Weird 22 of the Most Bizarre Obsessions of Professional Athletes  

Jacob Shelton
268 votes 72 voters 7.1k views 22 items

List Rules Vote up the most unexpected and strange fixations of stars from any sport.

Strange athlete obsessions are really only possible because sports superstars make so much money. For instance, you can enjoy Superman on your modest budget, but you probably can’t afford a life-sized Superman statue on your boat dock. There’s something about having the time and resources to chase your true passion that makes the hobbies and personal lives of athletes so interesting. It’s no surprise there are athletes who are obsessed with weird things, but the lengths to which they’ll go to feed their desire for volcanic dust or French onion dip are unfathomable until you see it.

While most sports star obsessions are tangible (a pile of snakes, soft drink memorabilia), some athletes are chasing a feeling you can only find once you’re embroiled in a hearty game of Dungeons & Dragons or Magic: The Gathering. That’s right, there are mega athletes out there right now spending millions of dollars perfecting their decks so they can destroy you in the back of a comic book shop on some lazy Saturday afternoon. It’s easy to understand superstar athlete obsessions, because if you were suddenly gifted all the money, you'd start collecting everything you wanted, or trying to play as much disc golf as possible. That’s just how humans work.  

Vote on the most unexpected and strange fixations of stars from any sport, then leave a comment about whatever weird thing you’re into – just don’t incriminate yourself. 

Ronda Rousey is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 22 of the Most Bizarre Obsessions of Professional Athletes
Photo: The Fumble/YouTube

There's nothing wrong, weird, or kooky about playing video games. They're fun, you love them, everyone loves them. But the amount of dedication it takes to run a forum specifically for Pokemon is ridiculous, and it's shocking to learn that, before Ronda Rousey was punching people's heads in, she was sitting in front of her computer editing comments about Snorlax.

In a Reddit AMA, when asked if she would rather fight one Mew-sized Mewtwo or 100 Mewtwo-sized Mews (which is not a thing that would happen), she answered “One Mew-sized Mewtwo, ‘cuz everyone knows that even though Mewtwo has better stats than Mew, 100 Mews totally overcome that.” Sure. Why not?

Also Ranked

#5 on If You Fought To The Death, Who Would You Want By Your Side?

#19 on Overhyped Athletes Who Still Performed

#49 on The Most Inspiring (Non-Hollywood) Female Role Models

#25 on The Best Female Wrestlers Of All Time

21 3
Agree or disagree?
see more on Ronda Rousey
Jesper Parnevik is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 22 of the Most Bizarre Obsessions of Professional Athletes
Photo: Golfing World/YouTube

Professional golfers seem like they have a lot of down time. There's not a lot of turn over in the sport, and even during a tournament they're mostly just walking around trying not to get duped into fighting a hockey-star-turned-golfer whose making a mockery of their sport. While Jesper Parnervik may not be a household name, he has five PGA tour wins and one Master under his belt, which is nothing to sneeze at. Especially if you've got a pile of volcanic dust on your desk.

Whenever Parnervik is feeling glum, he likes to eat a handful of volcanic sand. "I just take it straight. It's from somewhere in Europe. I bring it back from Sweden." So it probably tastes great. What say you Parnevik? "It tastes just like regular dirt." Oh, okay. Enjoy your dirt, then. 

Also Ranked

#10 on The Best Swedish Golfers

20 7
Agree or disagree?
see more on Jesper Parnevik
Dwight Howard is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 22 of the Most Bizarre Obsessions of Professional Athletes
Photo: CONSPIRACY/YouTube

When you make Dwight Howard money, you can do whatever you want. But if you act like a Bond villain in your downtime, you might want to rethink your life choices. During an interview with Bleacher Report, Howard discussed his favorite, super dangerous, hobbies as if they were no big deal. First, he showed off his guns. Turns out he's amassed a small arsenal of shotguns, semiautomatics, and handguns (including a "gold-looking" Desert Eagle). He also has a bazooka "just for show" and 20 exotic snakes. Howard described his insane hobbies as "What you do in Texas.” He's actually not wrong about that. 

Also Ranked

#70 on The Best NBA Player Nicknames

#23 on The Best NBA Players of the Decade

#21 on People Who Should Be in the Basketball Hall of Fame

#33 on The Best NBA Players with No Championship Rings

15 6
Agree or disagree?
see more on Dwight Howard
Hideki Matsui is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 22 of the Most Bizarre Obsessions of Professional Athletes
Photo:  TriStar Pictures

If you've ever wondered whether you're similar to a two-time MLB all star and one-time World Series winner and MVP, the answer is, yes. Well, it is if you really like porn.

According to GQ, Hideki Matsui owns somewhere in the ballpark of 55,000 adult videos. To put that into perspective, the average stock of a video rental store in 1989 was 3,600 VHS tapes, which means that by the time Matsui retired from the MLB in 2012 he had around 15 Blockbusters in his home collection. That's a lot of porn.

As one Japanese reporter put it, "Matsui is a horny guy. All of us are horny, more or less. But Matsui doesn't attempt to hide the fact." ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Also Ranked

#38 on The Greatest New York Yankees of All Time

#19 on The Greatest Designated Hitters of All Time

13 5
Agree or disagree?
see more on Hideki Matsui