Sports Icons Who Cheated On Their Wives

The following article includes mentions of addiction, domestic violence, and sexual assault allegations.

Divorce rates show that, unlike sports, success usually comes down to a coin toss. Those are good odds considering the divorce rate among professional athletes has reached a whopping 80%, per one study. "It's hard to keep a marriage going if you're a celebrity athlete," New York divorce attorney Bruce Provda told Forbes. "There is a great deal of temptation and a ton of money available. It's a bad combination."

Celebrity athletes cheating has become so cliche that NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar wrote in an essay for Cosmopolitan that the cliche itself is a stereotype rooted in cultural bias. "This offensive characterization is in no way on par with the much worse stereotyping of women, people of color, Muslims, Jews, immigrants, and the LGBTQ community," he wrote. "But when we allow any prejudice to pass unchallenged, we endorse all prejudice."

Whether you agree with Abdul-Jabbar's sentiments or not is up to you, but we can all agree that infidelity is a great way to potentially damage a marriage beyond repair. These are the sports icons who cheated on their wives.

Chad Johnson

In August 2012, one month after their nuptials, NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson and wife Evelyn Lozada reportedly got into a terrible squabble over a receipt for a box of condoms. According to TMZ, it got so heated that Johnson allegedly head-butted Lozada, leaving her with a three-inch laceration on her head. "I don't give a f**k! I don't give a f**k about my career!" he allegedly shouted during the fight.

After the spat, Lozada reportedly fled to a neighbor's house to seek safety. Johnson was arrested and booked on domestic violence charges, though he claimed Lozada head-butted him first. Johnson and Lozada divorced a month later, according to People. While suspected infidelity was at the center of this dispute, Lozada apparently turned a blind eye to the possibility while they were engaged. When asked if she worried about the Cincinnati Bengal cheating on her, she told Latina in 2010: "It's not something that I worry about because if I did, I would go crazy. I really feel like that's not something I can control."

On September 19, 2012, the former NFL wideout's divorce from Lozada was finalized (via ESPN). Eight years after their divorce, Lozado claimed that Johnson abused her multiple times during their brief marriage after the footballer tweeted in part that he "lost [his] temper for once in life for 3 seconds." Lozado called his statements "infuriating" (via TMZ Sports). "It wasn't the first time, it wasn't the first time!" she proclaimed.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Carmelo Anthony

New York Knicks basketball star Carmelo Anthony and wife La La Anthony were once #couplegoals. Their union was well-documented on reality TV, and they certainly became a fixture on the NYC social scene. All that came to an abrupt end in April 2017 when tabloids began claiming the small forward had been unfaithful to his wife of seven years and even impregnated an exotic dancer. Soon after, the couple announced their separation.

While neither side has publicly discussed the alleged infidelity, the press has been hounding La La and her son, Kyan. "You kind of get used to it. What can you do? My mom always says, 'Worry when people don't care about you.' And that's what I tell myself," La La told Extra. "We're that interesting that people want to know what we're doing." As for their son, La La said she would lie to him, saying the paparazzi was following them to get fashion shots for magazines. "I kind of try to make it fun for him so he doesn't view it as a negative thing," she added. "We explain it in a way that works for a 10-year-old."

However, after a brief reconciliation, La La Anthony filed for divorce in June 2021 after 11 years of marriage (via E!). During an appearance on "The Angie Martinez Show," La La said: "Marriage, I don't think I can do that ever again. I mean, some amazing person would have to come. I don't see that happening again."

Tiger Woods

In November 2009, Tiger Woods' reputation was turned upside down when his wife of five years, model Elin Nordegren, reportedly discovered he'd been unfaithful through texts on his phone. Nordegren supposedly chased Woods out of the house with a golf club. He sped off in his vehicle but crashed into a fire hydrant outside their home. According to a Yahoo! Sports timeline of events, that fender bender was the catalyst that brought forward dozens of alleged mistresses from Woods' past. 

He later issued a statement apologizing for his "sins" (via People). Woods said, in part, "I have let my family down and I regret those transgressions with all of my heart. I have not been true to my values and the behavior my family deserves." According to the New York Post, Woods carried out as many as 120 affairs during his marriage. Following the big reveal, he checked into a sex-addiction clinic.

Years later, when asked what he regrets from his past, Woods didn't mention his cheating scandal. "The only regret I have in life is not spending another year at Stanford [University]," he told journalist Charlie Rose in 2016 (via ET). "I wish I would've had one more year." When pushed further about his cheating, he said, "All the things I've been through, yes. They've been tough, but they've been great for me. ... But I wish I would've gone one more year at Stanford." 

