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10 of The Worst Fights Involving Rich Athletes

The court, the pitch, the stadium, and the ring are places that draw some of the largest crowds in the world. Sports are one of mankind's favourite forms of entertainment, but there have been moments

The court, the pitch, the stadium, and the ring are places that draw some of the largest crowds in the world. Sports are one of mankind's favourite forms of entertainment, but there have been moments in history when the fun is replaced by nasty brawls that have etched themselves in our memories. At the height of the action, common sense, clear thinking, and maturity take a back seat to raw emotion. Crowds start to get rowdy while athletes forget their safety to fight for their teams. Heated moments in sports are common and some do really get nasty, involving officials and fans in the melee. Such are moments when passion and excitement are conveyed through blows, with tightening fits and flying sticks.

In a sport like hockey it isn't uncommon to see highly-paid players drop their gloves. Despite the controversy that surrounds this characteristic of the NHL, hockey fights fall well within the rules of the game. In other sports like basketball and baseball, fighting between players is much more rare, but when it does happen, it often leads to bench-clearing brawls between teams. Times like these are hard to forget as they only occur when emotions reach a boiling point. Matters get even worse when the crowd gets involved, as a contained fight can turn into an uncontrollable riot.

Most recently, in Maranhao, on June 30, 2013, a Brazilian soccer referee was beheaded by angry fans after he allegedly stabbed a player. Gruesomely, his head was put on a stake in the middle of the field. Although justice attempts to follow such incidents, it's impossible to erase such moments of intense madness. Below are some of the nastiest fights involving rich and successful athletes.

10 Kyle Farnsworth vs Paul Wilson (Combined Net worth - Unknown)

9 Andrew Golota vs Riddick Bowe (Combined Net Worth - $20+ Million)

8 Mike Vernon vs Patrick Roy (Combined Net Worth - $56+ Million)

7 Nolan Ryan vs Robin Ventura (Combined Net Worth - $60+ Million)

6 Carmelo Anthony vs Jared Jeffries (Combined Net Worth - $60+ Million)

5 Zinedine Yazid Zidane vs Marco Materazzi (Combined Net Worth- $70+ Million)

4 Ben Wallace vs Ron Artest (Combined Net Worth - $85 Million)

3 Clint Bowyer vs Jeff Gordon (Combined Net Worth - $170 Million)

2 Kevin Garnett vs Udonis Haslem (Combined Net Worth - $195 Million)

1 Alex Rodriguez vs Jason Varitek (Combined Net Worth - $310 Million)

It was during a summer classic at Fenway Park between Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees that Alex Rodriguez lashed out in anger and started one of the nastiest fights in baseball after getting hit by a pitch from Bronson Arroyo. Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek tried to calm A-Rod down but was pushed back. The situation grew worse when Varitek shoved a catcher's mitt in Rodriguez's face. A lot of pushing and shoving followed as fans stood up to cheer. One of the highest-paid athletes of all time, Alex Rodriguez has earned $325 million in salary alone. He has a net worth of $300 Million. The All-Star player is currently suspended for allegedly using performance enhancing drugs, a decision that could keep him off the baseball diamond until the beginning of 2015.

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10 of The Worst Fights Involving Rich Athletes