Divorces are a stressful situation for any family to go through. It’s difficult for any regular family to go through, but what happens when you throw millions into the scenario and add in kids. This is what happens when you have NBA divorces occurring in the media.
When couples separate, the legal actions are usually handled quietly and in private, only informing the necessary parties. When dealing with celebrities and athletes, the eyes of society are linked on them and the scandals that surround their separations. For example, When Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt broke up, all eyes in Hollywood were on them and how they would handle the break up and the relationships that would follow them.
In the NBA, there’s an additional factor of the sports world being added to it. The constant criticism with NBA players adds an extra drama to each respective divorce. Stories of infidelity, obsessive gambling and commitment issues have led to the NBA separations. These stars are constantly exposed to parties and women, high-stakes gambling, and competitiveness on and off the court. The best NBA player ever, Michael Jordan, is a well documented gambler during and after his career.
This list examines the messiest and biggest divorces of the NBA. This will primarily include the best stories out of the NBA familial issues, where players cheat on their wives, gamble away fortunes and avoid child support in order to save a few bucks.
10 Dwyane Wade
This three-time Champ has had to pay alimony and child support for years. Now in his 11th year in the league, Dwyane Wade is a veteran on and off the court. In 2007, he filed for divorce from his then wife, who was his high-school sweetheart.
Wade’s out-of-court settlement piled up to be $5 million to his ex-spouse. Even more so, she accused him of not paying his $25,000 per month of child support. However, these accusations have been quickly dismissed as Wade’s legal team quickly pointed out that she has gone through 16 attorneys and been arrested twice since the settlement was paid. On the upside in this strange divorce, Wade has gained sole custody of both his kids.
9 Dennis Rodman
The Worm has been through two marriages, and has managed to crawl around paying child support. Rodman divorced former spouse, Michelle Moyer, in 2012 after having two kids together. It’s always hard to deal with a divorce when kids are involved, but it’s even more difficult to deal with it when the player is dead broke.
As part of the divorce settlement, Rodman was supposed to pay Moyer $3,500 per month for child support. However, in classic Worm style, he’s avoided the payments and is said to owe approximately $860,000 in backpay for child support with another $50,000 in spousal support. Rodman is unable to pay his debts as it seems that he’s spent every penny he has and is broke. Hopefully his new best friend, Kim Jong Un is paying for his visits to North Korea and can set up a loan to help him.
8 Shaquille O’Neal
Shaq is possibly the most dominant force to ever play in the NBA and it fully makes sense. Standing at 7’1, Shaq was mobile (when he was younger) and had the passing abilities of the best big men in the league. Off the court, Shaq was a loveable character often wanting to make people laugh through his movies and his rap music (although the rap music laughter may have not been the intention).
In 2007, Shaq filed divorce from his wife of 5 years after the two had 4 kids. The divorce was delayed until 2010, and then finalized, resulting in Shaq reportedly paying $10,000 per month in alimony and then another $10,000 in child support. Thankfully Shaq had a prenup signed before they got married, or she could have left with a lot more since he’s admitted on numerous occasions of his own infidelity.
7 Kris Humphries
What would an NBA divorce list be without the marriage of Kris Humphries and Kim Kardashian. Humphries was a typical hustle player before he met Kim, then he was thrown into the limelight for his 15 minutes. Their marriage lasted 72 days before the split came along and the happy couple turned into a running feud.
Humphries, the less wealthy of the two, demanded $7 million out of the divorce. He also wanted to get an annulment rather than a divorce. Neither happened for him, and Humphries was left to pay his own attorney fees on top of it. And now, he plays for an NBA team who’s GM refuses to admit that they’re tanking, while Kim is happy is Kanye West and has a newborn child. I wonder who came out ahead of this transaction.
6 Jason Kidd
This is where the divorces get really messy, and it becomes hard to understand perspectives from both sides. Firstly, Jason Kidd’s marriage to Joumana in 1997 lasted approximately 10 years. It made it through guilty pleas, by Kidd, admitting to domestic abuse where he was forced to attend anger management counselling.
In 2007, the couple divorced and Kidd was accused of beating her again, breaking her ribs and smashing her face into a car which resulted in damaged hearing. Kidd, on the other hand, claimed that she both physically and psychologically assaulted him throughout their marriage by calling him names, hitting him and often throwing objects at him. Needless to say, this marriage turned south but Kidd did win an NBA Championship 4 years later, so at least he has that.
5 Steve Nash
It’s a shame that the two-time MVP has become a shell of what he used to be. Once upon a time he was one of the most influential and talented players in the league and Nash will be remembered for being 3rd in all-time assists.
Nash divorced his wife in 2010 after the birth of their new child at the time. Why you ask? The child turned out to be black. While Nash is white and his wife is Latina, the numbers didn’t match up for him to be the father and he left as soon as he could. Only a few days later, teammate Jason Richardson was traded to the Orlando Magic, leading speculations of J-Rich being the baby’s daddy. Looks like J-Rich gave Nash the assist on that one.
4 Tim Duncan
Possibly the quietest player to play the game, Duncan enters the list at number 4 and it’s hard to see how he could go through a divorce. Duncan seems like the kind of guy who would have four kids, a golden retriever and a white picket fence with a smoking hot blonde wife.
Well it is close; his ex-wife is blonde and he has two kids. And what tore this family apart can only be described as surprising and odd. These college sweethearts called it quits in 2013 due to Duncan’s supposed infidelity. The catch to this story that makes it so intriguing: the rumored infidelity was with a man. She alleged that Duncan often has the man over, and that he’s bought a house for the man. I guess not everyone can live the prototypical happy family life, not even Tim Duncan.
3 Kobe Bryant
The first disclaimer of Kobe’s section is that the divorce never actually happened. However, due to the story and the sheer awesomeness that is Kobe, it was impossible to leave him off this list. Before Vanessa could file the divorce papers to make it official, Kobe was able to buy her love back and the couple announced their peace through Instagram.
How did Kobe convince his beloved wife that he’s over the adultery and womanizing? Apparently, he bought her the only Murcielago in the world that has been turned into automatic transmission because she can’t drive stick and he bought her a $4 million diamond ring. Now all this does seem like it costs a pretty penny, however, if the divorce had gone through, Kobe would be paying $1 million in spousal support and an additional $365,000 in child support, per month! Good thing Lamborghini likes having Kobe Bryant as a customer.
2 Tony Parker
Let the locker-room quarrels begin. Tony Parker and Eva Longoria seemed like a match-made in heaven, as she's a wealthy actress and he’s the point guard for a legacy team. However, three years into the marriage, Eva filed for divorce due to emotional cheating. Eva found text messages between Tony and another woman that she couldn't handle.
The catch is the other woman was supposedly the wife of (then teammate) Brent Barry. Barry was immediately traded from the team (then retired) and Parker was left alone at home without having to give anything to Eva because of their prenup. This was probably better for Eva that the prenup was upheld or she may have actually been a desperate housewife.
1 Michael Jordan
This divorce settlement is insane just because of the money that was awarded. Jordan recorded the largest celebrity divorce settlement of all time and it makes sense, as he is the best player to have ever played the game. Combining his salary from the NBA, money from shoe endorsements and the profits from the Air Jordan brand, it makes sense that he coughed up a lot.
Jordan gave up an estimated $168 million due to the divorce settlement, which is not too much since he’s approximated to be worth $650 million. In typical retrospective action, Jordan insisted on a prenup in his marriage to Cuban-American model Yvette Prieto. It seems that everyone makes mistakes, even the mighty Michael Jordan. The difference between him and everyone else is that his costed him $168 million.