Out With A Whimper: The Saddest Sports Retirements

Brett Favre's interception last night not only cost his team a trip to the Super Bowl, but may have ended his career. But he's not the only great to go out with an L.

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Complex Original

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The storybook ending to Brett Favre's career would've gone like this: Mr. Funball leads his Minnesota Vikings to a clutch win in the NFC Championship, then presides over a Super Bowl demolition of the Indianapolis Colts. In the victorious post-SB locker room, Favre wins MVP honors, publicly defecates on a Packers banner, and then returns to Mississippi for a month-long Vicodin bender during which a half-dozen teams court him for yet another "comeback." Alas, that isn't how it unfolded. Favre's decidedly un-clutch 4th-quarter INT last night may be—we hope—his last play as a professional football player. Hate him or hate him, that's a shitty way to go out.

'Course, Favre isn't the only sports superstar to end his career with a whimper. From Muhammad Ali to Michael Jordan, here's our list of great athletes who left on a losing note...


LAST GAME: October 13, 1973
FAREWELL FAIL: After a 22-year, HOF career which included two MVPs and over 20 All-Star game selections, the "Say Hey Kid" retired as a New York Met after the 1973 World Series. Ending your career on the big stage—not bad, huh? But Mays only saw seven at- bats during the Series (in which he got two hits) and started only once as the Mets went down in seven games to Oakland. After stumbling in the outfield, Mays said, "Growing old is just a helpless hurt." Is it us or does everything the Mets touch turn to shit?


FINAL MATCH: July 9, 2006
FAREWELL FAIL: Zidane's final moment on the world soccer stage was stupid, sad, funny, and badass at the same time. We ride with you, Zizou!


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