For some reason, the populace has always shown an interest in the personal lives of renowned athletes. We've advanced since the time of the Roman Colosseum to where we now have hundreds of them scattered about in the form of boxing, MMA, and even pro wrestling (though it's scripted). We no longer make them fight lions or allow them to fight to the death (sigh), but we reward them with riches beyond their wildest dreams. The spirit of a fighter athlete is somewhat different than that of others. His sport is simple and straightforward—beat the living hell out of the person in front of them. In fact, football is quite similar when it comes to some positions—but only some.
Whether it's everyone crowded near the jungle gym at recess watching a school-yard bully get a dose of humility in the form of repeated blows to the face or someone launching a shoe at George Bush Junior during a press conference, America loves violence, and we love the people who give it to us. Here are 14 fighters who drive expensive cars and 4 who drive relatively cheap cars.
18 Wladimir Klitschko's Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG
Watching this Ukrainian heavyweight champ in action is like watching one of those "Wild Police Chase" TV shows; you know how it's going to end for the other guy, but you can't look away. You want to watch his car roll over or the cop nail him with a taser. Watching this guy's career in highlights is amazing. He's a damn machine with a Jedi sleep punch. One after another, his opponents fall.
This Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG in his collection has over 500 HP and an average price tag of around $130,000.
This car actually seems worth the investment—if you can punch enough people in the face to afford it, that is. Me, personally, I've punched a total of 15 people in the face in the last year alone, and I wasn't paid a dime for any of them.
17 Manny Pacquiao's Ferrari
Another famous Mayweather opponent, Pacquiao lost to Mayweather by a few points, and how the judges decided it, we'll probably never know.
Either way, he gets to feel better about life in this Ferrari 458 Italia, a 7-speed with a 565 HP V8 engine.
This Ferrari is pretty impressive, with a top speed of 210 MPH. One could say you're getting your bang for your buck with this ride. I'm suggesting a million-dollar scenario right here. Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr on the asphalt. His 458 against Mayweather's 458 Spider.
Winner gets to punch the other in the face 5 times and gets a $100 Starbucks card. I would pay to watch this on TV, and all the proceeds can go to a non-profit organization that investigates Las Vegas boxing fraud and corruption.
16 George St-Pierre's Range Rover
The current middleweight champion for UFC, George "Rush" St-Pierre, is a force to be reckoned with. Reportedly, his catalyst for beginning to learn martial arts, Kyokushin Karate, in particular, was to fend off school bullies. When his teacher died, it ignited a driving force in him that we can see to this day. St-Pierre comes from humble beginnings, apparently working as a garbageman for 6 months while in school and working as a bouncer at a club in Montreal. His choice of vehicle is a fine one. With over 200 HP and a reasonable price tag, this luxury SUV is a smart choice of good taste, fit for a king who has nothing to prove outside the ring.
15 Jon "Bones" Jones' Bentley
Who can be arrested for a hit and run involving a pregnant driver and still be loved by America as a UFC Champ? Or test positive for controlled substances, lose one's title in the process, and still be respected by most people? Jon Jones of course.
Even while he was serving out his 18-month probation for the hit and run, he managed to have time (in between AA and community service) to purchase this Bentley Continental GT.
With a reported 567 HP, pregnant women won't even see him coming now! Now, he can whip up and sideswipe them before they even know what's happening. Hope you opted for the full-coverage policy, Jones! Don't forget to blow into the little mouthpiece to start your overpriced and pretentious British-made sedan.
14 Tito Ortiz's Phantom
For a man who continuously seems to crash automobiles, usually involving alcohol or a concrete medium, he seems to purchase more and more expensive vehicles. The UFC bad boy/outlaw apparently has no issues with paying more in insurance payments than the appraised value of most of our homes. Well, maybe not quite that much, but after 3 accidents and given the value of the Phantom above, I would be hard-pressed not to want 5 or 6 grand a month to cover collision damage. Somehow, he makes it work while he's going through a reportedly bitter divorce with Jenna Jameson, the former adult-film star. Maybe that's where the drinking started from. Relationships will make you drink, ladies and gentlemen. I know from experience.
13 Randy Couture's '49 Chevy
Randy Couture, retired UFC & MMA fighter, is alright with me. No, I didn't alcoholically bump into him at a house party in Vegas, where he resides. It's because any man who drives a '49 Chevy has already proven that he's (1) a real man, (2) able to shave his back with a straight razor, and (3) willing to help you move. The metallic silver paint job could have you staring at it like an overhyped solar eclipse if you're not careful. This thing, for the record, is not overhyped.
