Fidel Castro gave Matos his blessing after the Olympic Games in 2008. But it wasn’t for winning a gold medal. Matos made global headlines after his dramatic temper tantrum in Beijing. The referee disqualified him in his bronze medal match but the Taekwondo star didn’t take this well. His immediate reaction was to kick the referee in the head. However, the most dramatic part was that he had a broken toe (via Houston Chronicle).
Technically, his anger didn’t cause the injury but it definitely adds to the story. Castro defended his countryman’s actions because he said the referee was unjust. Most people agree that kicking officials in the head is never a good look but they do things differently in Cuba. The picture of Matos kicking the referee became of the event’s most iconic and notorious moments.
Even King James loses his temper sometimes. The NBA icon played the Warriors for the championship, but Golden State was too much for the Cavs to handle. It didn’t help that a self-inflicted injury had affected Cleveland’s best player. After the first game, an angry James strode into the locker room and punched a whiteboard (via SBNation). But this was a terrible decision.
The moment of madness left him with a broken hand. He continued to play through the series but the injury compromised him. After two MRIs, it was clear that James broke his hand. However, he didn’t require surgery. He kept his hand in a soft cast and didn’t disclose his malady to the media. It just goes to show that anger can make anyone do stupid things.
The Houston Astros defeated the Cardinals in Game Four of their NL Championship Series but Tavarez made the story about him. He received a fine after he threw a pitch over Houston’s Jeff Bagwell. But there was even more drama. After the inning ended, Tavarez had a tantrum. The Dominican hit the roof of the dugout before punching the bullpen phone. This wasn’t a smart thing to do (via ESPN).
It left him with a broken hand. Medics put his hand in a plastic splint to immobilize them. However, Tavarez was a controversial figure. Earlier that season, MLB hit him with a ban because he applied an unknown substance to a ball. Tavarez was volatile and ruthless but this made him a compelling figure. Many fans felt he deserved his injury because of his stupidity.
Farnsworth made headlines after he kicked an electric fan in 2003. It was a stupid move because the fan put him on the disabled list for over two weeks. He had a bad game against the Houston Astros. On his way back to the Cubs’ clubhouse, Farnsworth threw his gloves away into the crowd. But he felt an urge to vent his fury in a more visceral way. It’s too bad he chose to kick a metal fan.
“You know everybody has done something similar at some time in their career,” Manager Dusty Baker said (via ESPN). “There’s a valuable lesson here, an expensive one.” It was also an embarrassing scenario for Farnsworth because Chicago fans already resented him. They had booed him because of his poor performances in previous games. Unfortunately, he made life worse for himself.
Beckham was Manchester United’s biggest star but this didn’t keep him safe from the wrath of Sir. Alex Ferguson. The celebrated coach clashed with Beckham several times but one moment stands above them all. After an argument developed between the two men, Ferguson kicked a soccer boot into the air. It came down and lacerated Beckham’s face, forcing him to get multiple stitches (via Manchester Evening News).
Technically, Beckham didn’t cause the injury to himself, but he was responsible for infuriating his coach. It was a ridiculous situation that left both men red-faced in front of the media. Soon after, Beckham departed for Real Madrid where he became one of the highest-paid soccer players on the planet. However, the pair maintain a good relationship and laugh about the incident now.
Harbaugh was the Indianapolis Colts’ starting quarterback in the late nineties when the franchise ran into tough times. They were 0-7 in 1997 when the QB had a run-in with Jim Kelly. The Bills’ icon was working as a broadcaster when he found himself face-to-face with the younger man. An emotional Harbaugh proceeded to question Kelly’s toughness before he punched him in the face.
But Harbaugh came off worse because he suffered a fracture in his throwing hand. Not only did he come off as the aggressor but the result was ridiculous. Harbaugh refuses to go into detail about the incident because it was embarrassing for him. But there’s no doubt that Kelly thinks about this fondly. Finally, Harbaugh missed a month of the season (via IndyStar).
Unlike others on this list, Thomas’s action was reasonable. But it was too bad that he came off on the wrong side. In November 1993, the Pistons’ star suffered a broken rib when Bill Laimbeer elbowed him in practice. Needless to say, their relationship wasn’t the best and Thomas wanted revenge. He was also wary of Laimbeer and promised to make him pay if he tried it again.
The following month, Laimbeer elbowed Thomas again but this time he was ready. Thomas immediately lashed out with a punch to Laimbeer’s head. However, it didn’t have the result that Thomas wanted. In the end, he broke his own metacarpal bone off of his teammate’s skull. This ridiculous injury left him on the sidelines for a few weeks because of his bad luck (via Bleacher Report).
Veteran pitcher Perez is another baseball star who suffered the consequences of anger. The Pirates’ star put in a bad performance against the Cardinals. After he allowed four runs on seven hits and five walks, he lashed out. Perez kicked a laundry cart but didn’t realize that it was solid metal. In short, he received a broken toe and found himself on the disabled list.
