Professional athletes have to do so many things right to get to where they are that sometimes people forget that they are just regular people and just as inclined to mistakes as the rest of us.
Some mistakes are minor, without severe consequences, like changing ones last name to ones jersey number, or making a video game like Shaq-Fu.
Unfortunately, sometimes athletes make mistakes that have the potential to end careers. Here is my list of the three dumbest things pro athletes have done to end or nearly end their careers.
3. Michael Jordan decides to try baseball:
In 1993 after the Bulls third NBA Championship in as many years, Michael Jordan retired from the game of basketball. Citing a loss of desire to play, stemming from the murder of his father, Jordan decided that he would fulfill his father’s dreams for him of a baseball career and debuted for the Chicago White Sox minor league affiliate Birmingham Barons in 1994.
While playing for them, he hit .202 with three home runs, and 51 RBI, during the fall league Jordan played for the Scottsdale Scorpions and hit .252. In 1995 a labor strike ended the MLB season and Michael Jordan decided that baseball may not be for him, and on March 18, 1995 Michael Jordan returned to the NBA and led the Bulls to a second three-peat.
2. Michael Vick goes to prison:
What do you do when you are regarded as one of the top mobile quarterbacks in the NFL, and your career track may be heading to an NFL Championship?
Obviously you get arrested and sentenced to federal prison for being the leader of a dog fighting ring. In 2007 Michael Vick plead guilty to “Conspiracy to Travel in Interstate Commerce in Aid of Unlawful Activities and to Sponsor a Dog in an Animal Fighting Venture” in federal court and was sentenced to 23 months in a federal penitentiary. He served his time at Leavenworth Penitentiary at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas and upon his release in 2009 he set about getting back into the NFL and was given an opportunity to play back-up QB to Kevin Kolb for the Philadelphia Eagles.
The opportunity was more than most fans believed Vick deserved, but he kept the critics at bay by playing really good football and earning the starting spot from Kolb.
1. Pete Rose makes a bet:
Pete Rose was an amazing hitter, All-Century team outfielder, and probable first ballot Hall of Famer.
His career batting average of .303 and his record 4,256 career hits, including a record 3,215 singles, and his three World Series titles, would almost have guaranteed it. Until Rose was charged with allegedly placing bets against the Reds while he was their manager. After the investigation was complete Pete Rose was blacklisted, declared ineligible, and removed completely from the game of baseball, like Shoeless Joe Jackson and the other seven Black Sox accused of intentionally losing the 1919 World Series.
The ruling of permanent ineligibility meant that Rose could no longer be voted into the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers Association of America after they formally voted that ineligible players could not make the ballot in 1991, the year before Rose would have become eligible for HOF voting.
Rose would have been eligible for voting by the Veterans Committee in 2007 but did not appear on the ballot, and in 2008 the Veterans Committee ruled that ineligible players and managers could not appear on a HoF ballot. Pete Rose was the only living player on the ineligible list during both votes.