The Oddest Couples
Everybody knows this old one - don't judge the book by its covers? Yes? OK. And, I think that’s just the responsible way to live and its one of the best lesson for the kids. But! Just because you can’t judge a book by the cover doesn’t mean you can’t laugh at the absurdity of the cover. Some things are just too ridiculous to ignore - like, 7'1" basketball player routinely dating women who barely break the five-foot mark. Or even like a statuesque model with a soccer player who looks more like a gargoyle. Or even like a Playboy Playmate who formed an extremely unlikely match with a one-time NFL quarterback. Here are some of the unlikeliest couples in sports.
Nikolai and Galina Valuev
Nikolai Valuev is a Russian boxer who is also known as Rock Man, The Russian Bear, Lurch or even Shrek (the mean one!). He’s a full 7'0" tall, 308 pounds and rocks size 18 shoes! His wife Galina is 5'2" and can’t be much over 100 pounds. Galina said she was won over by the Rock Man’s poetry that he wrote for her after a chance meeting at a friend’s birthday party in 1999.
Dirk Nowitzki and Jessica Olsson
Dirk Nowitzki of the NBA champion Dallas Mavericks was recently engaged to the relatively teeny Jessica Olsson. Nowitzki stands a full foot taller than Olsson, but they actually make quite an adorable couple.
Amare Stoudemire and Ciara
At 6'10", New York Knicks power forward Amare Stoudemire stands about 13 inches taller than his girlfriend, R&B singer Ciara. Actually at 5'9", Ciara is fairly tall for a girl but standing next to an NBA player is bound to make most of us look comically undersized. The timeline on their relationship is a bit hazy, but the pair have been dating since early 2011.
Tito Ortiz and Jenna Jameson
UFC fighter Tito Ortiz and Jenna Jameson have been together since 2006 on MySpace and the pair were married in 2008. They probably looked like less of an odd couple back when she was a little bit more luscious. Now that she's decidedly more stick-like, they just look like skinny and the beast. However, to everyone's surprise, these crazy kids seem to be making things work despite their very well-reported rough patches.
Mike Modano and Willa Ford
Goofy-looking Mike Modano is an American hockey player who is now the oldest active player in the NHL. He was drafted in 1988 and until last season played every single game of his career for the Stars—first in Minnesota and then in Dallas. Modano has been with singer/songwriter Willa Ford for nearly a decade and the two were married in a small ceremony in Athens, Texas in 2007.
Plaxico and Tiffany Burress
It’s not just the difference in height that make New York Jets wide receiver Plaxico Burress and his Tiffany an odd couple. If you’ve ever seen the pair together, you know that this is definitely a case of opposites attracting. Plaxico is a professional athlete, who’s always been a man of relatively few words. Tiffany is a model, an attorney and she’s exceptionally well spoken. The pair seem to be making it work though!
Chris Bosh and Adrienne Williams
The Miami Heat’s Chris Bosh stands an impressive 6'11". That’s almost as tall as Shaq, but of course, Bosh is a bit trimmer. Bosh met Williams, who looks to be almost a two full feet shorter than him, in late 2009 and the pair married sometime in 2011. Most sources insist they were married way back in April, but Bosh has been strangely evasive about it.
Kevin Garnett and Brandi Padilla
Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett is one of the most imposing figures in the NBA. At 6'11" and over 260 pounds, he’s absolutely massive and his personality probably makes him look about a foot taller on the court. KG married his longtime girlfriend Brandi Padilla during a private California ceremony in 2004; he actually skipped the Olympics that year because of the wedding. It’s anybody’s guess how tall Padilla is, but she appears to be almost 18 inches shorter than her husband and it’s hard not to laugh at some of the pictures of the couple.
Peter Crouch and Abigail Clancy
Peter Crouch is an English soccer player who plays for the national team as well as Stoke City in the Premier League. Abigail Clancy is a stunning British lingerie and fashion model as well as a television personality. The two began dating in 2007 and Crouch, who probably couldn’t believe his luck, decided to put a ring on it in 2009. The two had their first child, Sophia Ruby, in March 2011. Crouch isn’t tragic to look at, but he’s obviously a bit of an average Joe. Unfortunately next to Clancy, he looks like a lot more like a substantially below-average Joe.
Bastian Schweinsteiger and Sarah Brandner
Bastian Schweinsteiger is a German soccer player who plays for the German national team as well as for Bayern Munich. He’s a celebrated player who has won a number of national and international awards over his career. Unsurprisingly he’s credited his gorgeous model girlfriend Sarah Brandner for a lot of his great performances over the last several years. The two have been dating since 2007 and currently live together in Munich. Schweinsteiger may not be a looker, but he’s gotta be brave! When he and Brandner first met at a social event in Munich, she was dating Wladimir Klitschko, the Ukrainian heavyweight boxer who later dated Hayden Panettiere.
Marko Jaric and Adriana Lima
Marko Jaric is a Serbian basketball player who was drafted by the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2000 NBA draft. His career in the NBA was decidedly unremarkable, and his looks leave a little to be desired; yet he still managed to land one of the hottest women on the planet. He met Brazilian supermodel Adriana Lima in 2007 and Jaric proposed a year later on June 12, 2008—Lima’s 27th birthday. They married in Jackson Hole, Wyoming in 2009 and welcomed their first child, Valentina Lima Jaric, almost nine months to the date later. Nobody is sure what is more stunning at this point: Lima’s show-stopping good looks or her marriage to this dude.
Shaquille O'Neal and Nicole "Hoopz" Alexander
At 7'1" and 325 pounds (which is a modest estimate), it would be very difficult for Shaquille O’Neal to find an appropriately-sized partner. Obviously there aren’t too many 6'6" women walking around, but there are certainly women closing in on 6'0", right? Well Shaq isn’t interested. He likes his women petite and 5'0"—his new girl, Hoopz Alexander, is no exception. Hoopz is two feet shorter than him and over 200 pounds lighter! Wow, I can't even imagine the logistics of this relationship.