Talk about bringing home the gold! Beijing’s eight-time gold medalist, Michael Phelps, is rumored to be seeing two golden ladies: U.S. Swimmer Amanda Beard and British Fashion model Lily Donaldson. Donaldson is a top model and replaced Kate Moss as one of the faces for Burberry. He really can’t lose with either lady. In addition to being a world-class swimmer, Amanda has appeared on the sexy pages of Playboy. Before the 2004 Olympics, the charismatic 23-year-old said, “I haven’t got a girlfriend and I can’t do the kind of things all my friends are doing as college students.”
If the rumors are true (when would he have fit them both in?), then Phelps is making up for lost time. [Photos: Getty Images]
Related Content: Top 10 Hotties Of The 2008 Olympics
Shaquille O’Neal and wife Shaunie have reconciled after he filed for divorce in September.
“Neither one of us could probably answer why we were getting one in the first place,” Shaunie told the Associated Press on Thursday.
Shaq, who in June blamed former Lakers teammate Kobe Bryant for the demise of his marriage in a disparaging rap, filed papers last year stating that Shaunie was “secretive” with her finances while she claimed Shaq had caused her “emotional pain and embarrassment.”
Shaunie continued, “Things have been going so great, that someone actually had to remind us that ‘Hey, you do remember those papers are still there.’ Literally, it was days ago. So, we’ve agreed that before we leave Florida in a few days we’ll make sure that that’s gone away.”
Shaq and Shaunie married in a lavish ceremony in 2002 and have four children together. They also each have one child from previous relationships. [Photo:Getty Images]
10. Amanda Beard
In the 2008 Summer Olympics, Amanda Beard may be remembered more for the naked posters of her anti-fur campaign than for swimming. The two-time Olympic gold medalist and U.S. team captain failed to advance out of preliminaries in the 200-meter breaststroke, despite being the defending Olympic champion in that event. If Amanda’s swimming career is on the wane, the 26-year-old is hot enough to fall back on modeling: She’s already posed for Playboy, Sports Illustrated and FHM.
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The Spanish Olympic committee so didn’t need this. Spanish sports fans have come under fire in recent years for the incessant “monkey chants” hurled at black soccer players, and British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton even had to deal with taunts from race attendees in blackface earlier this year. Now the country’s men’s basketball team—including LA Laker Pau Gasol—has paid questionable tribute to the Beijing Olympics in this photo, taken from an ad for SEUR, a Spanish courier company (the women’s team got in on it too). If Spain seriously hopes to host the Olympics in eight to twelve years, they might want to sponsor some sensitivity classes and crack down on this bullshit. [Guardian via Gawker]
Smokin’ hot Olympic swimmer Amanda Beard ripped off her one piece and posed for an anti-fur campaign for animal rights group PETA.
Beard was originally scheduled to present the photo at a Beijing hotel Wednesday, but Reuters reported that authorities prevented that event, citing “safety” reasons. The 2004 200m breaststroke champion unveiled the photo, which features her fully nude, with her hand strategically placed, above the words “Be comfortable in your own skin. Don’t wear fur.”
The former Playboy covergirl is indeed comfortable in her own skin, telling reporters, “I go to the office in a swimsuit, so for me to shed a few more pieces of clothing isn’t a real big deal for me. I’ve done Playboy. I’m fully comfortable with my body and who I am”
Dennis Rodman forgot to pay his registration – for a year and a half! The former NBA star let a lady friend borrow his Mercedes S600 on Saturday and while joyriding in West Hollywood, the cops pulled her over for having no tags. Dennis’ rep told TMZ that he thought his business manager paid the bill a long time ago, and he is ready to fix the situation.
This isn’t the Worm’s first problem paying bills. Last month, he was served a notice of unpaid tax liens totalling $400,000.
