Cech went down as one of the best goalkeepers in Premier League history. But the Czech star almost died after a serious collision in 2006. He moved forward to collect a ball but took a knee to the head from Stephen Hunt. The Irishman refused to pull out of the challenge and left Cech sprawled on the floor. It quickly became clear that the situation was serious because the keeper lay prone on the floor.
An ambulance rushed him to the hospital where he underwent surgery (via Sports Illustrated). Medics discovered that he had a depressed skull fracture. This was a life-threatening injury if they didn’t treat it quickly. Fortunately, he recovered and bounced back after the traumatic experience. Cech wore a distinctive rugby-style skull cap for the rest of his career. This was because doctors warned him to protect his vulnerable injury.
Fury defeated Wladimir Klitschko in 2015 and won a clutch of heavyweight titles. Fury also became the lineal champion of the world. It appeared as though a new era was about to begin. But then he didn’t defend his belts against mandatory opponents and failed drug tests. The downward spiral escalated when he fell into alcohol and drug addiction. Finally, his weight blew up to over 300 pounds and he contemplated suicide.
However, the controversial boxer showed his strong will with one of the most incredible comebacks ever (via Business Insider). He returned to action in 2018 with a couple of warm-ups before an epic clash with Deontay Wilder. Fury wasn’t fit but he still dominated the fight and survived two knockdowns. The judges ruled the fight a draw. Then he went on and won an exciting trilogy against the “Bronze Bomber.”
The great Lemiuex never completed a full NHL season. Despite this, fans widely regard him as one of the best players to step onto the ice. He endured a series of serious ailments throughout his career. These included spinal problems as well as cancer. Indeed, many expected the latter to end his tenure with the Pittsburgh Penguins. But Lemieux’s desire to play was too strong to deny (via Sports Illustrated).
He continued to deliver exceptional numbers despite his ailments. Most humans struggle to do anything when they’re undergoing cancer treatment. But Lemieux wasn’t an ordinary person. He loved hockey more than anything else and was never happier than when he was in a game. It’s amazing to imagine what he could have achieved if he didn’t have to deal with constant health problems.
Brady signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after 20 seasons with the Patriots. This left fans with mixed feelings because he showed signs of age in his final semester in New England. They thought that he was looking for one last big contract before hanging up his cleats for good. Of course, he received the money he wanted but he delivered far beyond anyone’s expectations.
The wildest part was that the Bucs didn’t start well. Brady allegedly struggled with Bruce Arians’ playbook before it all clicked into gear. Then the fairytale built up momentum until they found themselves in the Super Bowl. He put on a fantastic display to crush Kansas City and earn an unprecedented seventh ring. It was a strong comeback and a reaffirmation he’s going nowhere (via Boston Globe).
Agassi’s career is very similar to Tyson Fury’s in a lot of ways. He reached the pinnacle of his sport before succumbing to external pressures. Then he demonstrated incredible willpower to return to the top. A combination of a toxic relationship and persistent injuries sent him into a downward spiral. This escalated into full-blown depression and Agassi began to use crystal meth (via Reuters).
He went from being the number one tennis player in the world to 141 in the blink of an eye. But he cleaned up his act and returned to the form. Agassi rehabilitated and fought his way back up the rankings. In the end, he became the oldest player ever to become world number two. After staring down at the abyss, Agassi demonstrated that everybody can overcome their demons.
There was a lot of talk about the Packers being Super Bowl contenders before the 2021 season. But then Rodgers rocked the NFL. He demanded a trade and spent the summer at loggerheads with his franchise. Finally, he reluctantly agreed to spend another year in Green Bay. Fans saw danger signs. Then, the Packers suffered a humiliating loss on opening day against the New Orleans Saints.
The 38-3 blowout immediately created a reaction. Many analysts shook their heads and said that there was too much drama in the locker room. But the Packers bounced back with a series of strong displays to top the NFC North. Rodgers still created drama off the field but was brilliant on it (via Sporting News). He showed the fans why knee-jerk reactions are foolish. Things can change very quickly.
It seems ridiculous that even one person ever wrote Mahomes off. Fans spoke about him as a lock for the Hall of Fame after his first Super Bowl win with the Kansas City Chiefs. The franchise hadn’t won the coveted prize for 50 years, but their quarterback inspired them to glory. They had a second shot at gold in 2021 but fell dismally short against Tampa Bay. Meanwhile, it was the worst performance of Mahomes’ short career.
The Chiefs were inconsistent at the start of the following season. Mahomes escaped criticism at first but then whispers began about the changes in his displays. However, they ruthlessly turned a corner. One game against the Raiders showed Mahomes at his ruthless best. He completed 35 of 50 passes for 406 yards with five touchdowns (via CBS Sports). Also, he didn’t throw a single interception in the strong showing.