked away from the game he loved to a man who has a franchise and a fanbase over a barrel.
2. Michael Jordan: When he announced he was returning to play for the Wizards, it was strange enough, but when it actually ended with Wizards owner Abe Pollin calling MJ in and telling him to get lost, it was just sad all around.
3. Evander Holyfield: His career ended a while ago. So why is he still boxing?
4. Rickey Henderson: The greatest leadoff hitter of all time should have gone out on top. Instead he scuffled around in the independent leagues and begged for one last major league gig that never came.
5. Andy Dick: His career's over now, right?
What are the ugliest career endings of all time? Let us know below...
Lang Whitaker is the executive editor of SLAM magazine and writes daily at SLAMonline.com
Wrigley Field. Shoulda been razed 80 years ago. It's hosted really bad baseball ever since. Now, it's just a place for rich kids to put on their bucket hats, Abercrombie & Fitch duds, and use their parents' Visa Gold cards to ring up $11 Old Style. All while ignoring the game on the field.
Motor racing is filled with these. A.J. Foyt, Jacques Villeneuve, Damon Hill, and now David Couthard all spent the last years of their careers as back-markers, being lapped again and again every race by younger drivers on the way up.
I hope I am remembering this correctly. But Willie Mays finished with the Mets when they went to the World Series. As I remember it the Mets needed a hit in the ninth inning and they put Ed Kranepool in and left Willie on the bench.
Coach Woody Hayes running onto the field near the end of the Gator Bowl to grab the facemask of the Clemson player who intercepted a pass to end OSU's last chance drive. It didn't take the Ohio State board and community long to realize that that was the end of Hayes' career right there, whether he would agree to resign or not (he didn't).
IIRC the Gator Bowl was not prestigious at the time, so Hayes and OSU were already smarting at being there instead of playing on January 1.
Your list sucks. Willie Mays playing for the Mets should have been on there somewhere. Babe Ruth's career ended pretty badly. What about Joe Louis coming back to get knocked through the ropes by Rocky Marciano?
1) Kyle Petty- watching him trying to bring up the rear every race, is embarassing. The announcing gig is a mercy killing for his career. 2) Steve Carlton- Pitched way past his prime. 3) Ric Flair- I know, he had a great last match, but it was painful to watch him after all those years in his heyday!
I think the pitcher's name was Dave Dravecky. He came back from cancer surgery on his pitching arm. Threw a two or three hitter, then snapped his arm after a few more starts effectively ending his career. To make matters worse, the arm was eventually amptutated due to reoccurance of cancer.
This list could go on forever but I would have to go with
He left his team out to dry until training camp without any clue as to his intentions. his ending wasn't ugly due to lack of talent. it was ugly based on the way he handled it with an organization that was never committed to winning.
Carlton Haselrig-only 6 time NCAA heavyweight wrestling champ, Steeler Pro-bowler his third year in the NFL (prob. second only to Fanaca for best Steeler OL). Amazing since he never played football in college. Had it all, but drugs and the bottle caused him to go missing on the Jets.
ric flair losing to hbk. hulk hogan and the endless retitements, brett hart in wcw bob stoops and ou football, the end is near, adrian is gone yankee stadium. overhyperd dump, small cramped and forget history it sucks, my gramdma is old and historic too and she poops herself, as should we in yankee stadium
The only problem I have is with Ricky. I saw Ricky play for the Newark Bears at the end of his career and he was happy and so were the guys around him. Who are you to tell someone they have to stop playing the game they love just so they can appear better to you.
Being an old duffer, I remember Johnny Unitas, Gordie Howe, Willie mays, Muhammad Ali and one other no one has mentioned..."Sugar Ray Robinson". Also no one has mentioned Emmitt Smith or Marshall Faulk. Faulk was beaten out by a rookie for gosh sake.
This is not fun to watch. Every year, for half a decade we have had to turn to this debacle when nothing else is available. Maybe lazy sports writers should get a summer vacation, to spare us from the drivel.