Franck Ribéry

Franck Ribéry would probably like to forget the year 2010. In July of that year, the former three-time French Player of the Year was questioned by authorities regarding an investigation into an underage prostitution ring that revealed Ribéry and a former teammate both had sexual relations with a 16-year-old girl, Zahia Dehar. Ribéry's lawyer, Sophie Bottai, insisted during a radio interview that her client was unaware of Dehar's age at the time. "She would have had to look like a minor, which was not the case. She would have to be claiming that she had told him she was a minor, which is not the case," Bottai said, per The Guardian

During a 2010 interview with Paris Match Magazine (via Daily Mail), Dehar stated the former FIFA World Cup player "made reservations at a luxury hotel in Munich" and then paid her for sex. She also stated that Ribéry thought she was 18 during their encounter. 

The publication went on to say that Ribéry's wife was standing by him. "It hurt my family, above all those close to me. That's all I want to say," he said of the scandal. Eventually the case was dropped after the prosecution admitted that the underage sex worker had "said herself that she told them she was 18" (per France 24). 

Dwyane Wade

NBA shooter Dwyane Wade and actor Gabrielle Union found themselves in a very Ross and Rachel-like situation that played out like a storyline on "Friends." As this story goes, Wade and Union had been dating for quite some time when they decided to take a break, and during that break, Wade fathered a son with Aja Metoyer, a woman he had known "for many years," according to ET.

In her 2021 memoir, "You Got Anything Stronger?" Union detailed the heartbreak she felt over Wade fathering another child while she was experiencing fertility issues. "To say I was devastated is to pick a word on a low shelf for convenience. There are people — strangers who I will never meet — who have been upset that I have not previously talked about that trauma," she wrote (via OK! Magazine).

"The experience of Dwyane having a baby so easily — while I was unable to — left my soul not just broken into pieces, but shattered into fine dust scattering in the wind," the "Bring It On" star revealed. "We gathered what we could to slowly remake me into something new. There was no way to disguise where I'd been glued back together." Whatever issues Wade and Union had are apparently worked out, if their social media game is anything to go by. In October 2021, the couple shared a shirtless selfie on Instagram while wearing matching pants.

Kobe Bryant

In June 2003, Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant was at the top of his game when a night in a Vail, Colorado resort would forever change his path. Bryant allegedly had a sexual encounter with a 19-year-old woman who worked at the hotel. His wife, Vanessa Bryant, and first child, were not with him on the trip. According to CNN, the teenager filed a police complaint the day after the alleged encounter and Bryant was subsequently charged with sexual assault, which could have landed him in jail for life if convicted. 

"I didn't force her to do anything against her will," a 24-year-old Kobe said during a press conference. "I'm innocent. You know. I sit here in front of you guys furious at myself. Disgusted at myself for making a mistake of adultery." A year later, the case against Kobe was dropped after the alleged victim refused to testify in the trial. She did, however, file a civil case against him, reported The Washington Post. That suit was settled behind closed doors.

The stress of the time period weighed heavily on Bryant and his wife. In 2015, he shouldered the blame for the miscarriage Vanessa suffered during the trial. "We were expecting," Kobe, who tragically died in a helicopter crash in 2020, said in a documentary called "Kobe Bryant's Muse" (via HuffPost). "Expecting our second child during that time and there was just so much stress. ... I have a real hard time dealing with that 'cause I felt like it was just my fault."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Ryan Giggs

Former player and current manager of the Welsh national team, Ryan Giggs has received multiple red cards when it comes to his private life. Considered one of the greatest footballers of all time, Giggs won't be winning any Brother of the Year awards any time soon. In 2011, it was revealed that the former Manchester United star carried on an eight-year affair with his brother's wife (per Bleacher Report). Yikes.

During a 2018 interview with The Sun, Giggs' father, Danny Wilson, didn't have many kind words to say about his son. "I should be the proudest dad in the world, as happy as a lark by what he's achieved — but I am ashamed of him," he said. "I can't even bring myself to use his name — I refer to him as the ex-footballer." The scorching critique didn't stop there. "He is my son and it brings me close to tears to say that my family don't respect him and look up to him. As the eldest he should have been watching his brother's back — not stabbing him in it," Wilson continued. "He cheated in the worst possible way and is not man enough to apologise for it."

Also in 2011, Giggs was outed for having an extramarital affair with model and former "Big Brother" star Imogen Thomas (per The Sydney Morning Herald). We assume Thanksgiving dinners are pretty quiet at Giggs' house.

Lamar Odom

Former basketball great Lamar Odom's drug addiction and infidelity helped fuel the demise of his marriage to reality star Khloé Kardashian. The pair tied the knot in 2009 and officially divorced in 2016 after a slew of scandalous headlines, including Odom's drug bender that nearly left him dead in 2015. 

In 2017, the former Los Angeles Lakers star came clean about his roaming eyes to Us Weekly, noting that the reality show "Khloé & Lamar" "opened this gate up with other women who probably wouldn't have been interested in me. When I became Khloé Kardash­ian's man and on TV, it made me look more enticing. People who didn't even know basketball would approach me because they knew Lammy." 

