Sports

Fans Share Stories About The Most Intimidating Athletes They’ve Ever Seen

Darren - April 5, 2021
Sports

Fans Share Stories About The Most Intimidating Athletes They’ve Ever Seen

Darren - April 5, 2021
Mandatory Credit: Sky Sports

8. The Best Referee

“He wasn’t a footballer, but Pierluigi Collina was; in my opinion, the scariest person on a football pitch. One of the greatest refs since I’ve started watching football, Derphighbury wrote. Collina is one of world soccer’s greatest referees. While he never played the game, he established a high profile in his own right because of his intimidating and distinctive presence on the field.

Mandatory Credit: GOAL

He suffered from alopecia which actually benefited his career because it made him one of the most visible figures on the soccer pitch. Meanwhile, Collina had an extremely strong character. One incident from Euro 2000 sums him up because he went head-to-head with the Czech Republic’s Tomas Repka. In sum, Collina didn’t blink and pushed the angry defender away.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

7. Metta World Peace

It’s definitely Ron Artest or that guy from the old days that almost killed someone by punching him in a game. But Artest is legit not 100% in the brain like he really acts like a dude with screws loose,” Redrexmyers1 wrote on Reddit. In short, he isn’t wrong. The man who became Metta World Peace was one of the wildest characters in NBA history, as his actions at the Malice at the Palace showed.

Mandatory Credit: CBS Sports

“Man he was crazy,” plaid_cloud wrote. “Like probably mentally ill. Whose shorts did he pull down? My buddy still has a signed jersey from his DPOY season.” Artest was genuinely a superb talent and won the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2004. But opponents found him intimidating because he was so unhinged. They had no idea what he was going to do.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

6. Beast Mode

“Marshawn Lynch. The spooky black visor, the bouncing dreads, watching him sprint at you with his shoulder lowered… you might as well get out of the way. Make a “business decision,” as Mike Rob puts it,” Intensebreathing wrote on Reddit. Lynch was a marauding presence on the football field. The Seahawks icon was a juggernaut when he charged forward and was one of the NFL’s most intimidating athletes.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

“I miss Marshawn Lynch. Beast Quake still gives me chills when I watch it,” @NFLMidwest tweeted. The fan refers to one of the greatest individual plays in playoff history. He broke nine tackles en route to a 67-yard touchdown against the New Orleans Saints. Some moments define a player’s entire career because they are so dramatic. In Lynch’s case, this was something special.  

Mandatory Credit: Sky Sports

5. Keano

“Roy Keane. Plenty of players can pull off the psycho look – but go and ask Alf Haaland if Keane will follow through on his glare or not,” Sicks3144 wrote on Reddit. The incident he referred to was when Keane deliberately attempted to break Alf-Inge Haaland’s leg in 2001. This was an act of vengeance after Haaland mocked the injured Manchester United captain as he lay in agony on the field in 1997.

Mandatory Credit: Sky Sports

Keane waited four years to get his revenge. In short, the former Ireland international is one of the most intimating soccer players ever. He infamously walked out on his country in 2002 after a feud with coach Mick McCarthy in Saipan. Furthermore, many of his former teammates admit that he terrified them. A relentless midfielder, Keane was a quality player but also played on the edge.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

4. The Predator

“Calm Francis is the scariest fighter I’ve seen,” @ZimoMoyo tweeted after UFC 260. Francis Ngannou became the UFC heavyweight champion of the world after knocking Stipe Miocic into oblivion. The gigantic Cameroonian crushed his foe in a rematch with terrifying ease. There is no doubt that this made him the most intimidating mixed martial artist on the planet. 

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

@NoBrainerMMA wrote, “Francis is the scariest fighter I’ve ever seen in MMA by a good amount second closest was 205 Rumble Johnson.” Both of these men possessed massive knockout power, but Ngannou’s size gives him the edge. His fists possess the touch of death because all it takes is a single punch. Meanwhile, his calm, quiet demeanor only lends to his mystique. 

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

3. Specimen

Shaquille O’Neal was physically gifted in a way the NBA had never seen before. The former Lakers superstar was the best player of his generation and also a beast on the court. His stature didn’t help him as he aged because he gained weight and lost fitness. But in his prime he was unstoppable and a nightmare for opposition teams to play against. Furthermore, this made him an incredibly intimidating foe.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

There were even murmurs of opposing players getting the Shaq-flu or Shaq-itis and conveniently missing games against Shaq,” Poorchris wrote. “No other player is intimidating enough to even start rumors like that, regardless of their validity.” While the likes of Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan, and LeBron James are all amazing athletes with great skills, they never had the same physical presence as Shaq.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

2. Crazy Eyes

“I’ve never been one to be intimidated by muscles or tattoos or anything like that,” Fsphoenix wrote on Reddit. “To me, intimidation is all in the eyes. You can look in a man’s eyes and see what he’s all about. James Harrison and Adrian Peterson have the two craziest looks in their eyes in the NFL in my opinion. ” Harrison is also the type of man who warms up shirtless in the frigid Pittsburgh winter.

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

“James Harrison, and it’s not even close,” another fan agreed. “I don’t care how ripped other players are, just look at that glare.” There is no doubt that Harrison possesses one of the most intense gazes in the NFL. A two-time Super Bowl champion, Harrison was a brilliant linebacker. But as well as his playing ability, Harrison possessed a natural intimidating aura that few footballers dream of.

Mandatory Credit: DAZN

1. Iron Mike

“Mike Tyson is the most ruthless, unforgiving, untouchable, scariest fighter of all time in any form of professional fighting,” @Jvom07 tweeted. In sum, there is no doubt that Tyson was one of the most intimidating athletes in sports history. The New York native was a fearsome knockout artist but also a volatile personality. He served time for rape and once bit off Evander Holyfield’s ear. 

Mandatory Credit: USA TODAY Sports

Meanwhile, he was a terrifying personality in the ring. He came out in his black shorts with little fanfare and a menacing look in his eyes. “The way Tyson was eyeballing McNeeley in their fight was scary as hell,” LuvDumplings wrote. “Don’t think I ever saw such a menacing look in the ring like that before.” This came after Tyson’s release from prison in 1994 and reflects his fearsome aura.

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