“When you get mad, you don’t think about anything, you’re just angry,” Perez explained (via Chicago Tribune). That summed up his situation but it doesn’t justify the ridiculous nature of the injury. Pirates GM Dave Littlefield called the incident ‘unacceptable’ because it hurt Perez’s teammates too. Meanwhile, Perez knows everybody will remember his stupidity.
Former MLB Pitcher Brown is a tough customer. He once famously held two mail thieves at gunpoint until the police arrived on the scene. The Padres veteran was the wrong man to anger because he didn’t hold back. Unfortunately, this landed him in trouble when he lost control. Brown felt frustrated after an injury-shortened 2004 season. He decided to take his anger out on the clubhouse wall (via ESPN).
The pitcher’s temper tantrum left him with a broken wrist. He apologized to his Yankees’ teammates because he knew he let them down. Then, to rub salt into his wounds, the franchise investigated to see if the self-inflicted injury voided his contract. Brown was 39 at the time so there was no excuse for his action. It was a ridiculous moment from the pitcher.
Storen suffered one of the most freakish injuries on this list in 2015 after he shoved his locker. Somehow, the Nationals star caught his thumb on a metal clasp. He didn’t set out to punch a hard object like other athletes on this list, but the result was the same. The moment of frustration left him with a fractured thumb. It also wounded his pride because it was embarrassing.
“I was frustrated with my outing, but I had no intention… I’m not the type of guy to punch a wall or do something like that,” Storen explained to NBC Sports. “That’s not what I was aiming for.” After, Storen went to the team manager and apologized for letting the team down. It was more of an accident than the outcome of sheer stupidity. But it brought his season to an early end.
Russian tennis star Youzhny never won a major, but he was a perennial contender. He was also famous for another, more bizarre reason. Whenever Youzhny made a serious mistake on the court, he reacted in a violent manner. However, this time his victim was himself. The Russian beat his own tennis racquet against his forehead. This eccentric behavior also cost him on multiple occasions.
First, at the Sony Ericsson Open in 2008, he drew blood when he gave himself a good whacking (via Sporting News). Later, he repeated the action at the French Open. This time, the impact caused a migraine and caused him to retire from his game. Another incident occurred in 2013 when he annihilated his racquet on the tennis court. Youzhny was a strange character but a compelling one.
The Knicks met the Miami Heat in the NBA playoffs and lost the first two games of the series. They needed all of their players to step up and be counted but Stoudemire didn’t receive the memo. A wave of fury washed over the basketball star but he didn’t just take a deep breath. No, he decided that the best way to deal with his anger was to punch a fire extinguisher.
This was a terrible idea because extinguishers are a lot harder than the average human hand. He required 15 stitches in his hand after the ridiculous incident (via CBS Local). Luckily, it was his left hand so he didn’t worry about his NBA future. But it was still a terrible decision and also cost his team dearly as they lost the series. Maybe they would have gone out anyway, but his absence didn’t help.
Another MLB star, another ridiculous self-inflicted injury. Sweeney played for the Red Sox in a victory over the Tigers but stole the headlines for an idiotic reason. Cody Ross replaced the right-fielder in the ninth inning of the game. This prompted fans to think that the franchise had traded him before the deadline. But the player had punched a door and broke a knuckle on his hand.
Mandatory Credit: USA Today Sports
Of course, this injury put him on the disabled list because he couldn’t play. “I feel like I just let the team down if it’s bad,’’ Sweeney said via Boston.com. “I feel terrible right now. Obviously, when you hit something, you just have so much adrenaline going and you don’t know what happened. Afterward, it just hurt.” Finally, he discovered that punching hard objects is a bad idea.
Perry is one of the UFC’s most eccentric personalities. Fans loved him because of his gung-ho fighting style and shall we say, “authentic” nature. However, he’s prone to ridiculous moments that have landed him in trouble. One of the most concerning episodes in recent history occurred when he kicked through a glass door. The fighter lashed out in a fit of rage but it didn’t end well.
Then, he uploaded a picture of his wounded limb onto social media. “No matter what I do it’s never enough,” the fighter tweeted (via MMA Junkie). “So I act out. Happy to spill my own blood.” His supporters replied to this disturbing message because they wanted him to seek help. It was a tough year for the welterweight because he had several depressive episodes.
Williams was a key member of the Milwaukee Brewers’ bullpen when he made the worst decision of his career. It came after a night of drunken celebration that went badly wrong. The Brewers won the NL Central title and were set to meet the St. Louis Cardinals in the postseason. It should have been a highlight moment for Williams but he became upset and punched a wall.
The reliever broke his hand in the process. Needless to say, fans thought it was ridiculous. The worst part was that Williams was a very important player for his team. He had an 8-2 record with a 2.50 ERA in 58 games and struck out 87 batters in 54 innings (via New York Post). Williams apologized to the organization and his fans because he was a moron. In the end, he knew it was all his fault.