He said the exposure was a curse, explaining, "B***hes and THOTs came out of the woodwork. If there is one thing I regret when I was married, it was having multiple affairs with different women. That wasn't the stand-up thing to do. I wish I could have kept my d**k in my pants."

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Wayne Rooney

Manchester United legend Wayne Rooney has had his share of cheating scandals. In 2010, two years after he married his childhood sweetheart Coleen McLoughlin, Rooney was the subject of cheating allegations when former escort Jennifer Thompson claimed she had a paid threesome with Rooney and "Big Brother 15" winner, Helen Wood, while Rooney's wife was pregnant with their eldest child (via The Telegraph).

During an interview with The Sun in 2019, Thompson says she regrets selling her story about her fling with Rooney. "Believe it or not, I don't like to keep bringing it up, but every time Helen opens her mouth — I get dragged into it," Thompson said. "I really do despise her." In 2017, Rooney was arrested for drunk driving in another woman's car (via The Sun). Wood, who was part of the infamous threesome, told the Daily Star that Rooney's wife should leave him after his arrest. "Coleen wouldn't want to hear it from me, but mum to mum, I would tell her to get out," she said. "A leopard never changes its spots, once a cheat always a cheat."

In the first trailer for "Rooney" in 2021, Coleen finally broke her silence on the years of cheating and allegations. "I knew groups Wayne was hanging around with — together with alcohol — not good," she said. "I forgive him, but it wasn't acceptable."

Jason Kidd

Former New Jersey Nets player Jason Kidd had his dirty laundry aired by his wife of 10 years, Joumana Kidd. When they divorced in 2007, Jason claimed she was emotionally unstable, but she alleged he was a massive cheater who stepped out with exotic dancers, drank too much, and abused her. (He was arrested in 2001 for domestic violence against Joumana.) 

In a tell-all piece with Metropolis Nights Magazine (via the New York Daily News), Joumana recalled a time when she used their son to uncover Jason's alleged infidelity. As the story goes, in December 2006, she allegedly got their son to lift Jason's phone from the locker room so she could comb through its text messages and yell at him from her court-side seats during a game. 

"I will say that most women put in that position would have acted the same way, or at least wanted to," she told the magazine. "Plus, it was blown up into something way bigger than it was. It was just his lawyers trying to paint a picture of me crossing boundaries and they did a good job of it. But it was far from the truth. And, it wasn't as dramatic and amazing as they made it sound, although I kind of wish it was."

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Tony Parker

In November 2010, point guard Tony Parker's three-year marriage to actor Eva Longoria ended amid claims that he was unfaithful. The San Antonio Spurs legend never addressed his alleged infidelity, but Longoria broke her silence with Piers Morgan in 2011, just months after their divorce was finalized. "So many people want me to hate him, want me to destroy him," she said (via the New York Daily News). "But I don't, I wish nothing but the best for him. I want him to be happy. He's not a bad person. I do believe in forgiving and forgetting." Longoria added, "I do not regret getting married, nor do I regret getting divorced."

Longoria also discussed their divorce a year later and claimed it made her second-guess herself. "It wasn't about who he chose. I mean, I had moments of, 'Am I not sexy enough? Am I not pretty enough? Am I not smart enough?'" Longoria said on the Lifetime series "The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet," per Page Six. "But in so many of those questions, I immediately stopped and said, 'No, don't start doing that.' Because you can get stuck in that cycle."

During an interview with Fansided, Parker's former Spurs teammate Robert Horry reflected on how the couple positively impacted his time in San Antonio. "That was the most boringest team," he said. "The most exciting thing we had was when Tony and Eva started dating."

Chipper Jones

Atlanta Braves baseball star Chipper Jones wrote in detail about the time he decided to come clean about his affairs to his wife, Karin Luise. In his 2017 memoir, "Ballplayer," he described an agonizing drive home to share the heartbreaking news. "She sat down and started welling up right away. She knew what was coming; she just didn't know the depth of it," he wrote (via The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). "'Karin,' I said. 'This is killing me and I've got to get it out. ... I've been having affairs with three girls: the girl from LA; a girl from Atlanta; and a girl from Detroit. ... I've been having these affairs since the beginning of the season. ... The girl from Detroit, Jennifer, is pregnant. And she's going to have the baby."

Jones described 30 minutes of subsequent chaos, crying, and shattered glass flying around their Georgia home. Then came a moment of silence. He wrote, "She walked into my office and sat on the arm of the chaise lounge beside me. She leaned into me. We sat there in silence for a long time. 'I'm so sorry,' I said." 

The couple divorced in 2000. "I would not be who I am today had I not traveled through those years," Karin Luise told the AJC in 2018. Jones later married his third wife — Playboy model Taylor Higgins — in 2015 (via the New York Post).

