Ben Barba of the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs is in the public eye once again due to his gambling activities with other six teammates, according to Empire and Exchange Hotel owner Rob Sullivan which confirms the rumour that Mr Barba indulged in the vice almost regular every Saturday afternoon. But he is not new in the act, since many professional athletes in the past have been damaged by one screw-up to another, not only due to gambling but also bad business and other bad habits.
1. The retired American basketball player Scottie Pippen who played back in the 90s and remembered as a member of the Chicago Bulls with participation in six NBA titles and 72 wins for 1995 to 1996 season in their record. Pippen preferred financial security over being paid for what he actually is worth; thus, throughout his career, he endorsed anything and everything. By the end of his playing career, Pippen suffered from bad business deals including the notable mistake of purchasing a $4 million Gulfstream jet in 2002. The jet's engine needed $1 million worth of repairs after purchase due to missed inspection. "Pippen had sued two attorneys at the Chicago law firm Pedersen & Houpt for malpractice, alleging they failed to closely monitor his purchase of the jet, which was grounded only months after 2002 purchase," Lisa Donovan wrote in the Chicago Sun-Times.
2. The "Real Deal" fighter Evander Holyfield has gone flat broke despite his £350 million banking records. Holyfield was forced to sell everything to pay off debts totalling £10 million. Sports memorabilia such as gloves, boots, robe, Olympic bronze medal, and world title belts were sold. Holyfield lost most of his fortune in casinos at Las Vegas and Atlantic City, business misadventures, crippling lawsuits and expensive lifestyle.
3. The 10-time Pro Bowler back in 1980s, Lawrence Taylor, went bankrupt. Taylor was positive for cocaine use, hiring prostitutes to tire out members of the opponent's team, busted business deal, and failure to file his tax return. Lawrence Taylor won two Super Bowls which earned him a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
4. Former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, who earned an estimated $400 million, filed for bankruptcy in 2003. There are several reasons why Tyson has gone bankrupt, including settlements for his two divorces with his second wife, ceding two estate deeds, spending millions on jewelry and clothing, and purchasing mansions and cars, and Siberian tigers. One of the most notable expensive purchases was in Dec 22, 2002 of an astounding 40-inch white gold necklace with 80 carats worth of diamonds from a Las Vegas jewelry emporium (the tab showed: $173, 706.05). Mike Tyson was a former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and holds the record as the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA, and IBF heavyweight titles at 20 years, 4 months, and 22 days old. Tyson lost his WBA crown to Evander Holyfield in November 1996 and their rematch ended after Tyson bit Holyfield's ear, leading to his disqualification.
5. The retired American football player Orenthal Simpson or better known as O.J. Simpson and "The Juice" was involved in a lot mischief after his retirement from the game. In 1994, he was accused of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman, but he acquitted in 1995. Simpson had other legal troubles, including due taxes of $1.44 million with the state of California, battery and burglary which he was acquitted in the Miami, Florida, suspicion of ecstasy possession and money laundering in December 2001, and pirating broadcast signals using illegal electronic devices in March 2004. O.J Simpson was sentence to a total of 35 years in prison for kidnapping, with the possibility of a parole in 2017 after nine years in prison.