Dennis is a busy guy. Between entertaining strippers and other important activities, no wonder the Worm can’t find time to get his finances in order. [Photo: Getty Images]
From the Department of Bright Ideas: apparently Jessica Simpson keeps things hot with footballing boyfriend Tony Romo by setting up her webcam and performing sexy stripteases. The Sun is reporting that when the Dallas quarterback and the singer are apart, Jess strips down to keep her man interested. “Jess has no problem showing Tony her favourite ‘PUSSYCAT DOLLS’ routine. She will dance in front of her camera until she makes her man happy,” a source tells the UK tabloid. Apparently though, she’s paranoid about Tony letting his buddies check out the footage. He sounds like a keeper, Jess.
While we’re sure that the source of this tale is fairly questionable, we do know Jessica has a penchant for stripping to her skivvies. Jessica has performed numerous times with the Pussycat Dolls, and while married to Nick Lachey, performed a striptease for his birthday. [Photo: WireImage]
As the first NBA player drafted right out of high school, Kobe Bryant was living the epitome of a perfect life — Prom with Brandy! Hot teenage wife! $40 million a year in pay and endorsements! — when he suddenly and stupidly f*cked up all his fame and fortune in an instant. On July 18, 2003, while in Colorado for surgery, Kobe banged a 19-year-old former cheerleader working at his hotel. Shortly after the incident she came forward and charged the Lakers star with sexual assault, throwing a wrench into his perfect world.
Bryant admitted to the adultery, and — in the most pathetic and pricey attempt at an apology ever — bought his wife a $4 million 8-carat diamond ring so she could wear his shame on her finger. Everything from the victim’s semen-stained panties to Kobe’s kinky fetishes (such as grabbing the victim’s neck while penetrating her from behind, then asking permission to ejaculate on her face) was fair game in the trial. But the baller denied the charges of assault, and the case was dropped when the victim refused to testify. She later brought a civil suit against Kobe, which was “resolved to the satisfaction of both parties.” In other words, she got some cash ya’ll!
As the scandal dust settled, Kobe’s star rose again thanks to his MVP status and his feud with former Lakers teammate Shaquille O’Neal — and, of course, that massive diamond ring.
A great fury gripped America in 1910 after boxer Jack Johnson became the first undisputed black heavyweight champion of the world. In those unenlightened times, a desegregated fight was unheard of. But after years of dodging Johnson’s challenges, white champ James J. Jeffries came out of retirement “for the sole purpose of proving that a white man is better than a Negro.”
When the pair squared off in Reno, the crowd chanted “Kill the nigger” and the ringside band played “All Coons Look Alike to Me.” And then Jeffries threw in the towel in the 15th round. When the news broke, riots and lynchings around the U.S. claimed the lives of at least 20 blacks and two whites.
Johnson was hounded out of the country for marrying a white woman in 1911, lost his title in Cuba in 1915, and spent the remainder of his life as the kind of fallen spectacle we now call “Mike Tyson.” Racism, as ever, remains the hardest palooka to keep down. — Charles Bottomley
After the jump, watch a clip of Jack Johnson‘s 1909 fight.
In 2007, Atlanta Falcons star quarterback Michael Vick was busted for running a dog-fighting ring in Surry County, Virginia. It was alleged that Vick and his associates organized bouts at the Bad Newz Kennels, bet on the fights — and executed the dogs.
The nation was divided. Dog lovers were appalled to learn that canines had apparently been hanged, drowned, and even electrocuted. Sympathizers argued that Vick and his fellow defendants had grown up in a culture that condoned the blood sport. Like in most debates, there were no easy answers.
Angling for a light sentence, Vick pleaded guilty, swearing that he’d never a) gambled on the bouts, or b) killed any dogs. But during sentencing, he ran into trouble when a drug test turned up traces of marijuana in his blood. He was sentenced to 23 months in prison.
This didn’t sit well with the Falcons, who in 2004 had signed Vick to a 10-year contract worth $160 million. Vick has been suspended by the NFL, and ordered to pay back the Falcons a portion of his earnings. In July 2008, Vick filed for bankruptcy. — Charles Bottomley