Box art sport stars that went wrong...

PES 4 - 2004

Curse victim (1)... Pierluigi Collina (centre)
Almost had the rules changed on the retirement age for referees in Italy until he was seen advertising automobiles for Opel (rival team AC Milan’s sponsor) thus raising a conflict of interests. 2004.

Curse victim (2)... Francesco Totti (right)
Spat at Danish midfielder Christian Poulsen in Italy’s 0-0 draw with Denmark and was subsequently banned until the semi. Sadly, Italy got knocked out in the first round and Totti finished with the unwanted record of having accrued more red cards (1) than goals (0).

PES6 - 2006


Curse victim... Adriano (left)
The Inter Milan striker and all-round party boy compromised his true potential during the 2006/07 campaign by choosing the devil’s water over training hard. Due to the ill after effects of a late night drinking session, he was benched by manager Roberto Mancini and promptly dropped by Brazil coach Dunga. He’s never regained his explosive form.

PES 2008 - 2007

Curse victim... Michael Owen (centre)
An injury blighted season saw the Newcastle United and England striker's minutes limited thanks to a cruciate knee ligament operation in 2006. He returned in May 2007 only to be knocked unconcious by a collision with team-mate Matty Pattison during a game against Watford. Later on in 2007 he was back under the knife, this time with a double hernia op. Ouch.

PES 2009 - 2008

Curse victim... Lionel Messi
A recurrence of an old muscle tear injury laid the flying Argentinian out for six weeks.

NHL 2005 - 2004

Curse victim... Markus Naslund, Vancouver Canucks
Although the bad luck isn’t necessarily all on his shoulders, Naslund was at the centre of a bizarre war in the NHL. During a game against the Colorado Avalanche, opposing forward Steve Moore cleaned Naslund out with a forearm smash. The injury needed 13 stitches to repair and Naslund missed three games, but the referee did nothing.

Naslund’s team mate, Todd Bertuzzi, decided vigilante justice was in order. Later in 2004, in another match-up between the two teams, Bertuzzi exacted revenge by punching Moore in the back of the head and practically riding him down into the ice. A pile on ensued and Moore's neck was broken in three places.  Bertuzzi was banned indefinitely by the NHL.

NHL 08 - 2007

Curse victim... Eric Staal, Carolina Hurricanes
In 2007, shortly after it was announced that he’d be the cover star for NHL 08, Eric Staal was arrested during his bachelor party. He was slapped on the wrists for disorderly conduct and obstructing the legal process and ordered to pay a measley fine of $587. This is a mild one, so we're still waiting for the other skate to drop.

NBA Live 08 - 2007

Curse victim... Gilbert Arenas, Washington Wizards
In 2008, Arenas required knee surgery for a niggling problem which saw him miss a majority of the season. The NBA hotshot became increasingly disillusioned at starting each game on the bench instead of on the court and even stormed out of the dressing room when a doctor suggested he wasn’t fit enough for the game that day.

MLB 06 The Show - 2005

Curse victim... David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox
Although Ortiz broke a record in 2006 for most homeruns in a season for the Red Sox, he became unwell during day-night doubleheaders (when two games are played in one day, one in the afternoon and one in the evening). It turned out he had an irregular heartbeat brought on by the stress of these games.

Top Spin - 2003

Curse victim... Anna Kournikova
The sexy-siren of tennis retired at the end of 2003 at the tender age of 22. Prematurely bringing the curtain down on her career was attributed to a niggling back problem, but professional opinion suggests that her numerous modeling ventures meant she wasn’t training properly. We say the sport's loss is our gain. 

Feb 17, 2009


  • St. Patrick - February 18, 2009 11:29 p.m.

    Ah, that is much better, you even expanded the old parts
  • - February 17, 2009 12:24 a.m.

    So far NHL 09 seems to be carrying a curse on Dion Phaneuf....
  • oryandymackie - February 16, 2009 10:54 p.m.

    kind of agree with you lava lamp (there's something I thought I'd never say). Bit of a waste GR, but mind you who am I to speak? Anyways I'm British and not a great lover of sport/sport games anyway so I don't know what I'm doing here
  • kicking222 - February 16, 2009 9:57 p.m.

    Somebody beat me to the Dany Heatley punch, but... it's one thing to miss the majority of the season; it's another to miss the majority of the season and KILL A TEAMMATE.
  • RealTerry - February 16, 2009 9:53 p.m.

    Great article Gr but it was a bit too sloppy no?
  • Johnny6Gun - February 16, 2009 9:33 p.m.

    Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, anyone?
  • lava_lamp - February 16, 2009 9:29 p.m.

    no offense but that article was so much of a bore fest i couldn't even finish it
  • AMayer - February 16, 2009 7:45 p.m.

    Donovan McNabb never played for the Dallas Cowboys, he played for the Phillipalphia Eagles. They're kinda rivals.
  • manaconda - February 16, 2009 7:21 p.m.

    a good one for the list would have been danny heatley the cover star for NHL 2004, durring that season he crashed his ferrari breaking his leg(s?) and killing the passenger, teammate daniel snyder. he was replaced on the covers after the accident by joe sakic.
  • Corsair89 - February 16, 2009 7:20 p.m.

    Umm... You guys said that Madden '02 curse victum was Eddie George again, but that's Dante Culpepper, Vikings QB.
  • titansfan - July 30, 2009 7:50 a.m.

    I think that Vince Young getting hurt was the best thing that happend to the Titans cause if he was the starting quarterback the Titans would have sucked worse then the lions
  • BLACKICE - February 19, 2009 12:05 a.m.

  • EricBratcher - February 17, 2009 11:18 p.m.

    Argh. I can't believe we missed Heatley. Sorry about all the typos and broken grammar and factual squip-ups. We're fixing them now. On the plus side, it's nice to see someone besides me showing an interest in the NFL. Go Bears!
  • And_ROOS - February 17, 2009 11:15 a.m.

    I call shenanigans, Messi was injured before he was on the cover, and Michael Owen was sh*t a loooooong time before he was on the Pro Evo cover.
  • St. Patrick - February 17, 2009 5:19 a.m.

    You took 2 different years and combined them for the Vince Young part. He tore his quad in the season the game was released, and then lost his starting job the next year. On top of all the other stuff, quite a sloppy article.
  • FancyRat - February 17, 2009 1:51 a.m.

    @RealTerry - Indeed, the article is rife with typos and grammar issues. Was this put together as fast as it seems it was? I did enjoy it though. Wish you'd point out instances of the curse skipping people, though I suppose that'd make for a boring article.
  • theturbolemming - February 16, 2009 9:42 p.m.

    Good thing I don't play sports games..
  • hardcore_gamer1990 - February 16, 2009 8:46 p.m.

    I've spotted a typo.... you accidentally put "abruptyl" instead of "abruptly" =) ME: 1 YOU : Amount of article that you've done without any spelling mistakes xD Good article, even though I'm not interested in any sports apart from good ol' English rugby and some japanophile-esque kara-TE! lol but seriously, i don't even know who Michael Owen is, and I'm English =| lol - My ReCaptcha was "1970 maybe" which is what I'd answer if someone asked me what year England won the world cup xD
  • Awesomeitude1523 - February 16, 2009 7:30 p.m.

    Woooh. Poor football players, bth American and the REAL football. I feel bad fr them. Recaptcha: Drawing Darlings (Coincidence?)

Showing 1-19 of 19 comments

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