Talking trash in sports is as American as apple pie, and there are tons of players who take it to another level that the average nice guy can’t comprehend. The myth behind trash talking though is it is always the asshole that no one likes. Of course there are a few villains on this list, but there are also a few guys that you always thought were the nice guy, but on the court or field, they would turn it up so hard that they would make their opponent cry during the game, here are the top 10.
10. Chad Ochocinco
Chad Ochocinco has toned down his trash-talking antics recently, but I don’t think we can ever forget when Ochocinco was constantly ripping on opposing defensive backs. Seriously, you have to be a good trash talker to come up with stuff like that letter you’re looking at. Or to race a horse. Or to send your opponents deodorant so they “don’t sweat” covering you. Or to keep a checklist of cornerbacks who can’t cover you. The man is ridiculous.
9. Terrell Owens
Ochocinco might be a pretty good trash talker in his own right, but Terrell Owens runs his mouth more than anyone in the history of the NFL. This is the man that once told fans to “get your popcorn ready,” said he would give “181 percent” with the Buffalo Bills and even proclaimed, “I love me some me.” If that doesn’t define an egotistical maniac, I don’t know what does.
8. Jim McMahon
Former Chicago Bears quarterback Jim McMahon somehow managed to alienate his entire organization: “Who do I think the Bears should draft? I think the Bears should draft a new owner.” And an entire continent (he’s talking about Europe by the way): “The people don’t take baths and they don’t speak English. No golf courses, no room service. Who needs it?” Wow, Jim.
7. John Rocker
Former Major League pitcher John rocker was, um, off his rocker to say the least. And this is what he told Sports Illustrated about the city of New York: “It’s the most hectic, nerve-racking city. Imagine having to take the 7 Train to the ballpark, looking like you’re riding through Beirut next to some kid with purple hair, next to some queer with AIDS, right next to some dude who just got out of jail for the fourth time, right next to some 20-year-old mom with four kids. It’s depressing.” I’m not sure that he’s trying to talk crap about an entire city, but he sure sounds like it.
6. Michael Jordan
Aside from being the greatest player in NBA history, Michael Jordan was well-known for his trash talking. He would famously ask opposing players if their coaches got mad that they couldn’t guard him, but perhaps his greatest trash talking moment came against the Denver Nuggets. Before shooting a free throw against the Denver Nuggets, Jordan looked directly at Dikembe Mutombo and said, “This one’s for you.” He then closed his eyes, sunk the free throw, and added, “Welcome to the NBA.” Classic.
5. Floyd Mayweather
Floyd “Money” Mayweather earned himself a permanent spot on this list with his rant on fellow boxer Ricky Hatton: “When I retire, I’ll get Ricky Hatton to wash my clothes and cut my lawn and buckle my shoes. Ricky Hatton ain’t nothing but a fat man. I’m going to punch him in his beer belly. He ain’t good enough to be my sparring partner. “If that wasn’t enough, Mayweather also went off on a racist, homophobic rant directed toward Manny Pacquiao and entered the world where people get paid to talk trash, the WWE, for a match with “The Big Show” at Wrestlemania 24.
4. Reggie Miller
Reggie Miller will forever be one of the greatest trash talkers in the history of sports. He talked so much trash during his career that he even got John Starks ejected after he headbutted Miller because he was so frustrated with Miller’s constant jawing. And in 1994, New York Knicks fan (and director) Spike Lee was heckling Miller all game, but Miller responded by dropping 25 fourth quarter points and taunting Lee with that famous choke sign. That was trash talking at its finest.
3. Larry Bird
Here are two stories about Larry Bird that prove just how great of a trash talker he really was. Prior to the first three-point shooting contest in 1986, Bird walked into the locker room and looked around silently for a few minutes before finally proclaiming to everyone in the room, “”I’m just looking around to see who’s gonna finish in second.” Bird also told Chuck Person that he had a very special Christmas present waiting for him that he would deliver during the game. Well, Bird hit dribbled near the sideline where Person was sitting on the bench, he drained a three-point shot, look at Person and said, “”Merry F**king Christmas.” That is amazing.
2. Muhammad Ali
“I’m young, I’m handsome, I’m fast, I’m pretty and can’t possibly be beat.” Greatest line in the history of sports? Quite possible. Muhammad Ali was not only the “greatest of all-time,” he was a pretty damn good trash talker too. Just watch the video. He’s phenomenal
1. Mike Tyson
No one can rival the insane trash talking of Mike Tyson following a tune-up fight that lasted a ridiculously short 38 seconds. He directed this famous rant to his next opponent, Lennox Lewis: “My style is impetuous. My defense is impregnable. And I’m just ferocious. I want your heart. I wanna eat his children. Praise be to Allah.” Plus, I don’t think anyone can forget the “I’ll f**k you ’til you love me” rant.