Oscar De La Hoya

In 2007, boxer Oscar De La Hoya found himself in a quandary when an exotic dancer posted photos of him wearing fishnet stocks, panties, and heels. The images immediately let everyone know, including his wife, that he had been messing around. 

At the time, "The Golden Boy" refused to admit it was him in the snaps. According to the Daily Mail, his spokesperson flat-out denied the authenticity of the photos, saying, "His head's too small and it doesn't even look like his body." The reputation of the woman who posted the snaps, Milana Dravnel, was allegedly smeared by the boxer's team in an effort to discredit her and the photos. Dravnel filed a lawsuit against De La Hoya, which was settled behind closed doors, though sources told the New York Post that he reportedly "shelled out a whopping $20 million" to make her "go away."

Fast forward four years later: De La Hoya came clean in an emotional interview with Univision (via the New York Post). "Let me to tell you, yes, yes, it was me," he said, claiming he was drunk and high on cocaine during the photo shoot. "I am tired now of lying, of lying to the public and of lying to myself." The fighter said he'd cheated on his wife, Millie Corretjer, whom he married in 2001. "We are obviously not talking a Tiger Woods here, but I was unfaithful," he added. As of 2016, De La Hoya was reportedly a bachelor again.

Hank Baskett

In 2014, former NFL wide receiver Hank Baskett's marriage with model Kendra Wilkinson became embroiled in tabloid headlines, when he was accused of having an affair with transgender model Ava Sabrina London. 

The incident occurred while Wilkinson was eight months pregnant with their second child, the couple later told People. As the story goes, Baskett wanted to buy marijuana from a random couple and was given an address to make the purchase. After using the restroom at the location, he claimed to have seen two transwomen, one of whom was nude, making out. One of the women reportedly fondled Baskett over his clothes. "I didn't engage in anything," he said. "It was like a bank robbery. You never know when you'll freeze. I don't know if it was a couple of seconds or 15 seconds, because all I was saying was get out, get out, get out."

Baskett and Wilkinson worked hard to rebuild their union, and they temporarily reconciled. "Hank was very naïve and gullible," the "Kendra" star told People in 2015. "He thinks everybody is his friend. That led him to the hell that we've lived." However, the couple's marriage ultimately ended in divorce in 2018, per Us Weekly.

Paul George

If you do a simple Google search of "Paul George cheated," you get more results than rapid COVID tests. Back in 2013, when George was still playing for the Indiana Pacers, the 6'8" forward was dating the daughter of Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers, Callie Rivers. Then he met exotic dancer Daniela Rajic at a yacht party in Miami (via Black Sports Online).

Flash forward a few months to 2014, and Rajic was pregnant. Rumors began flying that George offered her $1 million to have an abortion — an accusation he vehemently denied. "If and when there is legal confirmation that I am the father, I will fully embrace my responsibilities. This is a personal matter that is still being sorted out, so I hope you can respect my privacy," he said in a statement to TMZ Sports. Turns out the baby was his, the couple fell in love, and got engaged in 2020 (via People).

Now for the M. Night Shyamalan twist: In 2019, George was traded to the Clippers to play for Doc Rivers. Remember him? The father of the woman George cheated on? That same year, shooting guard Seth Curry (Steph Curry's brother) married Callie Rivers in Malibu. Curry was a former teammate at Duke of Austin Rivers, Doc's son and Callie's brother. Why hasn't everyone involved pitched a reality show yet? They're leaving millions on the table here.

John Terry

"I've misbehaved and slept with girls behind her back and that's not right. She knows about it all now and we're moving on. I'm not going to cheat on her ever again," Chelsea legend John Terry said in 2005, two years before exchanging wedding vows with Toni Poole (per Daily Mail). However, in 2010, Terry was embroiled in a cheating scandal with a teammate's girlfriend.

According to the Daily Mail, Terry had an extramarital affair with French underwear model Vanessa Perroncel — his teammate Wayne Bridge's girlfriend and Terry's wife's best friend. Sounds like the Bermuda Triangle of love triangles. Terry vehemently denied the allegations, but the allegations began a tabloid feeding frenzy once a court ruled to lift a ban on reporting the alleged sordid details. Perroncel also denied the affair took place, telling The Guardian in 2010: "The stories are untrue. Who are they to do this?" Later that year, two British tabloids publicly apologized to Perroncel for their rabid reporting of the incident.

As far as Wayne Bridge's thoughts on the matter, he refused to shake Terry's hand during a match in 2010. "The most disappointing aspect of it all is that I'm probably more famous for not shaking someone's hand than I am for playing football," he told The Sun in 2017. "I get abuse walking down the street now and I let it go in one ear and out the other. It's a handshake after all, nothing more."