The original chrome grille from 1949 is in showroom condition; the 6.2-liter V8 that belts out 430 HP is a force to be reckoned with.
This thing is a fully restored and upgraded relic from our past when strength and hard work got s&$# done and when crying left you with a wet face and a hungry family. "We are not now that strength that in old days moved earth and heaven" is an excerpt from Alfred Lord Tennyson. This truck is material proof of that.
12 John Cena's Old-School Fleet
One of America's favorite WWE stars John Cena doesn't like many things made after 1971. He has a massive collection of old muscle cars and a handful of more modern vehicles. The WWE superstar gets my respect with sheer good taste.
A 1970 Plymouth Superbird, a '66 Hemi Charger, a 2006 Dodge Viper—this man knows good cars.
You won't find any overpriced prissy shiny quarter-million-dollar automobiles here, just pure American muscle. Many are unaware he made a rap album a few years back, and straight from the lyrics, he says,
"A man's measured by the way that he thinks
Not clothing lines, ice links, leather and minks
I spent 20 plus years seekin' knowledge of self
So for now, Marc Predka's livin' life for wealth"
Marc Predka is his first cousin whom he collaborated with on the album. Based on his automobile tastes, I would say Cena is true to his words.
11 Dave Bautista's Hot Car
A lot can be said about Bautista. Sure, he made it as a professional wrestler on WWE, but he then went to MMA then back to WWE, all in the midst of becoming a force in Hollywood. Aside from his very expensive car collection, Bautista is an interesting guy. Reportedly, he has a massive collection of metal lunch boxes, is a registered Democrat, is a published author, and claims he grew up very poor. It makes sense that most of his vehicles shout luxurious success. Perhaps, for him, it's not about driving the same cars the rich and powerful do, but showing them what these cars can actually do with the right driver.
10 Conor McGregor's Notorious
Conor has so many high-end luxury cars, won't list them here. Let's say he likes his presence made known. After having his fight with Mayweather Jr. end by the interesting behavior of the Vegas referees and judges, he has every reason to flex his chest to the world. Though the judges called it for Mayweather, any man who's ever been in a fight knew who the real winner was in that match. Ready to come out of retirement for a rematch in the UFC ring, Mayweather? Didn't think so. Keep on living large, Dublin's golden son!
9 Bill Goldberg's "Goldberg Garage"
What can be said about the former football player, wrestler, and actor? He has immaculate taste in vehicles. This is a 1970 Super Boss 429 Mustang. Only two have ever been made, and this is the only one in existence. We must assume the other was destroyed in a wreck because this thing has 1,200 HP under (or over, I should say) the hood. He also has a '65 Shelby Cobra replica, a '69 Dodge Hemi Charger, and a '70 Challenger R/T. Not much else can be said. When an artist creates a fine piece, one can only look on with admiration and respect.
8 Mayweather's Luxury And Sports Car Fleet
This one is a sore spot for me and anyone else who watched the Mayweather-Mcgregor fight live on pay-per-view. Mayweather never considered a fight in the UFC ring, so Conor brought the fight to the boxing ring. The body language said it all at the beginning of the match: Conor was the animal, and Mayweather was the dancing actor with a slightly suspicious string of luck. Why was Mayweather given 4-5 rounds that no logical human being would've ever given to him? Why was the fight called after less than two seconds of Conor being on the ropes? It's Vegas people. God forbid you let the best fighter win, especially with +300 odds. Well, Vegas pulled off the hoax, and then Mayweather announced his retirement afterward (conveniently). So, Mayweather is worse than Paris Hilton in his spending and pretentious behavior. He owns so many cars that he probably has very little knowledge of them and doesn't know how to drive them, so I won't list them all. Countless Rolls-Royces, Mercedes-Benzes, etc.—I see in his future bad investments, bad business decisions, and bad bankruptcy. Thumbs down to Mayweather's lack of fighting ability and simpleton spending habits. May you discover incurable flesh-eating bacteria in your Raisin-Bran, you sell-out!
7 Lennox Lewis's Sapphire
Most people know him as the man who knocked out Tyson in the 8th round. True, but he wasn't fighting Tyson in his prime.
Considered one of the greatest fighters in the world, the now-retired Lewis gets around in this 6.75-Liter V8 360 HP Bentley Azure.
