15 Athletes Who Look Radically Different Now

Nick Dimengo@@itsnickdimengoFeatured ColumnistApril 22, 2014

15 Athletes Who Look Radically Different Now

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    Ross D. Franklin

    Whether it's getting more jacked or really letting themselves go, there have been several athletes who have had major body transformations over the years.

    And since some of them have been pretty insane—making the athlete appear like a completely different person at timesI just needed to give you a few that will have you wondering what they did to themselves.

Sammy Sosa

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    Diane Bondareff

    Remember the great home run race of 1998 and how then Chicago Cubs outfielder Sammy Sosa became a national hero?

    Yeah, that seems like a long time ago these days, doesn't it?

    After retiring from baseball in 2007, Sosa not only seems destined to be locked out of the Hall of Fame for presumed performance-enhancing drug use, but he has also been bleaching his skin, giving him an appearance most fans might be baffled at.

Chris Andersen

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    William Sallaz/Getty Images

    Does this Chris Andersen look like the version of "Birdman" we know so well these days?

    Not so much.

    The Miami Heat forward has undergone one of the most extreme makeovers of any athlete since entering the NBA in 2001, ditching the clean-cut look and adding a unique hairstyle, bushy beard and tattoos.

Lolo Jones

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    Al Bello/Getty Images

    OK, so thanks to her pretty face, there's a good chance most sports fans would recognize two-sport Olympian Lolo Jones.

    Still, seeing how much muscle weight she packed on for the Winter Olympics earlier this year to compete in bobsled makes her a little less petite than she looks while in a tight track outfit.

    Either way, Lolo's still a total babe.

Steve Francis

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    Pat Sullivan

    Former NBA shooting guard Steve Francis may have made three All-Star Games in his nine-year career, but these days Francis looks like he's been busy getting socked in the face as a boxer.

    Just take a look at him in this picture from China earlier this year and you'll see why he might not be as recognizable as he was just a few years ago.

    Not sure what Francis has been doing since leaving the league, but he may want to take it easy.

Tonya Harding

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    Image via YouTube

    Yes, Tonya Harding was actually a figure skater before being a boxer and a somewhat forgotten athlete.

    Seeing how one has to be in good shape to maneuver themselves around the ice for a routine, it's a good thing Harding isn't attempting to do anything near that these days—because she's not exactly in the best figure skating shape anymore.

Brian Wilson

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    Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images

    Most baseball fans only know current Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Brian Wilson as a shaggy-haired long-beard.

    But during his rookie season of 2006, Wilson was just your normal-looking dude who was most comfortable rocking a thin beard.

    Seeing how he looks today, he's gone through quite the transformation.

Mike Tyson

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    Evan Agostini

    Former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson has had a few different body transformations since he last stepped into the ring.

    Going from a giant meatball when he starred in The Hangover to looking a bit more svelte these days thanks to a massive weight loss, who really knows what Iron Mike's physique will look like this time next year?

    Honestly, the only way a fan might be able to recognize him is from his ridiculous face tattoo.

Bryce Harper

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    Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

    It might not be as obvious as some of the other athletes on this list, but current Washington Nationals All-Star outfielder Bryce Harper has seen his body change over the past few months.

    Getting jacked up before the 2014 season, Harper was a complete meathead all winter, spending hours in the weight room to try and increase his power numbers.

    We'd all recognize him, but he's just a little bit more cut up now.

Magic Johnson

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    Charlie Neibergall

    Former Los Angeles Lakers great and current Los Angeles Dodgers part-owner Magic Johnson has had a ton of success since walking away from the basketball court—and he looks like he has had a ton of meals, too.

    Johnson is one of the nicest and most successful professional athletes in history, but the dude doesn't look like he even played a minute in a pro sport thanks to the current weight he's packing.

CC Sabathia

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    Pat Sullivan

    Sometimes, athletes think that it's necessary to change a few things in their diet in order to maintain the longevity it takes for an upcoming season.

    That's what seems to have happened with New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia, who showed up to spring training this year looking like a string bean compared to his former self.

    Odder than Sabathia looking so tiny is the fact he was trying to deny he ever lost any weight—though, technically, he may have kept the weight after putting on muscle and cutting the fat.

Diego Maradona

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    Luca Bruno

    Much like a few other guys on this list, former Argentine soccer great Diego Maradona has finally gotten himself into shape after letting himself go following his retirement from the game.

    Standing at just 5'5", Maradona did himself a favor by finally losing a ton of weight a few years ago, and he appears to be a lot healthier now than when he was leading his native country's national team as head coach.

    I applaud him, so let's just hope he keeps it off.

Brett Favre

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    Image via YouTube

    Remember when future Hall of Famer Brett Favre was a quarterback?

    He doesn't look like he has been busy tossing footballs around these days, appearing more like he's been tossing logs with his bare hands.

    Seen a few months ago with a burly beard and a forearm vein that made it look like he could kick anyone's butt in an arm-wrestling match, Favre is a beast nowadays.

Antone Davis

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    Every NFL offensive lineman is meant to be big, but former player Antone Davis allowed his weight to increase a bit too much, and at one point, he tipped the scales at nearly 450 pounds!

    So what did he do to help himself? Davis competed on The Biggest Loser in 2012, losing weight at ease to get down to 245 pounds.

    Since his weight loss, many NFL fans could confuse him for someone who was busy running around at a skill position rather than a former lineman.  

     

Barry Bonds

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    Gene J. Puskar

    Barry Bonds doesn't look like the All-Time Home Run King*, does he?

    While Bonds belted 762 homers over the course of his career, these days he looks more fit than he ever did during his playing days—which is actually saying something.

    Bonds may have been on steroids in the 2000s, but the dude looks a lot more toned and healthy in his current form.

Alan Faneca

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    Want to know who nearly no NFL fan would recognize? Former offensive lineman Alan Faneca.

    After the nine-time All-Pro player showed up to the New Orleans Marathon earlier this year looking like he had been competing on the pavements for the past 15 years, it's no wonder Faneca lands in my top spot.

    Considering how tiny he has become, maybe he's using his old NFL jersey as a blanket to stay warm, because there's no way he can fit into it now.