Before Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake came along, we didn’t know what to call it when an athlete’s basketball shorts got pulled down, or their swimming suit got tugged by an overzealous water polo opponent. But now we do. We call them athlete wardrobe malfunctions.
Of course, in the olden days, athlete wardrobe malfunctions were rare. Athletes didn’t wear uniforms made of space-age fabrics designed by NASA. They wore things made out of wool, cotton, and polyester, and they fit in such a way—not too tight, but not too loose—that everybody’s junk pretty much always stayed in the trunk.
This is not the case today. Many athletes now wear skin-tight getups made of delicate fabrics designed to reduce wind resistance. And the one’s who don’t have uniforms so baggy it’s a wonder they keep their various body parts concealed at all. As a result, today’s athletes have bits and pieces of themselves popping out all the time
Today, we’re going to take a look at 50 of the greatest athlete wardrobe malfunctions of all time, all of them made possible by some combination of flimsy outfits, freak mishaps, or bulging physiques. Technically the images are all safe for work. However, we cannot guarantee your boss will approve, so exercise some caution.
Drexel's Daryl McCoy found out the hard way that there was a reason basketball shorts used to be so small and tight. (Much harder to inadvertently pull down.)
Figure skaters wear low-cut outfits that are basically sculpted around their bodies. Wardrobe malfunctions are bound to happen.
Figure Skating Costume: Problematic
Maybe it would be a good idea to wear something a little more sturdy while playing PROFESSIONAL TENNIS?
Venus Breaks a Strap
The funny thing is, Gronk will gladly show his butt to pretty much anyone. All you have to do is ask.
I'm thinking the split in his suit probably created a little extra drag for American swimmer Ricky Berens.
So Much for Streamlining
Wardrobe malfunctions are shockingly rare for a sport that shows as much skin as beach volleyball. This one from Kerri Walsh about as extreme as it gets.
The women's Judo competition at the 2012 London Summer Games got off to an interesting start when this happened to Mongolia's Urantsetseg Munkhbat.
The thing about all those high-tech lycra-spandex undergarments basketball players where these days is, there's no friction. So are you have to do is look at those baggy shorts the wrong way and they slip right off.
Water polo is a much more physical sport than people realize. Underneath the water, pretty much anything goes—pushing, kicking, elbowing and, yes, lot's of grabbing.
Water Polo Mishap
When it comes to the Lingerie Football League, t's actually hard to call them malfunctions. I'm pretty sure they're supposed to happen.
Lingerie Football: Invented for Wardrobe Malfunctions
"Take your time pulling your pants back up, Travis Benjamin!" –Female NFL Fans
The look on the other guy's face pretty much says it all.
Um, Aaron McClean?
At the 2009 Estoril Open in Portugal, the umpire asked Czech tennis player Iveta Benesova to change her shorts because they were too small. So she changed them right there on the court.
You can call "being too small" a malfunction, right?
Anyway, yes, we're serious. This actually happened. And it wouldn't be the last time, either...
These Shorts Are Too Damn Small!
I have no idea whether a nosey umpire thought Jelena Jankovic's short were too small, or whether she just felt the ones she was wearing just weren't working for her. All I know is, back in 2008, this really happened.
Jelena Jankovic Underwear Situation
Jelena's wardrobe problems have not been limited to her underpants. At one event her bra strap broke and she had to enlist the help of a matronly female fan to fix it.
Jelena Jankovic Bra Problem
Again, the problem with high-tech undergarments and baggy basketball shorts rears its ugly head. Though I'm sure our female readers would argue it's not ugly at all.
Blake Gets Pantsed
Sometimes your shirt just tears in half. What are you gonna do?
Didier Drogba's Nip Slip
Looks like this Chelsea legend was trying to take off his warmup pants but pulled his shorts down along with them...which is basically my worst fear every time I go to the gym.
Didier Drogba's Pants Slip
Holy moly those suits may need a bit more coverage.