Watching this man's highlights is incredible. Like a machine, he swings and brings them down hard and fast. Then comes a few delayed reactions, a moment to realize they had just rung the bell. One after the other they were defeated, stumbling with a look of confusion then falling. This is to one of the greatest fighters to have ever entered the ring. Hope you're enjoying retirement.
6 Iron Mike's Benz
Okay, we all know the limits Tyson pushed for extravagance in the '80s and the '90s. We all saw him bite off Holyfield's ear and appear one day in public with a massive tribal tattoo on his face. However, it seems the man has made peace with those demons that helped him become the youngest heavyweight champ ever. After losing his 4-year-old daughter to an accident, Tyson said, "I had to grow up" on The Larry King Live Show. Interestingly, Larry and Tyson are from the same neighborhood in Brooklyn: Brownsville. "You had to bust out of that neighborhood," says Larry in the interview. Now, Tyson spends his days with his wife and daughter.
5 Chuck Liddell's BMW
This is the man who knocked out Randy Couture and Tito Ortiz. Alongside Couture, Chuck is considered one reason MMA went into the mainstream. Known as the "Ice Man," he was inducted into the UFC hall of fame in 2009. His car? A 2013 BMW 760Li. With a V12, 320 HP, and an 8-speed automatic shiftable transmission, this car packs a lot of punch. Who else wants to see a three-way race between Liddell, Couture, and Ortiz? I'll tell you how it plays out—Ortiz crashes like he's used to, and Couture and Liddell bank back and forth for position; Couture in his '49 Ford, Liddell in his BMW. If any man can make a German vehicle beat American muscle, it's this man. That's a hard feat.
Fighters Who Drive Cheap Cars
4 Hulk Hogan's "Hulkamania" Camaro
He body-slammed Andre The Giant back in the early '90s. Yeah, and won the hearts and minds of anyone who wasn't a communist in an era of American wrestling that was the golden age. His wrestling persona stood up for what's right and taught kids that drugs were bad, and when he rips his 75-cent yellow and red shirt off, someone's about to get beat down. So, of course, his Chevy Camaro is yellow and red as well. It's an American icon, like him, and isn't pretentious in the least. I can see him driving around Cali, maybe Sunset Boulevard, smacking joints out of kids' mouths, and body-slamming smack dealers. Long live America's favorite wrestling hero!
3 Ronda Rousey's Honda Accord
As a man who's made a car his mobile home, I have to really respect this girl. She went from sleeping in this 2005 Honda Accord to having a net worth of around $12 million. She truly is the proverbial rags-to-riches story. When she listed the Honda on eBay for $3,000, she never thought the bidding would go over $20,000 and sell with all the superglued action figures and writing in the vehicle like an old cast for a leg. I guess the moment you know you're a celebrity is when your old beater sells for more than it did brand new, simply because it's yours. Much respect, Ronda. You've earned every bit of the success you now have.
Now, to more serious issues, how do you feel about dating writers who currently sleep in their car?
2 Stone Cold's '95 Ford Bronco
For those of us of a certain age, we remember that in the midst of chaotic drama and corruption in the ring, when you hear the glass break and the heavy guitar rhythm, that's Steve Austin's theme and that people were about to be put in their place. For the most part, his real personality seems to have an uncanny resemblance to his character. He keeps things, for the most part, simple, and he doesn't bite his tongue. So, it's no surprise to me that one of his favorite vehicles is a 1995 Ford Bronco. "What does Steve Austin have in common with O.J Simpson?" you may ask. Well, they both ride around with firearms, of course! Alas, law enforcement, you need not fear Mr. Austin. Only Vince McMahon should take heed.
"AND THAT'S THE BOTTOM LINE, CAUSE STONE COLD SAID SO"
1 Triple H's Hummer
He's the wrestler that went full corporate, marrying Stephanie McMahon and serving on the board of directors for WWE. Anyone who remembers him from the '90s remembers the other members of D'Generation X: Chyna the bodybuilding Goliath of a woman who became a Centerfold for Playboy and The "Road Dogg" Jessie James who went on to have his own TV show and marry Sandra Bullock (lucky b*stard) then divorce her. Even Mike Tyson was a member at one time with these brigands. Somewhere in America, a yellow hummer makes a bend in the road, being driven by the man who crossed his arms over his crotch and yelled, "S&%$ IT!"
Sources: motortrend.com; Wikipedia.com