Home Sports The definitive list of the scariest athletes of all-time

The definitive list of the scariest athletes of all-time

by Nicholas Di Giovanni October 30, 2018
The definitive list of the scariest athletes of all-time

From “The Hammer” to “The Refrigerator,” here are some scary players to face

Everyone loves to associate Halloween with horror movies and monsters but no one ever thinks of scary athletes. That’s because athletes usually aren’t scary. But there are a few scary athletes that stand out, and here are some of the scariest ones out there.

Hockey: Dave “The Hammer” Schultz

With a nickname like “The Hammer,” you just know Dave Schultz is a scary guy on the ice. He played for the Philadelphia Flyers from 1972 to 1976, winning two Stanley Cups. He was a huge reason behind those Cup victories, not for his skill, but for his pure physical force. At 6’1” and 185 lbs, he was part of the Flyers team known as the “Broad Street Bullies.” With the Flyers, Schultz had seasons of 259, 307, 348, and 472 penalty minutes, with 130 fights in 297 games. His 472 minutes in the 1974-75 season still hold an NHL record for most penalty minutes in a single season.

Opposing players used to be so scared of Schultz and the Flyers that they came down with the “Philly flu” before having to play them on the road.

Football: William “The Refrigerator” Perry

Another athlete with a well-deserved nickname makes the scariest athletes list. William Perry was known as “The Fridge” because his body frame really looked like one: standing at 6’2”, he weighed 335 lbs.

The defensive lineman played for the Chicago Bears from 1985 to 1993, under Hall of Fame coach Mike Ditka. He had a respectful career as a defensive lineman, averaging three sacks per game and 52 tackles per season, with 138 games played between the Bears and the Philadelphia Eagles.

What made Perry the scariest of all was when Ditka used him as a fullback on offence. It was a really smart strategy by Ditka, to just give the ball to a 335-lb player and let him run through players. Perry scored two career touchdowns, and scored another in Super Bowl XX in 1986. Can you imagine having a fridge run into you?

Basketball: Shaquille O’Neal

This is the perfect opportunity to include the Monstars from Space Jam, but I won’t. Shaquille O’Neal makes this list because of his size (7’1”, 325 lbs) and his talent. When you watch him play basketball, you just see an absolute monster dominating normal-sized people on the court.

O’Neal was as skilled as you can get. In a 19-year career, he won four championships, three NBA finals MVP titles, one league MVP, and 15 All-Star Game appearances. O’Neal’s greatest strength was his dunking, and he even broke nets multiple times.

Off the court, between his acting and TV broadcaster career, O’Neal is anything but scary.

Soccer: Daniele De Rossi

I skipped over baseball because I couldn’t think of any scary player, so soccer gets a nomination on this scariest athletes list instead. That player is Daniele De Rossi. The A.S. Roma midfielder’s motto is that, if he goes for a tackle and doesn’t get the ball, he will get the opposing player instead. He has a tattoo on his right leg that is a hazard for tackles.

De Rossi is a warrior on the field, going after every ball and fighting hard in every battle. Even at 35 years old, he’s a scary player to face. He once said he would “like to take a baseball bat” to the teeth of young players who use social media in the dressing room.

Personal note

I played goalie in water polo for about three years, so I had to stop these heavy balls coming at my unprotected face. After a while, I got used to it and obviously wasn’t scared, as I had saves to make.

There was one player that had such a strong shot, I was afraid to face him. I move out of the way pretty much every time he shot. It came in so fast and so strong, I wasn’t risking anything for that.

That player, Abdalla Osman, is currently a goalie on the Concordia Stingers men’s soccer team.

Graphic by @spooky_soda.

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