Atomic Polo Wedgie
When you're trying to bring down a 6'3" New Zealander built like a brick house, you hold on to whatever you can for dear life.
Yeah, this one we had to obscure. Just too much bare ass to call it SFW.
Another Rugby Tackle
Italy's Flavia Zoccari shows us that men aren't the only ones who experience problems with those wacky full-body suits. Maybe the companies that make them need to rethink the seems.
Maybe They Should Reinforce the Seems?
If you thought baggy shorts were a problem in basketball, just imagine if basketball players wore cleats that can easily catch on fabric.
Neymar Gets Pantsed
WWE Diva/Executive Stephanie McMahon is a voluptuous woman, and there have been times where the outfit she's worn in the ring failed to contain her.
Boss's Daughter Puts on a Show
If it's a partial butt, that's okay. But when we're talking full moon, we've gotta cover that thing up a bit.
Sorry ladies. Don't want to corrupt the youth.
Devin Hester Booty Show
It seems Arsenal's Nicklas Helenius misunderstood when he heard a friend say, "you can't score if you don't pull your pants down."
Premier League Pantsing
I would have thought sports bras are absolute essential for female runners. But apparently not.
Tiny outfits + camera with long lenses= Rate R crotch shots on Monday Night Raw
Eve Torres: Up Close and Personal
Come on, Jennifer Benitez. There are kids watching. Sweet, innocent kids who take screen shots any time a nipple appears for a fraction of a second.
The best part about this Dayton kid losing his shorts are the reactions from the Boise State cheerleaders, who were clearly impressed.
March Madness No Pants Party
DeMarco Murray was not an easy man to bring down in 2014. In fact, the only way anybody could stop him was by pulling his pants down.
Nipple pop out so frequently in the LFL—what with the skimpy bikini tops and the tackling—that some players choose to wear pasties.
Some, on the other hand, like to keep things au naturale.
LFL Double Slip
Oh my God, Tommy Kelly, what the hell just happened?
What Is Going on Here?
Remember when LSU's Logan Stokes tried to pull Reggie Ragland off a pile by his belt only to discover Reggie Ragland wasn't wearing a belt?
Yeah, that was funny.
The Jock Strap Snapper
In 2013, WWE Diva Brie Bella suffered a minor wardrobe malfunction—but not while wrestling in a skimpy outfit. She was wearing a regular dress, and she was clapping.
Bella Twins, Part 1
Almost one year to the day after her sister, Brie, accidentally exposed a piece of herself to the world, Nikki Bella did the exact same thing. Only this time, yes, she was actually wrestling.
Bella Twins, Part 2
Ghana's Jordan Ayew showed off his fancy underwear (and sizeable package) to the world during the 2014 FIFA World Cup thanks to a grabby Portuguese defender.
World Cup Junk Slip
There are wardrobe malfunctions, and then there are mysterious wardrobe disappearances.
This one, obviously, falls into the latter category.
Pants down! I repeat, pants down!
Diego Costa Loses His Shorts
No skimpy blue dress was going to contain this voluptuous figure skater.
Gives"Figure" Skating a New Meaning
If you were wondering what Ric Flair's bare, 66-year-old ass looks like...that's f---ed up. But here it is anyway, thanks to the Hulkster.
Russian ice dancer Ektarina Rubleva suffered a MAJOR wardrobe malfunction during the European Championships back in 2009. But what did she do? She sucked it up and finished her routine.
Now that's a pro.
The Show Must Go On
This LFL tackle left little to the imagination, but we added a little so your imagination gets a workout.
Well that's embarrassing.
I say if you grab a guy's shorts in such away that his junk is left flopping around in plain view, that's an automatic red card in my book.
FYI, that's Borussia Dortmund midfielder Sebastien Kehl with his dong hanging out.
Yep, this really happened. WWE Diva Melina really did expose her undercarriage to the world. We can't prove it here, because we're trying to be SFW. But you know how Google works. See for yourself.